Why Is DITA So Hard? Understanding the link and configuration management challenges inherent in technical documentation.

DITA-based technical documents are inherently sophisticated and complex hyperdocuments. They are developed through complex revision processes, often by highly-distributed teams. Thus DITA documents and their management present a number of challenges inherent in the nature of sophisticated technical documentation. While the value of this sophisticated approach to documentation has tremendous value to organizations as a whole, it can make the life of individual authors much more challenging, leading to the common complaint “DITA is too hard”. This talk presents the link and configuration management challenges inherent in sophisticated hyperlinked documentation and discusses the features of DITA and DITA component content management systems that address these challenges. If authors and managers understand the challenges inherent in DITA-based authoring they can at least set their expectations and provision tools and resources appropriately.

What can attendees expect to learn?

  • The way in which DITA documents are sophisticated hyperdocuments
  • What “configuration management” means in the context of DITA-based documentation
  • The fundamental link and configuration management challenges DITA hyperdocuments present
  • The DITA features that enable and support hyperdocument configuration management
  • The link and configuration management features DITA-aware component configuration management systems must provide in order to support authors.
  • A little bit about Aikido


Meet the Presenter

Eliot Kimber, Contrext, LLC
Eliot Kimber is a founding and active member of the DITA Technical Committee. He has been working with structured markup for more than 30 years. Eliot is also a co-editor of the HyTime standard. Eliot currently focuses on the application of DITA to the business challenges of Publishers. Eliot is the founder and principle developer of the open-source DITA for Publishers project. Eliot lives and works with his family in Austin, Texas.


⇐Return to Agenda