What role does conditional processing play in tailoring navigation documentation for different vessels and routes?

Conditional processing in DITA XML plays a crucial role in tailoring navigation documentation for different vessels and routes, allowing maritime organizations to provide relevant information to specific users based on their needs and contexts.

Dynamic Content Generation

With conditional processing, DITA enables the dynamic generation of content based on conditions or variables. For maritime navigation documentation, this means that information related to a particular vessel type, route, or even weather conditions can be included or excluded as needed. For example, documentation for a cargo ship may differ significantly from that of a sailboat, and conditional processing allows for the generation of vessel-specific content.

Context-Aware Documentation

Conditional processing allows documentation authors to create content that is context-aware. For instance, if a user is navigating a specific route in rough weather conditions, DITA can provide relevant safety procedures and hazard warnings specific to that situation. This ensures that seafarers receive information that is directly applicable to their current circumstances, enhancing safety and decision-making.


Here’s an example of how conditional processing can tailor navigation documentation:

<topic id="navigation_procedures">
  <title>Navigation Procedures</title>
    <condition expression="vessel-type='cargo-ship'">
      <content>... (Content for Cargo Ship)</content>
    <condition expression="vessel-type='sailboat'">
      <content>... (Content for Sailboat)</content>

In this DITA example, conditional processing is used to include vessel-specific content based on the “vessel-type” variable, tailoring navigation procedures for different types of vessels.