Re: Nostradamus (was Re: FO. lists as tables)
On Fri, 15 Oct 1999 23:45:41 +0100 (BST), you wrote: >No. I see portability as meaning use of the same stylesheet with >different systems. A notion of portability that means everyone is using >the same system (baring dull issues like efficiency or host operating >system) is not what I had in mind at all. But if I have to do all my work on a single system in order to ensure consistent results, then where is the portability? I may as well use a proprietary document composition application. My data is still held hostage. >the user interface is not much of an issue if you are just batch >formatting FO's being churned out by an XSL engine, is it? You are >not using the system to author anything, just reading it in and driving >a printer or screen or voice synthesiser or whatever. I used "user interface" as merely one example of the kinds of things that can be modified without altering the results of the formatter. There are many other things in the "meat" of the formatter that could be changed and improved without affecting the end result. >It is not an unspecified free-for-all As far as I'm concerned, it's awfully close. I'll refer once again to HTML as an example: How many thousands (millions?) of man-hours do you think have been wasted by people doing nothing but testing and modifying their HTML so that it comes out right in all the different versions of all the different browsers? Unless XSL can provide a _substantially_ higher level of "identicality" (and from the wording in the current Requirements Summary I can't see that it will), people will continue to have to do the same kinds of things. Only this time it will be even worse, because they'll be working with XSLT instead of XSL fo's themselves, and will therefore be one more step removed from the end product and consequently have less control over the details of the generated fo's. >No tweaked, discarded. Are you really saying that (given the code) >getting son-of-tex, son-of-word, son-of-frame, and daughter-of-quark >to all produce identical line and page breaks on a given input would >just be a matter of some `tweaks'. In my code, the line breaker is a separate routine, independent of everything else. It receives as input a line length in absolute units, and an ordered list of objects representing glyphs, spaces, kerns, discretionary breaks, and penalties (it is a minor variation of the TeX algorithm). The only aspect of line-breaking that isn't in that one routine is orphan/widow consideration. Yes, modifying that code _would_ be a "tweak." Even if I had to replace it wholesale, it's just one routine. -Steve Schafer XSL-List info and archive: http://www.mulberrytech.com/xsl/xsl-list
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