Conversational DITA for Chatbots and Voice Assistants

Conversational DITA for Chatbots and Voice Assistants

Conversational DITA for Chatbots and Voice Assistants

Adobe DITA World Webinar

Conversational DITA is a term and a practice new to many of us. Chatbots and voice assistants represent yet another tipping point in customer support and techcomm. They push us to move more quickly down the path of intelligent modularity and genuinely break free of legacy publishing paradigms. These new deliverables force us to focus on what is most important with new content deliverables: usability, interoperability, precision, scalability, and adaptability.

Joe Gollner, Master Architect at [A], and Kristen Toole, Sr. Information Architect at Adobe, share challenges and responses learned during a recent pilot project at Adobe to expand Adobe’s self-help offerings for customers. Adobe learned that despite advances in SEO, there was simply too much content for customers to navigate through via a portal with traditional methods. Due to expanding customer profiles, increased product offerings, and more, Adobe had to stop relying on static self-help content created with traditional methods.

In this free, on-demand webinar, learn more about the dynamics and principles of conversational DITA, as well as actual planning steps taken by Adobe and [A] to move towards more flexible delivery of customer self-help.

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The topics covered in this webinar are listed below with accompanying minute markers for easy reference to specific segments:

  • How Adobe made the business case for chatbots  [00:26:00]
  • How a conversational interface offers contextual, proactive, and personalized support  [00:29:20]
  • Lessons learned from a pilot study on scalability of content for expanding product lines  [00:31:00]
  • How conversational DITA is a specialization of DITA  [00:36:00]
  • Authoring experience: goals for making intent and entity metadata foolproof  [00:39:00]
  • Reuse of dialog components, terminology, references, and snippets from documentation sources are a natural fit for chatbot content  [00:43:00]
    “If content components and metadata units are kept simple, then reuse is made easy and intuitive, with resulting content becoming manageable and processable, even at scale.”
  • How to avoid having quality issues surface “too late” in the project  [00:49:00]
  • A simple and scalable approach to metadata  [00:55:00]
  • Challenges with voice assistants; what about Speech Synthesis Markup Language (SSML)?  [00:57:20]
  • Adding voice-compatible content to the mix (importance of leveraging reusable content components and metadata units)  [00:59:00]
  • Conclusions on this usage of DITA  [01:02:30]

“Conversational DITA emerges when DITA is challenged to converse with multiple systems within a digital enterprise landscape.”

“Chatbots and voice assistants, in providing new, effective and popular engagement channels, highlight the necessity of elevating our treatment of content onto this level.”

More About Adobe DITA World 2018


About the Presenters

Joe Gollner, Master Architect, [A]

Joe Gollner serves as [A]’s Master Architect and Chairman of [A]’s Steering Board. A veteran implementer, he has overseen dozens of content management projects in a variety of industries and in organizations ranging in size from start-up ventures to global enterprises. He has been known to say that he is really a management consultant who happens to be having an illicit affair with DITA. He is a member of the CIDM Advisory Council, blogs as the Content Philosopher (, and is working on a book about the effective and sustainable management of content and content technologies.

Kristen Toole, Sr. Information Architect, Adobe

Kristen has over fifteen years of technical documentation experience in the software development industry and is a DITA expert with extensive experience architecting and writing content for cloud, networking, virtualization, and server software audiences. She possesses a proven ability to manage distributed teams in order to deliver high-quality documentation and context-sensitive help on schedule.

As an architect and manager, Kristen works across silos to promote content strategies that increase the usability of content and drive down support costs. She believes that good content comes from empowering writers to be bold and collaborative on a global scale. She also believes in innovation and the power of using the latest tools and methodologies to deliver the right content to customers at the right time.

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