Tools for Online Help?

Subject: Tools for Online Help?
From: Geoff Hart <ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca>
To: techwr-l List <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>, Michael Ronquillo <mronquillo -at- equitrac -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2008 12:35:06 -0400

Michael Ronquillo wondered: <<I'm looking for a tool for creating
online help. I know there's RoboHelp, but I find it very overwhelming.>>

Nobody says you have to use all the features. <g> Simple and direct
works best. RoboHelp for Word is actually quite easy to use (at
least, in older versions; haven't tried the more recent versions).
Run through the tutorial and ignore the features you won't actually
use, and you should be up to speed in a few hours. (That's how long
it took me way back when.)

<<I heard there is a tool out there where you can make it in Word.
Anyone know of any easy programs, preferably free?>>

Depends what you mean by "online help". Old WinHelp could be created
easily in Word using nothing more than a knowledge of the footnote
codes used to define things like topic titles and keywords, followed
by exporting the Word file to RTF and running the resulting file
through the Microsoft Help Compiler (freely available from
Microsoft). I've used this approach, and it works, but it's far less
efficient than using a professional tool like Robo or Flare. WinHelp
is also deprecated, so you probably should look for HTMLHelp options
instead. Microsoft also offers a comparable compiler for HTMLHelp
c8a6-452f-9aa0-d597d16580cc&DisplayLang=en), but I haven't used it
and thus won't comment further.

You could also try researching your options in the uber help-tool
comparison site:

-- Geoff Hart
ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca / geoffhart -at- mac -dot- com
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Tools for Online Help: From: Ronquillo, Michael

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