The shortdesc element is more important than it initially appears to be. Although optional, it's highly recommended that you use this tag. The shortdesc appears in several key places:
  • As a tooltip in links pointing to the page
  • As a description on a parent page containing child pages
  • As the summary that appears in search results
  • Possibly as context sensitive help (perhaps pulled as a tooltip to show in an interface with a link to learn more)

Here's an example:

<concept id="concept">
 <title>Wheel truing overview</title>
 <shortdesc>Truing your wheels requires you to tighten or loosen spokes with a spoke wrentch in a balanced pattern in order to change the shape of the wheel.</shortdesc>
 <conbody>
   <p>Blah blah blah...</p>
 </conbody>
</concept>