Generated: Tuesday, May 2, 2006, 09:35:27 Copyright © 2006, Kurt Nørmark The local LAML software home page

What is new in LAML

News in version 31:

  1. Command line activation of LAML:
    Activation of LAML from the operating system command line has been changed. It is now necessary to give the file extension explicitly:
    laml file.laml
    laml file.sdoc
    The rationale behind this change is that we now use several different extensions (laml, sdoc, chord) for files with LAML content. This change caused me to modify all LAML command files and all LAML compatibility files, accross all supported platforms and all supported Scheme systems. It is not easy to test if all these have been successful. If you observe problems with command line activation of LAML, please tell me.
  2. Validating XML parsing:
    Two new parsing XML functions have been provided for: xml-parse-string and xml-parse-file. They both build on the existing (limited) XML parsing tool of LAML, but they now deliver XML-in-LAML ASTs (not low level parse trees). In addition, xml-parse-string and xml-parse-file validate the resulting ASTs if the mirror library of the involved XML language is available and loaded. Use of these functions may allow for a mixing of native XML and Scheme (example laml file, derived XHTML file).
  3. Emacs help on Scheme definitions:
    LAML is strongly supported by Emacs. Now it is also possible access SchemeDoc information from Emacs. Use (the usual) C-h f, or M-x display-schemedoc-information, or the menu Scheme > SchemeDoc > Show Documenation of.... It is even possible to access extracts of the R5RS Scheme Report in that way. More details on the LAML SchemeDoc home page.
  4. XSL-FO support:
    LAML now comes with a mirror of XSL-FO. XSL-FO is an an XML language for description document layout for printed media (as well as output on other media). The primary benefit that XSL-FO documents can be rendered as PDF documents, for instance via the Apache FOP. This mirror is quite voluminous, and the auto-generated documentation of it is even larger; Therefore I have not yet included the documentation of it in the distribution. See examples.
  5. Enhanced XML transformation functions:
    A new transformation function transform-ast is now available. It somewhat inspirred from XSLT. It is useful to apply transform-ast in concert with the new function process-xml, as illustrated by some of these examples.
  6. Pretty printed rendering of XML documents
    The pretty printed rendering of XML documents is now controlled of by two (additional) variables, namely compact-end-tag-rendering? and use-empty-tags-for-elements-without-contents. By the default value choice of compact-end-tag-rendering? the default pretty print rendering of XML documents has changed a little bit. This has removed the white space problems in pretty printed documents in earlier versions of LAML.
  7. Loading of the LAML initialization file .laml
    The LAML initialization file is intended to allow for personal customization of the LAML system. Before version 31, the LAML initialization file, .laml, was loaded as the last action in laml.scm. This was not a good time of loading, because other (non-customizable) pieces of LAML software was loaded afterwards. Therefore, we have introduced the function begin-laml (and its alias end-laml-loading), which loads the LAML initialization file. In simple documents (XHTML, SVG, etc) you must call begin-laml yourself, in the same way as you call end-laml. In the more specialized XML-in-LAML languages (schemedoc, elucidator, leno, etc) begin-laml is called automatically (at the point in time where all software has been loaded).
  8. Enhancement of the LAML Course Plan tool:
    The LAML course plan tool, which I use for generation of course home pages (such as this one) has been modified. It is now possible to inline subject information and time information in lecture elements. With this is possible to make course plan descriptions which are less fragmented than in the original design. We have also introduced attributes new-as-of and updated-as-of on some elements. These can be used to signal new or updated content.
  9. LAML SchemeDoc: Systematic cross reference capability.
    New manual-front-matters attributes (element-cross-reference-url-fn and element-cross-reference-anchor-text) allow for systematic generation of cross references of functions and XML elements. For an example that applies these attributes, see the "SVG 1.1 Specification Details" references to the SVG 1.1 Specification from the SVG 1.1 LAML SchemeDoc manual.
  10. Improved value of the XHTML 1.0, SVG 1.0 manuals, and XSL-FO manuals
    The LAML SchemeDoc manuals of XHTML, for instance the XTHML 1.0 transitional manual, the SVG 1.1 manual, and the XSL-FO manual now contain links to W3C specifications for each element. This makes it easy and convenient to get help on use of HTML and SVG. The links have been made by use of the LAML SchemeDoc Systematic cross reference capability, described above.
Kurt Nørmark