Earlier today, Liz Fraley, from Single-Sourcing Solutions, showed some best practices for doing DITA stylesheets in Arbortext Styler. She talked about understanding fall-back processing, using read-only stylesheets, and doing modular stylesheet development. All of these things contribute to a successful DITA implementation and a productive environment.

In case you missed it, you can view the recording or, because the event had a live Twitter stream, you can read through the highlights below. Enjoy!

SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 9:51am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Get your Arbortext resources here: http://social.single-sourcing.com
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 9:51am
Top 5 Arbortext Resources from Single-Sourcing Solutions, qualified value added reseller for PTC dynamic publishing products – Arbortext Mathcad Windchill http://top5.single-sourcing.com
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 11:01am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: A giant chart of resources available to the Arbortext community and this is just a small slice!
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 11:00am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Please don’t ever, ever, ever, style concept, task or reference. Rely on fall-back processing!
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:59am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Icon indicators, color, weight, hints to give you what you need to develop stylesheets right in the UI
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:57am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: RDS is a separate stand-alone file that does not affect your source content
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:56am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Use the Resolved Document for Styling to see your content after it’s gone through publishing pipeline
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:55am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Use a test document that contains many of the different contexts you need to style
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:54am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Added APP code by adding a module and changing rendering engine to APP. Voila! Cool.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:53am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Source edit support–source edits are mechanism for going above and beyond, like including APP code!
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:52am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler is a very powerful tool; people enjoy using it. It does a nice job of simplifying the view
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:51am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: easy to see that style applies only to one format or to all. Red to indicate you’re changing a subset/one
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:50am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler can have multiple output formats from one stylesheet–true multi-channel stylesheeting
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:49am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: easy to move rules into/between modules and see precedence of modules
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:48am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: lots of customers using pageset modules
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:47am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Sort by module–it’s a nice way to organize your work, and you can reuse modules in other stylesheets
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:46am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: You can sort by module, and work on all TASK-related parts at once, see everything together.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:44am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler validates modules on import to make sure you don’t have garbage in your stylesheet
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:43am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Use a modular architecture to do your work, deploy flattened stylesheet to field–faster in production
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:42am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Arbortext provides 31 modules OOB, easy to drop domains you don’t use
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:41am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Use the flattened base or the modules provided OOB to start your stylesheet work
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:40am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler is a tool that just anyone can pick up and use
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:39am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler is a tool that can be used by the non-programmer; easy to understand, with info/hints right there
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:38am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: OTK–a great tool, but takes programming skills, really need to understand the DTD to dig around in it
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:36am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Make sure w/specializations, you’re not going to break anything. Just think it through
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:35am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: There’s a notion of fall-back processing and you want to take advantage of it: no unnecessary styling
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:34am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler has all of these little tips that provide you w/what you need to know as a stylesheet developer
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:33am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Comment feature added in 5.4, you can see/add comments easily, right in UI
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:32am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Can sort by element and can quickly jump to rules, elements, and contexts
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:31am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler provides hints–“this elt is a specialization of…”–stylesheet devs need this info at hand
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:30am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Lots of elements in OOB stylesheets are “unstyled by design”
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:29am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: With DITA, take advantage of fall-back processing. Styler makes this easy to see.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:27am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: For folks who used Styler in the past, it looks a lot different; lots of new things to talk about
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:26am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler provides a very robust, obvious, powerful way to make modifications to meet org needs
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:25am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Can sort on column to see active vs overridden rules.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:24am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: bold=active rule; gray/italic=overridden rule. Easy to see.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:23am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Icon shows precedence and priority status of rules in stylesheet.
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:21am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Knowing specialization history is important for stylesheet writers, pop up hint in Styler is handy view
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:20am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Hover over element and you can see where it comes from (file, module) and what it’s specialized from
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:19am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: by importing a read-only copy, you can leverage future updates provided by Arbortext
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:18am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: ATX provides a very extensive stylesheet that supports all of the DITA elements and attributes OOB
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:17am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Start with an empty shell (driver) stylesheet and import read-only copy of OOB stylesheet
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:16am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: also an RDE – resolved document for editing – to see total — editiable– content in one view
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:15am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: RDS good for troubleshooting link problems, it’s what’s gone through the publishing pipeline
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:14am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Styler has a “Resolved Document for Styling” (RDS) that contains all the info from map & topics
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:13am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Style against a sample document that represents the vast majority of constructs you would see in output
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:12am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Stylesheet creates the rules for how elements appear in the various contexts in the output
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:11am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: a single Styler stylesheet can create output for multiple output formats
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:10am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Best practices for using Styler with the OOB DITA modular stylesheets
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:09am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Talking about Styler – a UI to make non-programmers capable of maintaining/creating stylesheets
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:07am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: PTC pushing for interoperability, cooperation between applications — based on customer feedback
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:06am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Arbortext is the only OOB end-to-end solution with integrated products that all play nicely w/each other
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:05am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Arbortext was Editor IBM was using when they developed DITA; Arbortext part of OASIS DITA TC from start
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 10:04am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar L.Fraley: Arbortext has a long history with SGML, XML, and DITA. Around since 1990
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 9:57am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar: about to get started…
SingleSourcing
Aug 31, 2010 at 9:57am
#Arbortext #DITA Webinar: We’ll be live-tweeting the webinar. Fair warning: we’re going into high-volume for the next hour.

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