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Subject: "Any number" of elements.



The DITA standard refers to “any number” of elements.  For example, a conbody can contain


( (dl or parml or fig or syntaxdiagram or imagemap or image or lines or lq or note or hazardstatement or object or ol or p or pre or codeblock or msgblock or screen or simpletable or sl or table or ul or data or data-about or draft-comment or foreign or unknown or required-cleanup) (any number) then (section or example or conbodydiv) (any number) )


Does “any number” mean “Zero and up” or “One and up”?  The FrameMaker 11 “concept” EDD uses the “*” symbol, which means “Zero and up” rather than “+”, which is “One and up”. (though I certainly don’t cite Frame as definitive!).  If I understand correctly (never a given), then


·        If “any number” means “Zero and up”, then I should be able to insert a section immediately following a conbody.  That is...








....because the <dl/>, <parml/> and other elements listed would be optional.  However, this is not possible in either Frame 11 or XMetaL 6.  Both tools require some pre-existing element in the list.


·        If “any number” means “One and up”, then I would be required to end a conbody with a section (or example).  However, both Frame 11 and XMetaL 6 allow me to terminate the conbody without one.


The tool behavior seems inconsistent.  But regardless and ignoring the tool behavior, what is the formal definition of DITA on this point?  Can I start a conbody with “section” (or example), must I end a conbody with “section” (or example) or am I just completely out to lunch?


Thanks much!


David S. Blyth (The UNIX dinosaur)

Sr. Staff Technical Writer


QUALCOMM – Standard disclaimers apply


Only 149,999,943 more years of Ruling The Earth to go


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