Re: A grudging Help partnership...

Subject: Re: A grudging Help partnership...
From: susanh -at- cardsetc -dot- com -dot- au
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2000 09:44:48 +1000

Hi Jeff,

You wrote looking for solutions for incorporating "the software-specific
Help into
the product [Help]."

Have you thought of merging your Help file and the MS Help file? The result
is a single source for your users.

I've just created a one-topic project in HDK, testhelp.hlp, and merged that
testhelp.hlp with Mspaint.hlp by editing the .CNT files of each help...
it's best to edit the .CNT files using notepad rather than the MS .CNT file
editor which behaves oddly at times.

3-steps
1. Use a ":Index" statement to include the indexes of the other help file.
For example, :Index (not titled) = mspaint.hlp
2. Use a ":Link" statement to associate the other help file. For example,
:Link mspaint.hlp
3. Edit the TOC list in each .CNT file or include the TOCs of other files
using a ":Include" statement. For example, :Include mspaint.cnt. (You can
edit the TOC to reflect the merged functionality from the perspective of
YOUR BUSINESS USER. That is you can change the order and levels of
information)

Below the edited .CNT file for testhelp.hlp.

:Base testhelp.hlp
:Index Table of contents = testhelp.hlp
:Index (not titled) = mspaint.hlp
:Link testhelp.hlp
:Link mspaint.hlp
:Title Table of contents
:Include mspaint.cnt (I put my merged TOC in mspaint.cnt so used an include
statement)



Below the initial part of the edited .CNT file of mspaint.hlp.


:Base testhelp.hlp
:Index Paint Help = mspaint.hlp
:Index Table of contents = testhelp.hlp
:Link mspaint.hlp
:Link testhelp.hlp
:Title Paint Help
1 My test of manual merging
2 First page for test =HDK3B9ACA40 -at- testhelp -dot- hlp1 Drawing Lines and Shapes
2 Drawing a straight line =PAINT_LINES
2 Drawing a free-form line =PAINT_FREEFORM_LINES
etc

.. And I want to acknowledge that I owe my understanding of the
flexibility of .CNT editing to Matthew Ellison who presented a brilliant
paper on merging Help files at the 1999 Australasian Online Documentation
Conference. The merging is even more flexible and powerful if merged help
files are using associated index links (a-links).

Best regards,
Susan Harkus






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