FrameMaker user variables can be defined for strings that are used
repeatedly in an EDD (for example, an indentation
amount used for several element types). Variables make it easy to
change multiple occurrences of such a string since editing the
definition of a variable changes all its occurrences. To make the use of
variables visible, every definition can use a character format that
distinguishes variables from surrounding text.
For instance, a character format called
Variable might set all properties except color to
As Is and set color to
Red. A variable
Indent might be defined to be
<Variable>12pt. Uses of
Indent would then appear in red in the EDD and hence
be distinguished from surrounding text.
The first child of an
Element in an EDD is always either
Comments. When the first child is
Tag, the tag of the element being defined is visible in
the Structure View if the
Element is collapsed. Consider
Comments at the beginning of an
Element with the tag as well to help identify a
element definition in the Structure View.
Version information can
be entered into a
Para element, but
are not imported with element definitions into a template or
other structured document. Thus, while the
visible to the application developer who is editing the EDD, it is
not included in documents derived from the EDD. It is preferable
instead to put the version information in an element
where it will be imported into derived documents. Even though it will
not necessarily be visible to end users working with the derived
template, it will be encoded in any test files sent with bug reports
back to the developer. By exporting the element catalog of such test
files as an EDD, the application developer can quickly confirm the
version of the original EDD used in the test file.
Possible contexts to place this information include:
Commentselement that appears as the first or last child of an
Element, perhaps the EDD's highest-level element. Although the metatemplate (template for EDDs) distributed with FrameMaker+SGML does not permit
Commentsin other contexts, other metatemplates (such as the Text Structure Consulting metatemplate) may.
Commentsat the beginning or end of an element definition are imported into derived documents; other
FormatChangeList, perhaps one defined only for this purpose. Note that spaces are permitted in
Tags, so that a string containing a version number and date, separated by spaces, is permitted. If the version number appears in an otherwise unused element tag, when it processes the EDD, FrameMaker+SGML will report that the element is defined but not referenced unless the element is declared to be valid at the highest level. Since it may appear in the Element Catalog window, a version element type is visible to end user; a format change list is not.