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On Monday 12 April 2004 09:49, Dave Pawson wrote:
> At 18:16 10/04/2004, Ari Nordström wrote:
> >The DTD that is used will have to be right for the purpose--writing that
> >particular document type in that particular context--but it doesn't have
> > to be the same that is used when publishing the complete document.
> I'm curious about the rationale behind this statement.
> I can think of subsetting say docbook, to reduce the list of valid
> tags at any one point, perhaps remove a set that I'm unlikely to use,
> is that what you mean?
Subsetting is certainly one way to go. I've done this on a number of
occasions, removing structures that aren't appropriate for the context in
which the information is edited but which could pop up when the complete
document is published/processed.
An example that comes to mind is the J2008 DTD often used by the automotive
industry that I made more author-friendly for a number of contexts. The
original DTD was simply too big and used constructs that were too permissive.
There was no way authors could make easy-to-follow, no-nonsense service
procedures with that beast.
Or, to pick another example from J2008, that DTD uses some ugly linking
constructs that I don't want authors to use (having replaced them with models
more appropriate for the document management system in use) but that I need
to convert to when exchanging information with other manufacturers or
Another way is to be more liberal for the authoring DTD, in controlled ways,
and rely on processing before publishing to handle the places where the
author's been "liberal". This can be useful when publishing in different
media--for example, online and paper will sometimes present very different
requirements. If you use a DTD that simply allows everything when publishing,
that DTD cannot ensure that you've used the correct structures in an online
An example that comes to mind is, again, J2008; its meta-data and linking
models aren't enough for a modern document management system but that are the
ones you need when exchanging information. When authoring, you want to allow
for your in-house structures since those are the ones that make the magic
happen when publishing, but which you simply cannot allow when exchanging
information, because the exchange structures aren't rich enough.