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Subject: RE: [docbook-apps] Fwd: Thanks!

Hi all.

Being new to this list as well, I'd like to join in Mary in thanking the authors and the community for the DocBook stylesheets that have proved to be a most versatile toolbox for many years now!

We use them for producing PDF files in large volumes, deploying DocBook as an intermediate format generated from our in-house XML dialect. Now we want to step up and replace our HTML offering with WebHelp. As far as I understand it and tested it, the WebHelp stylesheet works well for a single DocBook file. But here’s the catch: our documentation sets often consist of many “modules” resulting in as many DocBook files (and as many PDF files), but to produce a single WebHelp for all of them it seems the only way is to wrap all DocBook files into a single <set>. Is that correct? Because I feel this is not really an option, since some sets comprise several thousand pages and we might run into serious performance trouble.
Alternatively I thought about enriching our current HTML production by pointing the webhelpindexer to a completely pre-generated HTML set. This way also has some considerable drawbacks: we would have to make many changes to our stylesheets to make this WebHelp feature fit for HTML (and there’s the navigation help as well). On the other hand, we forego producing DocBook, but, as said, we do so for getting PDF out of the door anyway...

Personally, I’d favor to deploy the DocBook stylesheets, since I know my ways around them, but leveraging the stylesheets from the module to a set level without using the <set> mechanism looks to me to be way beyond trivial. Or has this been done already?

Could anybody please point me to a good solution in this situation?

(And, Mary, yes, I'm quite obviously interested in your WebHelp experiences as well...)

Thanks a lot in advance,

-----Original Message-----
From: Mary Tabasko [mailto:tabasko@telerama.com]
Sent: Freitag, 5. September 2014 05:36
To: docbook-apps@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: [docbook-apps] Fwd: Thanks!

Hi, gang.

I just joined this list, and I wanted to start off by offering a HUGE thanks to everyone who maintains the DocBook Stylesheets and the related resources.

(I accidentally sent this message to the docbook list; this is a resend to the right address.)

We have been using them where I work for years, and we would not be able to do the things we've done without them! Over the years, I've been asked to do some things that I was not sure would be possible, but the stylesheets have provided a terrific basis for a bunch of crazy things.

So thanks!

We are just finishing up a project to move some large documents we produced as Microsoft Help (CHM) output to the Webhelp format.
We've been trying to replace MSHelp (the compiler is getting harder and harder to keep running), but were having no luck finding a suitable replacement, until we stumbled on the Webhelp transforms.

We did run into some non-trivial issues and ended up doing a fair amount of work to get what we wanted, but we got very close to our wishlist, and it wouldn't have been possible without the Webhelp transforms. So thanks again.

I didn't want to dump a long list of the issues we had and how we dealt with them, but if anyone is interested, I'd be happy to describe them (and send a screen shot of what we ended up with). Some of it might be useful or informative in relation to a few of the bug/issue reports I've seen on them, but I don't want to offer unsolicited input.

Thanks again! You guys rock!

-- Mary Tabasko

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