Specialization is the process by which new designs are created based off existing designs, allowing new kinds of content to be processed using existing processing rules.
Specialization provides a way to reconcile the needs for centralized management of major architecture and design with the needs for localized management of group-specific and content-specific guidelines and behaviors. Specialization allows multiple definitions of content and output to co-exist, related through a hierarchy of types and transforms. This hierarchy lets general transforms know how to deal with new, specific content, and it lets specialized transforms reuse logic from the general transforms. As a result, any content can be processed by any transform, as long as both content and transform are specialization-compliant, and part of the same hierarchy. Specializers get the benefit of specific solutions, but also get the benefit of common standards and shared resources.
|Unspecialized||Unspecialized||Base processing, expected output|
|Unspecialized||Specialized||Base processing, specialized overrides are ignored, expected output|
|Specialized||Unspecialized||Base processing, specialized content treated as general, output may fall short of expectations|
|Specialized||Specialized||Specialized processing, expected output|
|Specialized||Differently specialized||Some specialized processing, specialized content treated as nearest common denominator, output may fall short of expectations|
The following topics provide an overview of specialization, some recommendations for use, and detailed rules for its mechanisms.
OASIS DITA Architectural Specification v1.0 -- 09 May 2005
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