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The State of Structure


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An overview of the results from a recent survey on structured authoring conducted by Scriptorium Publishing.

An overview of the results from a recent survey on structured authoring conducted by Scriptorium Publishing.

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  • 1. The State of Structure Sarah O’Keefe scriptorium STC 2009, Atlanta
  • 2. Structured authoring A publishing workflow that lets you define and automatically enforce consistent organization of information; implementations are generally based on Extensible Markup Language (XML). scriptorium
  • 3. Background Ƿ Survey conducted in January and February 2009 Ƿ More than 600 responses Ƿ Participants recruited via our customer lists and scriptorium
  • 4. Momentum for structured authoring Have implemented. 29.2% Currently implementing. 13.5% Will begin this year. 8.9% 1.0% Plan to start in 2010. Plan to start in 2011 or later. 0.6% Eventually. 9.4% Undecided. 21.1% Do not plan to implement. 16.2% 0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% scriptorium
  • 5. Why structure? Past Consistency Present Future Reuse Localization Info exchange Compliance Personalization Cost/effort 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 Most critical Not important scriptorium
  • 6. DITA versus non-DITA Ƿ DITA implementers care (relatively) more about localization, cost/effort, and information Ƿ Most critical for DITA: reuse Ƿ Most critical for non-DITA: consistency scriptorium
  • 7. Just say no to structure Ƿ 16 percent said No. Never. Nuh-uh. Ƿ Of those, 67 percent cited cost and time of implementation. Ƿ Other reasons: “staff will not adjust” (30+ percent) Ƿ Small writing groups, small content set, lack of control, management sees no value, current tools work scriptorium
  • 8. Did it work? Yes. Factor Ranked 1 or 2 Achieved by Content reuse 60.7% 86.0% Consistency of documents 59.7% 91.5% Cost/effort of developing 28.2% 70.5% content Localization costs 25.2% 38.8% Information exchange 11.2% 45.7% Personalization/ 15.4% 38.8% customization of content Compliance with regulatory 9.4% 21.7% requirements scriptorium
  • 9. DITA dominates structure adoption. DocBook DITA ATA Past Military standard Present Future S1000D Custom-developed Other Author-it 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Percent scriptorium
  • 10. DITA: Free but not cheap Ƿ Past implementers: same cost as other structures Ƿ Present implementers: DITA implementation is more expensive than other structures Ƿ Future implementers: estimate DITA at significantly lower cost than other structures. scriptorium
  • 11. DITA cost factors (not survey data) Ƿ Specialization Ƿ Output requirements beyond Open Toolkit (especially web-based help) Ƿ Complex formatting in PDF Ƿ Legacy documentation Ƿ Large number of contributors scriptorium
  • 12. Wishful thinking? 100 80 Outside resources Mostly outside 60 Percentage Mostly employees Employees 40 20 0 2–5 ppl. 16–50 ppl. 1 person 6–15 ppl. 50+ ppl. 2–5 ppl. 16–50 ppl. 1 person 6–15 ppl. 50+ ppl. 2–5 ppl. 16–50 ppl. 1 person 6–15 ppl. 50+ ppl Past Present Future scriptorium
  • 13. Authoring tools Ƿ Winners: Arbortext, structured FrameMaker, XMetaL Ƿ Surprises: oXygen, Flare scriptorium
  • 14. Market share Tool By implementation By seats Arbortext 10% 15% oXygen 18% 18% Structured 35% 23% FrameMaker XMetaL 37% 44% scriptorium
  • 15. Change management Ƿ Over 30 percent of non-implementers said, “Staff will not adjust.” Ƿ Nearly 30 percent of past implementers had “some” or “a lot” of turnover. Ƿ Nearly 20 percent of current implementers had “some or “a lot” of turnover. scriptorium
  • 16. “What was your biggest mistake?” Ƿ “Underestimated” Ƿ “Failure to plan” Ƿ “Insufficient analysis” Ƿ 37 percent cited project management problems, double the number of any other issue. scriptorium
  • 17. How to improve outcomes? Private training. Ƿ Private, customized training increases implementation success. Ƿ But…it also correlates with change resistance! scriptorium
  • 18. Recommendations Ƿ Planning! Ƿ Assess motivation Ƿ Provide training and education Ƿ Manage the development process Ƿ Address content migration Ƿ Choose tools and technologies wisely scriptorium
  • 19. Questions? scriptorium
  • 20. Contact information Ƿ Sarah O’Keefe Ƿ Scriptorium Publishing Ƿ Ƿ Ƿ Scriptorium is exhibiting; stop by and visit us. scriptorium