[sword-devel] OSIS questions

araj at critos.co.uk araj at critos.co.uk
Sat Jan 26 08:13:59 MST 2013

I'm trying to convert a number of USFM documents to OSIS using my own
software, and then to Sword using osis2mod.  However, I'm relatively new to
OSIS, and am struggling somewhat.  Don't know if anyone can comment on any
of the following issues?

*	<osisText osisIDWork={NAME} ...>: "Normalized name of the Bible
version (Usually 3 letters for language, 3 for translation)".  Does this
have any significance to anything (ie does it matter that I get it "right")?
If so, I assume the first three characters are the ISO language code?  What
should you do where you also have a variant code?  Does the "translation"
portion of the name need to follow any particular convention?

*	According to http://crosswire.org/wiki/OSIS_Bibles, the minimal
document header consists of just <work osisWork={Name}/>.  This does not
seem at first sight to square with Appendix L of the OSIS user manual
(dealing with conformance requirements), which appears to require a scope
definition, to which the document must conform.  Is the minimal header shown
above in fact adequate?  And what do you lose by not giving a fuller header
(for example, by not giving "scope")?

*	An example text I have picked up includes the refSystem tag in a
number of places.  I'd prefer to avoid using this if I can, since it is not
always immediately apparent what versification schemes have been used in the
texts I have available to me.  Is it a problem if the tag is not supplied?
(If it must be supplied, then I presume it has to come from some predefined
list of valid schemes?  Where do you get the details of these schemes?)

*	http://crosswire.org/wiki/OSIS_Bibles includes <div
type="bookGroup">.  I presume this enables you to group together, say OT or
NT books?  What are the implications of having it (or of not having it)?

*	OSIS appears to support a tableOfContents marker, which I believe
corresponds to USFM toc/toc1/toc2/toc3.  How is it used?  Suppose I have the
text for Matthew, and somewhere else I want a table of contents.  Does the
marker go at the start of Matthew itself, to mark the place to which the
table of contents should point?  Or does it go into the table of contents,
to indicate that you want it to include a reference to Matthew?  And either
way what does the full tableOfContents tag look like?  (I tried the former
of the two options - putting <div type='tableofContents'>Matthew</div> into
Matthew itself, but the only effect seemed to be that the word Matthew was
output as part of the text.)

*	In at least one of the vernaculars I'm dealing with, the translator
has included in the USFM at the start of each book both a "h" and an "mt"
tag (in that order, in case it's of any interest).  According to the OSIS
user manual, both of these should give rise to title tags (of type "short"
and "main" respectively, although I gather Sword ignores this).
Unsurprisingly, I end up with two titles appearing at the start of the book.
Clearly with a certain amount of effort I can address this by filtering the
data while I'm generating the OSIS, but does OSIS itself (or Sword) have any
convention as to what to do in these circumstances?

*	Some USFM tags appear to need to be converted into right-justified
paragraphs.  Does OSIS support right justification?

*	Occasionally we work with right-to-left languages in which the verse
number needs to come at the end of the verse rather than the start, and in
some cases also the verse number needs to be decorated in some manner.  Does
OSIS cater for this at all?

Thanks in advance,

"Jamie" Jamieson

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