April 2016The survey results as of April 2016 are very nicely shown in graphical form below (generated by the survey site). Apologies for the fact that they spread into the right hand column - one of the limitations of the Blog Layout.
Issues of S1000D
We will look at the progression of taking on board S1000D but it is very clear that there is now a larger take up of Issue 4. I suppose with a number of US Projects using S1000D we should expect that. I do know that some of the Issue 1 Change 6 data is still in current use and being (more or less regularly) updated.
When this question was first posed the majority of people were not using a CSDB at all. However now that is changing. Of course this was a very crude yes or know answer. Perhaps we will do something a little more granular for this in the near future.
Where Responses Came FromOne of the features of the survey is that we can get an outline view of where people were when they responded to the questions and how many there were. This is interesting because it, in some small way, illustrates the spread of the Specification in documentation.
S1000D UsageOf course what the survey does not take into account is 'How many different Issues of S1000D is each person using?'
As products get more mature one question is: are projects keeping the existing documentation in the original Issue or is it all being converted to a later Issue? This is an interesting question of course because some of the earlier Issue of S1000D are SGML only. Where SGML and XML is available for the same Issue converting to XML is very straightforward with off the shelf software (with a bit of knowhow of course). Where the company originating the information is the one making the decisions that is ok.
Where the company wanting to make changes is not the originalting one that is not ok without explicit instructions - even then it is doubtful. Who is going to sign QA document which says that the converted material reflects exactly the source material? A few years ago there was an issue locally where a company decided that they would convert some legacy Data Modules into a more recent Issue. Having been involved on the periphery of the origination of the first version I pointed out that the company did not have the right to convert, the material did not belong to them particuarly. I am not sure how popular I was at that point but it did raise the issue with them of who had the right to change or update the material contained in the Data Modules.
I hope that the larger companies are a bit better behaaved than my example. That time they were gung ho in their attitude to data ownership.