Re: Developments in the review cycle

Subject: Re: Developments in the review cycle
From: Daniel Friedman <daniel -dot- friedman42 -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 7 Apr 2016 12:04:41 -0400

At my current position, we have made the embedded help file update-able
through the software's update feature. This means a customer doesn't have
to install an entire release, but just an update package. Whether or not
the customer has to re-validate their entire install after downloading an
update package, is something that the customer would have to decide based
on their SOPs (pharmaceutical industry).

Having the help on a separate web server could fix the validation question,
because then we wouldn't be changing anything in their installation to
update help, but it assumes:
1. Access control to avoid other clients/3rd parties from viewing help for
proprietary custom software.
2. End users would be able to visit our help website through the corporate
firewall/web blocking, which can be quite restrictive at these companies.

On Thu, Apr 7, 2016 at 11:51 AM, Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
wrote:

> In your vision of tech utopia, everything is on the public web, all
> applications are updated continuously, and all customers are cool with
> that. You seem to imagine that the only alternative to this utopia is
> a tech dystopia in which tech writers are still writing linearly and
> distributing printed manually.
>
> In the real world, there's still a lot of installed software with
> embedded online help. Once that ships and a customer installs it, the
> help doesn't get updated until they choose to install a later release.
>
> Is that a less than ideal situation? Yes. Would I prefer to put the
> help on the web so I could update it at any time? Yes. Do I know how
> to do that? Yes. Do I have a plan to do that? Yes. Are there sound
> practical reasons for not having done it yet? Yes.
>
> Lecturing working professional tech writers about how we're doing
> things wrong is probably not the best way of promoting your consulting
> business.
>
> On Wed, Apr 6, 2016 at 10:39 PM, <mbaker -at- analecta -dot- com> wrote:
> > Without the
> > restraint of shipping paper, you can continue to make the content better
> and
> > to add additional content, potentially through the life of the product.
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*Daniel Friedman*
*friedmantechpublications.com* <http://friedmantechpublications.com>
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Follow-Ups:

References:
Developments in the review cycle: From: Erika Yanovich
RE: Developments in the review cycle: From: mbaker
RE: Developments in the review cycle: From: Steve Hudson
RE: Developments in the review cycle: From: mbaker
Re: Developments in the review cycle: From: Robert Lauriston

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