DITA was invented at IBM and Arbortext was part of DITA from the very beginning. IBM content authors were using Arbortext Editor at the time DITA was being created and they are still using Arbortext Editor today. Arbortext was the only vendor who was invited to be a charter member of the OASIS DITA technical committee when DITA was released to OASIS from IBM. With the AOTk, non-IBM DITA users can use the Arbortext Editor for their publishing through the DITA OT.
The DITA Open Toolkit, or DITA-OT for short, is a set of Java-based, open source tools that provide processing for DITA maps and topic content. You can download the OT and install it for free from Sourceforge. While not part of the DITA standard, the DITA OT is a reference implementation in use by many companies who are exploring DITA. Many are using it in production. While the DITA Standard itself is owned and developed by OASIS, the DITA Open Toolkit is an independent, open source implementation of the standard.
“DITA is one of the most important innovations in XML publishing in years. The DITA OT, on the other hand, is very much a ‘toolkit’. It requires programming skill to implement and maintain long-term. And one of the first things that customers do is modify it to get better quality PDF output,” said Liz Fraley, CEO of Single-Sourcing Solutions. “We wanted to provide the tools that make it easy for customers to use Arbortext with the DITA OT. We’re always looking for ways to make professional, high-quality, XML publishing systems more accessible to non-programmers.”
The AOTk from Single-Sourcing Solutions is a set of add-ons that connect the DITA Open Toolkit to the various products in the Arbortext portfolio from editing, to publishing and content management. The current set of add-ons include:
- AOTk Publish
- AOTk Publish Server
- AOTk Publish Windchill
- AOTk PDF2
AOTk Publish is a DITA OT add-on for Arbortext Editor. This add-on is being provided free of charge under a Creative Commons license. Specifically, AOTk Publish by Single-Sourcing Solutions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. Anyone who wants to use Arbortext Editor with the DITA OT can get the add-on from Single-Sourcing Solutions by filling out a form on the Single-Sourcing Solutions website.
AOTk Publish Server is a DITA OT add-on for Arbortext Publishing Engine. With this add-on you can add the DITA OT publishing to the Arbortext Publishing Engine. With AOTk Publish Server, customers can execute DITA OT publishing directly from Arbortext Publishing Engine. Through this add-on, customers can extend the publishing capabilities of Publishing Engine to include those output formats supported by the DITA OT: ePub, Java help, eclipse help, troff, docbook, etc.
AOTk Publish Windchill is a DITA OT add-on for Arbortext Content Manager, Arbortext PDMLink, and all the flavors of Windchill. With AOTk Publish Windchill, you can execute DITA OT publishing directly from a Windchil workflow. Customers can get everything from AOTk Publish directly from their Windchill environment.
AOTk PDF2 allows customers to use Arbortext Publishing for their PDF composition in the DITA OT. Out-of-the-box PDF composition in the DITA OT uses Apache FOP. Users typically replace FOP with production-quality PDF rendering tool. AOTk PDF2 is a transtype/plug-in for using Arbortext Publishing for PDF composition in the DITA OT. With AOTk PDF2, customers can also optionally use Arbortext publishing also for HTML, RTF, CHM, and web. They can also take advantage of the built-in Arbortext Advanced Print Publsher for advanced layout directly from the DITA OT. This add-on allows customers to call Arbortext Publishing Engine directly from the DITA OT.
“We always talk about the ease of use and the out-of-the box advantages to Arbortext suite of products, but we understand that it doesn’t work for everyone. We wanted to leverage our knowledge about Arbortext, DITA, dynamic publishing, and the DITA OT to deliver everything required to connect the products in the Arbortext product line to the DITA Open Toolkit,” said Liz Fraley, CEO of Single-Sourcing Solutions. “If people want to use the Toolkit, then they want to use the Toolkit. And Arbortext works with the DITA OT. Just because the full Arbortext suite doesn’t require the DITA OT, doesn’t mean we’re going to tell you that you can’t use the DITA OT with Arbortext or that it doesn’t work.”
DITA brings companies the benefits of reuse and topic-based authoring, regardless of toolset. The AOTk tools connect Arbortext and the DITA OT for customers who want to use both Arbortext and the DITA OT.
About Single-Sourcing Solutions
Single-Sourcing Solutions is reseller of PTC’s Arbortext and Arbortext Content Manager (Windchill) products. With over a decade’s experience with the Arbortext toolset and in the practical development and deployment of mission-critical, custom XML development, Single-Sourcing Solutions has the expertise required for successful dynamic information delivery. Single-Sourcing Solutions is active in the global Arbortext community and related information development communities.
For more information on Single-Sourcing Solutions, please visit http://www.single-sourcing.com.