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Subject: [docbook-apps] website dtd processing on win32

Hi Dan,

> Hi Volker,
> I've been working with DocBook on & off in a WinXP environment for over a
> year now, and after all my search I would say that, no, there is no *free*
> out-of-the-box solution for processing website DocBook documents. There are
> some commercial solutions, but I am loathe to pay $500+ for the tools (esp.
> since the biggest area of concern for me is the editing of DocBook
> documents).
> Here's what I see as critical for getting DocBook accepted & more widely
> used on the Win2K/XP platforms:
> 1) A better (and free) editor of DocBook documents. This is critical for
> authors of the documents.
>     Interestingly, the best article I've seen on creating a good free
> that any non-tech author could use was found on the Microsoft library
> (msdn.microsoft.com). I plan on using it to create my own WYSIHTML editor
> for DocBook & other schema-based documents. (It will be free when it's
> but that probably will take about a year to do, as I would be creating
it on
> my own as a part time task.)

I use vim and dbhelper to write my docbook documents. It's a matter
of taste what kind of editor you use and of course the document size
matters. As larger a document is growing as more assistance you'll
need from your editor to relieve your work. I tried out several
editors but came always back to vim.

> 2) A decent publishing tool chain.
>     Ok. Let's get real. Who wants to use batch files & multi-step,
> non-integrated tools to produce the final output (regardless of the type of
> output wanted)? And how many people *really* want to go to all the
effort of
> correctly setting up environment variables, class paths, Java, catalogs,
> etc. - all to produce their final documents? If tool-chains don't start
> coming out that are easy & one-step for the Windows environment, DocBook
> will remain relegated to a small circle of users.

Do you know Gemdoc? It's not free but it supplies a GUI for processing
docbook documents. This application seems - for me - to move on the "right
Give the trial version a chance to see what I mean. Something like that
should be available for free.

> Just my 2 cents. By the way, don't get me wrong. I love DocBook, and am
> covertly pushing it at my place of employment (a tech school) as the best
> way to do curriculum. If the DocBook community ever got more serious about
> a) creating good free Windows tools (absolutely necessary for wide-spread
> acceptance) and b) integrating DocBook more readily with such items as
> Dublin Core, etc., then they could make a serious bid for de-facto
> curriculum development (especially in the Technical schools). These two
> s are my personal dreams, and as I am able, I will work on them (at least,
> until something better than DocBook comes along, which might happen
> considering the upcoming ratification of xslt2.0, etc.). [additional aside:
> Will there be xslt2.0 stylesheets for DocBook??? I sure hope so!]

Gemdoc[1] and eDE[2] are worth a look but far from being "complete".
Therefore I've registered yesterday pccdf at sourceforge
(pccdf=Pre-Configured Crossplatform Docbook Framework).  I hope we
can create a docbook package based on the standard tools (xalan, fop
etc.) which is easy to setup, easy to handle and can be used in the
same way on win32 and GNU/Linux systems.  Always looking for a
helping hand ;)

Docbook is a tool to get the job done. At the moment it seems at
least to me to be trendy to docbook but not for getting the job
done, only for the satisfaction of attending a technical trend.
Docbook should be used not only adulated.

This phenomenon is well known - like the inner circle of GNU/Linux


[1] http://www.g1c.com/gemdoc/
[2] http://docbook.e-novative.de/

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