Given the size and complexity of the specification, it is not generated as a single XHTML file. Instead, each DITA topic is rendered as a separate XHTML file. The XHTML version of the specification uses certain formatting conventions to aid readers in navigating through the specification and locating material easily: Link previews and navigation links.
The DITA 1.2 specification uses the content of the unique DITA <shortdesc> element to provide link previews for its readers. These link previews are visually highlighted by a border and a colored background. The link previews are not normative; they contain the content of the <shortdesc> element for the child topic, which is normatively rendered as the first paragraph of the child topic; the content is identical in both renditions. The link previews serve as enhanced navigation aids, enabling readers to more easily locate content. This usability enhancement is one of the ways in which the specification illustrates the capabilities of DITA and exemplifies DITA best practices.
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OASIS DITA Version 1.2 -- OASIS Standard, 1 December 2010
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