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Subject: Re: [docbook] external entities in docbook

Are you using the entities to substitute phrases at document  
generation time (i.e. using the XSLT stylesheets)?  I've had success  
by adding elements to Docbook for the phrases that I need ( <TargetOS/ 
 >, <ProductName/>, etc.) and writing simple XSLT rules that replace  
them with a string provided to the xsltproc or saxon command-line.

Using this mechanism, the document authors just insert an empty  
<ProductName/> element wherever it is required, and the publisher can  
generate the documentation for the required product by specifying the  
appropriate command-line arguments.

I initially went down the road of using entities, but abandoned that  
route because a) my preferred XML Editor (XMLMind) doesn't support  
them in the way that I'd like, and b) difficulty in specifying the  
required values cleanly, as you describe.

I can go into more detail if this approach sounds useful to you.  My  
experience is with DocBook 5, but I'm sure that the theory is equally  
applicable to previous versions.

Geraint North
Principal Engineer

On 14 Nov 2007, at 9:15, Hinrich Aue wrote:

> Hello list,
> at the moment we have a reference to a file containing our entitiy  
> definitions like this:
> <!ENTITY % myents SYSTEM "Q:/docbook/Tourmalet_en/Variables/ 
> Variables.ent">
> This is of course ugly. Is there a different way of providing  
> entities into any file without this?
> Thanks,
>             Hinrich

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