Dreamweaver to create HTML Help?

Subject: Dreamweaver to create HTML Help?
From: "Hart, Geoff" <Geoff-H -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 1 Mar 2001 15:52:13 -0500

Sybille Sterk would <<... like to use Dreamweaver to create
"browser-independent" HTML help. Does anybody on the list use Dreamweaver
for this purpose? Any tips and tricks you'd like to share would be very
welcome.>>

I'm not sure that Dreamweaver's the right tool for the job. First off, you
have to distinguish between a file containing helpful information presented
in HTML format (which is what Dreamweaver would inherently create) and
actual HTMLHelp; the latter has various features that aren't present in
simple HTML (e.g., context IDs so that the software can link directly to the
correct topic at the press of a button by the user). I don't doubt that you
could fake HTMLHelp features using straight HTML, but it would be far more
awkward than using a dedicated tool like RoboHelp or ForeHelp. Among other
things, you'd need an additional tool such as HTML Indexer to create a
useful index.

Second, there's no such thing as "browser independence" unless you stick to
very simple, very vanilla HTML. That's actually a reasonably good design
decision from the user's standpoint, but be aware that you also sacrifice
some of the more powerful features of HTML (e.g., CSS) by doing so.

--Geoff Hart, FERIC, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca
"User's advocate" online monthly at
www.raycomm.com/techwhirl/usersadvocate.html

"The most likely way for the world to be destroyed, most experts agree, is
by accident. That's where we come in; we're computer professionals. We cause
accidents."-- Nathaniel Borenstein

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Develop HTML-Based Help with Macromedia Dreamweaver 4 ($100 STC Discount)
**WEST COAST LOCATIONS** San Jose (Mar 1-2), San Francisco (Apr 16-17)
http://www.weisner.com/training/dreamweaver_help.htm or 800-646-9989.

Sponsored by ForeFront, Inc., maker of ForeHelp Help authoring tools
for print, WinHelp, HTML Help, JavaHelp, and cross-platform InterHelp
See www.forehelp.com for more information and free evaluation downloads

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