Re: Windows help tools--which to use?

Subject: Re: Windows help tools--which to use?
From: Martyn Thirlway <thirlwaym -at- USOFT -dot- NL>
Date: Fri, 31 May 1996 08:44:00 PDT

>Nora Merhar {merhar -at- YOOPER -dot- SWITCH -dot- ROCKWELL -dot- COM} asks:

>>1. If you use a help tool, which do you use and do you like it?
>>2. If you have used more than one tool, which did you prefer?
>>3. Is Robohelp really the best, or just the most popular?
>>4. Is it better to use a tool, or just code the help without one?

1. I use Doc-To-Help and am very pleased with it
2. I have also used RoboHelp, HULK, and dabbled with HelpMagician and a few
others
3. I think Doc-To-Help is the best for me, because I'm working in
circumstances where the paper docs and the on-line Help are similar.
Doc-To-Help provides empty macros which can use to carry out your own
processing at different points in the conversion process from DOC to RTF.
This has enables me, by judicious use of style codes, to create two
different versions of help (one for W3.11 one for W'95) from the same
source, which also becomes the printed manual and the online manual (Acrobat
PDF format). I have even discovered that some of my processing is in fact
now incorporated into the new version of D2H, so maybe I should work for
WexTech :-)
I get the impression that RoboHelp is very popular, and it is true that Blue
Sky work very closely with Microsoft (so they will probably be the first to
be ready with the new HTML-based help when it comes). But for my purposes,
D2H wins.
4. Definitely use a tool. But also study how the help system works, and what
all the coding is, so that you can manipulate the results of the tool if
necessary.

Martyn Thirlway
thirlwaym -at- usoft -dot- nl
["This writing business, pencils and what-not. Overrated if you ask me."
Eeyore]

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