[XeTeX] xdv to rtf, docx, or OpenOffice?

Tara Andrews taralee at alum.mit.edu
Sun Mar 8 18:13:11 CET 2009

On Sun, Mar 8, 2009 at 9:50 AM, Jonathan Kew <jfkthame at googlemail.com> wrote:

> I think one or more of the LaTeX-to-HTML routes out there can also be used
> with xelatex documents, at least to some extent, and presumably Word can
> then open the HTML and Save As its own format.

What tools are these?  This is just the sort of thing I'm looking for,
and although I can find a bunch of dvi -> html things, I have no idea
how to work out which ones will work with xelatex / xdv.

> If Word's support for the fonts and transcription system you use is "dodgy",
> then the results of any conversion process will be equally dodgy.

Perversely, I kind of hope it will be better.  I have been able in the
past to fool Word into using fonts it doesn't want to make available
through its UI, and so I wondered what would happen if those fonts
were already specified in a .docx file.

> But with material like yours,
> especially, the results are likely to be pretty rough-and-ready. I can't
> imagine converting such a xelatex article to .doc and getting anything more
> than a "first draft"; you'd have to do so much tidying-up in Word that you
> might as well have started there in the first place. (And if Word isn't up
> to the job for your writing, then how will it cope with an "imported"
> article any better?)

All sorts of stupid little reasons actually.  You'd be surprised.  At
the moment when I know I'm going to need something in Word I usually
type it up in a text editor and then copy/paste it over.  For
instance, copy/paste is the only way I can get the [ character in any
Word document, thanks to some pathological misconfiguration that I've
never been able to track down.  There are other similar inexplicable
bugs that make direct typing a pain.  Any conversion would be just a
first draft, yes, but then I could play with ways to fix things up in
my own environment, and automate everything I can of it.  What I'm
really after here is not having to re-type all my footnote references.
 Even having to cut and paste them would be better than nothing.

I mostly mentioned the critical-edition stuff as an example of why I
don't do things in Word in the first place.  I have no intention of
ever trying to convert *that*, and wouldn't expect a converter to do
the right thing for it.  But the critical edition has some overlap
with other papers I write, particularly in terms of bibliography, and
it would make my life much easier if I could use TeX for everything
and then convert those papers that publishers insist on having in
Word.  Right now I know of no way at all to create an editable text
document from xelatex.


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