First off, thank you for what looks like a fantastic effort. I admire (and
am envious of) each of you who have found the time to contribute to such a
valuable project.

I am involved with the approval process for bringing new technology into
our company.  We have several development groups who have seen the FOP
engine and would like to include it their applications. The requirements
are pretty much the same across applications. They need to generate lots of
short dynamic documents in PDF (lots=500-1000 per day, short=1-20 pages,
mostly text, some tables).  Some of the applications need to support
unicode or double-byte languages.

On the surface, I agree that FOP looks like the right answer for what they
need.  However, I also need to ensure that we follow our guidelines for
technology acquisition.

One of our primary tenets is "no beta software should be included in
production applications".

I have read through many posts in the mail list and appreciate the honesty
and clarity about the current status.
Back in January of 2001 and again in July 2001, Arved Sandstrom pointed out
that FOP is still a development effort.
With this message, I am hoping I can persuade one of the committers to
provide a "January 2002" update on the status.
I have found the occasional status messages very useful, hopefully any
response to this message on the archive will help others in the future.

Here is a snippet from the July 2001 post by Arved:

>> FOP developers and committers have never suggested that the processor is
>> anything other than a work in progress. My best guess is that if we have
>> production release by the end of the year then we'll be doing well.
Alpha is
>> a long ways away.

Is this still the case?  I am making an assumption that the version number
speaks to the status (v0.x is "pre-release").
Is the version numbering a reflection of:
     A. Still early in development
     B. Indication of how completely the XSL:FO spec is implemented
     C. A combination of both

I also in various places reference to RC (Release Candidate) versions. It
seems that currently v0.20.1 is the latest "stable" release (no implication
intended by "stable" - I just think I saw that phrasing somewhere
associated with v0.20.1).
If possible, could someone clarify the intention/meaning of the x.yy.zz
version scheme.
(I am guessing that x is major production release, yy is a change to what
is supported, and zz is for minor changes / patches.)

I see some notes about the inclusion of jfor (RTF output) into the FOP
project.  I think that would be really cool, and speaks very well of the
effort put in thus far. Anyone care to comment on when that may make it
into a release?

On a somewhat related note, any updated comments on the following would be
I have seen several posts that recommend Renderx XEP if you "need
production level code".  Is that still the case?
Sometime ago, Renderx apparently put a feature comparison up on their site,
but since removed it (concerns of bias, etc).
I have seen references to things like "look for independent comparisons".
Has anyone seen a recent comparison? I can not find one (though I
understand time is better spent refining the code than dedicating resources
to run comparisons).

Thanks in advance for any responses,

Pete Tribulski

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