XML for Content Development (oXygen): Schedule for your_name
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Course start date: start_date

This is your main working page for your noncredit online course in XML for Content Development (oXygen). Although oXygen is the designated authoring tool for this course, you can use any authoring tool. Just send your files to me (David McMurrey); I will check to see if they validate.

From this page you can go to study materials, read about project requirements, find out what to name your files, see when projects are due, go to the online textbook and other resources for this course.

Syncro oXygen XML editor is available as a 12-month subscription for $59: https://www.oxygenxml.com/buy_subscription_a12_editor.html. You have to purchase it for a 12-month period.

When you complete a unit, click the Completed button for that unit. If you mistakenly mark a unit as completed, contact your instructor (or just wait until you've actually completed it.)

Links have been removed from this version of the course.

Unit 1: Course Introduction—Structured Authoring & XML: Overview

Let's get this course started by understanding what structured authoring and why it's a big deal. Understand the fundamental difference between a chapter (as in a book) and a topic (as in an XML project). Finally in this unit, use oXygen to create your first XML item—a simple, well-formed document.

Unfortunately, there is no free fully integrated software for XML. oXygen works great for XML, but it's not free obviously. You must use oXygen to take the XML version of this course. It you simply cannot acquire oXygen, try these and work with me (David McMurrey):

Go to course overview to read how this course is set up.

Go to XML introduction to get an introduction to structured authoring, XML, and Syncro oXygen and do the practice.

Due date: unit1_date

Unit 2: Elements, Attributes, Entities, Comments

Elements are the basic information blocks of XML documents. Attributes add detail to those elements. Entities are special characters reserved for XML and special variable-like items that you create and use yourself.

Go to XML basics to read about elements, attributes, entities, and comments and do the practice.

Due date: unit2_date

Unit 3: Document Type Definition (DTD)

Get an introduction to another key concept in XML structured authoring—Document Type Definitions (DTDs). The resources here duplicate each other a bit—sorry!

Go to DTDs to read about DTDs and do the practice.

Due date: unit3_date

Unit 4: Publishing XML Files with XSLT

At long last, let's produce some nicely formatted and readable HTML—a web page!

Go to XSLT to read about XSLT and do the practice.

Due date: unit4_date

Unit 5: Publishing XML Files with XSL-FO

In this unit, let's generate another common output of XML—a PDF!

Go to XSL-FO to read about XSL-FO.


Due date: unit5_date

Unit 6: Conditional Publishing with XSLT

You would be right to wonder about tagging text in XML files for specific conditions. For example, certain text gets output only to experts; other text gets output only to version 2; certain text gets output only to Windows.

XML does not have its own functions to process different versions like for different audiences, releases, and so on, but there is a way to set up conditions using XSLT, as described in the following link.

Go to XML Conditional Processing with XSLT to learn how to set up consitions with XSLT and do the practice.

Due date: unit6_date

Unit 8: XML Path & XML Query

This will be a "bonus" unit that I am currently developing. It will not be required to receive the certificate for this course.

XML Path

Unit 9: Final Project in XML

Get in touch with me (David at admin@mcmassociates.io) if you want to brainstorm what to write your final project about. Keep in that if you intend to show your project off to prospective employers, it might help to focus on something technology-oriented.

Here are the suggestions:

  • Include at least 3 topics.
  • Include at least one table and one image.
  • Zip your project (the XRD which would include the XML files, the DTD, the XSLT). Name the zip with some identifying part of your name, followed by _finalproject., followed by whichever extension your zip app uses. For example, david_finalproject.zip
  • Specify conditions for your final project--for example, different readers, different publishing channels. Somewhere in your project or e-mail to me, explain what those conditions are.
  • Use the standards of good formatting: agreeable fonts and color, headings, vertical lists, indentations, margins, highlighting, notices (see page design).
  • Use the standards of good writing.

Due date: unit7_date

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