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From Glen Mazza <grm7...@yahoo.com>
Subject Re: representative example needed - success story
Date Sun, 06 Feb 2005 02:37:06 GMT
Thanks for sharing.  FOP was first developed by James
Tauber in the late 1990's[1], which he then donated to
Apache, and now FOP has had multiple "generations" of
developers maintaining it.  

I am seeing that FOP is at its best when it comes to
invoices--mass production of smaller documents, also
it does pretty well at Docbook PDF generation.

For my day position, the main success I've had with
FOP was in switching our online help systems from
manual gotta-maintain-the-appearance-on-every-page
HTML-based RoboHelp to Docbook HTML and PDF (the
latter being generated by FOP).  The online help looks
great, with everything having a standard appearance,
and maintenance costs/time/stress fell maybe 90%. 
Also, the new solution is free.

Also at work, I am currently halfway through moving a
couple of our invoice-sized PDF reports from Oracle
Reports to a Servlet/FOP implementation.  This will be
a second huge XML victory for me--not just my first
dynamic XSL web application in actual production, but
I will then have the web framework in place for more
reports to switch over to XSL more quickly.

BTW, for your conversion of HTML to a XSL-based
system, [2] may be of use for you -- I have not gotten
to this framework yet myself though.




--- "Partridge, Michael" <Michael.Partridge@shps.net>

> I suppose now is a good time to share my experience
> with FOP with the
> rest of the mailing list, particularly the FOP
> developers.
> I'm a software developer working for a company that
> does health care
> administration services for many large US companies.
> Many of these
> clients have former employees who enjoy COBRA
> benefits, others provide
> subsidized benefits for their employees or retired
> former employees.
> We've been using FOP for well over a year now,
> creating over 35000
> invoices per month, most of which are available to
> our participants
> online as a static document that they can view or
> download. We're also
> beginning to use FOP to generate all of our client
> level reports,
> although we have yet to undertake the task of
> converting the old C++
> programs that currently generate the reports in HTML
> ;). If that's not
> enough, we're just finishing up a system to generate
> all types of
> different healthcare-related participant letters
> such as open enrollment
> forms using FOP for rendering.
> As for the future, I've just finished implementing
> an OCR scanline
> (using an embedded OCR font) and POSTNET barcode
> (using the fabulous
> barcode4j package at http://barcode4j.krysalis.org)
> on our individual
> invoice stub to save money and time spent matching
> payments to
> participants. 
> In other words, much thanks to all the FOP
> developers past, present, and
> future, for putting so much time into this great
> product!
> Mike

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