Re: Need real-world information about Framemaker

Subject: Re: Need real-world information about Framemaker
From: GeneK <gene -at- genek -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 20 Feb 2003 16:15:15 -0800

Having worked with all the SW you listed (not to mention some that you didn't),
my perspective would be that if you are planning on creating large documents,
FrameMaker is still, for the time being, the way to go. IMO, single sourcing XML
editors will eventually become the standard, but whether Adobe's attempt to
integrate XML authoring into FM ("XML smart") will enable them to become the
standard there is arguable (Adobe makes a lot of noise about their "XML
solutions for aerospace" and how FM 7 "can be the basis" for the XML workflow,
but most of the people I know who are working in XML in that industry are using
Arbortext, and you can see that in the number of recruiting ads for companies
like Lockheed-Martin and Northrup Grumman that call for Arbotext knowledge).

As far as smaller (which I personally define as 100 pages or less) docs, I'd say
that you can pretty much use anything you want to. In my last department, the
writers were using FM to make things like quick reference cards, but when your
tool of choice is a sledgehammer, everything tends to look like a railroad spike.
I would not turn an existing department's procedures on its head to try converting
it to FM if that was all it was doing. However, if you're going to go to FM, do it
with the current rev, because as has been discussed in other threads here, FM
development is being outsourced to India, and Adobe has a history of bolluxing
FM for at least a release or two (at least, that's how I see it) every time they make
major changes in the FM development team.

Gene Kim-Eng

At 01:15 PM 2/20/2003 -0800, Caldwell, Shannon wrote:

My position is expanding into proposal and SOQ writing, along with contract
administration. The only type of formatting software that my company has
right now is Quark. This is great if all you are doing is brochures and
smaller marketing materials. I am trying to sell my Division Manager on
FrameMaker. I have read about it on Adobe's website but am a new user.
Could you please give me some real-world, tried and true experiences and
opinions about the software. My pros for the software is the added
formatting that it has for large documents. The people here have been doing
their proposals on Word templates. I think that FrameMaker can be an asset.


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