RE: [xsl] XML to RTF with XSL?

Subject: RE: [xsl] XML to RTF with XSL?
From: Wendell Piez <wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 08 Jan 2001 17:53:20 +0000
On RTF output...

The method Dan Vint describes would be analogous to using XSLT to create RTF code directly, which, if you're desperate, could be done fairly well (albeit painfully) in XSLT using a method="text" output. And Dan is right -- Omnimark or Perl would be equally effective tools for this, I'd think.

What Linda is describing in DSSSL, however, uses DSSSL flow objects (DSSSL's equivalent to XSL formatting objects) to construct an object model that describes the (print) output directly. This is passed to a back-end engine that takes that set of flow/formatting objects and re-expresses it in RTF (or the format of your choice).

This has many advantages, including making for a much easier target format for a transformation than raw RTF code -- why formatting objects are a good thing -- but it does rely on that back-end transformation that knows what to do with the formatting objects. So far the only formatters I've heard of for XSL-FOs target PDF.

Like Linda, I'd love to see one that would target Word/RTF, Frame/MIF, a Quark-friendly input format etc. etc. These are features on which XSL-FO engines, it seems to me, ought to be able to compete. Because layout designers always want (need) to tweak a page in little ways before printing, it doesn't seem that PDF should be the only useful "terminal" format for an XSL-FO engine.

When there is one, however, I'm pretty sure we'll hear about it... :-)


At 04:36 PM 1/8/01 +0100, Linda wrote:

> My guess is this is more stright forward in OmniMark/Perl > than it will be in > DSSSL and XSLT, but it should be doable with any of these tools.

Thanks for your description of your process to create a conversion program, that's very useful! I'm going to be dealing with up- and down-conversions and transformations a lot in the near future.

But I suspect that right now it's most straightforward to create an
XML-to-RTF stylesheet in DSSSL, since I can use the OpenJade processor to
process DSSSL and it has an RTF backend. I played around with this a bit in
the past and all I had to do was create element rules along the line of:

for elements named ... make a paragraph, set the font size to ... points,
and the font family to ...

====================================================================== Wendell Piez mailto:wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Mulberry Technologies, Inc. 17 West Jefferson Street Direct Phone: 301/315-9635 Suite 207 Phone: 301/315-9631 Rockville, MD 20850 Fax: 301/315-8285 ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Mulberry Technologies: A Consultancy Specializing in SGML and XML ======================================================================

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