Authors moving from style-based authoring to structured authoring
in a DITA environment will need to build chunking,
and linking skills, and to understand the technique of separation of content
DITA authoring requires you to have skills that you may have used in
style-based authoring, but which you will certainly need to use differently.
Some skills may be entirely new to you. These skills are:
- Chunking refers to the way in which you break down information into
smaller pieces. The term is particularly (but not exclusively) used to describe
the way in which information is broadly
information types, or
(or metadata creation)
- Labels and catalogue information are part of a topic's or
collection's metadata. Metadata allows content to be filtered, sorted,
processed, and otherwise manipulated. Choosing accurate labels will result in
more flexible documents.
- Linking can be viewed as a technique for defining relationships
between topics. In DITA, best practice is to link topics by defining the ways
in which topics are associated, rather than manually choosing what text is
linked to which topic.
- Separating content from form
- In the writing phase of structured authoring, there is no place for
form (format, style and presentation). Form is not the
author's job. Content can be so separated by using semantics to identify each
element of the document. For example, rather than think that a word needs to be
displayed in bold, you need to think about what it is that makes it necessary
to distinguish that word from the others.