DIBA – Automating DITA Publishing in a Large-Scale Setting

Presentation Abstract

Stepping up from a small doc lab manually producing on demand to a department interconnected with many writers worldwide and continuous delivery to release engineering groups requires great efforts on a technical as well as organizational level to realize the necessary degree of automation while meeting defined quality standards at the same time. With DIBA 2.0 Software AG redefines the way it processes DITA-based documentation to pave the way to fully automated production, keeping the impact low for authors and maintainers alike, and allowing for flexible and maintainable configuration and monitoring with the help of XResources [*]. Reasons for redesign are discussed, along with first experiences with the new system.

What can attendees expect to learn?

This is a story about how to reimplement a custom DITA processing framework facing the situation of a rising degree of automation with a shrinking work force. We discuss why we continue to regard it as best practice to keep as much control over the publishing toolchain as possible. Building interfaces to producers and consumers as well as to partners of SAG documentation is an exercise many companies have to master in one way or another and the audience may compare it to their own way of handling their publishing needs.

Meet the Presenter

Frank Wegmann has 20+ years experience in SGML and XML processing, both in a research context in the area of natural language processing and, since 2000, in the field of technical documentation, being with Software AG, where he has been involved in custom automated build system for documentation since 2001. In 2009, Software AG introduced DITA documentation processing with ePublisher, and in 2015, the presenter started efforts to integrate these two documentation environments and redesign the DITA toolchain.

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