Can CMS systems automatically apply conditional attributes to DITA content?

Content management systems (CMS) can automatically apply conditional attributes to DITA content by using predefined rules and templates. These rules, integrated into the CMS, allow for the dynamic assignment of conditions based on factors such as content type, audience, product version, or language, streamlining the content creation process and ensuring consistent condition application across documents.

Rule-Based Condition Assignment:

Content management systems can be configured with rule-based condition assignment mechanisms. These rules define conditions to be applied based on specific criteria. For example, a rule may dictate that content with “Spanish” in the title should automatically have the “language” condition set to “Spanish.” Rules can be as simple or complex as needed, accommodating a wide range of conditions.

Templates and Metadata Mapping:

CMS systems can use templates and metadata mapping to automatically assign conditions. Content creators define templates that specify conditions for different types of content. For example, a template might assign the “audience” condition based on whether a topic is categorized as “Beginner,” “Intermediate,” or “Advanced.” Metadata mapping allows content creators to map metadata values to condition attributes, enabling automatic assignment of conditions based on metadata values.

Dynamic Attribute Assignment:

Some CMS platforms are designed to dynamically assign conditions based on the content’s context. For example, a CMS may analyze the title, tags, or keywords of a document and apply conditions accordingly. This dynamic assignment reduces manual effort and ensures conditions are consistently and accurately applied.


A tech company uses a CMS for managing DITA-based technical documentation. The CMS is configured with rule-based condition assignment. When a technical writer creates a new topic and assigns it a category like “Troubleshooting,” the CMS automatically applies the “content_type” condition with the value “Troubleshooting” to the topic. Similarly, if the title of a document contains the term “Advanced Features,” the CMS assigns the “audience” condition with the value “Advanced Users.” This automation streamlines the content creation process and ensures that the correct conditions are applied consistently across their documentation, reducing manual effort and minimizing the risk of errors.