Lightweight DITA

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DITA is an OASIS standard for modular content that can be assembled and published in many different ways. The full DITA standard provides powerful features for single-sourcing and structured authoring but can be intimidating for new adopters who require only a subset of those features.

The OASIS DITA Technical Committee is planning to define a lightweight DITA architecture to allow a broader range of authoring and publishing tools to support a useful subset of the full DITA standard.

This presentation provides a preview of the lightweight DITA proposal for DITA 1.3, including some example markup and possible architectural approaches.

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Lightweight DITA

  1. 1. ©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationCorporate User Technologies1Michael PriestleyLead IBM DITA ArchitectTotal Information Experience Technology StrategistSenior Technical Staff MemberLightweight DITAA preview of the proposed DITA 1.3 featureApril 16, 2013
  2. 2. 2ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationImportant DisclaimerTHE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS PRESENTATION ISPROVIDED FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY.WHILE EFFORTS WERE MADE TO VERIFY THE COMPLETENESS ANDACCURACY OF THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THISPRESENTATION, IT IS PROVIDED “AS IS”, WITHOUT WARRANTY OFANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED.IN ADDITION, THIS INFORMATION IS BASED ON IBM’S CURRENTPRODUCT PLANS AND STRATEGY, WHICH ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGEBY IBM WITHOUT NOTICE.IBM SHALL NOT BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGES ARISING OUTOF THE USE OF, OR OTHERWISE RELATED TO, THIS PRESENTATIONOR ANY OTHER DOCUMENTATION.NOTHING CONTAINED IN THIS PRESENTATION IS INTENDED TO,OR SHALL HAVE THE EFFECT OF:• CREATING ANY WARRANTY OR REPRESENTATION FROM IBM (OR ITSAFFILIATES OR ITS OR THEIR SUPPLIERS AND/OR LICENSORS); OR• ALTERING THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF THE APPLICABLELICENSE AGREEMENT GOVERNING THE USE OF IBM SOFTWARE.
  3. 3. 3ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationOverview●Background● DITA at OASIS● Lightweight DITA status● DITA across the enterprise● Full vs light●The proposal● Lightweight topics● Lightweight maps● Lightweight specialization● Out of the box: building blocks and starter types
  4. 4. 4ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationWhat is DITA?Darwin Information Typing Architectureis an XML standard for modular content,collections and classification that allowsan enterprise to: Keep many versions of content current across multipleaudiences, multiple media, multiple deliverables, multipletranslations across many geographies Deliver improved information quality through structured andreused content Experience faster response time when content for customproducts is needed Leverage traceability and accountability features when a problemis found (fix it once, fix it everywhere; inform other affectedauthors)DITA has the largest membership of any OASIS technicalcommitteeWho uses it (selected fromhttp://www.ditawriter.com/companies-using-dita/ )●Accounting●Automotive●Aerospace●Biotech●Computerhardware/software/networking●Consumer electronics●Consumer goods●E-learning/education●Manufacturing●Entertainment●Financial services●Health and wellness●Hospital and healthcare●Industrial automation●IT services●Insurance●Management consulting●Medical devices●Oil and energy●Pharmaceuticals●Publishing●Retail●Semiconductors●TelecomWho uses it (selected fromhttp://www.ditawriter.com/companies-using-dita/ )●Accounting●Automotive●Aerospace●Biotech●Computerhardware/software/networking●Consumer electronics●Consumer goods●E-learning/education●Manufacturing●Entertainment●Financial services●Health and wellness●Hospital and healthcare●Industrial automation●IT services●Insurance●Management consulting●Medical devices●Oil and energy●Pharmaceuticals●Publishing●Retail●Semiconductors●TelecomIBM contributed DITA to the OASIS standards organization in March of 2004,where it is now managed by the OASIS DITA Technical Committee.IBM contributed DITA to the OASIS standards organization in March of 2004,where it is now managed by the OASIS DITA Technical Committee.
  5. 5. 5ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationLightweight DITA● Requirements from community for lightweight version of DITA to easeadoption by groups who dont need all the features of full DITA● Currently part of DITA 1.3 development, although some discussion ofsplitting off● Many solutions already implementing lightweight versions of DITA, but lotsof variability – different authoring communities want different subsets● Standard should provide a lightweight starting point and be easy to extend –alternative to starting with full DITA and subsettingEverything that follows is a work in progress –its not normative, and its likely to change
  6. 6. 6ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSome scenarios to consider● Contribution – SME (developer, customer, etc.) creating content tobe used by a full DITA system● Collaboration – SME maintaining content that is used by a full DITAsystem● Parallel adoption – authoring team with need for lightweight DITAcan share CMS, publishing capabilities with full DITA team● New adoption – authoring team in a company with no existing DITAusage can start with lightweight DITA and then evolve to full DITAwhere it makes sense
  7. 7. 7ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationAcross the enterpriseManagePublishAuthorManagePublishAuthorManagePublishAuthorToday:Silos inhibitreuse of contentand infrastructure.Content delivery reflects companyorganization, not customer needsManagePublishAuthorManagePublishAuthorAuthorcontentTomorrow:Authoring with common standards allows sharingof content and consolidation of infrastructure.Content delivery can be organized aroundcustomer needs, not organizational boundariesTaxonomy
  8. 8. 8ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationLightweight DITA vs full DITAFull DITA Lightweight DITATopics 94 elements 27 elementsMaps 10 elements(+30 shared with topic2 elements(+2 shared with topic)Specialization Structural: any element starting withtopicDomain: any element except topicAttributes: @props or @baseConstraints: following constraint modelStructural: topic and body onlyDomain: section and ph onlyAttributes: @props onlyConstraints: predefinedOut of the box 23 document types (for basic, bookmap,learning, machine industry, technicalcontent, subject schemes)~15 (basic topics and maps,specialization authoring, basic DITAtypes, basic Information Mapping types)Buildingblocks37 structural and domain specializationmodulesTo be determined
  9. 9. 9ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationInteroperability between lightweight and full DITA● Lightweight DITA is a valid implementation of DITA – it is a subset of full DITA● If a tool supports full DITA 1.3, it should support lightweight DITA 1.3 as well● To simplify the schema architecture, lightweight DITA uses its own set ofDTD/XSD files instead of reusing the (larger and more complex) full DITA set● Lightweight DITA content should be convertible to full DITA simply bychanging the doctype line to point to an equivalent full DITA doctype● Lightweight DITA and full DITA topics should be able to reuse from each othervia conref with relaxed constraints in DITA 1.3
  10. 10. 10ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationA deeper look● Topics● Maps● Specialization● Out of the boxAgain, this is all work in progress –the examples are intended to be suggestive, not normative
  11. 11. 11ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSimplified topic● Eliminate advanced features● No prolog metadata or related links● Eliminate redundant markup● No CALS table (simpletable only)● Simplify content models● No mixed content: the only place to authortext is in a <p>, and <p> doesnt containlists or other block-level content● Predefined constraints to:● Get rid of sections or get rid of contentoutside of sections● Limit lists to one level● Attributes added as functionalgroups:● “block-level reuse” adds @id and @conrefto <p>, <ul>, <li> etc.● “phrase-level variables” adds @keyref to<ph><topic id="mini"domains="(lwdita-c)(no-nesting-c)(no-sections-c)"><title>Mini topic</title><body><p>This topic has constraintsthat disallow sections and listnesting.</p><p>None of the optional attributegroups have been included, so noconditional processing, no conref,etc.</p><ul><li><p>Everything you writegoes inside a paragraph.</p></li><li><p>You can addparagraphs, tables, lists, andmedia.</p></li></ul></body></topic>
  12. 12. 12ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSimplified map● Eliminate advanced features● No metadata or reltable● Simplify content models● Add <title> element to topicref, eliminatealternatives● Attributes added as functionalgroups:● “TOC referencing” adds @href● “Classification/variables” adds @keys● “Link indirection” adds @keyref<map id="simpleTOCmap"domains="(lwdita-c) (tocref-c)"><title>Mini TOC map</title><topicref href=”mini.dita”><title>Mini topic</title><topicref href=”another.dita”><title>Another topic</title></topicref></map><map id="simplevarmap"domains="(lwdita-c) (taxo-c)"><title>Mini variable map</title><topicref keys=”prodname”><title>My Product</title><topicref href=”installpath”><title>[root]/something</title></topicref></map>
  13. 13. 13ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSimplified specialization● Pull together a new specializationout of building blocks● Assemble section types● Add phrases and attributes● So simple it can be authored insteadof coded● Use a specialized authoring topic● Fill in the fields and generate thespecialization● Generate more than just DTDs● Schemas, RNG... with lightweight schemasor starter sets for full● Overrides for publishing transforms andeditor prompts● Even a lightweight authoring prototype fortesting<meeting id="abc123" domains="(lwdita-c)(all-sections-c) (goals-d) (agenda-d) (minutes-d)><title>Minutes for 2012 July 18<title><shortdesc>Discussions of editor scenariosand processing expectations.</shortdesc><meetingbody><goals>...</goals><agenda>...</agenda><minutes>...</minutes></meetingbody></meeting><specdef id=”meeting”><title>Meeting specialization</title><specdefbody><sectiondef><dl><dlentry><dt>Goals</dt><dd><p><xref href=”goals.dita”/></p><p>Fill the goals of the meeting</p></dd></dlentry>......
  14. 14. 14ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationOut of the box● Building blocks● DITA section types such as those used intask● Information Mapping section types● Some common attribute and phrasedomains● Starter topic types● DITA concept, task, reference –reassembled to match a valid subset of fullDITA● Information Mapping common topic types● A super-lightweight simple topic● A specialization definition type● Starter map types● Navigation map● Classification/variable map<task id="mini" domains="(lwdita-c)(all-sections-c) (task/prereq)(task/context) (task/steps-informal)(task/result) (task/example)(task/postreq)"><title>Do something</title><shortdesc>Its better thannothing</shortdesc><taskbody><prereq><p>...</p></prereq><context><p>...</p></context><steps-informal><ol><li>Do this first</li><li>Do this second</li></ol></steps-informal><result><p>...</p></result>....</taskbody></task>
  15. 15. 15ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationReview: why lightweight DITA?● DITA can make it easier to share content and infrastructure acrossthe enterprise● But full DITA can have a high learning curve that pays off with highfunctionality only for full-time professional authors● By clearly defining a lightweight DITA adoption point, we make iteasier for new groups to adopt DITA with occasional, contributing, orjust lighter weight authoring needs● And we also make it easier for vendors who specialize in a particulararea to add DITA support that suits the needs of their customerswithout the overhead of supporting the full DITA spec● Full DITA and lightweight DITA are meant to play together to meet abroad spectrum of authoring and publishing needs across theenterprise
  16. 16. 16ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationJoin the discussion● Lightweight DITA discussion groups at yahoogroups and linkedin● Blogged about it here:● http://dita.xml.org/blog/lightweight-dita● Birds of a Feather at lunch table 25
  17. 17. 17ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationQuestions
  18. 18. 18ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationLegalIBM and the IBM logo are trademarks of International BusinessMachines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Otherproduct and service names might be trademarks of IBM or othercompanies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the Webat “Copyright and trademark information” atwww.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml
  19. 19. 19ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationAppendix
  20. 20. 20ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationTopic content● Minimal elements (27 total)● Eliminated redundancy● Simplified content models (no mixing <p> and <ph>)● Core structure: topic, title, shortdesc, body, section● Blocks: p, ul, ol, dl, pre, simpletable, image, object, note● Phrase-level: ph, xref, image● Modified by predefined constraints● no-nesting: lists are limited to one level● no-sections: body element contains blocks only, no sections● all-sections: body element contains sections only, no blocks● Whats missing?● Metadata elements. Use attributes if you need metadata.● Full table support. If you need the CALS model, youll need to extend beyond simpleDITA, or go to full DITA.● Related links. You can use a section with xrefs, or use map-based linking. ... to do
  21. 21. 21ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationTopic attributes● Core required (21; or 7, excluding object and param)● every element: @class● topic: @id, @domains● xref, image: @href, @scope, @format● object: @declare, @classid, @codebase, @data, @type, @codetype, @archive,@standby, @height, @width, @usemap, @name, @tabindex● param: @name, @value, @valuetype, @type● note: @type● Controlled via domains organized by function (adding another 5)● Conditional content: @props on section, p, ul, ol, li, dl, dlentry, pre, simpletable,strow, image, object, note● Content reuse: @id/@conref on section, p, ul, ol, li, dl, dlentry, pre, simpletable,strow, image, object, note● Variable links: @keyref on xref● Variable content: @keyref on ph, image● Class extension: @outputclass on everything
  22. 22. 22ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSimplified map● Minimal elements – most ofthe work done by attributes● Only four elements:● map● title● ph (in title)● topicref
  23. 23. 23ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationMap attribute model● Core attributes (3):● every element: @class● map: @id, @domains● Other attributes grouped into optional domains by function● Referencing content: @href on topicref● Variable and metadata control: @keys on topicref● Conditional content: @props on map, topicref● Content reuse: @id/@conref on topicref● Variable text: @keyref on ph● Variable links: @keyref on topicref● Class extension: @outputclass on everything
  24. 24. 24ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationSpecialization model● In lightweight DITA, you start with a set of building blocks:● specialized sections for organizing block-level content● specialized phrases for adding semantics to phrase-level content● specialized attributes for supporting conditional processing● Each new topic specialization:● Defines new topic/body elements● Sequences a set of specialized sections to provide structure● Incorporate phrase-level and attribute domains● If you need new specializations of section, ph, or the @propsattribute:● You define them separately, so they can be reused by multiple specializations● And then incorporate them into your topic specialization● If you need new block-level specializations (eg a new type of table):● You can do it, youre just going beyond the basics of lightweight DITA
  25. 25. 25ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationAuthoring a specialization● Creating a new specialization should be as simple as filling in a form● No coding or special skills required● Outputs could include:● Generated DTD and XSD artifacts that allow the new specialization to be validated● “Full-DITA” DTD and XSD equivalents if someone wants to use this approach tocreate starter doctypes for full DITA● Output overrides for generated section titles● An authoring prototype – such as an HTML5-based form/editor● When someone wants to share content authored using the newspecialization:● They could bundle the generated artifacts (DTD, XSD, output overrides) along withthe content● Or they could just share the authored specialization topic itself – allowing the reuserto generate XSD or DTD schemas as they prefer, and potentially generate their ownoutput overrides.
  26. 26. 26ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationOut of the box● Basic topic types:● Lightweight topic● Super-lightweight topic● Specialization authoring topic● Basic map types● URI-based TOC map (@href)● Classification/variable map (@keys)● Key-based TOC map (@keys, @keyref, @href)● Basic DITA types● Concept● Task● Reference● Basic Information Mapping types (topics built up out of IM blocks)● TBD
  27. 27. 27ID Professionals Telecon©2012, 2013 IBM CorporationThe building blocks● Harvest existing building blocks from full DITA so existing semanticscan be reused● Section-level specializations● example (from topic) (technically not a section specialization)● prereq, context, steps-informal, result, postreq (from task)● refsyn (from reference)● prelreqs, closereqs (from learning domain)● Phrase-level specializations● still to do● Attribute “specializations”● product, platform, audience (from topic) (technically not specializations of props)● Coming soon:● Section types based on the Information Mapping information types

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