2.2.4 The xNAL domain

The DITA xNAL domain specialization defines a number of metadata elements and attributes that are useful in representing personal/organizational names and addresses. The metadata can be used to identify authors and content owners. The OASIS xNAL Standard (extensible Name and Address Langauge) was selected to represent close mappings from the DITA bookmap metadata content model to an existing standard. xNAL is included in the Bookmap and the LearningBookmap document types.

The OASIS Customer Information Quality (CIQ) standard for global-customer information management contains the definition of the OASIS extensible Name and Address Language (xNAL) metadata elements. Version 2 of the standard states:

The objective of xNAL is to describe a common structure for Personal/Organization Names and Addresses that would enable any applications that want to represent customer names and addresses in a common standard format. The applications could be CRM/e-CRM, Customer Information Systems, Data Quality (Parsing, Matching, Validation, Verification, etc.), Customer Data Warehouses, Postal services, etc.

However, any party for its own purposes and applications may use xNAL grammar or parts of it.

The DITA xNAL specialization is based on the OASIS extensible Name and Address Language metadata elements. Due to differences between the two processing architectures, the DITA xNAL domain does not incorporate all of the definitions from the OASIS xNAL standard directly. Instead, there is a transformational equivalence between the DITA and OASIS xNAL definitions for names and addresses. This equivalence enables XML-aware tools in workflow systems to capture and manipulate names and addresses in a standard manner.

The xNAL domain is available for use in the bookmap and learningBookmap document types, which are distributed as part of the DITA 1.2 specification. It can be included in specialized DITA document types that require metadata for names and addresses.

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