Basic map elements
DITA maps are built from a few core elements that are used for referencing and organizing topics. The <topicmeta> element is also available to specify metadata for the map, for individual topics, or for groups of topics. Many elements inside <topicmeta> are also available inside the topic prolog.
In this section:
- mapThe <map> element describes the relationships among a set of resources, such as DITA topics. Maps consist of references to topics, maps, and other resources organized into hierarchies, groups, and tables. Maps express these relationships in a single common format that can be used for different outputs.
- topicrefThe <topicref> element identifies a topic (such as a concept, task, or reference) or other resource. A <topicref> can contain other <topicref> elements, allowing you to express navigation or table-of-contents hierarchies, as well as implying relationships between a containing (parent) <topicref> and its children. You can set the collection-type of a parent <topicref> to determine how its children are related to each other. You can also express relationships among <topicref> elements by using group and table structures (<topicgroup> and <reltable>). Relationships are expressed as links in the output; by default, each participant in a relationship has links to the other participants in that relationship.
- topicmetaThe <topicmeta> element defines the metadata that applies to a topic when it appears in a map. When appropriate, that metadata also applies to the other topics in the map that are contained by the same element that contains the <topicmeta> element. When creating links, <topicmeta> content can also be used to override the title and short description that are used for the link. In addition, it can be used to add index entries to referenced content using the <keywords> element.
- anchorThe <anchor> element provides an integration point that another map can reference in order to insert its navigation into the current navigation tree. For those familiar with Eclipse help systems, this serves the same purpose as the <anchor> element in that system. It may not be supported for all output formats.
- navrefThe <navref> element represents a pointer to another map which should be preserved as a transcluding link rather than resolved. Output formats that support such linking will integrate the referenced resource when displaying the referencing map to an end user.
- reltableThe <reltable> element is a relationship table that specifies relationships between topics, based on the familiar table model of rows (<relrow>), columns (<relheader>), and cells (<relcell>).
- relrowThe <relrow> element defines a row in the relationship table (<reltable>). It creates a relationship between the cells in the row, which is expressed in output as links between the topics or resources referenced in those cells.
- relcellThe <relcell> element defines a cell in the relationship table (<reltable>). The <topicref> elements that it contains are related to the <topicref> elements in other cells of the same row. By default, topics or resources that are referenced in the same cell are not related to each other, unless you change the collection-type attribute of the <relcell> to indicate that they are related.
- relheaderThe <relheader> element is a row in a relationship table that contains column definitions (<relcolspec> elements). Each table can have only one set of column definitions.
- relcolspecThe <relcolspec> element is used to define a column in a relationship table. The <relcolspec> element may be used to set default values for the <topicref> elements in the column.
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Parent topic: Map elements