Middleware unifies publishing

Although the Standard Generalized Markup Language promised the same thing many years
ago, converting all documents to SGML proved too time-consuming, said Bill Thornburg, vice
president of publisher markets for Dataware Technologies Inc. of Cambridge, Mass.


Dataware's Electronic Publishing Management System (EPMS) can accept documents in many
non-SGML data formats, including active news feeds, by later this year. The text-based
repository for the finished documents is an SGML document store, which maps non-SGML
documents to its SGML structure.


The repository uses plug-in source cartridges to accept electronic documents from
composition systems, document management systems, groupware, database management systems,
word processors, and Hypertext Markup Language and SGML sources.


Dataware modified its flagship BRS relational database software to store and manage all
these formats. "The idea is to build publications from discrete elements that you
reuse in other publications," Thornburg said.


Included with the Dataware system are source cartridges for SGML, Microsoft Word, Corel
Corp. WordPerfect, Lotus Development Corp. Word Pro, Adobe Systems Inc. FrameMaker and
rich-text-format documents.


Dataware also licensed Outside In viewer software from Inso Corp. of Boston and will
deliver an optional source cartridge later this year. With that cartridge, Dataware's
product can support more than 200 document types created using desktop software.


Dataware will also deliver source cartridges for Adobe's Portable Document Format and
Adobe FrameMaker's binary format.


Government publishing shops such as the Defense Logistics Services Center in Battle
Creek, Mich., a beta tester of EPMS, use the system to combine various electronic source
documents into custom documents.


In an era when publications are targeting smaller audiences with special interests, the
style editor gives new documents a consistent look without converting the original content
in the SGML store. "Many organizations are grappling at a very high level with how
they look to the outside world," Thornburg said. They want to keep publications at
the department level but give them all a consistent look.


With EPMS, organizations can publish to multiple electronic delivery systems and create
hybrid publications. The graphics, audio and video content can arrive on a CD-ROM but with
hyperlinks to text published on an intranet or Internet server.


The publishing system permits simultaneous publishing of information to client-server
networks, Thornburg said.


Full-text search functions are integrated with the publishing functions. EPMS also has
enterprise security and accounting functions, he said.


The Dataware system captures and stores complex production processes within publication
objects, Thornburg said.


The client-server package runs under Microsoft Windows NT and Windows 95. Future
versions will run on SunSoft Solaris and Hewlett-Packard HP-UX platforms.


EPMS licenses start at $15,000. The cost to build a typical application is less than
$25,000, Thornburg said, including licenses for the EPMS Publishing Manager, EPMS Internet
and Intranet Server, EPMS Client and EPMS Software Developer Kit.


Contact Dataware Technologies at 617-621-0820.


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