About AH XSL Formatter Standard

Format XML/XSL-FO documents/data/forms at high speed.

AH XSL Formatter offers GUI support for over 50 languages, PDF generation, W3C compliance, extensions, significantly enhanced performance, vector support for EMF and WMF, new output capabilities through the new INX Creator Option and CGM Option, MathML native drawing, XSL Report Designer integration, support for SVG output with the SVG Output Option, the Standard edition can format a document of virtually any size whether it is a publication, tens of thousands of invoices, reports or personalized one to one documents.

Antenna House Formatter supports page layouts specified using either CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) or XSL-FO (Extensible Stylesheet Language - Formatting Objects) for formatting documents for PDF and print. Now users can select the stylesheet language and content strategy that best suits their business needs.

XSL-FO has long been recognized as the standard for formatting XML for print and PDF and CSS as the standard for displaying HTML on the web. The missing piece for web developers had always been how to go from web/HTML to print and PDF with properly formatted pages and documents. AH Formatter is the answer.

Building on the strengths of the CSS3 specification and Antenna House XSL Formatter, Antenna House Formatter V5.0 has added the capability that now enables web designers to use CSS to add print and PDF output to their systems by using all the features and functionality that Antenna House has developed over the years as the supplier of the most powerful XSL-FO formatting software available.

  • XSL-FO:Extensible Stylesheet Language (XSL) Version 1.1 recommended from the W3C.
  • CSS:Cascading Style Sheets Level 2 Revision 1, CSS3 Working Draft

In addition to the powerful formatting functions by using XSL-FO, Antenna House has added the ability for formatting HTML and XML with CSS.

Antenna House Formatter offers all the features (GUI, support for over 50 languages, PDF generation), W3C compliance, extensions, the significantly enhanced performance, unlimited document size and SVG support, vector support for EMF and WMF, new output capabilities through the new INX Creator Option and CGM Option, MathML native drawing, XSL Report Designer integration, support for SVG output by SVG Output Option, PANTONE color support by PANTONE Option and Web Service Interface to support the use of XSL Formatter via the Internet, the two-pass formatting that makes it possible to format huge documents, high quality EPS embedding in PDF, the enhanced PDF features, AcroForms, PDF/A, PDF1.7, PostScript output, PDF Digital Signature and numerous other enhancements by AXF extension. New to AH Formatter is the XPS Output Option that enables the output of XPS (XML Paper Specification) files.

The AH Formatter is available in 6 variations:

  • AH Formatter - Full support for the layouts specified by both XSL-FO and CSS
  • AH XSL Formatter - Full support for the layouts specified by only XSL-FO
  • AH CSS Formatter - Full support for the layouts specified by only CSS
  • AH Formatter Lite - Support for the layouts specified by both XSL-FO and CSS with restrictions
  • AH XSL Formatter Lite - Support for the layouts specified by only XSL-FO with restrictions
  • AH CSS Formatter Lite - Support for the layouts specified by only CSS with restrictions

AH Formatter Highlights

Compliant with XSL 1.1
Corresponds to XSL 1.1 which is a XSL-FO specification. AH Formatter faithfully implements quite almost elements of the XSL specification and properties.

High speed
In batch mode it can start to produce PDF output immediately from the inputted file.

Format virtually any size document
Antenna House Formatter can format a document of virtually any size whether it is a publication, tens of thousands of invoices, reports or personalized one to one documents.

Supports PDF/X and PDF/A
AH Formatter supports PDF/X. PDF/X is a specification that places much value on exchanging date and defined by ISO for printing purpose. PDF/A is a format for long-term preservation of an electronic document and it is also defined by ISO.

Accessible PDF
AH Formatter can generate the Tagged PDF for enhancing the accessibility to persons with sight problems. This is a function indispensable to comply with Section 508.

Integration Interface
Antenna House provides Command line interface, .NET interface, COM interface, Java interface and C++/C interface. The various interfaces make for easy system integration of Formatter with web applications, content management systems, and other software products.

The .NET interface and the COM interface are available for Windows only.

PostScript output and SVG output
AH Formatter PostScript Output Option makes PostScript® output available. With the new SVG Output module it is now possible to create SVG 1.1, SVG Basic, and SVG Tiny files using AH Formatter. This function requires AH Formatter SVG Output Option.

Direct Printer output
In Windows version, it's possible to output the formatted result directly to the printer without passing through PDF. It's also possible to get the formatted result and print it immediately by using GUI.

Supports the embedding of PDF into PDF
An arbitrary page of other PDF can be embedded into PDF.

Compliant with CSS
Supports CSS2.1 and CSS3. Page models of CSS3 is also supported, now that high-quality page formatting will be available.

Passes Acid2
AH Formatter has passed the Acid2 test published by "The Web Standards Project (WaSP)" that measures the conforming level to CSS.

PANTONE Color Support
AH Formatter provides the ability for more than 1000 PANTONE Colors to be converted into RGB or CMYK values automatically by using AH Formatter PANTONE Option. Possible to specify the PANTONE colors for separation color (spot color) simply by putting only the name of the PANTONE colors in FO.

Web Interface for Formatter
Web Interface for Formatter works with both CSS and XSL Formatter. The Web Interface reduces the amount of development effort necessary to integrate Formatter into a internet based solution.

Table Auto Layout
AH Formatter supports table-layout="auto." in the XSL-FO specification, which is not supported by many of the formatting software. This function arranges the table layout suitably without specifying the width of a cell. It's suitable for almost all tables which do not require the strict value of the width, and is very convenient. When the formatting speed poses a problem, please specify table-layout="fixed" instead and specify fixed width in all cells.

High quality PDF for SVG, MathML, EMF and WMF
Vector information for SVG, MathML, EMF and WMF is retained in PDF, thus enhancing the quality of output images and meeting the increasing demand for delivery of vectors in the output.

It makes it possible to draw high-resolution MathML in PDF. Lite is available to use with AH Formatter MathML Option.

Possible to get the .NET native parser output
With the .NET Interface when XSL-FO is generated from XML and XSL using an XSLT processor that transformation can now be passed directly and seamlessly to Formatter without passing it through a temporary file first.

The .NET and the COM interfaces can now also get the DOM directly without passing through a temporary file. This has the effect of slightly improving performance.

Multilingual Language
Supports almost any languages which are supported by Unicode including Latin, Cyrillic, Greek, Japanese (Hiragana and Katakana), Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Hangul, Arabic, Hebrew and Thai. It offers the abilities to write in vertical mode, to run the text from right to left as in Arabic and Hebrew and also to create multilingual documents with language mixtures on the same page and even on the same line.

Possible to hyphenate over 40 or more languages
The former "Hyphenation Option" is now a standard part of Formatter. The Hyphenation function integrates the very powerful hyphenation algorithms from Computer Hyphenation Ltd., which enhances the quality of hyphenation and greatly simplifies setting up Formatter to hyphenate over 40 different languages.

AH Formatter support for DITA
AH Formatter has a set of DITAtoFO Stylesheets for the DITA Open Toolkit 1.4 that supports bookmarks, table of contents, indexes and several other features has been made public.

DITA (Darwin Information Typing Architecture) is an XML-based architecture for authoring, producing, and delivering technical information. The architecture and a related DTD was developed by IBM. DITA is organized around the principle of the topic as the highest level structure and is intended to support the reusability of content. It has been developed especially for managing a large set of documentation to be distributed in multiple channels.

DITA has grown well and its specification has been defined by the OASIS DITA Technical Committee since 2004. DITA version 1.0 was approved as an OASIS Standard on May 3rd, 2005.

Features of DITA

  • The topic as an organizing principle
  • Reuse of whole topics, as well as reuse of partial topics through the use of content references
  • Specialization of elements to provide
  • Property-based processing that makes topics easier to find
  • Making use of existing tagsets and tools

Antenna House DITAtoFO Stylesheet
The DITA Open Toolkit is an implementation of the OASIS DITA Technical Committee's specification for Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) DTDs and Schemas. DITA-OT (DITA Open Toolkit) transforms DITA content (maps and topics) into deliverable formats such as HTML, DocBook, and PDF. The current version is 1.4.3.

Antenna House provides a stylesheet that transforms DITA into XSL-FO so that you can format and print through the DITA Open Toolkit 1.4.3 using AH Formatter. This kit is composed of the batch file, the shell script file and the ant build file.