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docbook-apps message

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Subject: win32 app converting docbook to PDF

As a technical writer using docbook some of my clients complained that it
was nice to have the format in xml but that they were unsure of the
usability of the xml without me to "make it happen".  They didn't want to
contact me for any little change and if I was unavailable they were at a
loss of what to do with it.

So, I put together a real simple program for windows that runs the xsl
stylesheets and FOP to export their PDF document.  It includes a java
runtime (jre1.4.2) to run the apache FOP (0.94) software and the docbook xsl
stylesheets (1.72.0).

Anyways, if anyone wanted to try it out feel free, it is a free application
and I would not be able to make docbook text without the great community
support.  There are some great commercial applications out there but I
figured someone new to docbook might like to try it.  There are some sample
docbook files that I was using when testing it.  If anyone else thinks it
could be useful I could roll up a linux and macosx version too.

PS, I do have to figure out how to update the main window if you are running
a large job.  For example, running a 160page book with a whole lot of
screenshots through it will take about 5 minutes and... well.. there is no
pretty bar saying it is working hard.  Smaller documents can be run in
seconds.  I am using Realbasic to write it which has xsl transformations
built in.

Here are some limitations to keep in mind (aside from it being a work in
progress :) 
* modular documents are supported when listed as entities
* relative file references must use "file://"
* a root book element must have an id if the page links are going to work.
* currently XML files should be put in their own directory in the Njin
* docbook 5 is currently not supported

Aside from any bug fixes I wanted to add the new FOP support for PDF
metadata.  I was impressed that I could now include Title, Author and
Keywords using fo:declarations.  I do not think the docbook stylesheets
supports that itself though.

The link is http://software.sirkevi.com/download.php?view.12

Shawn Giese

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