<ol>: When and how do you use the <ol> element to create ordered lists in DITA content?

The <ol> element in DITA XML is used to create ordered lists within DITA content. Ordered lists are employed when you want to present a sequence of items that have a specific order or need to be followed in a particular sequence. Understanding when and how to use the <ol> element is crucial for structuring DITA content effectively.

When to Use <ol>

The <ol> element is used in DITA content in various situations:

  1. Step-by-Step Instructions: When you need to provide instructions that must be followed in a specific order, such as installation steps for software.
  2. Numerical Sequence: When you want to present items with a clear numerical sequence, like the steps in a process or the hierarchy of tasks.
  3. Priority or Importance: To indicate the priority or importance of items, with the first item being the most important or top priority.


Here’s an example of how the <ol> element is used to create an ordered list within a DITA topic:

<topic id="ordered_list_example">
  <title>Step-by-Step Guide</title>
    <p>Follow these steps to configure the application:

<ol> <li>Launch the application.</li> <li>Go to the settings menu.</li> <li>Click on "Preferences."</li> <li>Adjust the settings as needed.</li> <li>Save your changes.</li> </ol> </body>

In this example, the <ol> element is used to create an ordered list of steps, ensuring that users follow a specific sequence to configure the application correctly.