RE: a RoboHelp/html question

Subject: RE: a RoboHelp/html question
From: Paul Hanson <twer_lists_all -at- hotmail -dot- com>
To: "'TECHWR-L'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 31 Jul 2013 09:34:57 -0500

No. Tell them no. Then, tell them no again.

If they want changes made to the content, they can email you and you will
incorporate their edits into the content. Put a feedback link at the bottom
of every HTML file that sends feedback directly to you. I had fancy code
that would include the HTML file name the feedback was sent from in the
email. Just make sure you indicate that the documentation feedback email
address is not for reporting bugs or issues with the software.

Think of your help file as software code. Would they be allowed to make
"edits" to the software code? Probably not. Same idea here. Say you have a
standard like using "Go to" as the phrase to begin a sentence that tells the
user navigation, like "Go to Menu1 > Menu2." And they "edit" the text to say
"Access Menu1 > Menu2." Who now has the source files - you or your customer?
Who reconciles your content to your style guide? What if your corporate
style is to follow the MS Manual and they make edits that do not conform
with it? And then, when you get asked to send an updated version of your
help file, all their "edits" get lost because you have the source files and
you do not have their edits. Also, who owns your help file? Your company
does. Check with your legal department about if the client can edit source
files.

In my opinion and based upon what I've been through with different
situations, this is a very slippery slope and it will get bad for you very
quickly.

All that said, technically, yes, the client can decompile the CHM file, edit
the HTML with Notepad / Dreamweaver, and then recompile. They wouldn't use
MS WinHelp as that is a different help format though.

Paul Hanson
Senior Technical Writer
blog: http://prhmusic.blogspot.com
Twitter: @phrmusic - follow me!
Lou's Classic Ride: https://www.facebook.com/LousClassicRide

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+twer_lists_all=hotmail -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+twer_lists_all=hotmail -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
Behalf Of Lynne Wright
Sent: Wednesday, July 31, 2013 9:06 AM
To: TECHWR-L
Subject: a RoboHelp/html question

I'm using RoboHelp 7 to convert source content into html and to compile a
.chm file for context-sensitive help.
A customer wants to know if there is a way for them to edit individual .html
files without using RoboHelp.
In theory, could they use Microsoft WinHelp (or some other app) to make
changes and generate new .chm files, or would that cause all kinds of
problems with formatting, hyperlinks, etc ?



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