[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next]
[Date Index] [Thread Index] [New search]

Re: EDDs, Text Insets, and Format Change Lists(was EDD Format Design Approaches)

At 09:53 AM 8/29/03 -0700, DW Emory wrote:
>Clearly, an EDD implementation in which all (or at least most) 
>context-based EDD format rules specify format change lists (all of which 
>are typically located at the end of the EDD) is the optimal approach. This 
>allows a single format change list to be referenced from many different 
>format rules, and also permits using format change lists as building blocks 
>by combining several of them to define a particular format in a particular 
>context. By placing all of the format change lists at the end of the EDD, 
>you can easily create multiple versions of a single EDD simply by modifying 
>the format change lists, leaving everything else unchanged.

If you need multiple versions of an EDD that differ only in the format
change lists, put the rest of the EDD in a text inset. Thus each version
consists of a reference to the common part and then the version-specific
format change lists. Instead of having to repeat any changes you make
to the main body of the EDD in each version, you only need to do the editing

Of course, the text inset must have a highest-level element. According to
the Dev Guide, FM unwraps the highest-level element in a text inset when
that element is tagged SGMLFragment. If this worked, you could use SGMLFragment
as the highest-level element. You would need to modify the element definitions
used by the EDD to permit SGMLFragment. Unfortunately, the software actually
unwraps SGMLFragment only when it contains a single child. Thus, without FDK
support, you might as well use ElementCatalog as the highest-level element just
as you would for an entire EDD. Before importing element definitions from any
version of the EDD, convert the text inset to text and unwrap the extra 
ElementCatalog. Make sure you do not save the EDD in this form.

Managing multiple related EDDS is much easier with a plug-in that not only
does this unwrapping and import, but imports element definitions from each
version of the EDD into the appropriate templates. Text Structure Consulting
and Tassos Anastasiou just happen to offer a tool that does exactly that.
Feel free to contact me my phone or email for more information.

By the way, format change lists are fine as far as they go. They allow you
to reuse a set of property values throughout an EDD. However, they do not
allow you to repeat other EDD structures (for example, common attribute
definitions or context rules). You can use text insets for these as well.


Lynne A. Price
Text Structure Consulting, Inc.
Specializing in structured FrameMaker consulting and training
lprice@txstruct.com            http://www.txstruct.com
voice/fax: (510) 583-1505      cell phone: (510) 421-2284

The program for the 2003 FrameUsers Conference includes several
presentations and training on XML and structured documents. See
http://www.FrameUsers.com for more information.

** To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@omsys.com **
** with "unsubscribe framers" (no quotes) in the body.   **