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O'Reilly Open Source Convention


Transforming XML for Web and Print
Mike Kruckenberg, OpenAir

Track: XML
Date: Thursday, July 10
Time: 5:15pm - 6:00pm
Location: Columbia

Over the past two years, the Health Sciences Database project at Tufts University has lured faculty into both converting existing syllabi into and writing new syllabi in XML with promises of seamless publication on the web and in print using XSLT, HTML, XSL-FO, and FOP. The ability to author and edit one source document and have it dynamically available in a variety of forms has brought many faculty members on board.

Benefits of XML Documents
There is great value in bringing documents into one XML standard. Having a body of XML documents creates a large set of output options as well as allowing a rich understanding of the relationships between documents.

Converting Sources into XML
Much of the source documents are Word documents or PowerPoint presentations. We’ve also been presented with a collection of html documents or image sets. Whatever the source, we’ve found a mix of open source and proprietary solutions to transform almost any source into valid XML.

Transforming XML
With the use of XSLT, XML can be dynamically transformed into a wide variety of formats. We’ve focused on transformations to HTML for web, and XSL-FO run through FOP for print PDF.

Kruckenberg looks briefly at the methods for converting existing source documents into XML, and walks through the process of creating stylesheets for output in HTML and XSL-FO. He explores FOP and processing XSL-FO documents into PDFs, and concludes with a discussion of the lessons learned along the path.

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