If you do HTML conversions, READ THIS!

Subject: If you do HTML conversions, READ THIS!
From: Christine Bain <pubedge -at- AIRMAIL -dot- NET>
Date: Fri, 9 May 1997 00:01:56 -0500

If you do HTML conversions, READ THIS!
I have conducted research and have found some interesting facts that might
save someone else a few headaches. It?s too late for me?

I do HTML conversions and if you are familiar with the tools available you
will understand my dilemma. I needed a tool that could support Interleaf,
Frame and Word. All of the files contain native graphics, native hypertext
links, tables, sub and super scripts, and tons of special characters. To
make a long story as short as possible, the closest I could come was HTML
Transit. A very good tool mind you, but two major problems with the
graphics. The first is my pet peeve? the product claims to be able to
automatically translate graphics to GIF?s. What it doesn?t tell you is that
these GIF?s are not transparent. Now as we all know, what good is a
automatic translation if I still have to open each graphic in a conversion
utility to make it a GIF 87a or 89a. They really didn?t save me any time.
Now the fun one? Native Interleaf vector images are not supported by HTML
Transit, but the text and tables translated beautifully (HTML 3.2).
In the mean time I try a translation in Cyberleaf, a product owned by
Interleaf. It handled the native Interleaf vector images great, but writes
to HTML 1.0 so the tables came across as images (can?t have that) and a lot
of fixes on the sub and supper scripting would be too time consuming.
So hence my dilemma? convert the over 200 graphics (and that was just for
this book, there are many more books to come) which consists of opening the
file the images are in, capturing the image, and export it to a graphics
tool to convert it to GIF, then take them out to a utility to make them
Fix the text in the Cyberleaf conversion, which is more tedious, if you can
believe that, these are very technical documents (ASIC products).

Then the light bulb came on? use both tools. I am going to do a full
conversion of the book with both HTML Transit and Cyberleaf. I am going to
take the GIF?s that Cyberleaf creates from the native Interleaf images and
save them as the names that HTML Transit gives the same images. Then I will
copy over the Transit GIF?s with the Cyberleaf GIF?s (so not to have to
reassign the links). I still have to turn each graphic transparent unless
Cyberleaf has a way to do that automatically, but that is a far cry from
what I was facing.

If anyone knows if Cyberleaf can convert images into GIF 87a or 89a please
tell me. Or is there a way to do a batch conversion of the transparencies?

Hope this information helps someone.

If you would like to see the evaluation results you can download the PDF
file from my FTP site at http://web2.airmail.net/pubedge (available Friday
evening). The evaluation is of four top HTML conversion applications and
my list of criteria. I did not rank their performance, I only had time to
check if they could do the function or not.

All comments welcome.

Christine Bain
Publishing Edge
pubedge -at- airmail -dot- net
972 298-1281
Do we have as much sense as a goose?

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