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Typically, paper-based semi-structured documents are used to communicate technical requirements in the industry. One approach to improving the efficiency and flexibility of searching and manipulating these documents is to obtain them in electronic form, and then make explicit the technical content in a form amenable to pattern matching and symbol manipulation. This paper explores the role of XML Technology for these purposes: the use of XML language to make explicit the content of a document in a standard fashion, and the use of XSLT to manipulate the content and mediate between applications that need this content. In order to recognize and appreciate the practical difficulties, a problem in the realm of Content Extraction from Materials and Processing Specification is studied and solved using the available tools supporting the XML Technology. The Case Study provides a realistic assessment of the benefits and the limitations of XML Technology for document handling from the perspective of a developer. It also illustrates non-trivial uses of XSLT constructs.


Presented at the 2nd International Conference on Information Systems Engineering, San Diego, CA, July 14-18, 2002.

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