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DITA Getting Started

For information about hosting a workshop, click here.

Length: Two days

Fee: $975.00 USD


The DITA: Getting Started workshop delivers a comprehensive introduction to the DITA 1.2 standard, providing participants with an in-depth look at the end-to-end DITA information development environment.

This training begins with the conceptual and practical challenges of moving from a book-based to topic-based architecture, then quickly progresses into hands-on exercises in an XML authoring environment. In the exercises, participants are guided through the process of making a DITA content plan, creating DITA source topics, assembling the topics into DITA maps, applying metadata, and publishing through the DITA-Open Toolkit.

DITA: Getting started is an ideal course for a wide variety of roles within a documentation group:

  • Managers faced with the challenge of moving to XML and deciding the best approach
  • Full authoring teams gearing up for a DITA implementation
  • Individuals authors new to an organization already working in DITA and needing either a refresher or an introduction to DITA
  • Information architects already implementing DITA who need to optimize their reuse strategies or modify their authoring environments to better support their information developers

The workshop is a mix of conceptual and hands-on: students are asked to understand the framework and best practices, then perform exercises to practically apply and reinforce the learnings.

Recent updates to the course include sessions on major enhancements present in the DITA 1.2 specification, including reuse improvements such as keyref and architectural modification capabilities such as constraints.

The Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) is an information architecture that presents a powerful solution for the information developers. DITA provides information developers with a standard approach for creating topic-based information and assembling topics into books or other outputs. Topic-based and task-oriented information provides end users with organized and comprehensible solutions for their needs.

Why call it DITA?

Darwin—DITA provides a single-sourced information model that can be specialized to account for your particular authoring needs.

Information Typing—DITA was designed to create technical information based on a core information architecture using concept, task, and reference.

Architecture—DITA provides a framework for designing and delivering technical content efficiently.

DITA provides you with an open source, OASIS standard to support topic-based authoring of well structured content. Out of the box, DITA encompasses three primary information types (concepts, tasks, and reference) that provide a structure amenable to most technical information. And it provides a mechanism for extending the structure through specialization to meet your industry's needs.

In this workshop, you learn that DITA is a standard for authoring topic-based technical information, that using DITA provides significant business advantages, and that you can get started immediately with the DITA Open Toolkit.

Who should attend?

This workshop is designed as an introduction to DITA. It is meant for those who need to implement structured documentation, including writers, editors, information architects, and their managers.

You will learn to

In the workshop, participants will learn to

  • build a business case for moving to the Darwin Information Typing Architecture
  • apply DITA concepts and methodology
  • design and create information using a topic/task-based structured writing approach
  • use XML markup with DITA elements and the importance of the DITA elements to information development
  • use DITA maps and understand their purpose
  • create relationship tables
  • recognize the need for specialization in DITA
  • evaluate XML editing tools and use the DITA open source toolkit
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