Sunday, December 7, 2008

Single-sourcing - do we really reuse as much as said?

There has been a lot said on single-sourcing - about tools, techniques, methods, and so on. But two aspects of single-sourcing are: reuse of content and modular writing. Here is how I look at single-sourcing:

Click on image to see comparison

The latest news is that Adobe has a FrameMaker version with DITA capabilities. Then we also have Adobe Technical Communication Suite with these components:
  • FrameMaker 8
  • RoboHelp 7
  • Adobe Captivate 3
  • Acrobat 9 Pro Extended

So it all has to do with how content is written. Ideal single-source content should be without hyperlinks or linked references but in reality that is not possible. So why DITA? "DITA provides a standard for structuring topics and content within topics. This standard is based on three broad information categories into which almost all technical information can be classified: task, concept, and reference."

Yet the question remains: how much of information do we really reuse?

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