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Technical Quality Assurance in Structured Content
 

Technical Quality Assurance in Structured Content

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Automation with DITA and single-sourcing promises cost savings and efficiency gains, but also creates increased complexity and less control over the output. How do you make sure non-compliant ...

Automation with DITA and single-sourcing promises cost savings and efficiency gains, but also creates increased complexity and less control over the output. How do you make sure non-compliant publication source and other hidden costs do not reduce the advantages of DITA? A thorough technical QA report and a special review process allow Varian Medical Systems to reclaim control over the XMLA sources, minimizing risk and allowing companies to reap the full benefits of DITA.

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    Technical Quality Assurance in Structured Content Technical Quality Assurance in Structured Content Presentation Transcript

    • 1 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS TECHNICAL QUALITY ASSURANCE IN STRUCTURED CONTENT Richard Forster, Information Architect Richard Forster 9 May 2014
    • 2 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Varian Medical Systems • World's leading manufacturer of medical devices and software for cancer treatment • Radiotherapy • Radiosurgery • Proton therapy • Brachytherapy
    • 3 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Varian Medical Systems Company • Varian Medical Systems (VMS), NYSE: VAR • World’s leading manufacturer of oncology systems • 60+% world market share Business units • Oncology Systems – comprehensive cancer treatment solutions • X-ray Products – for medical, scientific, and industrial applications • Security and Inspection Products – x-ray devices for cargo screening and industrial inspection Sites • Worldwide headquarters in Palo Alto, CA • R&D in USA, Canada, India, Finland, France, England, Germany, Switzerland • Manufacturing in North America, Europe, and China • Sales and support: approx. 70 offices, plus distributors Employees • Approx. 6,500 around the world
    • 4 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Global Technical Publications at Varian Unstructured FrameMaker DITA* 2010 2014 *Darwin Information Type Architecture
    • 5 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Figures May 2014 (±15%) 13 Writers 133 Books 1333 Maps 13333 Topics 133333 Localized
    • 6 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Investment and Benefits • Investment in new tools • Steep learning curve • Data analysis and migration • Output limitations • Localization savings • Single sourcing • Faster time-to-market • More consistent content
    • 7 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Quality Assurance in Tech Pubs
    • 8 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS The Transformation as the Key DITA Open Toolkit PDF Plugin Customization XSL, XML, … CHM Plugin … <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml><xml> <xml><xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml> <xml><xml> <xml>
    • 9 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Example 1: What the …? • XML Editor: • Output (PDF after transformation): ??
    • 10 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Example 2: Wrong by 180 degrees… • XML Editor: • Output (PDF after transformation): ??
    • 11 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Some more surprises • Translations fine at vendor’s, but not in the final version from the CMS because of wrong languages codes. • Spacing owing to superfluous spaces in source XML:
    • 12 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Verification Step: Technical QA Review
    • 13 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Technical Quality Assurance Technical QA = “Files that work” • Today • Tomorrow • …and in the Future!
    • 14 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Technical QA: Aims Faultless and consistent output Smooth translation cycle Faultless future outputs Reuse Global maintenance
    • 15 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Technical QA: Detecting… Inconsistent tagging Deviation from the information model Outdated and missing templates/boilerplates Typical conversion and localization issues Defective links and cross-references …
    • 16 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Typical Localization Issue • Source Text: Select File > Save As. • Translation according to style guide: Wähle File (Datei) > Save As (Speichern unter). • XML received from translator:
    • 17 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Technical QA Review in Practice QA Report Overview Metrics Lists Findings Errors SuspectsSigned QA Report
    • 18 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Metrics and Lists • Element statistics • Attribute statistics • All inline elements alphabetically • All letters used, font characteristics • TOC with metadata • Image list and metadata • Index • Conditions • Variables (conref targets)
    • 19 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Errors and Suspect Patterns • <p>See figure 5.</p> • Changing to DITA<indexterm>silver bullet</indexterm> solved all our problems. • Call the<b> Varian</b> helpdesk for support. • Press <uicontrol>OK.</uicontrol>
    • 20 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Another Typical Example English: Translation: placement=“break” missing! Cause:
    • 21 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS
    • 22 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Different Flavors of Technical QA Migration QA review Initial QA review Writer’s ongoing QA checks Standard QA review Final QA check before publication Translation QA review
    • 23 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Success factors for Technical QA Review • Ongoing/informal reviewing • Easy report generation • Adequate explanations and advice • Making Writer and Reviewer Accountable •
    • 24 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Adoption and Difficulties • Time pressure • Finding the balance • Agency problem and awareness • Roles and burdens (writer <-> reviewer) • Difficult judgment calls and false positives • Acceptance problems • False sense of security • Dealing with repetitions
    • 25 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Unintended Side Effects • Style Guide: “Do not include ellipsis that appear after menu options.” • Writer’s original text: <p>Click <uicontrol>Open…</uicontrol> and select a file.</p>  Flagged by QA report (do not use ellipsis in uicontrol) • Writer’s “correction”: <p>Click <uicontrol>Open</uicontrol> … and select a file.</p>
    • 26 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Benefits of Technical QA • Improved quality • Reduced effort for re-publications • Reduced translation effort • Improved understanding of DITA XML • Writers can measure their skill improvement Documents with anomalies in output Before: ~30% After: <2%
    • 27 | VARIAN ONCOLOGY SYSTEMS Richard Forster Richard.Forster@varian.com