expanding without expanding

Subject: expanding without expanding
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 14 May 2013 13:02:16 -0400

I've been doing WebHelp only, for years.

Some procedures have multiple steps and occupy a page or so, if all steps remain "closed".

The same procedure expands hugely if the expanding/drop-down text (including graphic items) in each step are expanded. That works fine in WebHelp.

In WebHelp, a person who is new to our product can expand any step where they are unsure, while an experienced person doesn't need to see all that newbie stuff if they just want a refresher on the order of steps.

Now that we have a mandate to also produce PDF output, such a procedure would be fully expanded, and therefore hugely long for both the newbie and the person with experience.

As a brute-force approach, I could re-write the procedure without the expansion stuff, and have that as the main instruction for all users, and then have a cross-ref to an appendix containing the fully-expanded version, for benefit of newbies.

Is there a better way?

No, we can't use footnotes for the expansions when publishing as PDF.

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