RE: The Old Argument: FrameMaker vs. MS Word

Subject: RE: The Old Argument: FrameMaker vs. MS Word
From: Tony Rocco <tony -at- roundpeg -dot- com>
To: "'Mark Baker'" <mbaker -at- omnimark -dot- com>, TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2000 15:14:52 -0800

Sorry, Mark, but I beg to differ. You're idea of what a tech writer is in
this day and age is narrow and unrealistic, least in the software
development world. I have been in this business for most of a decade and my
jobs have never been pure writing jobs (and that's OK with me). Many tech
writers have developed skills and abilities beyond writing, editing, and
researching because their jobs demand it. I have worked with good designers,
good managers, good technical people, all of whom carried the title
Technical Writer. This is an eclectic profession and it demands skills in
many areas. You might find jobs that only require writing and editing, but
in the software world, they are few and far between.


-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Baker [mailto:mbaker -at- omnimark -dot- com]
Sent: Thursday, January 20, 2000 2:38 PM
Subject: Re: The Old Argument: FrameMaker vs. MS Word

Tony Rocco wrote

> Does any tech writer in his or her right mind prefer MS Word to
> FrameMaker???


Word is a fine word processing tool. It is limited publishing tool.

Frame is a powerful, if wonky, desktop publishing tool. It is a terrible
word processor.

I am a writer. I process words. I prefer Word.

If you are still stuck in DTP land then you are probably stuck in Frame
land, but let it be said load and clear:

Technical writing is about writing. Technical writers should not be asked to
do DTP. It is a waste of their time and their talent. Technical writers
forced to do DTP spend more than half their time on layout and production
tasks. These tasks should be performed by people with the proper aptitudes
and skills. Writers should spend their time on research and writing.

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