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      CommentAuthorfbrault
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2011 edited
     
    So, I seem to be first here. I hope this topic is of interest here.

    I would like to make a Ulysses template for XML. I would use the template to bring tagged content into Adobe InDesign, but I think that there would be other uses. I am piecing together all the necessary components from the wonderful WebExport help and the example templates in the Web Export 2.0 package that I downloaded here. My purpose is simple, so this template would not be particularly capable on it's own, but perhaps others might adapt it to their needs.

    I have had some small success with adapting images in my content and exported with the Minimal template so far.

    After combing the documentation, I have not found the way to reference the names that the user specifies for the paragraph, inline and reference and marker styles in order to construct XML tags, i.e. {{inlineUserStyle.name}} or something similar. It would seem that this is available when the export dialog box is populated, since the cheatSheet.html seems to be able to build the list of user defined styles. Is this not exposed after the export dialog is dismissed, while the exported files are actually being written? Perhaps there is a way that I have not seen. In any case, it would be logical for the template creator to have this semantic information, to dynamically build meaning onto the output.

    I would like to exchange what I make here with others interested in creating templates. I apologize in advance if I am not using this category in the way it was intended.

    Thanks,

    Frank Brault
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      CommentAuthorgoetz
    • CommentTimeJul 25th 2011
     
    Hello Frank,
    thanks for trying out the WebExport beta!
    I'm a bit a confused about which placeholders you want to use when exporting. Currently, you can access properties of Documents such as the name, the text or the label. Additionally, you can access the parameters of the exporter. However, you cannot access properties of Styles or Markers. For rendering the cheat sheet, we use internal knowledge of the Presets and Templates, which is not exposed to regular export. I understand that your example could be a special case where it would be useful to exploit such information, but for most cases, this is not needed. Perhaps if you give us more concrete examples, we can figure out a way to solve your problem. (Also, feel free to contact as directly at support@the-soulmen.com since this is a very specific issue).

    Götz
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      CommentAuthorfbrault
    • CommentTimeJul 26th 2011 edited
     
    Hi Götz,

    Thank you for replying so thoughtfully!

    So, I am making software manuals, which are in a very specific subset of your market, I guess. When I first encountered Ulysses, I was looking for a writing tool that I could write and minimally indicate the semantics of my writing, without having to think about the look or the layout. I understood that the section describing Ulysses as being a Semantic Editor exactly fit what I was looking for.

    It delivers well for my writing task. I use all of the inline, paragraph and marker features to tag everything as to the look and layout for the graphics team. But now I need to get all this data out in electronic form. I think that without the style type and names, that I could still create a specific template action for every style in my document that creates the necessary markup. Then I can map the styles to the tags and go back to writing.

    I am happy that I may be able to effortlessly export my work to the graphics team in Ulysses. I do think that there are many in my situation who have less interest in the workings of the templates and would make use of an export-like interface for XML.

    Thanks,

    Frank Brault
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      CommentAuthorgoetz
    • CommentTimeJul 30th 2011
     

    Hello Frank, wouldn't it be possible to achieve this by simply editing the Style Actions of your Template? I.e., assigning a specific action for each Style/Marker?
    If you need any help creating these actions, feel free to ask -- the actions are quite powerful, but we're working on how to make them easier to create.

    Cheers, Götz

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      CommentAuthorfbrault
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2011 edited
     
    So far, I have managed to get almost all of what I need by doing just what you said; Creating a new XML style sheet. I have learned enough about the WebExport to make a template that spits out the file with tagged content, the images which is really just using the facility that you provide and a .dtd file specific to my manual. So I would say Cheers! And thank you for making a kick-ass piece of software!

    After committing to Ulysses and working to produce this template, I wanted to mention a couple of things that as a user, I think would make Ulysses better. Please keep in mind that this is not a rant; I am communicating my experience in using your wonderful software and wish to contribute my positive feedback. I understand that Ulysses is written for creative writers and that I am writing software manuals, but still, I think it probably is nothing that you haven't already thought about.

    I would really appreciate a better interface for images. It is fantastic that you have included this functionality and it works well. It's just that I have hundreds of screen shots and and diagrams, which each have to be carefully entered in the editor, entered again in the notes area and then find it on the disk and get the image file into the right note. I think if there was just a single dialog box that could have a field for the ID, the path to the image and the caption, that would go a long way toward making this process easier and quicker.

    I would like to know how to make internal links to places within the active file. If it's not already supported, it might be as simple as a dialog with the ID, named landing spot. (a Bookmark?) and the hyperlink reference. The footnote reference is almost there, but my brain is too small to see how to encapsulate the local named area. It seems that there is a hardwired spot for the footnote location.

    I would really be able to focus better on the my writing if I could minimize the tags to a faint or even hidden appearance. I have managed to get this, but I may be doing something that will cause instability, or misunderstanding by your code. I assign the straight bracket as an inline style with a faint color. Then I define all my paragraph styles with the same straight bracket plus another identifier, like [u1] for first unordered list style.

    So, Ulysses sees the definition for the inline bracket and colors the tag, but then colors the paragraph text between the tags with the my spec for the paragraph style color, which is usually just black. I have blue underline for hyperlinks, but not much else. I saw a software that doesn't do anything like Ulysses, but has this look in the screen shots on their website here: http://bywordapp.com/ It's the fourth thumbnail. This software doesn't have Ulysses' export flexibility.

    If you're interested I could send you the file and the marvelous pdf output from inDesign that does make sense, somehow with my output file. The real test will be when I want to merge in edits later. hoo boy.
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      CommentAuthorgoetz
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2011
     
    Hello Frank, thank you for your praise and thoughtful comments, your feedback is highly appreciated. To be honest, these issues have also bugging us over the last years. Adding images has always been not the easiest operation and we hope to improve that functionality in the future. We're also well aware of the other issues. We have some ideas in mind and hope to come up with something great by the end of the year.

    Cheers, Götz
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      CommentAuthorfbrault
    • CommentTimeAug 15th 2011 edited
     
    I'm getting on pretty well presently; Unfortunately, InDesign requires bits of non-standard formatting, or actually, I haven't found out how to do it yet except by extra breaks here; run-on lines there. No show stoppers, but the template is much less valuable with all of the modifications. Still, it goes well. I have one quick question:

    I am not able to get the {{TIMESTAMP}} Web Export document property to deliver the date.
    I have tried it in the template formatted as above and also various combinations of (document.timestamp) or {{document.timestamp}}, but Ulysses either complains that it is not defined, or passes it on as a string literal. I have not seen an example of it's usage in any of the other templates, so I thought I'd ask if there is something further to know about this feature.

    Thanks,

    Frank Brault
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      CommentAuthorgoetz
    • CommentTimeAug 15th 2011 edited
     

    I just did a quick test in one of my Templates, and {{document.timestamp}} works just for me. The output is a localized version of the current time and date (for me it is

    Montag, 15. August 2011 13:36:35 Mitteleuropäische Sommerzeit

    ), so I don't know if this is overly useful for you. You can use {{document.timestamp}} just like any other document property such as {{document.text}}. If it still doesn't work, you can send us a snippet of the code and I can have a look at what's wrong.

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      CommentAuthorfbrault
    • CommentTimeAug 17th 2011
     
    Ahh!

    OK, so I tried it in the Metadata section of the Export dialog. My bad. The code passes everything straight through.

    Thanks!

    Frank Brault