I think that you are right about being a sister project to FOP within XMLGraphics.

The discussion from everyone has been very helpful even if the writer was negative to the idea.

//I would be happy to see some interaction in a number of areas.
a) Clearly, the DITA group should be pushing for the FOP features that are required to produce the documents that can be described in DITA. b)I think that the current Apache members could make positive suggestions about the processing and structure of the DITA toolkit. c) The DITA language specification is constantly undergoing updates and there are likely things that current FOP users could suggest as additions to allow them to use a standard language to author documents. d) The users of the DITA tool kit need some customization of FOP configuration to produce nice looking documents and there is likely a lot of experts here that could be engaged to do these projects.


On 27/03/2014 12:18 PM, Chris Bowditch wrote:
Hi Ron,

Thanks for your e-mail. I can certainly see why joining the 2 communities seems like a good idea to help improve funding for FOP, and deliver the features DITA requires. I'd certainly be interested in seeing what the list of missing XSL-FO features are from a DITA perspective.

The challenge with joining multiple communities together is that it makes the merged project too complex and it scares users/developers away. This is a problem faced by FOP already. The codebase is so vast and complex, many people struggle to get to grips with it.

I would be against DITA and FOP merging for this reason, plus the separation of concerns already stated by others. That said, if DITA wanted to join Apache, adding DITA as a sub project of XMLGraphics would seem like a logical place for the DITA community. That way there would be some links between the 2 projects and an oversight of both from a common committee. This should help to improve interoperability a little although perhaps not to the extent you had hoped for.



On 26/03/2014 14:42, Ron Wheeler wrote:
The DITA-OT (DITA Open Toolkit) (http://www.ditaopentoolkit.org/) is an open source project that depends on FOP. It takes DITA (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darwin_Information_Typing_Architecture) XML input and produces a number of different document types. One of the main output types is PDF and it uses FOP to do this. It takes DITA input (xml) and produces an intermediate set of files that are processed by FOP to produce a PDF. It can also produce HTML There is a Maven plug-in to control the production in an IDE environment. It calls all the bits and pieces required to take the raw DITA XML files and output a document in PDF in the target folder.

There is some interest in adding DITA-OT to the Apache family and in my opinion, the XMLGraphics group seems like a natural home and the FOP sub-project might be a good place for DITA-OT to reside.

DITA-OT is a large community of users but a small community of developers. There are also a few enhancement ideas that would require FOP enhancements to complete. In addition, my own belief is that the FOP community could add some technical advice to the DITA-OT community that would be helpful.

http://sourceforge.net/projects/dita-ot/ is the download page. DITA-OT is currently distributed under the Apache License V2.0.

I am not one of the main players in the group but have taken on the task of seeing if there is a possibility of opening the discussion with the FOP group.

Would there be any interest in considering adding front-end XML processing to the FOP production project?


Ron Wheeler
Artifact Software Inc
email: rwhee...@artifact-software.com
skype: ronaldmwheeler
phone: 866-970-2435, ext 102

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