Translating XML -> HTML & RTF

Tony McDonald tony.mcdonald at
Sat Jan 23 15:12:39 GMT 1999

Hi all,
I'm working on a document management system for Medical Student 
'Study Guides' which will allow combining of elements from various 
XML documents into a single 'document' and thereonto either an HTML 
or RTF rendering. I would expect our students to select (say) all the 
sections that are of type 'Core Content' across various sections of 
the curriculum and then the system combines them into a single unit.

My (tentative layout is something like)

<studyguide title='Organisation of Tissues'>
<section title='Core Content' sg_title='Organisation of Tissues'> *1*
<text>This part of the course....	</text>
<item>Survey of human development;</item>
<item>Pre-implantation stages of pregnancy: fertilization, cleavage 
and implantation;</item>
<item>Formation of germ layers and early derivatives;</item>
<item>Establishment of the basic embryonic body plan;</item>
<item>Causal mechanisms in early development and their clinical 
</section> *2*

I'm using an Expat enabled parser to scan the resultant documents and 
(try) to do the translations.

My problem (or at least one of them) is that I would like the 
<section>..</section> tag to be replaced by a <h2 
class="section">Core Content: Organisation of Tissues</h2> construct, 
but using expat, I end up with the closing </h2> tag at the line 
marked *2* above. I've written some bloody messy code that gets 
around that (ie places the <h2>..</h2> tag sequence up at *1*), but 
I'm wondering if this doesn't imply that there's something inherently 
wrong with my document structure (or more likely my understanding).

Am I missing a rather obvious (and hopefully simple) point here? I'm 
pretty pleased with my initial attempts at getting my documents into 
XML (thanks Marcus!!) and I can see *so* many good things coming out 
of doing this project 'the XML way' that the loong hours put in at 
the keyboard is well worth it.

They aren't kidding that up-translation is an entropy lowering 
process, I feel like I've personally lowered the global temperature 
by a degree or two....sheesh!

many thanks in advance,
Dr Tony McDonald,  FMCC, Networked Learning Environments Project
The Medical School, Newcastle University Tel: +44 191 222 5888
Fingerprint: 3450 876D FA41 B926 D3DD  F8C3 F2D0 C3B9 8B38 18A2

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