Re: Manuals in InDesign

Subject: Re: Manuals in InDesign
From: Liz Goodwin <Liz -dot- Goodwin -at- ametek -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 16 Aug 2005 14:59:29 -0400

We just switched to CS2 last quarter. We've been using PageMaker for the
last 7 years. All of our manuals were previously done in Pagemaker using
the "book" features. Manuals average 18 chapters, usually totaling over 200
pages, and include graphics, illustrations, digital images, tables,
spreadsheets and Autocad and Solid Works drawings. There is a learning
curve to the CS2 package but, as with all Adobe products, the similarities
make it easier and we previously used Photoshop and Illustrator. Our PM
documents transition easily into ID2 just by opening them up in the
application. The major thing that we need to get used to is using frames
for everything but even that is coming easily.

Based on having subscribed to this list for several years, I know that most
whirlers are software documentation gurus. The hardware operator's manual
can be another animal. We do mass spectrometers here and the more visual -
the better. The need for graphics and digital images, charts and
illustrations, along with the software screen shots makes CS2 a cut above
the other packages available for us - and - it will do long documents. It
isn't for everyone, but that's why there's Framemaker.


Liz Goodwin
Technical Writer, Process Instruments
AMETEK, P&AI, Pittsburgh, PA
liz -dot- goodwin -at- ametek -dot- com

There are people who reshape the world by force or argument, but the cat
just lies there, dozing; and the world quietly reshapes itself to suit his
comfort and convenience.
--Allen and Ivy Dodd


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