RE: Framemaker, Word and Robohelp

Subject: RE: Framemaker, Word and Robohelp
From: "Gilger.John" <JGilger -at- acresgaming -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2001 12:06:57 -0800

Chuck Martin's interesting comments on this thread got me thinking (a
dangerous occupation).

With the complexity of today's software packages, is there still a cost
benefit to having everyone on the team use them?

In the "old" days, we wrote on typewriters. The emphasis was on writing
clean, concise prose. When this prose was published, someone with another
skill set, type composition or graphic arts etc., would lay it out and
prepare it for the press room. It seems that today we have about the same
number of people involved in the process but they are all trying to be jacks
or jills of all trades and usually master none of them.

So what's the point?

Wouldn't it make more sense to have the members of the writing team who are
best developers of content (writers) use simpler software such as Wordpad,
vi, or (my personal favorite cyber-swiss-army-knife) emacs to write in text
files and having one or two of your best layout gurus using a good type
setting, markup, or layout program (TeX, SGML, Framemaker, Word ...) format
the stuff and make it look pretty?

After all, most of us will admit that we are better at some tasks than
others. Why not do what you do best and let someone with the complementary
skill do what they do best. A great writer and a talented graphics artist
can produce more and better work together than if each were trying to "do it

That's my curmudgeonly two cents worth. Back to the cave.

You may fire when ready, Gridley.

John Gilger
Technical Writer
Acres Gaming, Inc.

-----Original Message-----
From: Chuck Martin [mailto:twriter -at- sonic -dot- net]
Sent: Tuesday, January 16, 2001 11:04 AM
Subject: Re: Framemaker, Word and Robohelp

It distresses me to see, time and time again, that "taking a course" is seen
as a solution to learning about a software package. While in some cases it
may be needed, training more often is about explaining how to use what
should have been obviouis, if the software had been designed with its usres
in mind.

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