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Reply to: Cross-referencing between two books (with PDF output)November 12, 2010 at 5:19 am
Hmmm… I was thinking more that you should just need to construct the xref properly and that the DITA OT would hopefully give you the right link (which really looks like Adobe has designed to be an HTML-like link).
However, from the few (all negatively-worded) pages I've read (both from Adobe's website and others) the first step might be to decide if this is actually going to give acceptable results. From what I've read it looks like you might have a 25% success rate of end users seeing what you intend if PDF is the format (ie: they are using the right reader, the right version of that reader and maybe even in the right version of the browser, or not within a browser at all). I'm not sure if I would be personally happy enough with those odds and might pick a different strategy until this functionality was more universal.
I think getting this working with the DITA OT producing your PDF files should (in theory) just be a matter of creating an external xref. A test would be needed to make sure that will work, but since you can link to any external file format it should. The only tricky bit is to add the #page portion to the end. As I'm writing this I don't have access to a DITA OT or XMetaL so can't say, but I'll have a look when I can.
Linking to a specific page number should be easy if you know that what you are linking to is set in stone (and the page numbers won't alter). If you are linking to something that will change then Adobe's other concept of a 'destination' would make more sense to use. However, the DITA OT has no way to create 'destinations' in PDF files as far as I am aware, so if you need to produce such a PDF with the DITA OT the OT might need altering to do that.