RE: New member

Subject: RE: New member
From: "Johnson, Tom" <TJohnson -at- starcutter -dot- com>
To: "Mike Schmidt" <mschmidt -at- weathercentral -dot- tv>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 1 Aug 2006 14:48:02 -0400

Hi Mike,

Welcome to the club!

What is the driving force behind all this change? Is IT mandating a smaller set of software programs? Do you have to facilitate working with a new set of vendors who can offer cheaper rates if you're using "standard" software?

Don't think of it as busy work. Think of it as an opportunity to learn new marketable skills.

I question whether you need to change everything or just work on it "as you go." Instead of trying to convert everything, just change the documents that need to be updated along with any new documents you work on. That ought to keep you very busy for a long time. Also, I would look at it as a chance to improve your products. I know I look back at things I did a long time ago and see things I'd like to change. Perhaps you can even adopt a new look and feel to your document set and break out of the old mold.

>From a technical perspective, some programs do a much better job than others of importing/converting documents. Some may come through very clean and others you might as well start from scratch. If that's the case, cut and paste become your best friends--at least to get the text without having to type everything. Even then, I'd look at this as an opportunity to do some clean-up work if the situation warrants.

I think you'll find you like InDesign and FrameMaker. They're both great packages.

Tom Johnson
Technical Writer
tjohnson -at- starcutter -dot- com

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+tjohnson=starcutter -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+tjohnson=starcutter -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com]On
Behalf Of Mike Schmidt
Sent: Tuesday, August 01, 2006 2:07 PM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: New member


Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Mike Schmidt, a tech writer (the only
one, actually) at Weather Central, Inc. in Madison, WI.

I've recently been commanded to abandon all the tools I've been using
for years (and know intimately) in favor of the Adobe Suite. I've also
been commanded to
"establish a timeline and list of resources that would be needed" to do

In short, is there anyone out there that's had to convert a sizeable
amount of their own material to a completely new format? In my case,
it's the Corel suite (Ventura Publisher, Corel Draw, Corel Photo Paint)
and Microsoft Front Page, into Adobe stuff including Robohelp and who
knows what else.

If you detect a hint of negativity in this... you're right. I am totally
at home with the programs I've been using for, in some cases, my entire
career, and I'm not thrilled about dumping it. I'm sure Adobe stuff is
great, but it's the learning curve and tons of busy work I'm not
terribly happy about.

At any rate, I expect I'll need some training and lots of time to
convert existing material, without even thinking of the constant stream
of new material being created.

Any insight on this would be greatly appreciated.


Mike Schmidt


WebWorks ePublisher Pro for Word features support for every major Help
format plus PDF, HTML and more. Flexible, precise, and efficient content
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