XSL-FO: Making XML Look Good in Print, by Dave Pawson

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XSL-FO: Making XML Look Good in Print, by Dave Pawson

XSL-FO: Making XML Look Good in Print, by Dave Pawson

XSL-FO: Making XML Look Good in Print, by Dave Pawson

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XSL-FO: Making XML Look Good in Print, by Dave Pawson

No matter how flexible and convenient digital information has become, we haven’t done away with the need to see information in print. Extensible Style Language-Formatting Objects, or XSL-FO, is a set of tools developers and web designers use to describe page printouts of their XML (including XHTML) documents. If you need to produce high quality printed material from your XML documents, then XSL-FO provides the bridge.XSL-FO is one of the few books to go beyond a basic introduction to the technology. While many books touch on XSL-FO in their treatment of XSLT, this book offers in-depth coverage of XSL-FO’s features and strengths. Author Dave Pawson is well known in the XSLT and XSL-FO communities, and maintains the XSLT FAQ. An online version of this book has helped many developers master this technology. XSL-FO is the first time this reference is available in print.The first part of the book provides an overview of the technology and introduces the XSL-FO vocabulary. The author discusses how to choose among today’s implementations, explains how to describe pages, and shows you what is going on in the processor in terms of layout. You’ll learn about the basics of formatting and layout as well as readability.The second part focuses on smaller pieces: blocks, inline structures, graphics, color and character level formatting, concluding by showing how to integrate these parts into a coherent whole. XSL-FO also explores organizational aspects you’ll need to consider?how to design your stylesheets strategically rather than letting them evolve on their own.XSL-FO is more than just a guide to the technology; the book teaches you how to think about the formatting of your documents and guides you through the questions you’ll need to ask to ensure that your printed documents meet the same high standards as your computer-generated content. Written for experienced XML developers and web designers, no other book contains as much useful information on this practical technology.

  • Sales Rank: #1185083 in eBooks
  • Published on: 2002-08-19
  • Released on: 2013-02-07
  • Format: Kindle eBook

Review
“There’s a lot to be learnt before you create your first XSL-FO style sheet, and this book is the ideal guide to get you through those first steps – it will also serve as a long-lasting reference for XSL-FO experts.” PC Plus, January 2003

About the Author

maintains the XSLT and XSL-FO FAQ site. He got started with XML in 1997 while looking for a means of document reuse for multimedia presentation in print and braille for the Royal National Institute of the Blind (RNIB). He is the W3C Advisory Committee representative for the RNIB,and has supported the Web Accessibility Initiative since 1998. His background is in software development in the aerospace industry, followed by 5 years with RNIB, where he initially worked as a change agent, has more recently been monitoring web standards for accessibility. He has been heavily involved in the digital talking book inititiative coordinated by the DAISY consortium at www.daisy.org.

Most helpful customer reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful.
Not a book for the faint of heart
By Foti Massimo
An interesting book covering a powerful but niche technology. Not a book for the faint of heart, get it only if you want to investigate this very specific topic or plan to do things like XML > PDF transformation. The author digs immediately into the technical details, condensing a relevant amount of info in less than 200 pages; the results are good, focused and well structured, but it’s not an entertaining read. This is definitely not a beginner book. A decent understanding of XML, XSL and XPath is required; some knowledge of printing would be helpful too

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful.
Show me XSL-FO, not XSLT
By Tripp Lilley
My main gripe with this book is the manner in which the author chose to present the material.
Rather than focusing on “literal” XSL-FO, the author gives fragments of XSLT stylesheets that produce the XSL-FO. This means that the path to understanding the XSL-FO in the examples goes through XSLT.
While I understand the author’s point in choosing this presentation (that no one will “really” be coding XSL-FO by hand, but will instead be writing XSLT stylesheets to generate XSL-FO from other XML input), I don’t agree that it’s the best way to explain the material.
I would have preferred to see actual, “complete” fragments of XSL-FO (both with and without larger context). I can draw my own conclusions about structuring the XSLT that I need. What I’m really keen to see is how the XSL-FO itself works, otherwise I’ve got no clue -what- to generate.

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful.
Apparently, too large a topic for one book.
By Douglas Rowe
Armed with only the most rudimentary understanding of XSLT, I found this book a little overwhelming. It’s not a “cookbook”, though the examples are good. There are a few places where it seems to dwell on minutia, but mostly it moves along at a jog to brisk run pace. I got a better understanding of the topic and and am prepared to do more research, but this could not be my only reference.

See all 9 customer reviews…

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