To Wrap Up
DITA provides a flexible, yet rigid, framework that helps you create effective technical information. DITA is flexible in that it helps you reuse, reorganize, and create content quickly. It's rigid in that you must be disciplined enough to adhere to the principles of good topic-based writing to take advantage of the benefits of DITA.
Writing task-oriented DITA topics takes some practice, but when you do create those perfect topics, your users can:
- Find the information they need faster
- Accomplish their goals more efficiently
- Read only the information they need to read
Writing in DITA not only benefits your users, but it also benefits you as a writer. By using DITA to create topic-based information, you can:
- Maintain and reuse topics more effectively
- Organize or reorganize topics more quickly
- Share and distribute the work on topic files more easily, which increases writer productivity
Topic-based information also starts with a thorough knowledge of your users and their goals. Do a comprehensive task analysis before you write anything. Don't be afraid to spend more time on planning your information and analyzing the tasks that users will want to do with your product.
By writing your content in discrete, task-oriented DITA topics, you can create useful, coherent, and retrievable technical information.