RE: Resources for learning Structured Writing?

Subject: RE: Resources for learning Structured Writing?
From: "Janoff, Steven" <Steven -dot- Janoff -at- hologic -dot- com>
To: Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>, Techwr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 27 Oct 2014 16:23:33 +0000

Couple of questions, if you don't mind.

What made you decide the migration would not be cost-effective?

How many such investigations have you been involved in?

Did any of them ever lead to actual migration?

If so, how did it go for you? Did it meet the cost savings you were expecting?

If you didn't go to migration, was it the same reason each time -- not cost-effective?

Thanks.

I think a lot of legacy content comes from the old book model, where you had chapters and sections. These were often developed in unstructured Frame, Word, and similar tools. Then these book projects get imported into Flare or another HAT, and they end up as "topics" corresponding to sections of the book but are still unstructured. New topics developed in the HAT are also often unstructured -- a mixture of concept, task, and reference material.

So topic-based authoring is not new and even structured writing is not new per se but it is new to a lot of writers. If you're not already developing in a content model like DITA, DocBook, S1000D, or similar, then chances are slim that you're writing structured content intuitively. If that's different for you, then you're ahead of the game.

Steve

On Friday, October 24, 2014 3:33 PM, Robert Lauriston wrote:

The first time I researched migrating to DocBook or DITA, they seemed like just formalization of the way I had been writing anyway. After we decided it would not be cost-effective, I made a few minor changes to our FrameMaker template to ensure that migration would be as simple as possible.

Maybe I've just had no exposure to old-school content. When people talk about topic-based writing as something new and different, I have trouble imagining out what they'd been doing before.

On Fri, Oct 24, 2014 at 12:41 PM, Janoff, Steven <Steven -dot- Janoff -at- hologic -dot- com> wrote:
> No matter how you slice it, there are two major tasks in this whole endeavor: converting "old school" content into contemporary, structured content (task/concept/reference topic or similar, with everything that entails), and then tagging a la DITA/XML.


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Follow-Ups:

References:
Re: Resources for learning Structured Writing?: From: Stuart Burnfield
Re: Resources for learning Structured Writing?: From: Stuart Burnfield
RE: Resources for learning Structured Writing?: From: Janoff, Steven
Re: Resources for learning Structured Writing?: From: Robert Lauriston

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