RE: Another angle on single-sourcing and what we really do...and feed back on a product requested

Subject: RE: Another angle on single-sourcing and what we really do...and feed back on a product requested
From: "Giordano, Connie" <Connie -dot- Giordano -at- FMR -dot- COM>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2002 15:48:15 -0500

Michele,

Yes I did look at it, I think it's the weakest part of the product that I've
seen, but that's OK. I don't really believe you can or should generate
stuff automatically without any tweaking. Besides it gives the folks who
love their paper docs a reason to believe in my continued employment! I
always rework a document generated from my source files for on-line help,
primarily for the same reasons Geoff so eloquently expressed. There's
always something that doesn't quite fit the way you really want it to.

I think of our single-sourcing debates in much the same way as "100%
normalized" databases were debated a few years back. Initially, the
"experts" said it was the only way to go, much trial and error showed that
it wasn't necessarily the best thing to do. But we still need the database
experts, and their abilities to make a database do what it should, when it
should, in the most efficient way possible. I don't know if a true
single-sourcing tool could ever be designed that would let me create the
various media outputs, with the fine tuning necessary to accommodate the
audience and the environment.

Maybe the art of tech comm is really about "tweaking"?


Regards

Connie P. Giordano
Senior Technical Writer
Advisor Technology Services
A Fidelity Investments Company
704-330-2069 (w)
704-330-2350 (f)
704-957-8450 (c)
connie -dot- giordano -at- fmr -dot- com <mailto:connie -dot- giordano -at- fmr -dot- com>

"I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to
do it." - Pablo Picasso


-----Original Message-----
From: Michele Marques [mailto:MarquesM -at- autros -dot- com]
Sent: Friday, February 22, 2002 3:34 PM
To: TECHWR-L
Cc: 'Giordano, Connie'
Subject: RE: Another angle on single-sourcing and what we really
do...and feed back on a product requested


Connie Giordano wrote:
> Anybody else attempting to travel this road of integrated product design,
> pre-sales marketing and post-sales user support? Anybody using the
Epiplex
> products (www.epiance.com)?

I haven't used that product, but it sounded interesting from your
description. But did you check the sample automatically-created
documentation on their site? It might be OK as an initial VERY ROUGH draft
of the type-and-click part of the procedures. But even there it is very bad
- I think I saw one step that said to "click the BUTTON" (they bold all
button and menu/option/field names), but didn't say which button. And, of
course, there is no explanation as to what the user is trying to accomplish
or why you are doing things.


------------------------------------------------------------------------
Michele Marques
Technical Communicator
Baxter
AUTROS Healthcare Solutions
One Yorkdale Road, Suite 310
Toronto, Ontario M6A 3A1
(416) 784-1100 x139 Facsimile (416) 784-0470
1-800-537-2255 x139
marquesm -at- autros -dot- com


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