Online Help Tool / Process Recommendation

Subject: Online Help Tool / Process Recommendation
From: Suzette Leeming <suzette -dot- leeming -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 20 Apr 2005 11:12:54 -0400

I've been busy reviewing a company's current documentation and trying
to determine a better process / tool for them to use to create and
maintain their documentation. I'd like to share my opinions and see
what kind of feedback / input the others on the list might have, since
some of you have much more experience than I do.

Some history: Originally, their documentation was done in Word (and
still is). I personally don't think Word is the best solution for them
though, because of the extremely large size of their manuals. Features
such as master documents, numbering, etc. are not stable or robust
enough to handle their needs. When the need for onliine help came
along, they chose to create Winhelp using Helpbreeze from
Solutionsoft. Lately, that's not working well for them.

I personally LOVE FrameMaker, but never had the time to learn WWP or
Mif2go. That's always an option though.

Their needs now are (by priority) online help, followed by printed/pdf
documents. This is a small company (interpret that as small budgets).
I have been investigating Help and Manual and was quite impressed with
what I saw. My hesitation is with the software's ability to handle
extremely large, multi-chapter manuals.

If anyone on the list is using H&M, I'd appreciate hearing from you
about your opinions / views / experiences, etc.

As for anyone else, if you are aware of any other software tool that
you think I should look at, please let me know. I should mention that
I think (personal opinion) Doc-to-Help is too tied to Word, ditto for
Robohelp (even if Adobe didn't acquire Macromedia and make everyone
worry about it's future).

Suzette Leeming
Stouffville, Ontario

No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an
uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.
...Helen Keller


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