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Subject: RE: DOCBOOK-APPS: Docbook for individual layout senseless ?

Docbook was never intended to specify layout, but the structure of a
document.  FO was developed for layout.  Also, Docbook was not designed to
handle the type of data you want to present.  It was designed specifically
for writing technical documentation, not creating lists of customers.
Probably your best solution is to specify your own XML document for storing
the information you want to print, basically an XML database, then write a
stylesheet to transform any document of that type to FO.  That way, if you
later want to change the display, you don't have to go back into the code,
you just re-write the XSL stylesheet that creates the FO.

Here's a possible example of the XML document you would output:

  <name>John Doe</name>
  <description>Description of John Doe</description>
  <name>Elena Jackson</name>
  <description>Description of Elena Jackson</description>

If you have problems or questions, e-mail me directly, as DocBook will
probably not provide an ideal solution.

Jeff Beal
Ansys, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: Holger Prause [mailto:h.prause@gmx.net]
Sent: Thursday, February 07, 2002 12:26 PM
To: docbook-apps@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: DOCBOOK-APPS: Docbook for individual layout senseless ?


I want to discuss the advantage and disadvantag of docbook with u because i
have to descide if i should take FO(without stylesheet) or Docbook(with
stylesheet) as XML Printing document.

Out company has a list of customers which should be printed as a list(with
information to the customer) for our support(for a fast lookup).

The data to the customers comes from a Java Bean.So far so good.
Now i see 2 solution for generating the list(in pdf).

1. I tranform the data to docbook and then i write a stylesheet for that
docbook document

2. I directly tranform the data to FO

When i thought about solution 1 ,i discovered a problem.Imagine i have the
following information(From the JavaBean) about the customer

Name and Decription

I would tranform this to docbook and the resulting docbook document would
like this:

  <para>Name: Customername</para>
  <para>Description: Customerdescription</para>

Now (for example)the name should be red and the description green.But how do
know from which is name and which is Desription, i have only <para></para>
Tags !(the information got lost) I dont want to use any string-functions.

Every docbook has an id attribute.I could use that attribute to identify the

paragraph afterwards but this would mean that every part that should have an

individual layout(sometime just a single word or sentence) must be placed in
own <para></para>Element or in an "indivual" tag(i have to modify the dtd
then).The other thing is that the stylesheet becomes more and more
for every single word that must have an individual color.

So docbook is for individual layout sensless or am i wrong?. I mean companys

like oreilly uses docbook and many documentations were made in docbooc.But
documentations have mostly the same layout(every paragraphs are black, etc.)
it would be usefull to use docbooc then.

Has anyone of u used docbooc yet(in projects) ?

What your opiniom about that ?,

Thank you in advance,


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