Trick or Treat with Altova at DevConnections!

devconnectionsIt’s no trick – we will be in Las Vegas October 30 – November 1 at the Bellagio Hotel for the fall DevConnections event, in booth #408. If you are attending the event we would love for you to stop by our booth, where we will be showcasing MissionKit, Altova’s suite of XML, SQL and UML tools.

Altova MissionKit 2013 provides specialized functionality for Microsoft developers and IT pros, including seamless integration with Visual Studio®, C# and C++ code genjack-o-lanterneration, powerful functionality for SQL Server® database management and reporting, integration with SharePoint® Server, functionality for working with Open XML (OOXML), diff/merge for Word documents, and much more.

While you are at our booth, don’t forget to enter our drawing for a chance to win a free Altova MapForce Basic Edition license. If you also mention that you saw this blog post – we might have a special treat for you too!

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Do You Believe in (XML) Magic?

One of the most exciting features in our recent Version 2013 release is Smart Fix XML validation in XMLSpy. Smart Fix is so magical it can revolutionize XML validation as we know it. While the XMLSpy validator has always been powerful, with new features added often, Smart Fix really delivers the “wow” factor: automatic error correction.

clip_image002 Let’s take a look at how it works.

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Using Table Row and Column Conditions in StyleVision 2013

The ability to conditionally hide table rows or columns has been a popular feature request from StyleVision users. StyleVision 2013 adds the capability in the form of conditional expressions on table rows and columns. Conditional processing can be set on individual columns and rows of static and dynamic tables, as well as on column and row headers, to display or hide the column, row, or header depending on the truth of the condition. The conditions are specified using StyleVision’s XPath Expression editor. If a condition evaluates to true, the column, row, or header is displayed; otherwise it is not (i.e., is hidden).

StyleVision 2013 Edit XPath Expression dialog

Let’s take a look at some scenarios for which this new feature is exceptionally useful.

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Watermarks in StyleVision 2013

Watermark support has been added in StyleVision 2013, in response to customer requests. A watermark is text or an image that is displayed on the background of each page of a document section. Watermarks are often used in draft and confidential documents in order to emphasize a document’s status or security constraints.

In StyleVision 2013, watermarks may be used for print-oriented output formats, including PDF, RTF, and Word (Open XML). In keeping with StyleVision’s overall design model, with a single layout design used for multiple output types, you only need to define watermarks once, and they are applied to all print-output views.

Here’s an example of a StyleVision design containing a watermark:

StyleVision 2013 Word watermark example

Let’s take a look at the steps involved in using watermarks in StyleVision 2013 by modifying the QuickStart example (quickstart.sps) included in the Tutorials folder (installed with StyleVision), in order to produce the design shown in the image above.
In the Design view, if you select “Edit Properties” in the Initial Document Section, you’ll see a new “Watermark…” button. Clicking the button presents the Edit Watermark dialog:

StyleVision 2013 edit image watermark dialog

StyleVision supports both image and text watermarks. For both types of watermarks, the general idea is to specify:
· A condition used to determine when the watermark should be included (which can simply be “true()” in order to include the watermark on all pages)
· The watermark content (image or text, with related attribute setting preferences)
· Watermark size and position settings

For our example scenario, let’s assume we want to place a red “CONFIDENTIAL” text watermark across printed pages. To do so, we click the Text tab in the Edit Watermark dialog and:
· Enter “true()” for the condition
· Enter “CONFIDENTIAL” for the watermark text
· Select red for the watermark color

StyleVision 2013 edit text watermark dialog

StyleVision’s support for watermarks is powerful and flexible. You can include both text and image watermarks, for example, with different XPath conditional expressions used to specify what should appear when. You can also specify different watermarks (or pairs of image and text watermarks) for each document section in a StyleVision design.

Check out watermark options and the other new features in StyleVision 2013 by downloading a free 30-day trial version today!

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