A navtitle, in DITAspeak, is a shorter version of a longer, actual topic title that can be displayed in navigation menus or other contexts where a more succinct version is preferred. In fact, any application that publishes adaptive content can make use of this version of the title in place of the main title for summary views of the topic such as in a sidebar blurb or for progressive disclosure in a responsive theme.
To make a topic self-sufficient in any context, you can craft a navtitle in the topic’s titlealts markup. Alternatively, if a particular use of that topic requires a differently worded navtitle, you can do so in the map itself; in the topicmeta element of the topicref that points to a topic, you can add a navtitle element that will override the topic’s internal version.
Did you know?
The topicref element also provides a navtitle attribute that some editing systems might use to display for the author’s benefit whenever a map is being edited. When published, however, the element version of the navtitle is always used when available in either the topic or in the map that references the topic.