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Subject: Re: Q) Re: DOCBOOK-APPS: Converting from DocBook/SGML to DocBook/XML

At 01:43 PM 12/07/2001 +0100, Sebastian Rahtz wrote:
>Jeffrey_Franks@i-o.com writes:
>  > Does DSSSL work better than Xsl for rendering PDF?
>not really, no. You have a choice of at least 4 tools [1] to render XSL
>FO, and one to render DSSSL. so your chances of success are higher.
>[1] FOP, PassiveTeX, XEP, Antenna House

Just to expand on this from a semi-casual user's standpoint:
1. The XEP and Antenna House products are commercial. I've checked into the 
pricing and they are way out of line for a small business or individual 
consultant's budget. In fact the business models of both companies 
specifically exclude individual price points and focus on corporate or 
server based pricing. Unfortunately, as you might expect, I perceive them 
as being the most functional and easiest to implement and use of the group. 
XEP is Java based and I think Antenna House is a Windows GUI and API 
(ActiveX) tool.

2. PassiveTeX may ultimately the most flexible and powerful environment 
because of its relationship with TeX. You would need to know TeX quite well 
in order to exploit this potential. When last I looked PassiveTeX was 
targeted only at the TEI XML dialect. It's hard to believe there would not 
be a DocBook version around but I'm not aware of it and willing to admit 
ignorance (and accept help) on this count. I'm not sure how difficult it is 
to configure PassiveTeX to the Docbook dialect. It would likely depend on 
how much of docbook you use or need.

3. FOP just seems to move so slowly. It doesn't seem to be a priority with 
the Apache organization. The reasons from this may relate to different 
thread on either this list or the XML-FO list regarding the interests of 
some of the major industry players with respect to FO. FOP is a Jave based 
tool set.

4. DSSSL has always seemed to be "from Mars" to me in spite of its ISO 
standing. I think my perception may be more general and as a consequence 
support for DSSSL has never reached any sort of commercial critical mass. 
(Of course these thoughts have been done to death before and elsewhere.)

Hoping to be corrected and enlightened on any or all of these 
points.                    Regards.                            ...edN

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