external parsed entites (was: A unique ID question ?)

G. Ken Holman gkholman at CraneSoftwrights.com
Fri Nov 12 22:41:44 GMT 1999

At 99/11/11 17:18 -0500, Clark C. Evans wrote:
>On Thu, 11 Nov 1999, G. Ken Holman wrote:
> > But I think that is beside the point.  Should tools be limiting the way I
> > work?  Hopefully not.  I want to work with small chunks and external 
> parsed
> > entities help me do that.
>I've always been afraid of external entities.
>Do you have some examples you can share?

Logically, my document model is made up of modules, one is used for each 
major topic.  Each module is made up of an optional intro, followed by 
lessons, followed by the optional exit.  Each of these breaks down into 
frames, and each frame is made of a set of panes and prose.

When assembled as slides for instructor-led training, each pane of a frame 
makes a separate slide (both HTML on-screen slides and print pages).

When assembled for web-based CBT (currently being set up with an Australian 
company), each frame makes a separate page and the individual panes merge.

When assembled as a prose book, the chapters and sections come from the 
modules and lessons and the content from the prose (with backup to the pane 
content during the process of writing the prose if there is no prose for a 
given frame).

Physically, I break down the source into separate external parsed entities 
for each module, and within each module for each lesson ... thus, I'm only 
focusing on one lesson at a time when actually doing my writing:







Note that I do not name the entities with numbers, I label them with the 
concepts of the content ... I've just numbered them above to illustrate the 
physical hierarchy.

Prose content and pane content are authored side by each, as the production 
process winnows the undesired components for a given configuration.  This 
helps me ensure both forms of the content are in sync.

Concepts of applicability and effectivity are used to configure the 
material for either 45-minute, 90-minute, half-day, full-day lecture 
versions, two-day lecture or hands-on versions, or the book prose version 
*at a semantic level*.  This allows me to leverage the content at many 
different fora for different delivery lengths and host client 
needs.  Applicability can be used at either high (module) or low (phrase) 
levels of the document hierarchy.

The content configuration is *not* done by selectively including separate 
parsed entities, rather, the *entire* book (and *all* entities) is read in 
during a configuration/applicability XSLT transform that emits the 
effective result (based on applicability) that is then processed into 
slides or prose book format.

Host or publication detail configuration (title, language, logos, 
marginalia, ISBN, etc.) is accomplished via extensive use of external 
parameter entities and numerous marked sections.

The XSLT stylesheet components are also combined at the semantic level, not 
syntactic level, utilizing the xsl:include and xsl:import (xsl:import gives 
a *big* win when doing the print by importing already written logic for 
display).  I'm using XT for production and JADE for DSSSL/RTF/PDF publication.

I hope this helps.

.................. Ken

G. Ken Holman                    mailto:gkholman at CraneSoftwrights.com
Crane Softwrights Ltd.             http://www.CraneSoftwrights.com/x/
Box 266, Kars, Ontario CANADA K0A-2E0   +1(613)489-0999   (Fax:-0995)
Web site: XSL/XML/DSSSL/SGML services, training, libraries, products.
Practical Transformation Using XSLT and XPath      ISBN 1-894049-02-0
Next instructor-led training:              1999-12-05/06, 1999-12-07,
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