Standards & conventions

Content management techniques

Before beginning to write, Author-it recommends that you first decide on the standards and conventions that will be used in your content. This step is commonly left out of the process, and often results in content that is inconsistent, and therefore hard to read and maintain.

Author-it enables you to set, enforce, and maintain standards and conventions throughout your content, especially when you're working in a team:

  • Author-it only allows text formatting to be applied by using a style. This means that all paragraph and character formatting must use one of your defined Style objects; authors cannot make up their own formatting conventions.
  • You can create object templates to define and enforce any property settings you want to apply to certain objects. For example, a template for a Topic object that defines all of the property settings for the start of a new chapter.
  • Retain control by restricting people's security access in order to limit the changes they can make to your library. For example, after Author-it defined Style objects, Media objects, and all object templates for this guide, we set security for all other authors so they could use the objects, but not change them.

Your standards in any library only have to be set up once for each output format, then all documentation in your library shares the same standards.