From the Adobe Technical Communication blog comes this interesting and thought-provoking article, XML Authoring and DITA: An Interesting Analogy.

The analogy, provided by Aseem Dokania, Product Manager, Adobe FrameMaker: “Imagine if all countries followed the same driving rules. All cars can be driven in any country, and the road networks could be designed, as per the driving rules, without any knowledge of the actual cars that would drive on it. DITA is similar to these universal driving rules. If everyone follows the DITA specifications, it would be easy to share content and apply the same style sheets to the aggregated content.”

“There have been other standards (universal driving rules) that have come up in the past,” Dokania continues. “But they were good for specific kind of documents (terrains). DITA is different, as it is based on the premises that the same set of driving rules cannot be applied to all terrains (desert, mountains, city, etc.). Therefore, DITA allows each country to specialize the driving rules for its own unique requirements. In addition, DITA also has recommendations on the content (car) design – i.e. topics. This further makes it easier to reuse, manage and share content.”

If you are a FrameMaker user, Adobe has made it easy for you to make a move toward DITA. The company offers a free DITA application pack to get you started.