(vendor post follows) RE: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables

Subject: (vendor post follows) RE: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables
From: Jennifer White <jwhite -at- madcapsoftware -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 4 Mar 2014 08:14:17 -0800

Hello Gene,

With the release of Flare v9 last year, we updated the print output functionality to automatically correct the column wrap settings for tables that contain long strings of unbroken text as you've described. If you build a .pdf output from Flare, with the table/column settings as you've described, the table content will output with the cell columns wrapped to fit the table to the page. You shouldn't be experiencing any loss of content or table formatting. Please let us know if you continue to see issues when building using v9.

Thanks,

Jennifer

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Today's Topics:

1. RE: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables (McLauchlan, Kevin)
2. Re: Question from a re-virginized newbie (beelia)
3. Re: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables (Robert Lauriston)
4. Re: Question from a re-virginized newbie (kafkascampi)


----------------------------------------------------------------------

Message: 1
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 2014 09:19:44 -0500
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: Gene Kim-Eng <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>, Hannah Drake
<hannah -at- formulatrix -dot- com>
Cc: techwr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Subject: RE: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables
Message-ID:
<D1E2C829C5011E4A84DAF8A184DD7CDA036CBC1F85 -at- BEL1EXCH02 -dot- amer -dot- sfnt -dot- local>

Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

If the strings are meant to be copied and pasted by readers, include a note about the arbitrary splitting, either ahead of the table or at the end.

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+kevin -dot- mclauchlan=safenet-inc -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+kevin -dot- mclauchlan=safenet-inc -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of Gene Kim-Eng
Sent: February-27-14 10:59 AM
To: Hannah Drake
Cc: techwr-l
Subject: Re: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables

I don't have the latest, greatest, up-to-date-est rev of Flare, but unless there's been a change since the one I have, text in table cells won't wrap if there are no spaces, and when auto-sizing column widths to cell contents collides with table width limits, the limits lose. So yes, I think the solution here may be to introduce breaks in long test strings.

Gene Kim-Eng


On 2/27/2014 5:45 AM, Hannah Drake wrote:
>
>
> Gene, there are somewhat long text strings in my third column in
> certain rows, so maybe we have to rethink the format?


The information contained in this electronic mail transmission may be privileged and confidential, and therefore, protected from disclosure. If you have received this communication in error, please notify us immediately by replying to this message and deleting it from your computer without copying or disclosing it.




------------------------------

Message: 2
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 2014 18:00:28 -0800
From: beelia <beelia -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: kafkascampi <kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com>
Cc: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Subject: Re: Question from a re-virginized newbie
Message-ID:
<CAHmPqzJDpfTX1JP6rFOANQ=W2mrPXciV5tPhF2=rPjE-X0EwkA -at- mail -dot- gmail -dot- com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

It's a very long way to go by yourself unless you have a lot of time and a supportive engineering team who know what DITA is and what it can do for the company. Some engineering-oriented start-ups that are XML-centric will encourage and support you to use DITA, but most won't. For a small organization, it's usually like swatting a mosquito with an AK-47. Managers who want things done quickly and efficiently won't have the patience for it.

The best way to get trained is on the job. If you enjoy information architecture and want to go in that direction in your career, by all means go the Open Toolkit route. Otherwise, just learn enough by reading the books Tony cited to get familiar with the concepts, so you can show a hiring manager that you have the chops to learn the job. It gets boring to do the same processes day after day, so some doc managers I know are keep losing writers who want to do other things.

Most writers who are in DITA organizations use an elaborate framework that has already been set up professionally to give good publishing and results, especially for localized documentation. In my last company, we had to spend months coming up to speed - the processes you have to learn are quite intricate. For localization, you have to pre-select every single version of every file and support it with all the right components, and it can get quite hairy if you are sharing those topics with other writers.

It's not easy. When I finally got my docs localized, I felt like I'd run a marathon.

In my current company, the writers don't go the whole way to publishing the docs and doing the localizing themselves. It's probably easier, but also probably less satisfying. I always want to see a document I've written, not just feed content into the CMS's maw.

Fortunately, I still get to use Flare and Lingo, despite the fact that I work in a big company. Don't ask me how that happened - I figure it's all because I built up good karma in a previous life..:-0

Cheers

Bee


On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 5:10 PM, kafkascampi <kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:

> About DITA and large companies--I am a lone writer and author all of
> our docs in DITA (well, some in Docbook). I'd argue that for a small
> company, the benefits of DITA are still quite valid: Separating design
> from content, easing translation costs, maximizing reusability, writing for minimalism.
> And you're ready to build out your doc set in a scalable way when
> Facebook buys you for 18 billion.
>
> Personally, I got started at dita.xml.org, downloading hte Open
> Toolkit, reading a bunch of stuff about the solution, and then
> attending a Hackos class on it. Even if you don't end up going that
> way, it's a good thing to understand a solution that has gained a real foothold in the industry.
>
> cheers
>
> Chris
>
>
> On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 10:51 AM, Tony Chung <tonyc -at- tonychung -dot- ca> wrote:
>
> > And to add to Robert's insight:
> >
> > Most smaller companies who ask for "DITA" in a job description
> > really
> have
> > no clue what it is, let alone what it's used for. They also want
> > experts
> in
> > the DITA domain who can transfer all their existing processes into
> > their workflow. But it doesn't work that way. Unless the
> > organization and
> culture
> > get behind the concept of topic-based single-source authoring, a
> > DITA implementation will fail.
> >
> > Kind of similar to Agile methodology. If an organization does not
> > embrace collaboration and user-based scenarios, they can't claim to be Agile.
> >
> >
> > For Hannah, I've heard that some of the easy entries are DITA 101 by
> > the Rockley Group, Practical DITA by Julio Vasquez, and DITA for
> Practitioners
> > by Eliot Kimber. But you really need to find what works for you
> > based on what you already know.
> >
> > Here's a list of some DITA resources:
> > http://dita.xml.org/resource-directory
> >
> > It would be nice to find a version of this list that was scaled
> > toward level of understanding vs resource format.
> >
> > -Tony
> >
> >
> > On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 9:38 AM, Robert Lauriston
> > <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com
> > >wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > You'd be unlikely to need DITA skills outside of a large company.
> > >
> > > On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 5:47 AM, Hannah Drake
> > > <hannah -at- formulatrix -dot- com>
> > > wrote:
> > > > Bee, good point.
> > > >
> > > > Actually, I'm relatively new to the field and have seen various
> > articles
> > > > and discussion on DITA but still can't find a good entry point
> > > > to
> begin
> > > to
> > > > understand what it is. Does anybody have any recommended resources?
> > > >
> > > > Thanks in advance.
> > >
> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> > Doc-To-Help: new website, content widgets, and an output that works
> > on
> any
> > screen.
> >
> > Learn more: http://bit.ly/1eRs4NS
> >
> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >
> > You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com -dot-
> >
> > To unsubscribe send a blank email to
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> >
> >
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------------------------------

Message: 3
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 2014 08:53:01 -0800
From: Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
To: techwr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Subject: Re: MadCap Flare PDF output and wide tables
Message-ID:
<CAN3Yy4Dj5aUbeojSFFVCSJEChQG2HiW0pPbj+B_HJKTKSFZrjQ -at- mail -dot- gmail -dot- com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

I suppose Flare does not support <wbr>?


------------------------------

Message: 4
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 2014 09:34:41 -0800
From: kafkascampi <kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: beelia -at- pacbell -dot- net
Cc: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Subject: Re: Question from a re-virginized newbie
Message-ID:
<CACuiNr2544b3JhvMakw6NagVO+k+F-NZhiKYORKhYUBc-OT1BQ -at- mail -dot- gmail -dot- com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Robert said "If you're single-sourcing, you're separating design from content. A tool that gives you a WYSIWYG view of at least one of your deliverables while editing is more efficient than one where you're just looking at text and tags."

Well, you have to use a good XML editor, for sure. I use Syntext Serna, which has a good built-in XSL/CSS component for WYSIWYG.

And the point about an engineering-centric environment is well taken--I've always been embedded with the engineers, and I work in a Silicon Valley cloud software company that favors such approaches.


cheers

Chris


On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 6:00 PM, beelia <beelia -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:

> It's a very long way to go by yourself unless you have a lot of time
> and a supportive engineering team who know what DITA is and what it
> can do for the company. Some engineering-oriented start-ups that are
> XML-centric will encourage and support you to use DITA, but most
> won't. For a small organization, it's usually like swatting a mosquito
> with an AK-47. Managers who want things done quickly and efficiently won't have the patience for it.
>
> The best way to get trained is on the job. If you enjoy information
> architecture and want to go in that direction in your career, by all
> means go the Open Toolkit route. Otherwise, just learn enough by
> reading the books Tony cited to get familiar with the concepts, so you
> can show a hiring manager that you have the chops to learn the job. It
> gets boring to do the same processes day after day, so some doc
> managers I know are keep losing writers who want to do other things.
>
> Most writers who are in DITA organizations use an elaborate framework
> that has already been set up professionally to give good publishing
> and results, especially for localized documentation. In my last
> company, we had to spend months coming up to speed - the processes you
> have to learn are quite intricate. For localization, you have to
> pre-select every single version of every file and support it with all
> the right components, and it can get quite hairy if you are sharing those topics with other writers.
>
> It's not easy. When I finally got my docs localized, I felt like I'd
> run a marathon.
>
> In my current company, the writers don't go the whole way to
> publishing the docs and doing the localizing themselves. It's
> probably easier, but also probably less satisfying. I always want to
> see a document I've written, not just feed content into the CMS's maw.
>
> Fortunately, I still get to use Flare and Lingo, despite the fact that
> I work in a big company. Don't ask me how that happened - I figure
> it's all because I built up good karma in a previous life..:-0
>
> Cheers
>
> Bee
>
>
> On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 5:10 PM, kafkascampi <kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com>wrote:
>
>> About DITA and large companies--I am a lone writer and author all of
>> our docs in DITA (well, some in Docbook). I'd argue that for a small
>> company, the benefits of DITA are still quite valid: Separating
>> design from content, easing translation costs, maximizing
>> reusability, writing for minimalism.
>> And you're ready to build out your doc set in a scalable way when
>> Facebook buys you for 18 billion.
>>
>> Personally, I got started at dita.xml.org, downloading hte Open
>> Toolkit, reading a bunch of stuff about the solution, and then
>> attending a Hackos class on it. Even if you don't end up going that
>> way, it's a good thing to understand a solution that has gained a real foothold in the industry.
>>
>> cheers
>>
>> Chris
>>
>>
>> On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 10:51 AM, Tony Chung <tonyc -at- tonychung -dot- ca> wrote:
>>
>> > And to add to Robert's insight:
>> >
>> > Most smaller companies who ask for "DITA" in a job description
>> > really
>> have
>> > no clue what it is, let alone what it's used for. They also want
>> experts in
>> > the DITA domain who can transfer all their existing processes into
>> > their workflow. But it doesn't work that way. Unless the
>> > organization and
>> culture
>> > get behind the concept of topic-based single-source authoring, a
>> > DITA implementation will fail.
>> >
>> > Kind of similar to Agile methodology. If an organization does not
>> embrace
>> > collaboration and user-based scenarios, they can't claim to be Agile.
>> >
>> >
>> > For Hannah, I've heard that some of the easy entries are DITA 101
>> > by the Rockley Group, Practical DITA by Julio Vasquez, and DITA for
>> Practitioners
>> > by Eliot Kimber. But you really need to find what works for you
>> > based on what you already know.
>> >
>> > Here's a list of some DITA resources:
>> > http://dita.xml.org/resource-directory
>> >
>> > It would be nice to find a version of this list that was scaled
>> > toward level of understanding vs resource format.
>> >
>> > -Tony
>> >
>> >
>> > On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 9:38 AM, Robert Lauriston
>> > <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com
>> > >wrote:
>> >
>> > >
>> > > You'd be unlikely to need DITA skills outside of a large company.
>> > >
>> > > On Thu, Feb 27, 2014 at 5:47 AM, Hannah Drake
>> > > <hannah -at- formulatrix -dot- com
>> >
>> > > wrote:
>> > > > Bee, good point.
>> > > >
>> > > > Actually, I'm relatively new to the field and have seen various
>> > articles
>> > > > and discussion on DITA but still can't find a good entry point
>> > > > to
>> begin
>> > > to
>> > > > understand what it is. Does anybody have any recommended resources?
>> > > >
>> > > > Thanks in advance.
>> > >
>> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>> > Doc-To-Help: new website, content widgets, and an output that works
>> > on
>> any
>> > screen.
>> >
>> > Learn more: http://bit.ly/1eRs4NS
>> >
>> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>> >
>> > You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as kafkascampi -at- gmail -dot- com -dot-
>> >
>> > To unsubscribe send a blank email to
>> > techwr-l-leave -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
>> >
>> >
>> > Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit
>> > http://www.techwhirl.com/email-discussion-groups/ for more
>> > resources
>> and
>> > info.
>> >
>> > Looking for articles on Technical Communications? Head over to our
>> online
>> > magazine at http://techwhirl.com
>> >
>> > Looking for the archived Techwr-l email discussions? Search our
>> > public email archives @ http://techwr-l.com/archives
>> >
>> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>> Doc-To-Help: new website, content widgets, and an output that works
>> on any screen.
>>
>> Learn more: http://bit.ly/1eRs4NS
>>
>> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>>
>> You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as beelia -at- pacbell -dot- net -dot-
>>
>>
>> To unsubscribe send a blank email to
>> techwr-l-leave -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
>>
>>
>> Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit
>> http://www.techwhirl.com/email-discussion-groups/ for more resources
>> and info.
>>
>> Looking for articles on Technical Communications? Head over to our
>> online magazine at http://techwhirl.com
>>
>> Looking for the archived Techwr-l email discussions? Search our
>> public email archives @ http://techwr-l.com/archives
>>
>
>


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