Hardware documentation needs to be regularly maintained, updated, translated and most importantly be made available to various types of users including: Service Engineers, System Builders, Customers and potential buyers. Hardware will often share multiple components across product lines and the documentation is usually an ideal candidate for XML and DITA. DITA itself was originally conceived by IBM for their own hardware and software before being given to the open source.
Software is under constant development and the documentation needs to be regularly updated to stay aligned, it may also need to be translated and made available on various platforms to various types of users including: Customers, Customer Support Staff and potential buyers. The multi-channel delivery requirements of software documentation, especially when localization is involved makes it an ideal candidate for XML and DITA.