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Subject: comments on the proposed charter for the OASIS Adoption TC

Please accept this comment on the proposed charter for the OASIS Adoption TC.


I am concerned that the creation of the new OASIS DITA Adoption TC separate from the existing OASIS DITA TC may lead to confusion if the work of the two TCs are not coordinated. At a minimum I would like to see the normative sections of the charter for the existing DITA TC amended to include and the charter for the new DITA Adoption TC to include from the start wording that acknowledges the need for coordination and commits both TCs to participating in such coordination activities.


Other updates to both TCs’ charters may be desirable to make it clearer what the scope of both TCs is and where they do or do not overlap.


While one approach to coordination between the two DITA TCs is to rely on the goodwill of what we expect to be overlapping membership between the TCs, it has also been suggested that, and I support, doing something more formal using OASIS Member Sections or possibly a revived version of the OASIS Joint Committee. Either approach would provide for coordination and, if necessary, the identification and resolution of any conflicts or disputes that may arise between the two TCs.


I think it is appropriate to leave the interpretation of the rules and procedures that govern TCs up to the OASIS staff. I feel that disputes involving DITA specific issues should be resolved by the members of the TCs. The OASIS staff should not be placed in or assume the role of resolving DITA specific issues. The creation of a DITA Member Section or possibly a DITA Joint Committee would provide a framework and a forum for coordination and dispute resolution by OASIS members.


Specific wording changes are suggested below.


   -Jeff Ogden



Suggested changes in blue italic or red strikethrough [with comments within blue italic square brackets]:


(1)(a) The name of the TC, such name not to have been previously used for an OASIS TC and not to include any trademarks or service marks not owned by OASIS.


OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee


(1)(b) A statement of purpose, including a definition of the problem to be solved.


The OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee members will collaborate to provide expertise and resources to educate the marketplace on the value of the DITA OASIS standard. By raising awareness of the benefits offered by DITA, the DITA Adoption Technical Committee increases expects the demand for, and availability of, DITA conforming products and services to increase, resulting in a greater choice of tools and platforms and expanding the DITA an expanded community of DITA users, suppliers, and consultants.


Since DITA adoption is stronger in the US than in the rest of the world, especially the European Union, the Technical Committee will actively solicit participation from non-US members and help to facilitate providing information promoting DITA adoption globally.


By advancing the adoption of DITA through OASIS, the DITA Adoption Technical Committee members will:

  • Collaborate within the security of the OASIS open process
  • Maximize message credibility by working on behalf of a vendor-neutral standards consortium
  • Build on existing market awareness of OASIS as the source of DITA
  • Leverage the combined resources of all participants
  • Reinforce DITA as the result of an open, transparent process guided by multiple vendors, communities, and individuals
  • Openly share content and coordinate program execution with other entities that share a common or similar statement of purpose on a worldwide scope
  • Actively solicit participation from non-US members and help to facilitate the provision of information promoting DITA adoption globally
  • Cooperate and coordinate its activities with the existing OASIS DITA Technical Committee
  • Join an OASIS DITA Member Section or Joint Committee, if such a Member Section or Committee is established in the future


(1)(c) The scope of the work of the TC, which must be germane to the mission of OASIS, and which includes a definition of what is and what is not the work of the TC, and how it can be determined when the work of the TC has been completed.


OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee activities may extend to any of the following activities: 

  • Oversee the DITA XML.org Focus Area
  • Review and ensure accuracy of DITA references in commonly used resources such as Wikipedia
  • Host educational, vendor-neutral webinars 
  • Organize vendor-neutral workshops and tracks at OASIS events and other conferences 
  • Produce OASIS-branded primers, white papers, position papers, slide presentations, datasheets, and other collateral 
  • Develop best practice guidelines 
  • Establish liaisons with other organizations who may assist in building awareness of DITA, and promoting DITA in a variety of user communities
  • Assist in coordinating promotional efforts of members, leveraging activities wherever beneficial 
  • Assist in coordinating press and analyst relations such as briefings, releases, and announcements 
  • Encourage and coordinate volunteer efforts to translate the DITA specification and other committee documents into other languages 
  • Interface with other TCs to define how DITA can be best integrated with other standards to address specific scenarios 
    [this is covered elsewhere (7th bullet item above) and this wording seems to overlap with the some of the goals of the existing DITA TC]
  • Stage interoperability and/or proof-of-concept demonstrations at industry conferences 
  • Gathering information from end users on a wide variety of DITA related issues including ease of use issues, use cases, strengths, weaknesses, and areas for improvement
  • Other projects aimed at increasing adoption as identified by Committee members


The OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee will refer suggestions and requests for changes to and clarification of the DITA Specification to the existing DITA Technical Committee.


The OASIS DITA Adoption Technical Committee is seen as an on-going activity with no specific end date for its activities established in advance.


(1)(d) A list of deliverables, with projected completion dates.


  • First best practice issued within 6 months of formation.
  • First webinar produced jointly with the SVG Technical Committee and the DITA Translation Subcommittee and sponsored by OASIS.


(1)(e) Specification of the IPR Mode under which the TC will operate.


Royalty-Free on limited terms


(1)(f) The anticipated audience or users of the work.


Anyone involved in the implementation of the OASIS DITA standard in their own organizations, including information-development managers, content creators and distributors, consultants supporting implementations, and vendors providing tools to support content development and distribution.


(1)(g) The language in which the TC shall conduct business.




(2) Non-normative information regarding the startup of the TC, which includes:


(2)(a) Identification of similar or applicable work that is being done in other OASIS TCs or by other organizations, why there is a need for another effort in this area and how this proposed TC will be different, and what level of liaison will be pursued with these other organizations.


The DITA Adoption Technical Committee is closely allied with the DITA Technical Committee. The DITA TC is responsible for the development, maintenance, and enhancement of the DITA specification and the language reference. As such, the DITA TC concentrates on clearly defining and developing the technical content of the specification. It also supports the work of several subcommittees that are creating specifications for industry-specific DITA specializations of the DITA specification.


The DITA Adoption TC concentrates on the promotion of the DITA standard to the global user community, helping to encourage DITA adoption in new industries, new areas of content creation, and new organizations. To this end, the DITA Adoption TC's focus is on building public awareness of the standard, educating potential users in the standard, and ensuring that miscommunications that may exist are quickly corrected.


The DITA Adoption TC intends to appoint an individual who is an active, voting member of both TCs to serve as a liaison to the DITA TC, to actively communicate the work of the Adoption TC, and to request the assistance of the DITA TC on technical issues concerning the specification. Through the liaison, the DITA Adoption TC may bring issues to the DITA TC concerning user needs in improving the specification. The DITA TC may will be encouraged to bring issues to the DITA Adoption TC concerning the use cases or user scenarios around proposed changes and enhancements to the specification, as well as suggestions for other adoption-related work.


(2)(b) The date, time, and location of the first meeting, whether it will be held in person or by telephone, and who will sponsor this first meeting.


28 July 2008 11:00 am ET

The TC will use a free conference service provided by ComTech Services for its teleconferences.


(2)(c) The projected on-going meeting schedule for the year following the formation of the TC, or until the projected date of the final deliverable, whichever comes first, and who will be expected to sponsor these meetings.


The DITA Adoption TC plans to will hold regular meetings at least monthly meetings unless increased work requires more frequent meetings. Much of the Adoption TC work is expected to occurs through small working groups, such as the a working group responsible for updating and monitoring the dita.xml.org website as an ongoing activity.


(2)(d) The names, electronic mail addresses, and membership affiliations of at least Minimum Membership who support this proposal and are committed to the Charter and projected meeting schedule.


JoAnn Hackos, Comtech              Joann.hackos@comtech-serv.com

Gershon Joseph, Associate          Gershon.joseph@tech-tav.com

Troy Klukewich, Oracle             Troy.Klukewich@oracle.com

Kay Whatley, Individual            kay@brightpathsolutions.com

Kristen Eberlein, Individual       keberlein@pobox.com

Tony Self, Associate               tself@hyperwrite.com

Bob Doyle, Associate               bobdoyle@skybuilders.com

Bryan Schnabel, Individual         bryan.s.schnabel@tektronix.com

Michael Priestley, IBM             mpriestl@ca.ibm.com

Debra Bissantz, LSI Logic          debra.bissantz@lsi.com

Frank Miller, Comtech              Frank.miller@comtech-serv.com

Julio Vasquez, SDI                 julio_v27612@yahoo.com

Rene Gedaly, Individual            yourtechwriter@yahoo.com

David J B Hollis, A&O Consultancy  dhollis@AandOConsultancy.ltd.uk


(2)(e) The name of the Convener who must be an Eligible Person.


JoAnn Hackos   Joann.hackos@comtech-serv.com


(2)(f) The name of the Member Section with which the TC intends to affiliate, if any.



None initially.  The DITA Adoption TC will join the DITA Member Section if this or a similar member section is created within OASIS in the future.



(2)(g) Optionally, a list of contributions of existing technical work that the proposers anticipate will be made to this TC.


None  [Will any of the existing Best Practice documents be taken over by the new TC?]


(2)(h) Optionally, a draft Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document regarding the planned scope of the TC, for posting on the TC's website.


To be provided at a later date.


(2)(i) Optionally, a proposed working title and acronym for the specification(s) to be developed by the TC.


To be provided at a later date.

The DITA Adoption Technical Committee is not expected to develop formal OASIS specifications.

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