Re: Word template

Subject: Re: Word template
From: quills -at- airmail -dot- net
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>, "SB" <sylvia -dot- braunstein -at- gmail -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 19 May 2008 08:49:56 -0500

Simplify the number of styles you need. Most of your problems, besides fighting Word, could be traced to more styles
than you need. Start there. Then enforce a strict adherence to your styles. The changes to names isn't going to help.

Ensure you have a real reason to create a style or to keep it. Look at the structure of your documents, and if a style
doesn't fit into that structure, don't use it. If it is a once in awhile use for esthetics, consider why you are using
it. Does the concept of your styles need to be changed?

Somewhere along the line someone will have to bite the bullet and standardize all of your documents for transition to
AuthorIT, or you will encounter more problems.

Scott

On Sat 08/05/17 11:08 , SB sent:
> I have already posted here regarding this issue.
>
> I started working alone in the company. Due to so much pressure and
> Wordcrashing, when a style would not behave, I created a new style, which
> mayhave been the wrong approach but this was the fasted I could get the
> workdone without focussing on troubleshooting.
>
> Bottom line, the documentation had many unwanted styles.
>
> The technical writer with whom I worked created a new template with
> brandnew styles but we cannot afford converting everything from scratch.
>
> So, he renamed a lot of the styles and we attached the template. Most of
> itworks fine and needs minor fixing.
>
> One of the issues is that now, most of the documentation has a template
> except that a lot of styles do not talk to each other and I have no clue
> howto get rid of them without buiding everything from scratch. Having
> cleandocuments is particularly important in light of the fact that we plan
> tomake a transition to AuthorIT. If we keep all this variety of styles
> createdas I needed them, it will probably be imported in AutorIT, or will it?
>
> The other issue is that the guy that is in charge of the template keeps
> making changes and additions which sort of defeats the purpose of having
> atemplate since again, it is not backwards compatible with what we have
> already created. For example he decided to rename "bold" to "bold ch",
> "reference" to "reference ch", etc. As is, we have hundred of styles
> thatare not part of the template. With this renaming, we have even more of
> thosethat will not talk to the template. I started a matrix, which took me a
> longtime to compile part of the style naming. However, these constant
> changesand improvements make me wonder about whether using this template is
> anydifferent than not using one since there is always a discrepancy as the
> template changes, thus making all the efforts useless. I am wondering
> howyou people use templates to improve documentation. Freezing the
> templatemeans that we don't have all the tools we need, continuing to edit it
> meansthat the styles are not backward compatible with the previous template
> andhere we have new styles again that we need to get rid of.

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