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Chapter 6 Working with Rulesets

This chapter covers how to set up and manage rulesets, which are the tools that control Atomik Xport’s Automated Matching System (AMS). The Automated Matching System is the functionality within Atomik Xport that enables the extraction of content from a QuarkXPress layout to be automated. Understanding the principles contained in this chapter will enhance your ability to get the most out of Atomik Xport.

Definition: A Document Type Definition (DTD) is a specification that describes the structure of an XML document.

Definition: A ruleset is a Document Type Definition (DTD) together with a set of mappings and preferences. The mappings define which styles used in the QuarkXPress project should be mapped to the individual elements of the DTD. The ruleset preferences provide additional information relating to the extraction process such as the order in which Atomik Xport goes through the layout.

A ruleset is a key component of the extraction process. A ruleset essentially creates structure for content based on the way it is presented in QuarkXPress. As humans, we can look at for example a page of a newspaper, and know a headline is a headline because it is larger and bolder than the bodytext of a story. Computers do not possess this inherent ability. Atomik Xport uses rules like these to associate specific styles (in QuarkXPress) with the type of information those styles represent. In other words, rulesets infer structure from style.

Creating structure from style is a key principle behind Atomik Xport and essential because without it, the content would continue to have no structure. Creating structure adds significant value to content, because you know what each piece of content actually is (e.g. a headline) rather than only what each piece of content says or looks like.

The structure of the output XML is defined by the DTD used in the ruleset. Therefore, creating a DTD is the first and possibly most important step in preparing to extract content from QuarkXPress. Once you have a DTD, you can create a ruleset within Atomik Xport. For further information on DTD creation, please refer to Chapter 10 Working With DTDs For Atomik Xport