Re: Need help with Help

Subject: Re: Need help with Help
From: "Dana Worley" <dana -at- campbellsci -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 11 Mar 2009 09:49:09 -0600

On Tuesday, March 10, 2009, Aviva Wulfsohn wrote:

> I have been a technical writer for 10+ years now and am almost ashamed
> to admit I have never once authored, edited, or otherwise touched a
> help file. Others were always responsible or a company did not use
> them ... whatever. So now I have been asked to use Help & Manual to
> author a help system for a reporting program that is replacing Crystal
> reports. Apparently, the company we bought this program from used H&M
> to create it's help files so we need to modify them to reflect our
> company and our software. I hope this makes sense.

The first thing to do is get the existing help project and the resulting help file from whoever
has them. Review the help (with the application, if you can), to get a feel for what the
previous author did. Then open the help project up in H&M. Take a look. See what was done
to accomplish the current results. If it's mostly a branding issue, it may be fairly simple to
change Company X to Company Z and recompile the project.

Take note of what format the help file is in, that you get from the third party. H&M supports all
of the standard outputs -- you'll want to compile the help into whatever format was original

Help & Manual comes with some tutorials. Run through those to get an idea of how you
create topics, or new projects, from scratch and compile the project. H&M's documentation is
pretty good.

Good luck :)

Dana W.

Dana Worley
Software Product Manager/Manager, Software Support Group
Campbell Scientific, Inc.
Microsoft MVP, Windows Help


ComponentOne Doc-To-Help 2009 is your all-in-one authoring and publishing
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HTML and publish to the Web, Help systems or printed manuals.

Help & Manual 5: The complete help authoring tool for individual
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Need help with Help: From: Aviva Wulfsohn

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