Can OxygenXML publish XML to PDF using CSS stylesheet?

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binar
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 7:43 pm

Can OxygenXML publish XML to PDF using CSS stylesheet?

Post by binar » Wed Jun 26, 2019 5:07 am

Greetings,
I have XML data in the form of Issue 4.1 S1000D data modules. To output to PDF I use XSL stylesheets. However, I cannot make changes to the XSL stylesheets because I do not have strong XSL coding skills. Is it possible in OxygenXML to use a CSS file to output an XML publication module file as a PDF file? Additionally, is it possible in OxygenXML to apply the same CSS file to the computer monitor output while I am authoring in OxygenXML using the Author mode? Such a capability will greatly improve my authoring efforts. In short, my goal is to make my own CSS stylesheets to replace the XSL stylesheets so I can get control of my PDF publishing which is something I do not have as long as I continue to use XSL stylesheets. I would appreciate any links that can show me the entire process I need to follow from beginning to end.

My research led me to the Youtube video below:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ywi2XlBZnf0

However, this applies for DITA data and not XML data. I am assuming it is an entirely different process when using XML data. Do you have any training material that shows how to create a CSS stylesheet to apply it to XML data that conforms to Issue 4.1 S1000D? I would appreciate any links you can provide. Thank you for your help with this matter.

Costin
Posts: 621
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:04 pm

Re: Can OxygenXML publish XML to PDF using CSS stylesheet?

Post by Costin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 4:28 pm

Hi binar,

I understand that you need to use CSS to style XML files and produce PDF output.
If my understanding is correct, then you reached the right place.

Oxygen XML Editor is capable of producing PDF both out of DITA Maps and, as a new feature implemented starting with the latest version - 21.1 - of oXygen, out of general XML files, using our proprietary PDF Chemistry engine.
To produce PDF out of general XML, you could use the out-of-the-box "XML to PDF with CSS" transformation scenario.
More information about the scenario available in this section from the oXygen XML Editor User-Guide.

Unfortunately, there is no predefined CSS tailored for S1000D compliant XML documents, so you should develop your own CSS customization stylesheet and use it in the transformation scenario. Usually we do not offer consultancy services (though, there are 3rd party companies that offer such services), but we will try to help you with advice if the time and human resources allows us. Also, we would appreciate if you could share a CSS for styling S1000D compliant XML documents after you get it at a final form, as this could help us improve our product so that other users could benefit of this functionality too.

If you want to automate your PDF production or, from any other reasons, you are looking to use command-line to publish PDF (outside of the oXygen XML Editor GUI), there is also the separate PDF Chemistry product that you could consider.

More details on using the PDF Chemistry from command line available in the PDF Chemistry User-Guide (see the "Command Line Interface" section from "Getting Started").

Going further, there are two videos recorded at User-Meetup Conferences, where we demonstrate the power of PDF Chemistry engine in the Resources > Videos section from our website. Just type "pdf chemistry" in the search filter to show only the relevant videos.

Last but not least, it is recommended to test the products by yourself prior to purchasing any product. Therefore, you could register for a trial license on the Download page of a specific product, or just request a trial license for the product you are interested to test on our official sales support email: sales@oxygenxml.com

I hope this helps.

Regards,
Costin
Costin Sandoi
oXygen XML Editor and Author Support

binar
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 7:43 pm

Re: Can OxygenXML publish XML to PDF using CSS stylesheet?

Post by binar » Wed Jun 26, 2019 4:56 pm

Costin,
Thank you for your post. Could you please address the matter regarding computer monitor output. In short, can the same CSS file I create to stylize my PDF output also be used to stylize computer monitor output? In other words, can the same CSS file generate a WYSIWYG representation of the content on the computer screen while working in the OxygenXML Author mode? Such a capability will help the authoring process a lot. Thanks for your help with this matter.

Costin
Posts: 621
Joined: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:04 pm

Re: Can OxygenXML publish XML to PDF using CSS stylesheet?

Post by Costin » Wed Jun 26, 2019 5:13 pm

Hi binar,

Yes, it is possible to associate the customization CSS to the XML document you are working with (through the "Associate XSLT/CSS Stylesheet" action available both as a toolbar action, or from the menu Document > XML Document) so that, as a result, you could see the style applied in the Author editing mode.
There may be sporadic situations, where (due to post processing that Chemistry performs over the document) the PDF output could slightly differ for an element, but you could still have a high WYSIWYG accuracy that would help you to have an idea of how the PDF output would look like.

However, as I suggest in my previous post, it would be best to test the software prior to purchasing, see if it suits your requirements.

Best Regards,
Costin
Costin Sandoi
oXygen XML Editor and Author Support

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