It is one thing to produce graphs of the countries where DITA is being used, another thing entirely to look at a map and realize that you happen to live in a city where there are lots of other people are producing DITA-based content. When I originally did my survey of DITA worldwide usage a year ago, the geographic distribution maps that I was able to produce (courtesy of a free trail of MS MapPoint) were clunky. Last summer I found BatchGeo, which not only provides a better mapping of where everything is, but is interactive as well. If you click on the world map image below it will take you to the interactive version where you can zoom in to any area of interest.
While this article concentrates on the United States and Europe, you can use the above map to explore where DITA is being used in the rest of the world.
DITA Usage in the United States
As you can see by looking at the following map (which is linked to a separate BatchGeo page) there are several major concentrations of firms and organizations using DITA. This map only includes the continental states since I have not yet been able to find any firms using DITA whose HQs are located in either Alaska or Hawaii.
If you scroll to the west coast, you’ll see that San Francisco/San Jose area is dotted with the highest concentration of DITA using firms, the majority of them producing software. To the south in the Los Angeles area is another significant cluster of companies, several of them in the Biotech and Health Care services sectors, while up the coast in Washington state are a variety of firms in the Portland and Seattle areas. (Though it’s not included in the US survey, a look at the global map also shows a tight cluster of firms just north of this in the Vancouver, Canada area).
Heading east, the next major concentration of companies using DITA can be found in the Denver, Colorado area, and the state of Texas has clusters of firms in its major cities, several of them representing the major pillars of the US semiconductor industry. While there are scattered firms using DITA through-out the mid-west, the highest concentration is in the Chicago area, consisting of a mix of telecommunications, software, pharmaceutical and information technology firms.
In and around Washington, D.C. are a number of organizations using DITA, including several nonprofits and government agencies. To the north in Philadelphia is another cluster of DITA-using firms, followed by a not-surprisingly large number of companies in and around the New York City and Boston areas.
Scattered over the rest of the US are more isolated pockets with smaller clusters appearing in Raleigh, North Carolina, Atlanta, Georgia and Kansas City, Kansas.
Other than the aforementioned Alaska and Hawaii, other states that do not have any DITA-using firms that I have been able to verify include New Mexico, Nevada, Montana, Wyoming, both Dakotas, Nebraska, Louisiana, Mississippi, Maine, New Jersey and several others. If you work for a firm using that is DITA headquartered in any of these states, please let me know!
DITA Usage in Europe
The following map (which is also linked to a separate BatchGeo page) looks at all of the places across Europe where DITA is being used.
Not surprisingly the highest concentration within a single country is in England, clustered primarily in the south of the country in and around London. The majority are software companies, but there are also representative firms from the semiconductor, marketing communications and publishing sectors (plus the HQ for a <shameless-plug>certain consulting firm</shameless-plug> I work for).
After that there is a grouping of DITA-using firms spread throughout The Netherlands and Belgium, with one foci around Utrecht and the other around Antwerp. In France there is a tight group centered around Paris, with a couple of firms located in Rennes, and a couple of others in Lyon and Marseille. There is no specific concentration of DITA-using firms in any one major city in Germany, though most of the major metropolitan areas in that country have some representation. Though scattered, three of the Nordic countries (Sweden, Norway, Demark) have significant DITA representation too. Seemingly isolated are single firms in other European countries, including software/technology firms in Lisbon, Portugal, and Szeged, Hungary and St. Petersburg, Russia. If you use a certain XML editor you might be interested in knowing that it originates in the city of Craiova in Romania.
While this article focuses on the distribution of firms using DITA throughout the United States and Europe, for those wanting a more detailed maps of other areas, here are BatchGeo maps for Australia/Asia, and one specifically for Canada.
Tomorrow: While the majority of the companies using DITA are either in the software or computer services industries, there is a significant amount of other industry sectors that are using DITA. This will be investigated in tomorrow’s posting.