Are there considerations for generating print-ready documents from DITA for defense technical manuals?

Generating print-ready documents from DITA for defense technical manuals is a critical requirement for many defense organizations. Print-ready documents are typically used for physical technical manuals, handbooks, or other documentation that needs to be available in a hardcopy format. There are several considerations to keep in mind when creating print-ready documents from DITA XML:

1. Styling and Formatting: Defense organizations need to define the styling and formatting of the content to ensure that it looks professional and is easy to read in print. This includes setting page layouts, fonts, margins, headers, footers, and other elements that are important for the print medium.

2. Pagination: Paginating the content correctly is essential to ensure that page breaks occur at logical points and that tables, images, and other elements are split appropriately between pages. This is crucial for maintaining the document’s readability and usability in print format.

3. Example:

Here’s an example of how DITA content can be transformed into a print-ready format using CSS for styling and XSL-FO (XSL Formatting Objects) for pagination:

<!-- CSS for styling -->
<style type="text/css">
  body {
    font-family: Arial, sans-serif;
    font-size: 12pt;
    margin: 1in;
  /* Define other styles as needed for headings, lists, etc. */


<!-- XSL-FO for pagination -->
<fo:root xmlns_fo="">
    <fo:simple-page-master master-name="page" page-height="11in" page-width="8.5in" margin="1in"/>
  <fo:page-sequence master-reference="page">
    <fo:flow flow-name="xsl-region-body">
        Content goes here.
      <fo:block break-before="page"/>
        More content on the next page.

In this example, CSS is used for styling, defining fonts and margins, while XSL-FO is used for pagination, ensuring that the content is properly paginated for print-ready documents.