RE: Multiple undo (was Re: Microsoft Documentation)

Subject: RE: Multiple undo (was Re: Microsoft Documentation)
From: "Bill Lawrence" <scribe -at- matrixplus -dot- com>
To: "'technicoid'" <technicoid -at- cableone -dot- net>, "'TECHWR-L'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 2 Feb 2004 09:54:31 -0500

> I haven't found single XML editor, off the shelf, that even comes
> in terms of ease of use. Granted, you can set up a workflow that is
> simpler, but you can do the same with Structured Frame. And I'm not
> bashing XML. I rather like it and find content management, XSLT/FO,
> industrial-strength single source very cool. But let's be real in our
> expectations here. You aren't going to find a simple XML editor on its
> own that does everything that a DTP app does. And XML *is* supposed to
> be the bleeding edge, right? Having bled a bit on account of both
> and Epic, I'm not convinced that the designers of Frame have been all
> that remiss.

I'll second that! Although with a good deal of work, you can make both
Xmetal and Epic at least look a little better.

To turn the question around the other way: Is Word really that simple
and well designed or is it just that it can't do very much? I've been
debating the whole WYSIWYG vs. semantic markup thing with writers for a
decade, and at least from my experience Word seems to have its strongest
support from tech writers that produce simple print or PDF output and
are used to thinking only in those terms. Maybe it isn't the interface
that's so writer friendly, but rather the limited set of functionality
and capability that makes Word's learning curve so attractive. It seems
to me that Frame does a very nice job of providing much more powerful
capabilities in a package that isn't very hard to learn. Epic seems
well designed for folks that are working heavily with single-source that
must be turned into variety of documents for different audiences and

Bill Lawrence

Senior Technical Writer
Matrix Solutions

RE: Multiple undo (was Re: Microsoft Documentation): From: technicoid

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