Talk:Converting SFM Bibles to OSIS

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Revision as of 09:14, 13 January 2012 by David Haslam (talk | contribs) (Using SFMToOSIS: new section)

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Paratext USFM stylesheet, version 2.2

There has been an update to the Paratext USFM stylesheet, version 2.2, Updated October 17, 2008. See [1]. This update post-dates the making of Go Bible Creator version 2.3.2 which was the first to provide some support for USFM as source text format. CrossWire programmers who make use of the USFM stylesheet standards will need to take note of the changelog. I have also flagged this to the SWORD Dev mailing list. David Haslam 14:37, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

I suggest that CrossWire programmers who make reference to external standards make use of the excellent service provided by to be alerted by email when there are changes to websites like this. David Haslam 14:46, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

Paratext export to XML

The UBS page about Paratext includes this sentence, "Paratext also provides function for exporting text to RTF and XML formats." I have been informed that these XML export formats include OSIS in either the milestoned form (BSP) or the containerized form (BCV). Has anyone in CrossWire compared the direct Paratext export XML formats with what we can obtain using either the Snowfall software conversion tool or the CrossWire conversion script? David Haslam 13:07, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

One of my contacts emailed me (2009-05-15) as follows, "I was talking with the UBS Paratext folks yesterday about OSIS output and they let me know that they can do that to a degree. I tried using Paratext 6.1's "Convert from USFM to OSIS (Best Practices)" facility, which is found under the "Checking=>Publishing" menu. That generated cleaner OSIS that validated and didn't require an intervening XSLT (it has an option to not do milestones)." The latter option is relevant in the context of using Go Bible Creator, which for OSIS requires BCV, rather than BSP with milestones. He continued, "... Inasmuch as the Paratext conversion facility seems to work better than SFMToOSIS, I'll stick with that for now. Paratext 7 will also support this.". David Haslam 16:00, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Who May Use Paratext

The UBS page also states,

The Paratext program and its associated text files have been developed by the United Bible Societies for use by its translations project teams. Paratext is also made available for use by other Bible agencies for whom a formal licensing arrangement with UBS has been established. Persons qualified to use Paratext will include translation consultants, translators, reviewers, and those directly engaged in the translation's production. Copyright restrictions, especially those determined by third party copyright holders, require that use and distribution of Paratext be strictly limited to those engaged in Bible translation (as outlined above).

Seeing as CrossWire could be properly classified under "other Bible agencies", has there been any move towards negotiating a formal licensing arrangement for CrossWire members? David Haslam 13:14, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Converting OSIS to USFM

Just followed the link to the SnowFall Software Scripture Preservation Utility, and observed that it now also provides a means to convert OSIS to USFM. David Haslam 14:32, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

Has anyone tried using it in this direction? David Haslam 12:04, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
Description also includes, "A newer version is being developed with a graphical user interface for non-technical users that includes workflow tracking, keyboarding from scratch, and converting from formats other than USFM/SFM files." David Haslam 12:07, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Broken links for UBS-ICAP

The link to is broken. I can't even reach David Haslam 09:42, 21 June 2010 (UTC)

Please provide a link for David Haslam 09:47, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

It's not in the CrossWire ftpmirror for perl utilities. David Haslam 14:35, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

Converting files received in miscellaneous formats to USFM

Based on the experience of several CrossWire volunteers, it would be useful to start a new page with advice on converting files received in miscellaneous formats to USFM. David Haslam 20:14, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Do we have much experience in that? Even if so, is it really our place to provide this information or to encourage movement of data to USFM? --Osk 22:06, 13 December 2010 (UTC)


:Section being removed from main page - links to the software are now broken. David Haslam 02:14, 13 January 2012 (MST)

SFMToOSIS is a robust, but somewhat difficult to setup and use, program produced by Snowfall Software. The program requires that you install a Python interpreter and that the interpreter be within the system path. The program can also convert OSIS files back to SFM. SFMToOSIS more robust than and more likely to produce valid OSIS files automatically. The program has been renamed as OSIS Conversion Utility but comes under the heading Scripture Preservation Utility.

The program also requires a Paratext .ssf file. If you do not have such a file, you can use the following sample and adjust it to the specifics of your own text:

<FullName>The Bible in English</FullName>

Next, update the run.bat file that came with SFMToOSIS to point to your SFM files and SSF file. Then run run.bat.