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From Vincent Hennebert <vhenneb...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: DITA-OT and FOP
Date Thu, 27 Mar 2014 22:26:29 GMT
(CC-ing to general@ as it’s the place where I believe the conversation
should take place.)

I too would be in favour of welcoming DITA-OT as a sub-project of XML
Graphics. I think it matches rather well the purpose of this project.

A few comments:

On 27/03/14 18:32, Ron Wheeler wrote:
> I think that you are right about being a sister project to FOP within
> XMLGraphics.
> The discussion from everyone has been very helpful even if the writer was
> negative to the idea.
> //I would be happy to see some interaction in a number of areas.
> a) Clearly, the DITA group should be pushing for the FOP features that are
> required to produce the documents that can be described in DITA.

Pushing for having some features implemented is one thing; actually
implementing them is another. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t
believe the skill sets of a DITA developer and a FOP developer
intersect, do they?

So IIUC the goal of this would be to attract sponsors who use the
DITA-OT to fund specific developments? Or are DITA developers willing to
learn what is necessary to contribute new features to FOP?

> b)I think that the current Apache members could make positive suggestions
> about the processing and structure of the DITA toolkit.

Again, because of the different skill sets you might have put your hopes
a bit high I’m afraid.

> c) The DITA language specification is constantly undergoing updates and there
> are likely things that current FOP users could suggest as additions to allow
> them to use a standard language to author documents.

FWIW you might want to become involved in the W3C Print ang Page Layout
Community Group:

> d) The users of the DITA tool kit need some customization of FOP
> configuration  to produce nice looking documents and there is likely a lot of
> experts here that could be engaged to do these projects.

We can certainly increase the collaboration between the two projects,
although I don’t think becoming part of XML Graphics is a requirement
for that. Just out of curiosity, what are your reasons for wanting to
become part of Apache?


> Ron
> On 27/03/2014 12:18 PM, Chris Bowditch wrote:
>> Hi Ron,
>> Thanks for your e-mail. I can certainly see why joining the 2 communities
>> seems like a good idea to help improve funding for FOP, and deliver the
>> features DITA requires. I'd certainly be interested in seeing what the list
>> of missing XSL-FO features are from a DITA perspective.
>> The challenge with joining multiple communities together is that it makes
>> the merged project too complex and it scares users/developers away. This is
>> a problem faced by FOP already. The codebase is so vast and complex, many
>> people struggle to get to grips with it.
>> I would be against DITA and FOP merging for this reason, plus the separation
>> of concerns already stated by others. That said, if DITA wanted to join
>> Apache, adding DITA as a sub project of XMLGraphics would seem like a
>> logical place for the DITA community. That way there would be some links
>> between the 2 projects and an oversight of both from a common committee.
>> This should help to improve interoperability a little although perhaps not
>> to the extent you had hoped for.
>> Thanks,
>> Chris
>> On 26/03/2014 14:42, Ron Wheeler wrote:
>>> The DITA-OT (DITA Open Toolkit) (http://www.ditaopentoolkit.org/) is an
>>> open source project that depends on FOP.
>>> It takes DITA
>>> (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darwin_Information_Typing_Architecture) XML
>>> input and produces a number of different document types.
>>> One of the main output types is PDF and it uses FOP to do this. It takes
>>> DITA input (xml) and produces an intermediate set of files that are
>>> processed by FOP to produce a PDF. It can also produce HTML
>>> There is a Maven plug-in to control the production in an IDE environment.
>>> It calls all the bits and pieces required to take the raw DITA XML files
>>> and output a document in PDF in the target folder.
>>> There is some interest in adding DITA-OT to the Apache family and in my
>>> opinion, the XMLGraphics group seems like a natural home and the FOP
>>> sub-project might be a good place for DITA-OT to reside.
>>> DITA-OT is a large community of users but a small community of developers.
>>> There are also a few enhancement ideas that would require FOP enhancements
>>> to complete.
>>> In addition, my own belief is that the FOP community could add some
>>> technical advice to the DITA-OT community that would be helpful.
>>> http://sourceforge.net/projects/dita-ot/ is the download page. DITA-OT is
>>> currently distributed under the Apache License V2.0.
>>> I am not one of the main players in the group but have taken on the task of
>>> seeing if there is a possibility of opening the discussion with the FOP group.
>>> Would there be any interest in considering adding front-end XML processing
>>> to the FOP production project?
>>> Ron

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