RE: Beta Tester's Review of MadCap Flare 8

Subject: RE: Beta Tester's Review of MadCap Flare 8
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: Paul Pehrson <paulpehrson -at- gmail -dot- com>, "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2012 16:15:56 -0500

> -----Original Message-----
Paul Pehrson wrote:
> Hey Techwrl-ers,
> As you probably read in this forum yesterday, MadCap released a new
> version
> of their help authoring tool, Flare. I was a beta tester for Flare 8,
> and
> have written a review of the features you can look forward to in this
> new
> version. My review is on my blog. Here is the direct link:
> If you have questions about what is in Flare, how it works, or
> whatever,
> I'm happy to answer on this thread, in the comments on my blog, or
> personally.

I use Word just enough to be annoyed by the ribbon, but not enough
to get really practiced with it.

Maybe I'll get better at it if I start using the /s/t/u/p/i/d/ /t/h/i/n/g/
er... the lovely feature in something I use for hours each day (Flare).
Or maybe I'll start disliking two programs. :-)

My eyes opened a fraction when I reached the HTML5 section of your
review. I like the possibilities.

I deliver WebHelp on CD. Our customers (if they look at it at all)
will browse my help on that CD, or on their local computer where
they install the client software for our product, or on an intranet
file server. Nobody (to my knowledge) runs my WebHelp out of a web server.

I just now updated the readme.txt file, which mentions a list of
browsers that appear to work with my WebHelp in the situations
described. It mentions that Firefox is as quick as the others
(IE9, Safari, Chrome, SRWare Iron...) when reading off the local
machine, but strangely slow when reading off a networked drive.
More importantly, I mention that Opera 10.x and 11 stall at
the frames and never load the content (much like Chrome was
doing a couple of years ago - cross-frame scripting security
fix, in the Chrome case; I assume a similar reason for Opera).

So-o-o-o-o-oo have you tried the new output WebHelp from
Flare 8 with a variety of browsers in non web-server mode?

My other question: Flare 8 lives happily on a system
with Flare 7.2 ?

I'd want to mess with 8.0 without fully committing.
I've got bronze maintenance, so it should be a free
upgrade for me. "Free" except for the evaluation time
and effort, of course. ....... wait... that's the fun
part of this job... playing with new stuff :-)

This one remains off my radar, but I'm curious.
If we were to get the floating-license thing,
and an 11th person tried to start the application
in a 10-license system, would the interface provide
any way for them to see who was already running the
active licenses? When we switched to our current
system, we worked out the number of floating licenses
we'd need. Then, after months of suffering, we purchased
considerably more. Programmers, managers, tech support,
PLM, testers, and even techwriters needed on-demand
access in order to do their jobs, and hoarding became
a problem on the first day. So, I can see a similar
thing happening on a lesser scale with Contributor.

Does it maybe have an inactivity timeout feature?

Anyway, Flare 8 looks interesting. Too bad about
the timing - I've got a big release going out this
week. Kinda late to make a big change like switching
to HTML5 output.
The QA guys would kill me.

There'll be plenty of releases coming up, though.

-kevin (rubbing hands in gleeful antici...... pation.)

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Beta Tester's Review of MadCap Flare 8: From: Paul Pehrson

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