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Re: [xml-doc] Generating HTML Help from DocBook XML -- WinHelp

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  • Michael Smith
    ... There is a package that was put together a couple of years ago. You can get it at: http://www.oasis-open.org/cover/winHelpJade.zip But the developer who
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 29, 2000
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      fred.lass@... writes:

      > (FYI: ArborText's EPIC has an implementation of DocBook that includes lots
      > of bells and whistles vis-a-vis EPIC features -- including methods to
      > simplify the DTD -- that includes outputing HTML Help -- including chunking,
      > etc. -- probably from the days when Norm Walsh was there.)
      >
      > Is there a similar line of resources for generating *.hlp (WinHelp) files?

      There is a package that was put together a couple of years ago. You
      can get it at:

      http://www.oasis-open.org/cover/winHelpJade.zip

      But the developer who created it really intended it only as a proof of
      concept. He never updated it (as far as I know) and actually doesn't
      even make it available himself any longer -- the link above is an
      archived copy at Robin Cover's site.

      If you still want to try it out, there are a few more caveats to keep
      in mind:

      * it uses a stylesheet written in DSSSL, not XSL

      * it is not based on DocBook; you must use the Helpfile DTD that
      comes in the package

      * it requires that you also install (or already have installed) a
      few other applications:

      - James Clark's Jade, a DSSSL engine
      http://www.jclark.com/jade/
      (you could probably also use the newer OpenJade version)

      - Perl

      - WinHelp compiler
      ftp://ftp.microsoft.com/softlib/mslfiles/HCWSETUP.EXE

      * it doesn't create the TOC or contents (.cnt) file for you; you
      have to do that the old-fashioned way

      Here's a brief description of the steps needed to run it:

      1. Create your SGML/XML document using the supplied Helpfile DTD (or
      transform your document so that it validates against that DTD).

      2. Run Jade on your SGML/XML document, using the supplied DSSSL
      stylesheet to produce an RTF (MS Word format) file (Jade does
      SGML/XML-to-RTF transformation, among other things)

      3. Run a short Perl script (included in the package) to do some magic
      on the RTF file

      4. Open the RTF file in Help workshop (or whatever) to get the project
      (.hpj) and contents (.cnt) files, and compile to get the final
      (.hlp) file. At a minimum, this last step requires that you:

      * define at least one window for the project

      * create the contents (.cnt) file -- i.e. define which topics to
      list on the contents tab and in what order (of course this can be
      a bunch of work, depending on the number of topics you have)

      It would be much nicer to have a process that automatically created
      the contents file for you. It would also be nice to have a DocBook
      stylesheet for it. But it's unlikely that you're going to find any
      enhancements, unless you want to develop them yourself.

      So, unless you really really need WinHelp for some reason, you're much
      better off with the HTML Help conversion process described in my
      previous posting (http://www.egroups.com/message/xml-doc/425).

      --Mike Smith

      --
      Michael Smith mailto:smith@...
      XML-DOC http://www.xml-doc.org/
      see also: Logopoeia http://www.logopoeia.com/
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