RE: Confluence Usage

Subject: RE: Confluence Usage
From: "Sharon Metzger" <sharon -dot- metzger -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "'John G'" <john -at- garisons -dot- com>, "'Laura Phillips'" <laurap -at- pluribusnetworks -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 14 Jul 2015 13:56:23 -0400

I've been using Confluence since November. We currently deliver PDFs only.
It was here when I got here, and has had a series of (now moved-on) tech
writers working on various versions and various templates.

Our software shop uses lots of Atlassian tools (Jira, Stash, HipChat, etc),
so the fact that all the tools play well together is attractive.

Built-in PDF export is challenging. Your CSS savvy will be stretched, and
there's still some black magic under the covers. I'm currently working on
templates for the Scroll PDF Exporter (eval version), but that seems to have
different quirks than the built-in PDF, so the jury's still out.

Our engineers and sales/product folks use it extensively for an internal
wiki. (design docs, release plans, roadmaps, customer wish lists, general
how-tos, and the like). They've gotten much better at posting things since
I've jumped in as an active curator -- customizing the dashboard, archiving
obsolete pages, generally making it easier to find what's current, etc.

They also like collaborating and commenting on the doc sources. I was
nervous about the collaboration (that engineers would go in mucking up all
my carefully crafted professional-writer work), but for the most part, they
use the page and inline comment features and don't edit "my" sources. They
also like the Comala Workflows plugin I've implemented for review cycles and
signoffs.

So, with caveats, it's working for us. I still miss Frame (which I lived in
for 15-20 years) and would love to get a chance to learn Flare. There are
enough quirks in Confluence's WYSISometimes/SortaWYG (agree on the necessity
of the source editor) and PDF production to make me hold back on a
wholehearted recommendation. Lists and nested lists are my nemesis. As are
pagebreaks. But then, there's a whole community of folks out there who love
it and think it's the best thing since spell-check. I haven't found the
Kool-Aid yet, but it's hard to say where to draw the line between my still
less than expert knowledge and Confluence's real limitations.

FWIW,
Sharon

PS -- Robert -- I suspect I'd be interested in your pagebreak
macros/pointers. And thanks for your comments about Scroll HTML exporter vs
Confluence web delivery.


-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+sharon -dot- metzger=gmail -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+sharon -dot- metzger=gmail -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
Behalf Of John G
Sent: Monday, July 13, 2015 9:45 PM
To: Laura Phillips
Cc: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Re: Confluence Usage

We've been using Confluence for our context-sensitive online help for the
past 18 months or so. We use the Scroll Versions add on to allow us to have
multiple doc versions (past, present, future releases) which adds complexity
but provides features we require. We also localize into three languages.

We also use Confluence extensively for internal communications - various
teams and departments use it to develop and host content.

It's gained wide popularity due to its ease of use. PDF capability is merely
adequate.

I like using it as I can focus on content and not have to worry about
formatting.




On Monday, July 13, 2015, Laura Phillips <laurap -at- pluribusnetworks -dot- com>
wrote:

>
> Hi there,
>
> Are many companies using Confluence as the main tool for getting
> product information to customers? Since it is collaborative, what is
> the buy in necessary from the engineering group? Is that crucial to
> the success or failure of using the tool?
>
> Is it worth the effort to learn it and then subsequently maintain it?
>
> Just looking for any feedback or experience using Confluence,
>
> Laura
>
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--
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Follow-Ups:

References:
Confluence Usage: From: Laura Phillips
Re: Confluence Usage: From: John G

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