In spite of the advancement that has taken place in terms of technology and delivery of content to the end-user, PDF is still the fallback guy. Certain regulatory/ approving authorities still demand hard copies for the sign-off, as far as the content is concerned. There are scenarios wherein the PDF needs to be created to standards like JSS 0251:2002 apart from the S1000D specification. Ability to generate multiple, versatile and disparate outputs from the same source (XML) files dramatically enhances the ability of the OEM to deliver and delivered quickly without compromising on the consistency/ quality.
Typical life of equipment in use today is very long, in some cases over a century. S1000D is not just about using the latest digital content to create the IETPs. We need to be able to assimilate new technology with older equipment, specially when they might be a fag end of their usage, and any investment in migrating the data completely may not make business sense. S1000D provides guidelines on how legacy data can be organized so as to enable efficient usage by the end user.
The smallest unit in the S1000D system is a Data Module, and each DM is created as an XML file. These XML files don’t just store content but a lot of metadata. This metadata is what injects the element of so-called intelligence into the IETP. Every XML is written to a particular schema suited for the type of content. The same XML file is also expected to comply with the BREX file generated exclusively for the project. NavIETM supports XML created using schemas from the following issues of S1000D.
S1000D requires information to be created as Data Modules (DM), which are structured XML files. They are organized into a hierarchical XML structure through the use of Data Module Coding. Knowledge so partitioned and classified can therefore be shared among many publications, and updating of items in the underlying controlled source will automatically affect updating of the dependent publications. The DMs and supporting contents (graphics, multimedia, publishing information, training packages, etc.) are usually stored and maintained using a Common Source Database (CSDB). The output may range from a printed (paper or simple page-presentation) manual, through to a fully interactive digital manual with rich media, learning opportunities, and multiple formats of delivery.
The CSDB will typically contain all the components required for a product’s Interactive Electronic Technical Publication (IETP) – which is all the elements required across all disciplines for the production of a publication for the operation and maintenance of the product. Another common term often related to S1000D is the Interactive Electronic Technical Manual (IETM) which is usually considered as an individual manual that is part of the IETP. For basic features and functionalities that are needed to create IETPs and PDFs for small equipment, NavIETM CSDB Lite is the solution.