Moving a set of topics *and* their references to a new location

chrispitude
Posts: 250
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 2:32 pm

Moving a set of topics *and* their references to a new location

Post by chrispitude » Wed Aug 19, 2020 5:28 pm

Hi all,

In our DITA books, we use the following directory structure:

Code: Select all

book.ditamap
book/chapter1/graphics/pic_featureA_a.png
book/chapter1/graphics/pic_featureA_b.png
book/chapter1/graphics/pic_featureB_a.png
book/chapter1/graphics/pic_featureB_b.png
book/chapter1/topic_featureA_1.dita
book/chapter1/topic_featureA_2.dita
book/chapter1/topic_featureA_3.dita
book/chapter1/topic_featureB_1.dita
book/chapter1/topic_featureB_2.dita
book/chapter1/topic_featureB_3.dita
book/chapter2/graphics/...
book/chapter2/...
Each chapter has a directory that contains its topic files. Image files are in a graphics/ directory located where the topic file is.

Now, a writer needs to move featureB -- topic and image files -- from chapter 1 to chapter 2. In the DITA Maps Manager, this is easy - drag and drop that topic set from one chapter to another.

But this does not move the files on disk. And this is where the challenges are:
  • In the Project view, I can only drag-and-drop files one at a time.
  • I can't have two Project view folders open to drag between them (or can I?).
  • The topic filenames are such that their associated feature is not self-evident, so I must alternate between remembering one or a few filenames from the DITA Maps Manager, then finding and moving them in the DITA Maps Manager.
  • The images files in graphics/ must also come along to a graphics/ folder in the new location.
  • There could be over a hundred topic and image files to move in some cases.
  • The Master Files feature updates references, but this must run for each move operation.
Is there a way to have the topic/resource filesystem structure follow movement in the DITA Maps Manager?

Is there a "Get referenced files" way to select a set of topics in the DITA Maps Manager, then get the list of files (topic files, images, etc.) directly referenced (href) by those topics? (Cross-references wouldn't count.)

The issue of reconciling disk structure versus map structure disappears if you use a single ginormous flat sea of files on disk. Does anyone actually do this?

Radu
Posts: 7150
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2004 5:18 pm

Re: Moving a set of topics *and* their references to a new location

Post by Radu » Thu Aug 20, 2020 9:04 am

Hi Chris,
Is there a way to have the topic/resource filesystem structure follow movement in the DITA Maps Manager?
References in the DITA Maps Manager are symbolic links, I would not connect the movement of topicrefs in the DITA Maps Manager to moving files on disk.
The Oxygen Project view can be used to select and drag and drop multiple files at a time. You can also drag and drop entire folders (the folders containing the images for example).
Is there a "Get referenced files" way to select a set of topics in the DITA Maps Manager, then get the list of files (topic files, images, etc.) directly referenced (href) by those topics? (Cross-references wouldn't count.)
Well, if you select topicrefs in the DITA Maps Manager view, copy and then paste in Notepad for example, you will get a set of URLs there corresponding to those files.
I gave someone this related idea a while back: post57548.html#p57503
The issue of reconciling disk structure versus map structure disappears if you use a single ginormous flat sea of files on disk. Does anyone actually do this?
Some years back people used to recommend grouping content by topic type in folders named "concepts", "topics", etc. I think most people nowadays group content my meaning, like in your case you group it by chapter. Some content management systems like Ixiasoft do not have folders at all, they rely on specialized actions like our "Open/Find Resource" action to find a particular topic. So yes, you could consider having a single images folder and a single topics folder.

Regards,
Radu
Radu Coravu
<oXygen/> XML Editor
http://www.oxygenxml.com

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