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Re: Switching to XML

From: Guillaume Lelarge <guillaume(at)lelarge(dot)info>
To: "Joshua D(dot) Drake" <jd(at)commandprompt(dot)com>
Cc: Peter Eisentraut <peter_e(at)gmx(dot)net>,Josh Berkus <josh(at)agliodbs(dot)com>, pgsql-docs(at)postgresql(dot)org,David Blewett <david(at)dawninglight(dot)net>
Subject: Re: Switching to XML
Date: 2006-12-10 10:38:30
Message-ID: (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-docs
Joshua D. Drake a écrit :
> On Sat, 2006-12-09 at 09:21 +0100, Guillaume Lelarge wrote:
>> Joshua D. Drake a écrit :
>>> On Fri, 2006-12-08 at 21:58 +0100, Peter Eisentraut wrote:
>>>> Joshua D. Drake wrote:
>>>>> You can create, edit, convert, save, and open docbook xml in
>>>> Sure, there are more editing options with DocBook XML.  No one disputes 
>>>> that.  But the question at hand was about processing the DocBook.
>>> Yes which is generated from our use of SGML which is the core of this
>>> problem and the core of the question as a whole.
>>> SGML is making working with the documentation *harder*.
>> +1
> I believe this point is being overlooked is people's willingness to code
> a solution ;).
> Guillaume could you please tell us *why* you ported the SGML to XML
> before doing your translation and processing? Perhaps that will carry
> more weight to this discussion then my hand waving.

I use DocBook XML a lot more than SGML on some translation's projects.

I switch to DocBook XML because I find it easier to customize
stylesheets. Take a look at DSSSL and take a look at XSLT : DSSL just
hurts my eyes, I found XSLT more simple to understand *and* customize.
There's been a lot of posts on this subject on some of the Linux From
Scratch project. And they've done a pretty good job with HTML and PDF
builts. So I took their stylesheets, Makefiles. I tried to understand
what they do, customize a little more to get what the french team have now.

So first argument, the one that makes me switch, is ease of
customization. Second one is also really important to me. XSLT
stylesheets and xsltproc are under active development. You can take a
look here :
DSSSL 1.79 has been packaged one 2004-11-03, XSL 1.71.1 has been
released on 2006-10-19. And don't get me started on tools. I've seen
recent releases of xsltproc, none of jade, openjade or any of those tools.

Last point : just look at other free projects. Take a look at Gnome and
KDE for example. They all use DocBook XML with customized stylesheets. I
don't mean that because lots of projects use DocBook XML, they all are
right and us wrong. I don't even mean that we should switch to follow
new buzz. I just mean people use it, publish information on what they do
and how they do it. Can someone find more informations on how to build
documentation with SGML than he can with XML ?

I don't want to say we can't do all these with DocBook SGML. Tom fixed
some stuff on openjade to make it process quickier. Great. We can also
customize DSSSL stylesheets. We can, we can... yes we can do a lot of
things with SGML and DSSSL. When I say "We", I should say "You" because
I don't want to get this burden. I mean, fixing a tool is great... but I
really prefer to see Tom working on PostgreSQL new astounding features
than on an old unmaintained and unused tool. I can't code as Tom. But I
can help on documentation with tools, but tools that are maintained. You
want to put more documentation on the manual but don't want to write it
with DocBook XML ? I'm OK with it. Just give me a plain ASCII file or an
openoffice file, I will handle the tagging, check correctness of the XML
file, build the documentation.

I say "I" but perhaps "we" would be more appropriate.

Perhaps it is time to create a real documentation team. More people will
be able to get involved with this great project.

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