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SOFT9020 XML in Technical Communication Assignment Sample MTU Ireland

SOFT9020 XML in Technical Communication is a module that explores how XML is used to create and deliver technical content. XML is a markup language that is widely used for encoding documents in a machine-readable format. XML documents can be read by any XML-aware application, making it an ideal format for exchanging information between different systems.

This module covers the use of XML for document authoring, document management, and single-sourcing. Students will learn how to use XML editing tools, including Oxygen XML Editor, to the author and manage XML content. They will also learn how to use DITA-OT to generate output from XML sources. At the end of this module, students will be able to use XML to create and deliver technical content.

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In this section, we are describing some assigned activities. These are:

Assignment Activity 1: Describe the main technologies involved in technical communications which include XML, XSLT stylesheets, DTD, and XSD.

Technical communication is the process of conveying information about a product, service, or system to those who need to use it. The main technologies involved in technical communication are XML, XSLT stylesheets, DTDs, and XSDs.

XML: XML (Extensible Markup Language) is a markup language that defines a set of rules for encoding documents in a format that is both human-readable and machine-readable. It is used to structure and label data for interchange between applications.

XML was designed to be extensible, meaning that it can be adapted to meet the needs of particular domains without the need for changes to the XML specification. XML has been adopted as a standard by a number of industries, including information technology, publishing, financial services, healthcare, and government.

XSLT stylesheets: XSLT (Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations) is a language for transforming XML documents into other XML documents. It is used to convert one XML document into another XML document, or to transform an XML document into an HTML document.

XSLT stylesheets are written in the XML syntax and can be applied to any XML document. They are typically used to generate HTML or XHTML output from XML sources.

DTD: A DTD (Document Type Definition) is a set of rules that defines the structure of an XML document. It is used to validate XML documents to ensure that they are well-formed.

A DTD can be used to specify the allowed elements, attributes, and entities in an XML document. It can also be used to specify the relationships between these elements.

XSD: An XSD (XML Schema Definition) is a set of rules that defines the structure of an XML document. It is used to validate XML documents to ensure that they are well-formed and conform to a particular schema.

An XSD can be used to specify the allowed elements, attributes, and entities in an XML document. It can also be used to specify the relationships between these elements.

XML is a versatile technology that can be used for a variety of purposes in technical communication. It is a markup language that can be used to structure and label data for interchange between applications. XML can be used to author documents, manage document repositories, and generate output from XML sources. The use of XML in technical communication will continue to grow as the need for more efficient and effective ways to exchange information between systems increases.

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Assignment Activity 2: Evaluate industry-standard authoring approaches.

The three main approaches to authoring XML documents are the element-based approach, the attribute-based approach, and the mixed content approach.

  1. The element-based approach is the most common way of authoring XML documents. In this approach, elements are used to represent the structure of the document. The advantage of this approach is that it is easy to understand and use. The disadvantage is that it can be difficult to maintain the structure of the document if it is changed frequently.
  2. The attribute-based approach is less common than the element-based approach, but it has some advantages. In this approach, attributes are used to represent the structure of the document. The advantage of this approach is that it is more flexible than the element-based approach. The disadvantage is that it can be difficult to understand and use.
  3. The mixed content approach is a combination of the element-based and attribute-based approaches. In this approach, elements and attributes are used to represent the structure of the document. The advantage of this approach is that it is more flexible than the element-based approach. The disadvantage is that it can be difficult to understand and use.

Assignment Activity 3: Design technical documentation for re-usability.

When designing technical documentation for re-usability, it is important to consider the needs of the audience. The goal is to create a document that can be easily understood and used by the reader. To do this, the document must be well-organized and clearly written.

It is also important to consider the format of the document. XML documents can be authored in a variety of formats, including HTML, XHTML, and XML. Each format has its own advantages and disadvantages. For example, HTML is the most common format for authoring XML documents. However, it is not as well suited for re-usability as other formats such as XML.

Finally, it is important to consider the tools that will be used to author the document. There are a variety of XML authoring tools available, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. The tool that is selected should be one that is easy to use and has the features that are needed for the document.

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Assignment Activity 4: Assemble content by linking content and reusing topics.

Assembling content by linking content and reusing topics is a good way to create a well-organized and efficient XML document. This approach allows the author to reuse existing content and link different pieces of content together. This makes it easier for the reader to find the information they are looking for and to understand the relationships between different pieces of information.

When assembling content, it is important to consider the needs of the audience. The goal is to create a document that can be easily understood and used by the reader. To do this, the document must be well-organized and clearly written.

It is also important to consider the format of the document. XML documents can be authored in a variety of formats, including HTML, XHTML, and XML. Each format has its own advantages and disadvantages. For example, HTML is the most common format for authoring XML documents. However, it is not as well suited for re-usability as other formats such as XML.

Finally, it is important to consider the tools that will be used to author the document. There are a variety of XML authoring tools available, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. The tool that is selected should be one that is easy to use and has the features that are needed for the document.

Assignment Activity 5: Modify an XSLT stylesheet to customize PDF output.

XSLT is a powerful tool for transforming XML documents into other formats such as PDF. However, it can be difficult to customize the output of an XSLT stylesheet to meet the specific needs of a project. You will modify an existing XSLT stylesheet to customize the output of a PDF document.

To begin, open the XSLT stylesheet in a text editor. Next, find the section of the stylesheet that controls the output of the PDF document. This section will typically be labeled “Output.”

Once you have located the Output section, you will need to modify the code to customize the PDF output. For example, you may want to change the font size or the margins of the document.

After you have made the necessary changes, save the stylesheet and test it by transforming an XML document into a PDF. If everything looks as expected, you are finished. Otherwise, continue to tweak the stylesheet until you get the desired results.

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Assignment Activity 6: Develop ANT and Batch file to automate the PDF customization process.

Developing ANT and Batch files to automate the PDF customization process can save a lot of time and effort. These files can be used to automatically transform XML documents into PDFs that are customized for the specific needs of a project.

To develop an ANT file, you will need to open a text editor and create a new file. In the file, you will need to specify the name of the XSLT stylesheet that will be used to transform the XML document. You will also need to specify the name of the XML document that will be transformed.

After you have created the ANT file, you will need to create a batch file. The batch file will be used to execute the ANT file. To create the batch file, you will need to open a text editor and create a new file. In the file, you will need to specify the location of the ANT file and the XML document.

After you have created the batch file, you will need to test it by running it. If everything works as expected, you are finished. Otherwise, you will need to troubleshoot the problem and make the necessary changes.

Assignment Activity 7: Synthesize content to a variety of output formats.

XML documents can be transformed into a variety of output formats using XSLT. This flexibility makes XML an ideal format for authoring documents that will be used in multiple ways. For example, an XML document could be transformed into an HTML document for display on a website, a PDF document for printing, or a Word document for editing.

To transform an XML document into another format, you will need to use an XSLT stylesheet. There are a variety of XSLT stylesheets available, each designed to transform XML documents into specific formats.

After you have selected an XSLT stylesheet, you will need to transform the XML document using the stylesheet. This can be done using a variety of tools, such as an XML editor or a web browser.

Once the document has been transformed, you will need to save it in the desired format. For example, if you are transforming an XML document into an HTML document, you will need to save the document as a .html file.

After you have saved the document, you will need to test it to make sure that it is displayed correctly in the desired format. If everything looks as expected, you are finished. Otherwise, you will need to troubleshoot the problem and make the necessary changes.

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