DocZone Unveils New User Interface at STC Technical Communication Summit

Posted by Sarah Silveri on Jun 22, 2015 7:55:00 AM

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DocZone, a component content management system for technical publications, unveiled their new user interface at booth 316 the STC Technical Communication Summit in Columbus, OH. This latest version of DocZone provides an entirely new user experience through an intuitive user interface that minimizes actions required to store, search, tag and reuse content while allowing users to quickly and efficiently publish their technical documents to multiple formats and languages.

“DocZone has been a trusted industry leader for over 10 years,” stated Marty Wetzel, Director, Global Account Management at RSI Content Solutions, the makers of DocZone. “This new interface gives DocZone a fresh and modern look that I’m sure our clients and prospects will appreciate.”

“We chose the STC Technical Communication Summit as our launching pad for the new interface because we see this conference as one of the marquee events in the technical publishing space,” continued Wetzel.  “We are excited for the opportunity to demo DocZone at the conference and expect a great turnout at the event.”

For fifteen years, RSI Content Solutions has been a trusted content management solutions provider for both traditional and technical publishers alike. Learn how organizations with technical publishing needs like Citrix, Epson, ITT, Cummins, Kyocera, and many others use DocZone at www.doczone.com.  

Topics: DocZone, #stc15, STC, Society for Technical Communication

See the NEW DocZone UI at STC | June 22-24

Posted by Sarah Silveri on Jun 12, 2015 8:55:15 AM

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Topics: DocZone, #stc15, STC, Society for Technical Communication

FrameMaker to CCMS: A DocZone Sponsored Webinar

Posted by Sarah Silveri on Jun 16, 2014 8:56:00 AM

FrameMaker to CCMS: A DocZone Sponsored WebinarOn Tuesday, June 24th, at 11am EDT, please join Alan Houser, co-founder and president of Group Wellesley, Inc., former president of the Society for Technical Communication as he presents the FrameMaker to CCMS webinar, sponsored by DocZone. 

Alan is a distinguished consultant and trainer in the fields of XML, XML technologies, publishing workflows, and authoring and publishing tools. Christopher Hill, V.P. Product Management at RSI Content Solutions, (makers of DocZone CCMS) will be conducting the interview.

 

They will discuss questions such as: 

  • Are desktop publishing tools like Adobe FrameMaker keeping up with today’s new business and customer requirements?
  • How can component content management systems like DocZone dramatically improve the efficiency of your publishing workflows and content lifecycles?
  • How can you plan for and successfully deploy component content management in your organization?

Whether you’re working with legacy content or starting your technical documentation from scratch, we hope you’re able to attend this informative webinar.

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Topics: Webinar, DocZone, FrameMaker, CCMS, June, Alan Houser

DocZone | Managing Challenges on the Road to DITA

Posted by Christopher Hill on May 8, 2014 1:06:00 PM

DocZone DITALast week we attended the DITA North America conference in my home city of Seattle. It is always interesting to have the opportunity to interact with the DITA community. During a birds-of-a-feather lunch gathering I had some interesting conversation regarding the promise and perils of content re-use. Many of those in the conversation were new to DITA. As we discussed the challenges around content re-use in DITA I was reminded of the many pitfalls often encountered that often subvert the efficiencies promised by DITA.

The technical challenges of re-use

One of DITA's more attractive feature is its ability to provide a range of technical support for reusing content within or across publications. Traditional authoring and page layout tools tended to have limited support for re-use, and often the mechanisms for this support was proprietary. This is why more often than not these tools are underused in favor of copy and paste.

Re-use is baked into DITA

The DITA specification has effective, open concepts of re-use baked into the design. This means that using DITA for content authoring eliminates the technical hurdles limiting the re-use of content. It's topic-based approach encourages the creation of reusable content. Many organizations that move to DITA, then, are often surprised when after solving the technical hurdles content is still not widely re-used in their organizations.

Non-technical challenges

Many challenges to content re-use exist that are not technical. Unless these are addressed as part of a DITA project, wide re-use of content may remain an elusive vision. Here are some of the critical challenges that should at least be considered when trying to create an environment of content re-use.

Delivery assumptions

Most content delivered today is shifting from traditional print deliveries to a range of digital delivery formats. Yet when the content is authored it is often from the perspective of a single deliverable. Even though the tool may allow any section of a book to be re-used, you may find that the way the content is actually written prevents such use. Imagine a section of a technical manual that makes reference to other content contained in the manual. What happens if that content is re-used in a manual that does not contain the referenced section? And are such references required to be clearly tagged so that tools can provide assistance in managing such references when needed? Often this area of training is not well-addressed and authors continue to create content dependencies that are difficult to manage.

Authors who write content units only in the context of a deliverable will be tempted to write content that is dependent on the particular deliverable. You can't assume that they'll "figure it out" or that a tool can magically change such behaviors. You need to have a plan to train users not only on the technical use of the new tools but also the conceptual framework that DITA brings.

Oversimplification

Another temptation is to try to simplify your DITA implementation in an attempt to address potential dissatisfaction from your users. While it sounds like an XML editor that hides details and "acts just like Word" might be much easier for users to learn, if such a tool becomes an excuse to hide the details of DITA from the content creators then you may actually impede the realization of many of DITA's benefits. One of the important foundations of DITA is in separating content from presentation. This is at the heart of its powers to support single-source publishing.

In such a scenario, the concept of a WYSIWYG editor makes little sense. XML editors that provide a word-processor-like view are really better thought of as tools that present a style of XML useful for the authors in the creation of content. As such, when you design stylesheets for your authoring tool you probably do not want them matching your print output. Doing so risks obfuscating many important structures that are not visible in a specific print output but may be important foundations for re-use and linking. Instead of trying to match the authoring tool to a specific output format, you should consider creating styles for authors that make apparent the information they need to manage in order to create re-usable content. Metadata, conditional tagging and other supporting structures should be made apparent and easily accessed. If hidden behind a context menu or in an external panel users may find their use cumbersome. Worse, unexpected behaviors not readily apparent to someone re-using the content may occur. Such surprises often result in users avoiding the re-use of content they can't readily understand.

Access to properly configured tools and training is critical if you expect your users to take advantage of DITA's support for re-use. Not everyone needs to have a full set of content analysis skills in order to use a DITA system, but they do need to know the details of how your particular business environment is configured.

Lack of content management

Many DITA projects start using the DITA open toolkit and a file system or shared folder. But problems can occur specifically around re-use in such a scenario. Shared folders rarely provide controlled access to content. Content in directories often provides no mechanism for tracking versions, controlling updates, and ensuring that two users do not try to modify the same content (or overwrite others' content). When a small DITA project is rolled out to a larger set of users these problems worsen with increased content re-use. If a team runs into these problems they quickly begin creating copies of content anyway to avoid the problem — eliminating any potential benefits of content re-use.

Content management is also needed to support the organization of content components. Content management systems often provide the ability to support metadata and search features that make locating potential content for re-use much easier. Relying on a shared folder typically means that as the number of content components increases users' ability to find re-usable components decreases. At some point, users may decide its easier to write new content rather than try to deal with these challenges.

Unless you have a very small team that is tightly coordinated content management is an important tool for maximizing your investment in DITA.

Earning your wings

These examples represent just a few of the many potential challenges that can surprise newcomers to DITA. Some may be addressed through training. Some may improve with experience. But it is very hard for organizations new to DITA to make content decisions before they have sufficient experience. And there is often a chicken-and-egg scenario where the promise of DITA remains unrealized without an investment in tools to properly use it. Such investment is often risky, as it may require investment in integration, licenses and products unfamiliar to your organization.

In the last several years, however, tools like our own DocZone product are available that provide preconfigured integrated DITA tools on a hosted basis. For a monthly fee, you can license the use of DocZone's best-of-breed tools in an already integrated and configured environment. If your organization is new to DITA and/or content management such a solution can enable users to build experience on a professional platform without the cost typically associated with setting up such an environment yourself. Because you are in a proven, production-ready environment you are less susceptible to many of the problems typically encountered when setting up a new DITA environment. A hosted solution also can scale to address the requirements of small and large teams. The use of DITA also means that your content can be used with other DITA-based tools if needed.

Trying to achieve the full promise of DITA is a challenge whether you try learning in an ineffective shared-folder environment or try integrating an end-to-end DITA toolset for the first time. A hosted option like DocZone is a great alternative to taking on these challenges alone.

Topics: content management, DITA, DocZone

Come to the DocZone DITA Open Toolkit Capabilities Webinar

Posted by Sarah Silveri on Oct 18, 2013 9:00:00 AM

Register for DocZone WebinarBack in September, DocZone DITA exhibited at the CIDM Best Practices Showcase in Savannah, Georgia. We spoke with many of you about your DITA Open Toolkit wants and needs, we spoke with many of you about how you're personally using these capabilities.

Because there is a such a growing need for DITA Open Toolkit plugins in the technical publishing environment, we have scheduled a webinar to inform you on the capabilities that DocZone has to offer.

Attend our DocZone DITA webinar and witness:

      • How DocZone DITA incorporates DITA OTK plugins 
      • XTM capabilities that translate content in more than 250 languages 
      • How simple it is for DocZone to publish to multiple formats with the click of a button 
      • ...and so much more 


We're excited to introduce DocZone DITA's OTK plugin and other capabilities to you. Register for the webinar on October 24 webinar today!

Learn more

Topics: Webinar, DocZone, Open Toolkit, OTK, October 24, Plugins

Happy Holidays from RSI Content Solutions

Posted by Marianne Calihanna on Dec 21, 2012 9:13:00 AM


Click the image above.

Topics: RSuite CMS, RSI Content Solutions, DocZone

Really Strategies Changes Name to RSI Content Solutions

Posted by Marianne Calihanna on Mar 19, 2012 9:25:00 AM

RSI CONTENT SOLUTIONSEvery once in a while a company finds itself evolving and in need of a makeover. Really Strategies reached that point. The company's new name is RSI Content Solutions. "When we founded the company back in 2000, we were 100% focused on XML technology consulting to publishers and media companies," stated Barry Bealer, CEO and co-founder of RSI Content Solutions. "Today, 99% of our revenue is from our software products and related services and we needed to reflect that in our company name."

The name has changed but the dedication to provide world-class content solutions to publishers, media companies, and technical publishers remains.

The new web site reflects the name change and also brings together our three content management software products---RSuite CMS, DocZone Book Publisher, DocZone DITA Publisher---under one url: www.rsicms.com.  Additionally, the new web site highlights more of our customer success stories. When our customers make statements like this, we want people to know!

“RSuite CMS combined with the DITA for Publishers framework is helping us achieve the holy grail of single-source publishing: XML content automatically delivered to InDesign and to multiple ebook delivery formats. The transformations from structured content to designed content have been seamless, allowing our staff to focus on content and product development.”
--Holly Gilly, Vice President for Product Development, Human Kinetics

"RSuite CMS is 200 times faster than our old system. The efficiencies we've gained are hard to believe."
--Keith Lawrenz, Senior Business Analyst, SAGE Publications, Inc.

"We selected DocZone because it is the only DITA-specific CMS available as a hosted solution that met all of our requirements."
--Nancy Thompson, CMS Implementation Specialist, Epson America

"We saw the time for PDF proofs drop from a week to just a few minutes with DocZone Book Publisher."
--Stephen Driver, Vice President of Production Services, Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group

Over the next week, this blog will also have a face lift to reflect our new brand. We'll share more customer case studies as welll as highlight a series of webinars that kick off in April. Thanks for your interest thus far and stay tuned!

Topics: content management, CMS for publishers, RSuite CMS, RSI Content Solutions, DocZone, Really Strategies, DocZone Book Publisher

DocZone celebrates 6 years as the leading cloud-based DITA content management solution for technical publishers

Posted by Marianne Calihanna on Dec 13, 2011 12:06:00 PM

DocZone is DITA content management for tech pubsDocZone is the industry’s first award-winning software as a service (SaaS) XML content management system designed for technical publishers. This month marks the 6th year of serving the DITA-based tech community. We're proud to have an annual 98% renewal rate among customers such as Texas Instruments, General Electric, Johnson & Johnson, Agfa Healthcare, Citrix, Epson America, Kyocera, TechProse, Unica Corporation, and many others.
DocZone provides a SaaS platform for authoring, editorial review, localization, and single-source publishing. TechProse, a full service technical writing, training, and instructional design consulting service company, reports
“Using the automated publishing to PDF and HTML5 Help available in DocZone, we decreased the cost to publish content to multiple output channels by 15%. Further, by taking advantage of DocZone’s DITA reuse features we decreased the cost to author and maintain content by an additional 35%. The overall savings per year to update the documentation is now 50% and growing as we mature our processes!"

Want to see DocZone for yourself?

Schedule demo

Topics: DITA, DocZone

Don’t Hide Your Content in a Traditional Help System

Posted by Sarah Silveri on Sep 21, 2011 8:10:00 AM

TechProse, DocZone, Really Strategies, RSI, Webinar, Free webinar, SeptemberWhen people have questions, they turn to the Internet and search for answers. For technical publications, having content accessible is imperative. Put online help documentation on the Internet and your users can access your content.

CHMs, Robohelp, MadCap Flare, Adobe Air, Eclipse Help, and some WebWorks formats use architectures, plugins, and web services that restrict search access to the valuable content they contain. However, an HTML help system doesn’t rely on these technologies.

This is why TechProse, a consultant company specializing in technical writing, selected HTML5 and DITA, managed by DocZone.  DocZone is a SaaS XML CMS that can deliver help content to the Internet. HTML5 is designed with accessibility in mind, and DITA enables us to reap the benefits of single-sourcing and automated publishing.

By switching from FrameMaker and MadCap Flare to DITA and HTML5 help, TechProse was able to help its global international shipping customer:
•    reduce publishing costs by 15%
•    increase the quality of the user experience
•    make help topics accessible from any web-ready device

Learn more on September 28th at 1PM EST by joining us at our webinar entitled, "Don’t Hide Your Content in a Traditional Help System: A Case Study from TechProse Featuring DocZone."

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Topics: content management, Webinar, CMS for publishers, DocZone, Really Strategies, RSI, book publishing, TechProse, Free webinar, September

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