SVDIG Silicon Valley DITA Interest Group


Meeting: DITA Classification and Subject Scheme–Picking up where metadata leaves off

Joe Gelb of Suite Solutions, presented to a large crowd of in-room and virtual attendees, a discussion on the DITA 1.2 Classification and Subject Scheme.

Metadata is used by many to categorize DITA content. But categorization is not enough. More and more, companies are developing taxonomies to enable easier access to information. As you consider dynamic publishing and web deployment to meet the evolving expectations of your content consumers and the Google generation, classifying the subject matter in your content set and the relationships between that subject matter becomes critical. Using a real use case, Joe will demonstrate how you can use the DITA 1.2 classification and subject scheme to create, apply and publish your taxonomy using the same architecture you use to develop, manage and publish your DITA content.

Video recording 1h15m - I apologize for the extra noise near the end as I was moving the Polycom around to try to pick up the questions from the audience.


Free Resource: Fifth Edition of DITAinformationcenter (DITA 1.2, Toolkit 1.5.1)

Hi, All --
Dick Johnson and I have just released the fifth edition (publishing date June 30, 2010) of our DITAinformationcenter code distribution, documentation, and DITA project sample source files, available at:

This release focuses on DITA 1.2 features and DITA Open Toolkit 1.5.1 (final build).
The code distribution contains:
- DITA Open Toolkit 1.5.1 (final build)
- PHP interpreter 5.1.4
- A number of PHP debugging and reporting tools (also available in prior editions)
- A new Python repair tool (DITArepair) that fixes bad references (for example, if files have been moved and links broken) and also serves as an example of how Python can be used effectively in the XML/DITA environment
The documentation contains several DITA 1.2 features:
- Extensions to conref, conaction pushreplace: A Python script run in a preprocessing step to put keywords into shortdescriptions, both keywords present in the topic itself and also those keywords "inherited" from container topics
- Keyref: The values for publisher, copyright, and vrm version now have a single definition in a resource topics (instead of being defined separately in each topic)
- Coderef element: We have replaced some of the inline code examples with coderef elements that point to items in a code directory
Information describing how we implemented the 1.2 features are described in one of the topics (published as an appendix in the PDF output target).
Other documentation features:
- Added a section on trends in global communication and why DITA helps to solve some of the current challenges
- Information about our recommended DITAworkflow methodology based on the agile software development process
- New localization and translation topics and core vocabulary items
Sample DITA projects:
- As before, our grocery shopping and garage samples (garage is an expension of the garage sample available with the Toolkit)
- The current DITAinformationcenter source files, possibly useful as a model project of moderate size (350 topics) and complexity, and for testing processing tools. It contains a wide variety of DITA features, both from 1.2 and prior standards.
As always, comments are welcome. We hope the resource is useful to members of the DITA community.
-Anna and Dick