Information Management News
March 2011

A monthly e-newsletter from The Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM)
JoAnn T. Hackos, PhD, CIDM Director

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CIDM News and Events

For a complete Calendar of Events, click on these links:



Upcoming Webinars

Recorded Webinars

Other Events


The CMS/DITA North America Conference 2011 will be held April 4-6 in Baltimore, Maryland. For more information click here.

The Best Practices Conference 2011 will be held September 12-14 in San Antonio, Texas.

Upcoming Workshops

Minimalism: Creating Information People Really Need
March 8-9, 2011
Natick, MA

Minimalism is the first step to creating user friendly content that is fully structured. It is designed for anyone faced with manuals that users complain are too big and too detailed—or that aren’t used at all.

Advanced DITA Training including DITA 1.2
March 22-23, 2011
Norwood, MA

The Advanced DITA workshop will provide attendees with a hands-on walk-through of the essential DITA fundamentals, programming skills, and DITA Open Toolkit configurations required to assemble, style, and publish DITA XML source.

Developing Quality Documentation in an Agile Environment
April 28-29, 2011
San Jose, CA

This workshop focuses on the Scrum Agile methodology and how documentation departments can adjust to this high-speed development environment.

DITA Boot Camp
June 20-24, 2011
Fresh Meadows, NY

This workshop covers the concepts needed to move to DITA successfully. The Boot Camp takes you from the DITA Basics to the skills you’ll need to create a specific standard for your industry and your content.

DITA: Getting Started
August 17-18, 2011
Colorado Springs, CO

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.

Upcoming Webinars

Integrating Adobe FrameMaker 10 with EMC Documentum to maximize content reuse with Linked2

Tom Aldous, Adobe Systems Incorporated & Jim Fettes, Millennium Consultants, Inc.
March 3, 2011, 1pm Eastern

Successful Single-Source Content Development for Mobile and eLearning

Stuart Grossman, Xyleme, Inc.
March 17, 2011, 12pm Eastern

Authoring 3D DITA Documents—Yes, You Can!

Lars Olson & Bob Merlo, Right Hemisphere
March 23, 2011, 11am Eastern

Ensuring Consistency with Map and Topic Templates

Helen Michaud & Julia Malkin, Endeca Technologies
April 28, 2011, 11am Eastern

Click here for recorded webinars.


SDL Releases Enhanced Layered Business Rules Exchange (BREX) Data Module Validation

IXIASOFT Integrates Quark XML Author with its DITA CMS Solution

acrolinx 2010 Content Quality Survey—Understanding How Organizations View Content Quality

Elekta selects IXIASOFT’s DITA CMS solution to manage technical documentation

NLDITA 2011 Call For Speakers is now Open!

Major Global Brands Confirm Global Information Management as Key to Success

Click here for more announcements.

Content Management Strategies/DITA North America Conference 2011

Join an outstanding group of individuals who have moved their organizations into content management, implemented the DITA standard, reduced their operations costs, and solved copious technical issues. Go to our registration page to sign up today!

Release Management
JoAnn Hackos, Comtech Services, Inc.

Members of the CIDM LinkedIn Group have been sharing their concerns about managing multiple releases of a product. Most recently, we hosted a webinar session in which Tracey Atkinson and Wanda Applegate of Siemens PLM Software, who instigated the LinkedIn discussion, presented their requirements for the capabilities they hope to find in a content management system. We have asked developers of content management systems to provide their solutions in white papers, which we expect to publish on the CIDM website shortly.

Read the article.

Calculating the ROI of Content Reuse in a DITA
Topic-Based CMS

Beth Pollock & Andrea Rutherfoord, Citrix Systems, Inc.

In 2008 when our department started using a CMS, we had already made a business case for the implementation based on the impressive cost-savings realized in Localization. Intuitively, though, we knew that we would also save on authoring costs as a result of content reuse. Shortly after rolling out the CMS, we had to deliver product documentation for several large releases (some unplanned) in quick succession. The largest of these releases, which we worked on through 2009 and the first quarter of 2010, was delivered in half the staff time we had estimated during pre-CMS project planning. The question became, “How can we demonstrate what we know intuitively about content reuse ROI?”

Read the article.

Metrics Mania—Writing
Dawn Stevens, Comtech Services, Inc.

Whether or not you have specialists, such as graphic artists, editors, and formatters, supporting your information development, you’ll find that the bulk of your project budget goes toward the initial creation of the content by your writers. In fact, often the amount of time allocated for the specialists is calculated based on the writing time—editing might be allocated 25% of the writing time, for example.

Read the article.

Getting Value from DITA Without Retooling
Karen Bertram, OpenMarket

During the past several years, DITA has caught the attention of many people in our profession, yet I still run into writers and instructional designers who either haven’t heard of it or don’t understand its purpose and value. This article is primarily for this audience and for those who have considered implementing a DITA-based solution but who do not have the budget or time to retool.

Read the article.

Vasont Content Management System Supports Publishing to “Apps” for Mobile Devices
Reprinted with permission from Vasont Systems

Vasont Systems, a provider of XML content management software and data services, announced that the Vasont Content Management System (CMS) supports publishing to “apps” (applications) for mobile devices, such as smart phones and tablet computers.

Read the article.

Join CIDM’s LinkedIn Group Today!

CIDM’s LinkedIn Group is growing exponentially! Join more than 650 members today to take part in informative discussions about our industry.

Welcome New CIDM Member!

For 25 years, Adobe’s award-winning software and technologies have redefined business, entertainment, and personal communications by providing a catalyst for moving ideas from concept through creation to delivery across any digital device. With a reputation for excellence and a portfolio of many of the most respected and recognizable software brands, Adobe is one of the world’s largest and most diversified software companies. One of the latest additions to this portfolio is Adobe’s Technical Communication Suite 3—an end to end solution for technical authoring and multichannel publishing needs. With its focus on innovation, Adobe continues to reinvent how the world creates, perceives, and engages with information.

Learn more about CIDM (Center for Information-Development Management)here.

CIDM is now on Facebook! Click here to join our group.

bestpractices CIDM is calling for contributions to the bimonthly publication, Best Practices. Please contact our Editor, Lisa Larson, for more information.

Information Development: Managing Your Documentation Projects, Portfolio and People
With Information Development: Managing Your Documentation Projects, Portfolio and People, JoAnn Hackos looks beyond the structured project of the 1980s and 1990s. Instead, she focuses on the rapidly changing projects of the 21st century and addresses how to introduce agile information development without neglecting the central focus of planning information design and development around the needs of information users. Buy this book today!