What is DITA?
DITA stands for Darwin Information Typing Architecture. It’s an XML authoring methodology that uses minimalism and task-oriented topic writing to better organize and disseminate topics into a major work or across several different works. In other words, it makes topic writing easier, more flexible, and transferable. DITA allows easy linking and reuse of written information across several deliverables. Chapter 1 of DITA Best Practices claims “Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) was designed specifically for writing, organizing, and linking topic-based content.” So what I take that to mean is DITA makes technical writing easier to edit and organize large manuals among groups. If you break up a huge manual into small digestible pieces or “topics,” you can then easily edit each piece, reorganize, and reuse the information for that manual and future manuals that contain similar “topics.” In the past, technical writers had to copy and paste similar topic info from one manual to another which caused more errors. Now, with structured authoring, those chunks of info or “topics” can be easily transferred or reused from manual to manual.