How are links to user assistance and help systems handled during content localization in DITA?

Handling links to user assistance and help systems during content localization in DITA involves careful planning and consideration of the localization process to ensure that users in different regions and languages have access to the appropriate help resources. Here’s how links are managed during the localization of DITA content.

Localization of Linked Content

When localizing DITA content, the linked help resources and user assistance content need to be localized as well. This includes translating text, adapting images or multimedia elements, and ensuring that the linked content is culturally and contextually relevant to the target audience. This step is crucial for maintaining the usefulness of help systems in different languages and regions.

Conditional Links

DITA’s conditional processing capabilities can be especially helpful during localization. By using conditional processing attributes, you can create links that adapt to the language or region of the user. For example, you can use keyref or conref with conditions to point to different versions of content based on the user’s locale. This way, you can offer tailored help resources for various audiences without duplicating content or creating a complex structure.


Here’s an example of how conditional links are used during content localization in DITA:

<topic id="troubleshooting">
  <title>Troubleshooting Guide</title>
    <p>If you encounter issues, refer to the <xref keyref="localized_help/troubleshooting.dita" conref="en-us:troubleshooting|fr-fr:depannage"/> for assistance.</p>

In this example, the <xref> element uses conditional processing attributes to link to different versions of the “troubleshooting.dita” topic based on the user’s locale, ensuring that users receive help content in their preferred language during localization.