Peter Hentges (jbru) wrote,
Peter Hentges

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Toolbox and incoming friends

So the process I learned yesterday and put into practice today is something work calls "Toolbox." The process is to add special little codes to a text file and then have this program parse through it and generate the coding that lays the text and tables out on the page.

Having looked at this from the working end, it seems to be a system built up on layers of various kludges.

From what I can tell, clients send us word processing files (mostly Word) and then these are converted to text, rolled through a program called "Jumpstart" to do basic text formatting and then through Toolbox for final cleanup and setting up tables. The resulting file then has other little codes added to it for another program called "Break" to break the file up into manageable chunks to be worked by various typesetters.

I'm thinking a little Perl and some thinking about this process (why go from Word to text at the beginning of the process and not the end?) could improve efficiency tremendously. Looks like I've got another topic for that little talk with my manager that's been waiting for a while.

In other news, my friends Jeff and his wife Stacey are visiting from LA where Jeff has graduated (I think) from film school and Stacey works has a recruiter for lawyers. This means a group dinner out on Saturday and party following. Jeff is quite funny and is turning into a very good writer. His stuff turns up at odd intervals on his web site,

Work also wants me to come in on Sunday. I've told them that I'll call in and see if they need help. Don't really want to work, but hey, some extra overtime can't hurt either. So if I'm bored Sunday night I'll come in, otherwise I'll call and let them know I won't be.

Either way, should be a fun weekend.

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