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Subject: DocBook XSL and Internationalization


I posted this request yesterday on xsl-list, but Jirka Kosek pointed me here

I'm doing a presentation on various schemas at WritersUA next week, and one
topic I want to address is the internationalization support built into
various open-source tools. I know DocBook XSL has some built-in features
that would aid in localization(autogenerated text assets,
localization-specific attributes). However, to make sure I present the tool
set's strengths and weaknesses correctly, I thought I should ask about
DocBook XSL's current support for localized output. In particular, I'm
interested in knowing how much of the support is mostly implemented, and how
much is available but not fully expressed in the style sheets that ship with
style sheets and rendition tools. 

I've removed the questions that have already been answered, but I'm looking
for a bit more clarity on a few items. I've added more detail as well so you
understand why I'm asking the question. I've looked in the DocBook XSL
guide, and was

- Default fonts
This would be the actual definition in a template, not the inclusion of the
font files themselves in the tools.

While Unicode fonts, can contain all characters, some (perhaps most?) do
not, and sometimes a Unicode font isn't appropriate for an output. Do the
DocBook style sheets take this into consideration and provide separate
locale-specific control for fonts, or is this a customization that would
need to be added to test for specific locales?

- Word/character order for autogenerated components (xrefs, headers and
footers, chapter and appendix numbering)

Items containing autgenerated page numbers, chapter numbers, or other
autogenerated text may vary depending on the syntax of the target language.
Is this already addressed in DocBook XSL?

- Chapter, appendix and list numbering (for those locales that don't use
Arabic numerals)

Are there any other areas of concern that DocBook XSL addresses in part or
in whole? Are there any areas of concern for localizers who work with
DocBook data? 


Bill Burns
Verbum Communications, Inc.
Microsoft Help MVP

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