August 28, 2019 Looking for a single piece of content on a web site is often compared to digging in a giant bucket of LEGOs for a single unique piece – an often frustrating and futile endeavor. If those LEGOs are sorted by certain distinguishing attributes, such as color and size, the odds of finding a particular piece increase dramatically. As a result, companies often take a “LEGO-block” approach to their information taxonomies. However, the sorting of LEGO blocks is child’s play, compared to the intricacies of sorting technical content – the distinctions are not always as visible as color or size, and attributes that are that obvious may not be very useful in a search. Nevertheless, there are lessons we can learn from the “LEGO-block” approach. In this session, Dawn draws parallels between sorting LEGOs and sorting technical content, and provides suggestions for going deeper when the Lego model falls short. Presented by: Dawn Stevens is the President, and owner of Comtech Services and the Director of the Center for Information-Development Management. With over 25 years of experience, including 15 years at Comtech, Dawn has practical experience in virtually every role within a documentation and training department, including project management, instructional design, writing, editing, and multimedia programming. With both engineering and technical communication degrees, Dawn combines a solid technical foundation with strong writing and design skills to identify and remove the challenges her clients face in producing usable, technical information and training.
April 1, 2020 Implementing DITA with a small team of technical writers does not have to be expensive or difficult to set up. We'll go through the steps of implementing a DITA solution using GitHub for storage and workflow and Oxygen XML Editor for editing. We'll also look into how you can automate publishing and receive feedback from your end users. As a practical example we'll look into how editing, collaboration and publishing on the Oxygen XML Blog works. Presented by: Radu Coravu started working more than 10 years ago as a software developer for Syncro Soft SRL, the manufacturer of the popular oXygen XML Editor. During the last years, his main focus has been in the development of the visual XML Author editing environment and the specific-DITA support provided by oXygen. He provides support for complex integrations and helps steer the product in the right direction, all this with some development on the side.
Date: October 2, 2019 Prior to DITA, there wasn’t much we could do when it came to strategizing with the rest of the enterprise and pooling our tools, processes, and content. That’s no longer the case; as we see more and more DITA adoption from many expected and unexpected divisions, from Training and Support to Academic Publishers, Operations and Insurance. A unified, DITA-driven, enterprise-wide approach to content can have a profound impact on the enterprise. When content created by the enterprise is treated as a valued and valuable corporate asset, it’s a win-win-win situation. It’s more efficient for the enterprise and easier for content creators. But end users reap the real benefit by getting the content they need when they need it. In this webinar, Bernard Aschwanden, will take you through 10 ways in which DITA can help drive unified content strategy. Presented by: Bernard solves documentation-based problems and helps companies generate more revenue. He guides clients through the best processes to create, manage, and deliver content. Once content is delivered, he helps socialize the message, understand and act on feedback, and improve the process and workflow. He is the founder of Publishing Smarter (www.publishingsmarter.com), an Associate Fellow of STC, and a Past President of STC. Bernard has helped hundreds of companies implement successful solutions. He is focused on publishing better, publishing faster, and publishing smarter.
September 16, 2020 Tools and techniques used in software development can also be applied for documentation management:
- Storage and issue management using GitHub
- Automated quality checks and continuous publishing using Netlify
- Editing and collaboration support
- Release strategies
May 13, 2020 There is an explosion of content today. But what makes your content stand out is – relevance and searchability. To ensure that customers don’t have to spend hours searching through your content, metadata is key. And to know what metadata to add while authoring, a well-established taxonomy is key. To design a truly best-in-class content search experience metadata and taxonomy need to work in tandem. In this webinar we will showcase:
- How to leverage metadata to make your content searchable
- What is the difference between good and bad taxonomies
- A live example of taxonomy development using Adobe Experience Manager
Date: July 11, 2019 Content needs to be delivered across multiple channels – printed documents, website, mobile app, chat bots, customer support website, IoT devices, and beyond – but needs to be relevant to end users in context of their search. However, end users struggle to find the right content easily as authors are always short of time to create content best suited for all these needs. Content needs to be served up on demand almost like a service which works no matter the device, channel and context in which it is viewed. It all comes down to structure. Find out how you can make your content ‘future ready’ by following some intelligent techniques. Key takeaways:
- How to make your content intelligent?
- How to make your content channel agnostic?
- How structured content can help achieve these objectives?
Recorded: March 9, 2016 What can we as information developers do to help our users sort through the plethora of information available to them and find that small nugget of truth that will help them complete their task at hand, solve a nagging problem, or make a purchasing decision? How can we create an uncluttered path through the forest that takes them directly to our content, eliminating distractions and unnecessary forks in the road? A corporate taxonomy helps make searching simple and increases the chances for users to find the answers they need on their first try. Unfortunately, the effort to create such systems and the tools required to support them can be prohibitive. In this presentation, Dawn Stevens and Joe Gelb will discuss the importance of a corporate taxonomy, outline the process for defining and testing it, and demonstrate its crucial role within dynamic publishing platforms delivering focused content across all customer touchpoints. Presented by: Dawn Stevens, Comtech Services Inc. and Joe Gelb, Suite Solutions Dawn Stevens is the Vice President of Operations and partner at Comtech Services, Inc. Dawn specializes in information development, instructional design, and management consulting. With 25 years of experience, including 13 years at Comtech, Dawn has practical experience in virtually every role within a documentation and training department, including project management, instructional design, writing, editing, and multimedia programming. With both engineering and technical communication degrees, Dawn combines a solid technical foundation with strong writing and design skills to identify and remove the challenges her clients face in producing usable, technical information and training. Joe Gelb has over twenty years of experience helping enterprises implement, maintain and capitalize on structured content. At Zoomin, he has spearheaded the development of advanced technology solutions for content delivery. Prior to founding Zoomin and Suite Solutions, Joe was the CTO at Live Linx, a leading provider of software and system integration services for technical product information, where he designed and implemented solutions for aerospace, defense, manufacturing and hi-tech companies. Joe holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology.
Recorded: August 23, 2016 Standards are as old as human societies: their forebears are the coins and weights that were used for trade as far back as the historical record goes. In this presentation, JoAnn Hackos explains how information development managers can adopt standards that are relevant for our world. Know how standards demonstrate that we are part of a worldwide community dedicated to ensuring that we define and adopt recognized best practices. Learn how we can work together globally to ensure that we define and implement best practices to develop information and deliver it effectively. Dr. Hackos explains which standards are available and which are under development. She will help you learn how you can benefit from standards in your company or organization. Presented by: JoAnn Hackos, Comtech Services, Inc. Dr. JoAnn Hackos is President of Comtech Services, a content-management and information-design firm based in Denver, Colorado, which she founded in 1978. She is Director of the Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM), a membership organization focused on content-management and information-development best practices. Dr. Hackos and colleagues are called upon by corporate executives worldwide to consult on strategies for content management, development and organizational management, product interface design, customer studies, Web and traditional information architecture, and tools and technology selection.
Recorded: July 20, 2017The OASIS DITA Adoption TC is pleased to announce Stan Doherty’s presentation on Integrating Markdown Into Your DITA 1.3 Pipeline. Stan will provide a step-by-step tutorial on how to supplement an out-of-the-box DITA 1.3 deployment with the software, templates, and processing logic required to author and integrate Markdown-encoded topics alongside your DITA topics and maps. Stan will provide a step-by-step tutorial on how to supplement an out-of-the-box DITA 1.3 deployment with the software, templates, and processing logic required to author and integrate Markdown-encoded topics alongside your DITA topics and maps.
Presented by Stanley Doherty, Ph.D., HPE SimpliVity (Secretary for the OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee)Stan Doherty lives in the Boston area and works as a technical publications manager and Agile Product Owner at HPE SimpliVity. He participates as a voting member of the OASIS DITA Technical Committee, serves as secretary for the OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee, and supports companies in New England considering DITA. Feel free to contact Stan if you are considering DITA, DITA tools, and DITA-aware CCMSs.
Date: August 7, 2019 Gathering feedback from subject matter experts and other stakeholders is frequently a source of frustration for both content developers and SMEs alike. Whether you use the old “red pen” technique or circulate PDFs to your SMEs for comment and review, incorporating that feedback into your source content is time-consuming, labor-intensive, and error prone – not to mention difficult to track over time. In this webinar Chad Dybdahl, Adobe Solutions Consultant, will walk you through a highly collaborative workflow experience that allows you to:
- Easily collect feedback from many stakeholders simultaneously, in real-time
- Quickly import changes from reviewers back into your DITA source content
- Accept and reject whose changes
- Preserve trackability of the changes throughout the content lifecycle
Recorded: July 1, 2015
We talk a big game: DITA helps you reuse content with ease. Business cases are built on this promise, but many find the goal elusive. It seems to take just as much effort to manage reusable content as it did to simply copy and paste it. Sure, we might have missed some versions of that content in subsequent updates, but now we can destroy someone else’s deliverables by unwittingly changing content they were reusing. The problems are different, but the impact is the same, as we fail to realize the promised benefits and cost savings. At least in the “good old days” we understood what we were doing – Ctrl-C, Ctrl-V, and voila! Everyone could do it! Now we struggle with the difference between a keyref and conkeyref, we can’t decide whether to use a conditional attribute or a key, and we have never even made a conref push work, let alone find an application for it. Why isn’t DITA delivering on its reuse promises in so many organizations? In this presentation, Dawn Stevens asserts that the promises can indeed be met, but you must use the right tool for the job. Dawn provides guidance for choosing the appropriate reuse mechanism in the DITA standard as she compares and contrasts each feature, including the forthcoming 1.3 capabilities of scoped keys and branch filtering.
Presented by: Dawn Stevens, Comtech Services, Inc.
Dawn Stevens is a Senior Consultant specializing in information development, instructional design, and management consulting. With 25 years of experience, including 13 years at Comtech, Dawn has practical experience in virtually every role within a documentation and training department, including project management, instructional design, writing, editing, and multimedia programming. With both engineering and technical communication degrees, Dawn combines a solid technical foundation with strong writing and design skills to identify and remove the challenges her clients face in producing usable, technical information and training.
Recorded: July 27, 2016 Over the last decade, corporate technical publications departments have invested heavily in migrating their content away from proprietary authoring and publishing tools (e.g., MSWord, Adobe FrameMaker) and implementing the DITA standard for content markup. These companies have invested millions of dollars into content conversion and implementation of DITA-based authoring and content management systems. In many ways, these DITA implementation projects have proven to be hugely successful, particularly with regards to content reuse and reduced cost of localizing content to multiple languages. However, one promise of DITA has often fallen short: the goal of true “single source publishing.” The majority of technical publications groups are still publishing to print as the primary output format, followed by online help, and in some cases, eBooks. But, one major gap is still present for most technical publishers: automated publishing to mobile devices. Even though smartphones and tablets have dominated the industry for the last several years, virtually no one is publishing content in a way that fully uses the native capabilities of these mobile devices. Instead, they are settling for the inherent limitations of PDF or HTML files. Dan Dube outlines 5 tips to help technical publishers go “the last mile” to fully leverage their DITA investment and deliver content to popular mobile device platforms like Apple iOS and Android. This webinar will also help to answer the burning question: “Why aren’t EPUB or PDF the best choices for delivering DITA content to a mobile device?” Presented by: Dan Dube, Compass Behavior Dan Dube is a seasoned veteran of the XML content management and publishing industry, with over 30 years of experience working with structured content and automated single-source publishing solutions. Dan is best known as the co-founder and former CEO of DocZone, the industry’s first cloud-based solution for XML authoring, content management, localization, and multichannel publishing. (DocZone was acquired by RSI in 2009.) Dan is now CEO and co-owner of Compass Innovative Behavior Strategies, a New England-based provider of behavior therapy services for individuals with autism and other developmental delays. He still maintains a presence in the publishing industry as an independent consultant.