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Re: [docbook] Re: XML Editors
- From: Jeff Biss <jeff at marco-inc dot com>
- To: Janning Vygen <vygen at gmx dot de>
- Cc: docbook at lists dot oasis-open dot org
- Date: Thu, 01 May 2003 09:33:15 -0500
- Subject: Re: [docbook] Re: XML Editors
- References: <Pine.LNX.4.44.0304261225090.31688-100000@dell> <126.96.36.199.2.20030430165521.00b14550@pop3.Nildram.co.uk> <200305010910.h419Aft15530@janning.planwerk6.local>
See my thoughts (for what they're worth) below:
Janning Vygen wrote:
The writer must know which elements are to be used for their document. I
use FrameMaker most of the time for normal tech writing and must know the
structure of my documents in order to properly use the template's tags. I
have worked with many writers who never, ever, understood documentation specifications
that explicitly dictated structure and therefore proper tagging. their work
was always a mess. the difference is that FrameMaker would produce a document
whereas an XML editor will let you know when you tagged something wrong.
Am Mittwoch, 30. April 2003 17:56 schrieb Dave Pawson:
At 08:54 30/04/2003 +0200, Steinar Bang wrote:
I use GNU Emacs/psgml, which works great for me, with DTD-aware
element insertion and attribute editing, XML tree navigation and
editing, folding, and validation. But I wouldn't dream of even
_proposing_ it to someone who today uses MSWord.
Sigh. I tried it.
Now I'd follow that advice.
I got some really funny looks when I showed them emacs+psgml.
Does any XML editor discussion just show us, how difficult it is to
let an end user edit XML? Doesn't the end user always have to know
some markup to understand what his editor does?
There will always be a learning curve. People need to learn proper tagging
to ensure proper document structure regardless of the editor or whether they
are using XML.
I am using XML a lot and i am editing in emacs and its fine. And some
customers of mine are editing their XML stuff in raw text editors
too. after teaching XML in half a day they managed it.
Th only WYSIWYG XML editor I've used is XMLMind and it is very easy to use.
every wysiwig editor i know has problems. It is not end user
compatible OR isnt flexible enough.
Word is best for very simple documents. My clients try to use Word when
FrameMaker or Ventura Publisher are the correct tools.
But on the other hand: XMLEditors are always compared with Word. But
how many users can really use word? They can set a font, a font size,
bold, centering and thats it. Most people use word like an enhanced
I hate to keep harping about it but XMLWriter is a fine tool and well worth
the approximately $50 it costs. It is a text based editor but makes it obvious
when you are not using a DTD's elements properly.
So i think to edit XML by an end user you need a reduced XML Editor.
There really isn't "simple" when it comes to using the DocBook DTD. One must
use the elements properly from the start otherwise one will spend a large
amount of time locating improperly used element tags.
For docbook it would be fine to have an editor just doing the simple
stuff and maybe have a text mode in behind for advanced users.
You could alter the DocBook as directed in the DocBook reference to reduce
the number of elements and produce your own DTD that is based on the DocBook.
90% of all editing from the user perspective is
- bold (means emphasis of course)
- add a graphic
- add a list
Many users may not require XML at all too. You must help them determine which
documentation actuall requires XML and which can be left as an ASCII or Word
file. I have found that most users will produce incorrectly structured documents
regardless of the tool they use. The production crew then has the wonderful
job of fixing all the writers' errors, whether XML, FrameMaker, Ventura Publisher,
Word, or any other product.
i would like to have an editor just doing this in a word-like way
(with nice buttons and stuff like this) Most users don't really need
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