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Subject: Re: [dita-help] Context-Sensitivity

Alan Houser <arh@groupwellesley.com> wrote on 28/03/2008 02:11:12 AM:
> I must admit that I'm still getting my head around these issues, but
> wanted to raise a possibility.
> Assuming that "hook" == "unique identifier", we already have a
> persistent ID in each topic, and can specify an ID value on virtually
> every DITA element. Is there a reason that we would not leverage these
> IDs as hooks?

I see two problems with that:

1. You might want two (or two hundred) different contexts to point to the same topic. You'd have to invent elements just to attach an ID to, which is what you'd be doing anyway if you were to use <resourceid> or some other element that is customarily used for hooks.

2. The id attribute is used for other purposes too (such as the target for an <xref>).  How would you distinguish IDs-as-hooks from IDs-not-as-hooks?  If it's by the content of the attribute, then turning an existing non-hook ID into a hook-ID would mean changing the attribute value, which would break other links to that element.

Obviously there are technical solutions to both of those problems, but my opinion is that those solutions are more effort than having a dedicated element.

Deborah Pickett
Information Architect, Moldflow Pty Ltd, Melbourne

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