Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Introduction

This web site provides information for working with S1000D XML using widely applied techniques and tools for automating production processes. Examples include XSLT transformations and other forms of code that can be applied to increase the capacity of the production organization. These are provided as-is without warranty and the user is responsible for ensuring that they work within the context of the production processes of their organization.

Purpose

This information is being provided in response to observations over a number of US DoD contractor sites where the techniques applied to XML production for S1000D projects are ineffective for enabling cost-effective rapid response to mission objectives for that information.

Too many organization rely on obsolete processes inherited from years of creating and managing technical information with older SGML-based products. Further in too many cases the management and planners for the projects have fallen behind and failed to master even the earliest production potentials of XML. Basic technologies such as XSLT are neglected and instead these organizations rely on tagging armies and excessive man months to do work that basic automation can do much more effectively and cheaply.

Overview

Several technologies and standards will be used as part of this tutorial including:

  • S1000D XML
  • MIL-STD-3031A
  • XSLT
  • IADS
  • Oxygen Author/Editor
  • XML Creator and Utilities for S1000D
  • Notepad ++
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Visual Basic
  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft SharePoint

In the following article the role of each of the technologies listed above is explained in the context of this presentation.

Disclaimers and How to Help

The examples given here are intended to be self-contained and explanatory. Readers who wish to work or apply the examples directly will in most cases require some or all of these technical implementations. However it is not the intent of the author to market these and no fiduciary relationship to the makers of these packages exists. All of these in some form are standard office desktop products.

While S1000D production systems dedicated to creating S1000D products are available on the market, this presentation is not intended to explain them. Many are expensive enterprise systems and for large organizations managing multiple projects, these are well-worth the expense. This weblog is provided to teach nuts and bolts techniques that do not require these enterprise systems.

Also, some examples given can be improved with newer applications of the enabling standards such as XSLT. In such cases if the reader has alternatives that provably improve the examples, they are invited to cite where these can be obtained with alternative example code that can be included in this web site. Code fixes for errors in the examples are also welcome as long as they are open source and unencumbered by intellectual property claims.

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