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Subject: DOCBOOK: Exchange or Full CALS Table Model?

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Years ago, the DocBook TC decided that in DocBook V5, the Exchange
Table Model[1] rather than full CALS[2] would be supported. This
decision was made at a time when there were several competing
authoring applications that purported to support a subset of CALS. The
Exchange Table Model was developed to document the subset that nearly
all the vendors supported.

It's been a long time since I heard anyone discussing CALS support as
a distinguishing criterion between applications. Certainly, I can't
remember anyone asking about it in years.

I now wonder if there's any value to be had from adopting the exchange
model. AFAICT, it would introduce backwards incompatibilities, remove
some features that people probably use (like spanspec), and provide no
obvious benefits. On the flip side, I think the XSL stylesheets only
really support the exchange model (just because I was being forward
looking for XML, not because I think the full model can't be
supported), and few people have complained.

Does anyone feel strongly that the exchange model is the way to go?
That full CALS is the way to go?

(For the moment, let's keep this thread separate from the HTML tables
thread, which is certainly related.)

                                        Be seeing you,

[1] http://oasis-open.org/specs/tr9503.html
[2] http://oasis-open.org/specs/a502.htm

- -- 
Norman Walsh <ndw@nwalsh.com>      | The most violent element in
http://www.oasis-open.org/docbook/ | society is ignorance.--Emma Goldman
Chair, DocBook Technical Committee |
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