Re: Framemaker vs. Pagemaker

Subject: Re: Framemaker vs. Pagemaker
From: "Tim Altom" <taltom -at- simplywritten -dot- com>
To: "Jessica Lourey" <jessical -at- alx -dot- tec -dot- mn -dot- us>, "TechDoc List" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2000 20:17:43 -0500

Ah, an unfortunate dilemma. Given your short time frame, it's probably best
to use PM to introduce layout principles. But you're right, Frame is
definitely beating the socks off of PM in the tech doc world, as it should.
Frame is for long, structured documentation, not brochures. But it's not
trivial to learn and its best features take a long time to get used to and
appreciate. When used to its full extension, Frame is leagues more efficient
than PM. But even our resident structured doc guru, with many years spent
designing and writing them, and who was one of the world's experts on
Ventura Publisher, took months to get fully conversant with Frame. I'd teach
PM in your position and mention Word and Frame. Adobe would probably be
thrilled to supply you with marketing information about Frame and anybody
who thoroughly understands layout can make the transition to Frame later.
The problem is that employers often don't know that tools are secondary to

Tim Altom
Simply Written, Inc.
Featuring FrameMaker and the Clustar(TM) System
"Better communication is a service to mankind."
Check our Web site for the upcoming Clustar class info

1. The majority of our grads will work in small businesses creating shorter
manuals, brochures, newsletters, etc.
2. It is a one semester class so will not go into advanced features.
3. We already have Pagemaker in our labs.

However, Framemaker shows up as a requirement on nearly every TechComm job
I've seen listed. I'm not familiar with the software, but I'm willing to
learn it and teach it, if it is the only way to go. I appreciate your input
on this.

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