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DITA Quick Start Webinar Series: Building a Project Plan


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Presenters: Joe Gelb, President, Suite Solutions and Yehudit Lindblom, Project Manager, Suite Solutions
Migrating to DITA XML-based authoring and publishing promises rich rewards in terms of lower costs and faster time to publication. But DITA migration also requires a well-planned process that will lead you through all the steps of a successful implementation. In this webinar, experienced project manager Yehudit Lindblom and Joe Gelb will review a process that covers all the bases, helping you build your game plan for a winning DITA implementation.
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DITA Quick Start Webinar Series: Building a Project Plan

  1. 1. XML-based Authoring/Publishing Solutions Enterprise Intelligent Dynamic Content: SuiteShare Social KB High Tech, Aerospace & Defense, Discrete Manufacturing Healthcare, Government
  2. 2.         
  3. 3.  Familiar with your content Open to learning the new methods and tools Not necessarily the most senior and entrenched person in the group… Someone with a good understanding of the corpus of your content and how is (or should be) used Someone who can understand the toolset being customized and stitched together Understand what they do, who to turn to if something breaks or needs adjustment, can work well with vendors and your IT department
  4. 4. Helps you build a comprehensive project plan Helps you coordinate with your external resources: IA consultant, software vendors, conversion experts, style sheet developers… Has a broad and detailed view of all the moving parts and is focused on the success of your entire implementation Brings experience to your team
  5. 5. Gathering material Testing and approvals Training Regular update meetings and decision-making sessions Answer questions Test Re-test Approve Allow enough time to do the job right and not take shortcuts: you need the solid foundation to build on
  6. 6.  Gain a good understanding of the process and vocabulary Get some hands-on experience Set expectations Hands-on training with exercises on real, familiar content
  7. 7.  What are the business goals: yours? Your stakeholders? Your company? Types of content Who’s reading it? What are their goals? Types of outputs What are the pain points that need resolution? Answer these questions for now and over the next 3 years Design for a phased implementation: it may not all happen at once Build a business case around the potential savings and value-add What will be a reasonable budget request to start, implement in stages, and maintain
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  9. 9.  The content will need work to get into the proper structure Some work is easier to do before the conversion, some after Lists all headings in the document Set the granularity for splitting into topics Change titles, add indexes or metadata, merge conditionalization…
  10. 10. Will save time later; reduces need to stop and tweak the conversion tools for unexpected styles or patterns Be rigorous with the styles used in the input documents It is irritating grunt work to check and re-apply styles, but it will save huge effort later Even one character styled wrong has potential to throw off the conversion algorithm for that topic
  11. 11.  Have all the fonts available Invest the time to put together good test data, based on your IA, that simulates each combination of tagging and structure Test data should account for how it will look coming out of the CMS Communicate clear and detailed formatting requirements You do not need separate style sheets for each language…
  12. 12. As you migrate more content, you will encounter new patterns in the tagging Style sheets are very sensitive to differences in tagging, especially for PDF Page-break rules are sometimes complex and may be tweaked over time
  13. 13.  Requires coordination with information architect and style sheet developers
  14. 14. Integration with the DITA Toolkit Integration with PDF rendering engines Antenna House, XEP, FOP, Top Leaf …
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  16. 16.  Share tagging situations they came across Ask questions to the information architect or “go to” expert Discuss ideas for sharing and organizing content Discuss ideas for updating the tagging model Allow for time and budget to tweak the style sheets and CMS tools