What are the best practices for preparing mining content for translation in DITA?

Preparing mining content for translation in DITA involves following best practices to ensure a smooth and efficient translation process while maintaining content quality and consistency across languages.

Use Language Variables

One of the key practices is to use language variables for common terms and phrases that appear throughout your documentation. Instead of hardcoding these terms in multiple places, you can define language-specific variables and reference them in your content. For instance, if “excavator” is a term used repeatedly, you can define a variable like <term key=”excavator”> and then use it as <ph keyref=”excavator”/> in your topics. This allows translators to easily replace these variables with the appropriate translations without manually searching for each instance.

Segment Content for Translation

Segmentation involves breaking down content into smaller, translatable units, such as sentences or phrases. This helps translators work on manageable chunks of text and ensures that the translation aligns with the original content’s structure. In DITA, you can use elements like <ph> to enclose individual segments that need translation. Properly segmented content improves translation quality and consistency.


Here’s an example of how language variables and content segmentation can be applied in DITA:

<topic id="equipment_manual">
  <title>Equipment Manual</title>
      <p>Before operating the <ph keyref="excavator"/>, ensure all safety protocols are followed.</p>

<val key="excavator">Excavator</val>

In this example, the term “excavator” is defined as a language variable, and the content is segmented using <ph> elements to ensure translation readiness.