The FOP Project

      The Apache FOP project creates paginated documents driven by XSL formatting objects (XSL-FO) into various formats (PDF, PostScript, AFP, PCL, AFP, XML (area tree representation), Print, AWT and PNG, and to a lesser extent, RTF and TXT). We help fill the gap between web and paged media by supporting a wide range of typesetting technologies including various font formats and a multitude of image types. The flexibility FOP provides allow it to be used either as a stand-alone application or in complex tool-chains to support business processes and deliver high quality communications. FOP also has a vast and vibrant community with a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences that support each other and are happy to help new comers.


      Currently when custom fonts are used for AFP documents the only fonts that are allowed are APF-format specific. Many of these use the antiquated EBCDIC encoding and have license restrictions, which is obviously a serious impediment when using the AFP document format. TrueType and OpenType fonts are a much better supported standard and provide much better freedom in terms of licenses and availability for users. The MOD:CA specification allows TrueType fonts to be used within AFP documents and FOP already provides a library for reading and handling TrueType fonts.

      This project would expose applicants to various specifications (TTF, OTF, AFP, XSL-FO) and would teach them how to design software in enterprise products and adherence to standardized specifications. All code will be written in Java (currently Java5).

      Mentor: Mehdi Houshmand (




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     Mehdi Houshmand
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