Appendix E. Choosing XSL-FO products

Answers to the following questions may prove useful when trying to better understand an XSL-FO product offering from a vendor. The specific questions are grouped under topical questions. These by no means make up a complete list of questions, as you may have your own criteria to add; nonetheless, they do cover the aspects of XSLT that may affect the stylesheets and transformation specifications you write.

  • How is the product identified?

    • What is the name of the XSL-FO processor in product literature?

    • Which version of XSL-FO is supported?

    • To what email address or URL are questions forwarded for more information in general?

    • To what email address or URL are questions forwarded for more information specific to the answers to these technical questions?

  • What are the details of the implementation and invocation of the XSL-FO processor?

    • What hardware/operating system platforms does the processor support?

    • What character sets are supported for the input file encoding?

    • What is the XSLT processor used?

      • Can it be replaced with another XSLT processor?

    • What is the XML processor used?

      • Can it be replaced with another XML processor?

      • Does the XML processor support minimally declared internal DTD subsets with only attribute list declarations for ID -typed attributes?

      • Does the XML processor support XML Inclusions (Xinclude)?

      • Does the XML processor support catalogues for public identifiers?

      • Does the XML processor validate the source file?

        • Can this be turned on and off?

    • Can the processor be embedded in other applications?

      • Can the processor be configured as a servlet in a web server?

    • Is the source code of the processor available?

      • In what language is it written?

    • For Windows-based environments, the following questions are relevant.

      • Can the processor be invoked from the MS DOS command prompt?

      • Can the processor be invoked from a GUI interface?

      • What other methods of invocation can be triggered (DLL, RPC, etc.)?

      • Can error messages be explicitly redirected to a file using an invocation parameter (since, for example, Windows 95 does not support redirection of the standard error stream to a file)?

  • What features of XSL-FO are supported?

    • What constructs are absent or only partially supported?

    • What graphics formats does the product support?

      • Does the formatter support relative URIs for external graphic resources?

      • Does the formatter require a protocol specification in the URI?

      • Are vector-based formats rendered at device resolution?

    • What color schemes are supported?

  • How are specific features implemented?

    • At what conformance level is each feature implemented?

    • What is the thickness of each of the border width named values?

    • Which writing directions are supported?

    • What fonts are supported and how are fonts supported?

    • What ligatures are recognized for adjacent characters ?

    • Which properties and states of < basic-link > are supported and how?

      • Does the user interface have a "back" function to retrace steps?

  • What convenience features are implemented?

    • Can the resulting file be fragmented for ease of management or transmission?

    • Can the result be packaged in groups of different page sizes (to support fold-outs)?

    • Can different hoppers be specified for the printer for different paper selections?

  • What extension formatting objects and properties are implemented?

    • Are there any vendor-defined extensions to the vocabulary?

    • What namespace URI is used to identify the vocabulary?

  • What output formats are supported?

    • PDF?

      • Are internal links supported?

      • Are external links supported?

      • Is there an extension for turning on the PDF security bit in the result?

      • Is there an extension for defining the "General Info " fields for title, subject, author, etc.?

    • PostScript?

    • Windows GDI?

    • PCL?

    • TeX?

    • RTF?

    • Other?

  • What instream foreign object vocabulary namespaces are supported?

    • SVG?

    • MathML?

    • Other?

Definitive XSL-FO
Definitive XSL-FO
ISBN: 0131403745
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2002
Pages: 99
Authors: G. Ken Holman

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