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Subject: DOCBOOK-APPS: Word 2000->DocBook Effort

Disclaimer: I'm new to the DocBook and XSLT world so please don't hold me too accountable for my actions!

We have some documentation requirements within our group that are of a fair size - not huge, but significant  enough to require multiple books (as well as eventual profiling).  Most people in our group are not too technically savvy and would not want to delve into DocBook - particularly if it required learning another tool (let alone the cadre of tools supporting DocBook).  This led me to try to come up with a compromise where I could get what I consider the positive capabilities and solid infrastructure of DocBook while still providing a means for our internal users to write documentation.  Here's what I have:

  1. A Word 2000 stylesheet with DocBook-ish styles (a very small subset at the moment) - this is saved as HTM
  2. WH2FO (like tidy/jtidy: strips HTML into a type of XML) to get an XML
  3. XSLT to transform to a valid DocBook XML/SGML
  4. openjade/saxon, etc.
I think I have shown myself that it's a valid concept - it serves to turn MS Word into a pseudo-XML generator.  I have written transformations for section,sect1,sect2,para,simpara,orderedlist,itemizedlist,procedure (step and substep), figure, programlisting, and a handful of character type markups (filename, code, etc - these are easy so I haven't done too many) and maybe a few other block-type elements.  I think callouts will be easy, too.

My question is - do others think this is a valid concept?  If so, would anyone be willing to join forces to move this along?  As I said, I'm a complete novice in this and though what I've done to now works in producing PDFs (other than the insidious extra line in <step>), there are undoubtedly better ways.

Thanks for any feedback -

-- Andy

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