Lightweight DITA

The lightweight DITA proposal for DITA 1.3 is starting to come together. The proposal responds to requirements from the community for a lightweight version of DITA to ease adoption by groups who don't need all the features of full DITA.

Many companies have already implemented lightweight versions of DITA, but there is lots of variability – different authoring communities want different subsets, which is fine and normal. But a standard could provide a lightweight starting point that's easy to extend, so that when a developer wants a lighterweight solution they can start from the light spec and build up rather than having to start with full DITA and subsetting extensively.

There's a sparse and technically-oriented writeup available here:

We're already beginning discussions with interested developers, to make sure that the spec will be useful and implementable when it's done. We've formed two communities for discussion:

I'll also be presenting on lightweight DITA at the CMS/DITA conference, and I look forward to sharing via blog and group what kind of reaction the proposal gets at the conference.

Hopefully lightweight DITA can be an easier entry point for vendors who like the value proposition of DITA but whose target authoring groups simply don't require full DITA for their jobs. I'm definitely not seeing lightweight DITA as replacing full DITA, but instead allowing for a broader range of content applications within an expanded DITA ecosystem.

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