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Subject: Re: [docbook-apps] FO processors

Hi Tobias,

On Samstag, 6. Juni 2009, Tobias Anstett [k15t.com] wrote:
> We are currently using Apache FOP and like to switch to a processor
> that is more powerful (e.g. auto-column size table handling).
> Currently I am investigating:
> - XSL Formatter (Antenna House)
> - XEP (RenderX)
> Do you know more processors worth a look? And of course (I know Bob
> uses XEP too) have anybody of you experience with one of the above?

Well, my company uses XEP and we like it very much. It does all the things 
of the FO specification pretty well and is reasonably fast (although 
written in Java).

In the past we've tried Antenna House XSL Formatter (AXF) too. Although it 
offers a native Linux port, is faster than XEP, offers more options, but 
it was a bit too expensive for us. Unfortunatly, from my observations, 
AXF was also not as easy to configure than XEP. Maybe that has changed 
now, but it was not as intuitive than XEP.

If you have to render asian languages, AXF seems to make a better job than 
XEP. Well, AXF is written by a Japanese company that explains it. AXF 
supports SVG and MathML whereas XEP supports only the former. 
Unfortunatly, for AXF, you have to pay extra for the SVG and MathML 
modules, whereas XEP supports SVG out of the box.

Of course there are other (commercial) formatters than the two above. I 
never tried it as most of them run on Windows only. For an overview, find 
more information at the DocBook Wiki, section "FO engines"[1].

Hope that helps, :-)

[1] http://wiki.docbook.org/topic/DocBookPublishingTools

Thomas Schraitle

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