Maker Interchange Format

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Maker Interchange Format (MIF) is a proprietary markup language associated with Adobe Systems' FrameMaker product for technical document preparation.

While MIF is essentially specific to a single program (FrameMaker), it was widely used in the complex document workflows of small enterprises, especially in the industrial and manufacturing sector. As of 2013 MIF continues to be supported, so it remains an important tool for certain types of document processing and desktop publishing work.

The purpose of MIF is to represent FrameMaker documents in a relatively simple, ASCII-based format, which can be produced or understood by other software systems and also by humans. Any document that can be created interactively in FrameMaker can also be represented, exactly and completely, in MIF. All versions of FrameMaker can export documents in MIF, and can also read MIF documents, including documents created by an earlier version or by another program.

MIF turns the features offered by FrameMaker into potential extensions to the features offered by other software systems. For example, a database system may have good file management and reporting capabilities but permit only simple text output. We can then develop a conversion program that starts with the database system's data and generates MIF statements instructing FrameMaker to produce an elaborately typeset brochure, including diagrams, charts, and the like.

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