Word/HTML help

Subject: Word/HTML help
From: "Paula Flanders" <pflanders -at- vicinity -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 20 Mar 2000 10:11:30 -0500

Hello all,

I am the first tech writer in a relatively small (but growing extremely
fast) company that provides internet marketing services to Fortune 1000
companies. I was hired to create documentation as needed for the operations
group. Because our company is divided between California and New Hampshire,
the plan is for my doc to live on the company intranet (or on passworded
customer sites if I start doing any customer doc) so that whoever needs it
can simply download what they want. The project leader who has
responsibility for scheduling doc projects and making sure each project
gets what it needs for doc really wants me to provide the doc in Word 2000
and in HTML. A lot of the audience for my doc has Word, but some people do
not and need to use a browser to look at it. However, the browser that most
people are using is Netscape, which is not handling Word 2000 HTML output
very well. I've tried running the doc through the MS filter to strip out the
XML-like components and I've tried running it through HTML Tidy. Neither
seems to fix the problems. All the documents I've tested so far open fine in
IE. When I've tried to explain to this project leader (who is not very
techie) that we may need to consider different or additional tools or
different formats, he clearly just wants me to wave a magic wand and make it
work. BTW, there is huge resistance in the company to PDF, so that isn't one
of my options. I've also suggested that he just schedule in time for me to
learn more about HTML so that I can fix the problems, but he's not keen on
that either.

So, I have two questions. Are other people having trouble with Word to
Netscape? Any suggestions on how I can get this project leader to understand
what he's asking for? I can probably go around him by bringing my boss (and
his) into the situation. I'd like not to do this because our boss is located
in CA, while we are in NH and have to work together on a daily basis.

Paula Flanders
Tech Writer

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