Avoiding linking in topics

A topic with an embedded link is bound to the target of that link. If the target topic is not included in the same output, the link is not relevant (and will appear as a broken link in the output). Links should therefore be removed from the topic to the ditamap; the map being the place where context is stored.

For content to be truly separated from format, structure, context and delivery, there can be no links embedded within the topic content, because links contain context.

Embedded links create a dependency upon the linked topics; the topic can only make sense if the target topics for each of the links it are delivered alongside it. If a target topic is not included in the same collection as the topic, then the link will be broken.

DITA includes automatic linking mechanisms based on relationships established in relationship table (reltable) within the ditamap. Because the ditamap defines the collection of topics to be delivered as a publication, this is a more logical place for links between topics in the collection to be defined.