In May 2016, the U.S. State Department’s Office of the Historian relaunched its public website, history.state.gov, and the new TEI Processing Model (TEI PM) played a key role in the site’s plan for scalability and sustainability. By replacing custom-written code with TEI PM, the project shed years of legacy, custom-written code – laden with duplication and conditional branches for different publications and output formats – and replaced it with a light and lean ODD file containing a single set of TEI Processing Model instructions that form the basis of all transformations for the site’s TEI-based publications: HTML, EPUB, and PDF.

This poster will illustrate key aspects of the architecture of the new site: It uses the TEI PM Toolbox, an implementation of TEI PM that generates XQuery 3.1-based stylesheets for multiple output formats from standard TEI PM ODD files. The poster will also illustrate how TEI PM helped the Office of the Historian achieve its goals for scalability and sustainability: improved performance under load, less custom code, and better separation of concerns among editors / designers / programmers by reducing reliance on programmers for stylesheet maintenance and empowering editors to define and improve how their TEI is processed. By documenting the concrete benefits of TEI PM (using measurable benchmarks where possible, such as lines of code), the poster’s authors hope to inform other projects that might have similar goals about this significant new facility of the TEI.


  • Wincentowski, Joseph: history.state.gov: A case study of Digital Humanities in Government in: Journal of the Chicago Colloquium on Digital Humanities and Computer Science , 1/3, 2011. https://letterpress.uchicago.edu/index.php/jdhcs/article/view/80