Content Key References
Content key references (conkeyrefs) are a method of reusing content by referencing content through keys. Conkeyrefs are frequently used for variables, or content that might change.
Variables make it easy to reuse content and update information globally. Use variables for information such as product names, company names, product-specific information, and even user interface elements. When you use variables, you’re not actually inserting the text that’s displayed, but creating a conkeyref to that variable’s ID. By using content key references, you can abstractly reference the content without specifying the element. For more information, see Key References.
Variables can be used for contextual changes. For example, if you have a topic that is used for two different products, you can reuse that topic and just change the product name by using a variable.
You can also use variables for information that might change regardless of whether it’s reused in different maps. For example, if your company is rebranding a product, you should make the product name a variable. Then, when the rebranding takes place, you can just update the product name in one place and that update will reflect everywhere the variable is used.
Variables are typically organized into one or more warehouse topics. Having all your variables in one location, like a warehouse topic, makes it easier to track, manage, and maintain your content.
To use conkeyrefs, you need to do the following:
Create a warehouse file to hold your variable content. For more information, see Setting Variable Content in a Warehouse Topiccef631c0-bece-40b0-bdb4-25c5c5fc71f0:comment:admincef631c0-bece-40b0-bdb4-25c5c5fc71f0.
Add the warehouse file as a keydef in your map. For more information, see Adding a Warehouse Topic to a Mapfd9141ff-ecbe-4511-a901-aac961d8b373:comment:adminfd9141ff-ecbe-4511-a901-aac961d8b373.
Insert a conkeyref in a topic to reuse the variable content. For more information, see Inserting a Conkeyref into a Topicf5e3ba86-d8ce-4197-b0bf-ef6a8fca50cf:comment:adminf5e3ba86-d8ce-4197-b0bf-ef6a8fca50cf.
You need to publish a manual for both the Toaster 1000 and Toaster 1500. Both publication maps reuse the same Setting up the Toaster topic because the set up documentation for each model is the same. But what if you want to mention the specific toaster model? You can create variables for the names of each toaster model that you create conkeyrefs to. For example, we use the following key name and ID combination to resolve the product name
When the Setting up the Toaster topic is in the Toaster 1000 publication map, then the conkeyref to
vars/productNameresolves to the Toaster 1000 product name. For example:
When the Setting up the Toaster topic is in the Toaster 1500 publication map, then the conkeyref to
vars/productNameresolves to the Toaster 1500 product name. For example:
Each of these publication maps contain their own warehouse topics with variables specific to the product model. So if there are any topics reused among different product models, using conkeyrefs eliminates the need for duplicate topics.