XSLT workflow: ODF <-> XPP
Hey list, this is more of a general question about XSLT workflow than a specific task or technique. I'm helping out with XML at one publishing house. They are using ODF (OpenDocument) as a manuscript source format (received from customers) and XPP (XML Professional Publisher) as their internal format, on which they later add some specific XPP markup to style books (and later produce PDFs). The problem is, that the two formats are not interchangeable, and this breaks the whole workflow. They have a filter to import ODF to XPP (the easy part). They also have another to convert back from XPP to ODF, but it discards XPP processing instructions that were added while styling. That means a roundtrip is not possible, because the existing inline XPP styling would be lost. However both file formats are necessary, because they are using ODF to transform to XHTML and ePub, and XPP to produce PDF. The files also need to be up-to-date and synchronized, which currently is not the case. If the customer wants to make changes to the manuscript, it cannot be reimported. On the other hand, corrections can also be made in XPP. The transformations are currently done using Perl, but I'm thinking about converting the whole workflow to XSLT. I see XPP as the source of the problem, because of its inline styling and use of processing instructions. I don't know the system so well, but maybe it would be possible to somehow separate content from presentation there, in a similar fashion as with XHTML and CSS. Then it might be possible to do ODF-XPP-ODF conversions on the content only, while the styling would remain in XPP. But that would also mean changing the way they style, and would need to base it more on IDs and classes, which I'm not sure if it is possible to retain (and prevent from removing) in OpenOffice. And taking it one step further, if that would be solved, the customer and the publisher would still need to work on the same ODF file sometimes. Maybe some version control could help? Or is it crazy to think about manuscripts as source code? Any experience/advice with something like that? Appreciated in advanced. Martynas xml.lt
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