Someone recently asked me:
I am using DITA with structured Frame and Tech Comm Suite. Do you know the best output to use so the docs can be displayed in Confluence? The SMEs want to proofread in Confluence and use it for a knowledge base. Ideally, I'd like to output from DITA or Robohelp and then just upload to Confluence.
Great question! Mixing DITA and Confluence is a major challenge. I noted in my API doc survey that about a third of people working in the API doc space are using Confluence in some way. This poses a challenge if you're using DITA.
However, I recommend not porting the DITA content into Confluence. People may think they want to review content in Confluence because they're reviewing other content here and are familiar with the platform. However, if your content is in DITA, there's no easy way to get it in and out of Confluence without copying and pasting (as far as I know).
I'm not that familiar with the reviewing capabilities built into Adobe TCS. I use the Webhelp with Feedback option in OxygenXML (I have some detailed notes on it here). In the past, I've also imported imported my DITA content into a WordPress site to allow people to add comments.
Whatever method you use for SME review, try to find a method that allows these capabilities:
I elaborated with more detail here: Reviewing draft DITA content with subject matter experts: 6 essential points. Based on these considerations, I decided to use the Webhelp with Feedback option with Oxygen, but I'm also using Oxygen, so it fits well into my toolset and workflow.
How would you answer this person's question? What recommendations or best practice advice can you offer?
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I'm a technical writer based in the California San Francisco Bay area. Topics I write about on this blog include technical writing, authoring and publishing tools, API documentation, tech comm trends, visual communication, technical writing career advice, information architecture and findability, developer documentation, and more. If you're a professional or aspiring technical writer, be sure to subscribe to email updates using the form above. You can learn more about me here. You can also contact me with questions.