Research is currently created using print-oriented file formats such as DOCX or LaTeX. However, a modern published article requires the availability of structured metadata such as authors, affiliations, references and journal information. Publishers typically make use of the JATS-XML standard to capture that information, resulting in the costly and slow conversion process to turn a DOCX submission into structured XML.
If researchers and publishers all used a shared file format, documents could be created and shared directly without friction. Furthermore submission, peer-review, editing and author proofing workflows could operate on the same source document, streamlining the entire publication process.
A Document ARchive (.dar) is essentially a zip archive, containing the manuscript as a standard JATS XML file, as well as additional assets such as images and data files. It is built around the following design goals: