Building Back-of-Book Indexes

This section provides a tutorial example on how to build a clickable back-of-book indexes with hyperlinks using index-key attributes and index-page-citation-list formatting objects.

XSL-FO also supports another type of hyperlink called indexing links. When you build back of the book indexes, you can make their page numbers as hyperlinks. Here are some basic steps to build indexes with hyperlinks:

1. Create a unique index key for each term you want to be indexed.

2. Associate the index key to formatting objects that relevant to the term using the index-key="..." attribute.

3. Insert the term on the index list and generate a list of cited page numbers referring to locations of those relevant formatting objects. This can be done with the "index-page-citation-list" formatting object as shown below:

Some Term <fo:index-page-citation-list 
 merge-sequential-page-numbers="leave-separate">
 <fo:index-key-reference ref-index-key="..." 
  page-number-treatment="link"/>
</fo:index-page-citation-list>

Note that attribute index-key-reference[@page-number-treatment="link"] is to make cited page numbers as hyperlinks.

Here is my tutorial example, basic-link-table-of-content.fo, that uses "internal-destination" hyperlinks to build a table of content:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<!-- index-page-citation-list-and-index-key.fo
 - Copyright (c) 2016, HerongYang.com, All Rights Reserved.
-->
<fo:root xmlns:fo="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Format">
 <fo:layout-master-set>
  <fo:simple-page-master master-name="page" 
   margin="0.08in" page-height="2.2in" page-width="1.7in">
   <fo:region-body region-name="body" background-color="#eeeeee"/>
  </fo:simple-page-master>
 </fo:layout-master-set>
 <fo:page-sequence master-reference="page">
  <fo:flow flow-name="body">
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="10pt" font-weight="bold"
    index-key="Pooh">
Winnie the Pooh
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="8pt" font-weight="bold"
    id="chapter-1" text-align="center">
Chapter One
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="8pt" text-align="justify">
Here is <fo:inline index-key="Bear">Edward Bear</fo:inline>, 
coming downstairs now, bump,
bump, bump, on the back of his head, behind
<fo:inline index-key="Robin">Christopher Robin</fo:inline>.  
It is, as far as he knows, the only
way of coming downstairs, but sometimes he feels that
there really is another way, if only he could stop bumping
for a moment and think of it.  And then he feels that
perhaps there isn’t.  Anyhow, here he is at the bottom,
and ready to be introduced to you.  
<fo:inline index-key="Pooh">Winnie-the-Pooh</fo:inline>...
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="8pt" font-weight="bold"
    id="chapter-2" break-before="page" text-align="center">
Chapter Two
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="8pt" text-align="justify">
<fo:inline index-key="Bear">Edward Bear</fo:inline>,
known to his friends as Winnie-the-Pooh, or Pooh for 
short, was walking through the forest one day, humming proudly to 
himself. He had made up a little hum that very morning, as he was 
doing his Stoutness Exercises in front of the glass: Tra-la-la, 
tra-la-la, as he stretched up as high as he could go, and then
Tra-la-la, tra-la--oh, help!--la, as he tried to reach his toes. 
After breakfast he had said it over and over to himself until he had
learnt it off by heart, and now he was humming it right through, 
properly.
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin="0.08in" font-size="8pt" font-weight="bold"
    id="reference" break-before="page" text-align="center">
Index
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin-left="6pt" font-size="8pt">
Christopher Robin <fo:inline color="#0000ff">
<fo:index-page-citation-list 
 merge-sequential-page-numbers="leave-separate">
 <fo:index-key-reference ref-index-key="Robin" 
  page-number-treatment="link"/>
</fo:index-page-citation-list>
</fo:inline>
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin-left="6pt" font-size="8pt">
Edward Bear <fo:inline color="#0000ff">
<fo:index-page-citation-list 
 merge-sequential-page-numbers="leave-separate">
 <fo:index-key-reference ref-index-key="Bear" 
  page-number-treatment="link"/>
</fo:index-page-citation-list>
</fo:inline>
   </fo:block>
   <fo:block margin-left="6pt" font-size="8pt">
Winnie the Pooh <fo:inline color="#0000ff">
<fo:index-page-citation-list 
 merge-sequential-page-numbers="leave-separate">
 <fo:index-key-reference ref-index-key="Pooh" 
  page-number-treatment="link"/>
</fo:index-page-citation-list>
</fo:inline>
   </fo:block>
   </fo:flow>
 </fo:page-sequence>
</fo:root>

Since Apache FOP does not support index-key="...", you need to use RenderX XEP to process this example. Indexes are listed on page 5 as shown below:

index-key="..." Attribute and Index List

Last update: 2016.

Table of Contents

 About This XSL-FO Tutorial Book

 Introduction of XSL-FO

 Apache™ FOP (Formatting Objects Processor)

 RenderX XEP as an XSL-FO Tool

 Introduction of Area Model

 XSL-FO Document Basics and Examples

 Page Layout Masters

 Block-Level Formatting Objects

 Inline-Level Formatting Objects

 Including Graphics in XSL-FO document

 Table of Rows and Columns

 List, Item, Label, and Body

 Floating Blocks - "float" and "footnote"

Hyperlinks, Table of Contents and Indexes

 What Is "basic-link" Formatting Object?

 "basic-link" with "internal-destination" Attribute

 Clickable Table of Content

Building Back-of-Book Indexes

 Headers and Footers using "static-content"

 Font Attributes and Font Families

 Apache FOP Font Configurations

 RenderX XEP Font Configurations

 References

 PDF Printing Version