Monday, 13 July 2009

Back to the Silicon Mines

I dont think I've mentioned it here before - but remember the DHQ issue I edited alongside Greg Crane (Tufts/Perseus): Changing the Center of Gravity: Transforming Classical Studies Through Cyberinfrastructure? Well, its going to printed up a as book, by Gorgias Press.

Which means its my job to turn it from spangly lovely efficient DHQ XML into camera ready copy by means of.... MS Word templates, supplied by the publisher. Sigh. But I have put on my work gloves and back to the silicon face I go. (I figure for something so small, as a one off, there's no point wrestling with the XSLT to-PDF transformation for this particular stylesheet).

Its the kind of repetitive task that is both frustrating and yet enjoyable on some level - making sure that everything is fine, slotting in an hour a day to do this over the next few months so its doesnt become too tedious. Right. Here I go. First hour, then I get to do some *proper* editing and writing for the rest of the day.

4 comments:

Charles Ellwood Jones said...

Wow, this strikes me as a classic example of schlimverbesserung.

And wouldn't the publication of this volume by a commercial press kind of violate the spirit of the CC license under which it appeared initially?

-Chuck-

Melissa said...

Well. We went round the houses on that one. actually, the DHQ cc license allows that kind of thing, if all the authors agree. Which they did, as they felt like a companion volume would work well (and it will be nice to have a book on the shelf, in memoriam to Ross - something his kids can have to hold and keep, you know?). So the other authors persuaded me to go ahead.

But I agree on the bad improvement thing - lovely xml into MSWord? I grit my teeth...

It shouldnt take me long to turn it round. An hour a chapter a day - I hope to have it camera ready in a few weeks, quick and reasonably dirty. And the book refers people back to the DHQ issue...

Charles Ellwood Jones said...

Fair enough. But it does seem like it requires a lot of work on your part to rebuild this great stuff as a souvenir. lovely xml into MSWord into static print...

-Chuck-

Melissa said...

well... I'm getting through a chapter an hour. so maybe 20 hours in total, spread out over a month or so? and am on sabbatical just now, so its a nice... mechanical... job to fill in the dead space when I'm all thought out for the day and still have a couple of hours in which to do something mundane. If it wasnt so fast, I wouldnt do it, no.