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Customer Announcements


Novell Manuals Are Converted On-The-Fly From Existing SGML-based DynaText Electronic Books to HTML for Web Browsing

SANTA CLARA, CA, (WEB WORLD) April 19,1995--Electronic Book Technologies, Inc. (EBT) today announced that Novell, Inc. is using EBT's DynaWeb(tm) SGML-based World-Wide Web (Web) server software to enable instant on-line access to over one hundred thousand pages of Novell's NetWare(tm), UnixWare(tm), and NetWare SDK documentation manuals. In addition, Web client browsers (e.g. Netscape(tm), Mosaic(tm), etc.) now have direct access to the powerful DynaText(tm) search engine for quickly location relevant information. The manuals can be accessed from Novell's home page, one of the busiest Web sites in the world (http://www.novell.com), by selecting the "Manuals" button. EBT will be demonstrating DynaWeb this week in booth #208 at Web World in Santa Clara, CA, April 20 - 21.

Novell currently delivers product documentation on CD-ROM to its international customer base using DynaText, EBT's on-line publishing system based on SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language, the ISO standard for document markup). Instead of re-authoring all of Novell's manuals for Web dissemination in HTML (HyperText Markup Language, the evolving Web format for representing electronic information), Novell uses DynaWeb to convert existing SGML-based product documentation into HTML as it is requested by Web clients.

"DynaWeb preserves Novell's existing investment in documentation and enables us to deliver information in printed form, electronically via CD-ROM, and now, on the Web, all from the same source," said Steve Mahlum, Novell's Director of Corporate Publishing Services. "DynaWeb also enables much more powerful searching than could be achieved if the source content was in HTML, allows us to easily change the HTML as the model evolves, and positions us to use SGML Web browsers in the future," continued Mahlum.

"By using DynaText and DynaWeb with SGML, Novell has completely avoided the redundant publishing process trap," said Kent Summers, EBT Director of Marketing. "If Novell were using an HTML-based publishing model, instead of SGML with DynaText/DynaWeb, they would need to create roughly 4,000 separate HTML files to deliver 100,000 pages of documentation on the Web. Of course, the content, markup, and hypertext links would all need to be created and managed separately from the CD-ROM process; and yet another process would be needed to create the printed documentation," continued Summers. "Publishers who get themselves in this situation pray that things don't change. When things inevitably do change--HTML is rapidly evolving; content is frequently updated--publishers have major production and maintenance problems on their hands. With SGML and EBT's product suite, publishers can create it once and send it out their favorite way," added Summers.

The DynaWeb software running on Novell's server automatically generates all Table of Contents (TOCs) directly from the hierarchical structure of the SGML-based DynaText electronic books. Only when a selected TOC fragment is actually being downloaded to the Web browser, is the SGML content translated into HTML. DynaWeb also enables Web browsers to perform much more sophisticated searching than is supported by HTML by providing access to the DynaText search engine for fulltext, Boolean, proximity, wildcard, and SGML structure-aware searching.

Tables in Novell's source SGML documents are currently served to Web clients using a version of the HTML 3.0 table model. As this model is refined, Novell can change the output of the DynaWeb server to match revisions of HTML in a matter of minutes. Also, since this material has been delivered on-line using DynaText stylesheets for the last few years, it's already set to use HTML stylesheets as soon as they become available.

DynaText, introduced in 1990, is the world's leading SGML-based on-line publishing system. DynaText accepts any valid SGML document and automatically builds a dynamic electronic book that enables users to quickly browse, search and annotate large documents. DynaText electronic books can include hyperlinks, tables, equations, graphics, audio, video and animation. DynaText electronic books can be shared on heterogeneous client/server networks or placed on standalone workstations, PCs or PDAs. DynaText runs on Microsoft(R) Windows(tm) and Apple Macintosh(R) systems, as well as all major UNIX(R) platforms.

DynaWeb enables DynaText electronic book publishers to take full advantage of the Internet distribution channel for disseminating large collections of information electronically. DynaWeb is a server-side tool that links DynaText publishers' electronic books to existing Web client browsers. DynaWeb is designed to fully exploit the SGML structures already in place in publishers' DynaText electronic books. DynaWeb connects DynaText electronic books to the Internet, adds powerful search and navigation functionality to the multitude of Web client browsers, and does so in a manner that is efficient and sustainable.

Electronic Book Technologies, Inc. (EBT) provides corporate and commercial publishers with the industry's most comprehensive standards-based on-line publishing solution. EBT, a founding member of SGML Open and the MIT World-Wide Web Consortium (W3C), has developed a product suite engineered from the ground up around SGML. DynaText, EBT's flagship product, currently resides on millions of desktops through widespread deployment by Autodesk, Legent, Novell, Siemens Nixdorf, Silicon Graphics, Sun Microsystems, Sybase, AT&T, Australian Telecom, British Telecom, Ericsson Telekom and Northern Telecom. EBT is privately held and headquartered in Providence, RI.

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Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) is an international ISO standard for the publication and delivery of electronic information. SGML has been adopted by industries with large amounts of in-house publishing including aircraft, airlines, automotive, computer, defense, electronics, pharmaceuticals, securities, telecommunications and transportation, as well as government systems integrators, publishing companies, and academic research centers.

HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is an application of SGML used for marking up and rendering documents within the World-Wide Web environment on the Internet.

Media contacts:

Paul Lamoureux


(401) 421-9550

Linda Pendergast-Savage, Craig Librett

Miller Communications

(617) 536-0470

NetWare and UnixWare are trademarks of Novell, Inc. DynaText and DynaWeb are trademarks of Electronic Book Technologies, Inc. Netscape is a trademark of Netscape Communications Corp. Mosaic is a trademark of the University of Illinois. UNIX is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries, exclusively licensed through X/Open Company Ltd. All other products or service names mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective holders

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