Re: Word instead of FrameMaker

Subject: Re: Word instead of FrameMaker
From: "Flanders, Melanie" <mflanders -at- DYNASTY -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 14 Jan 1997 21:20:20 -0600

And now for the cons...

1. If you need TOC and indexing capabilities for your document, Word can't begin
to handle the task. FrameMaker allows you a lot of flexibility in designing
formats and generates them with little manual intervention. The cross references
are accurate. With Word, it's a crapshoot, and you can spend HOURS manually
correcting incorrectly generated page numbers. Word does not allow much
flexibility in creating TOCs. We have had several users have squirrelly thing
occur when they were trying to create a TOC and we couldn't find a way to
troubleshoot the problem.

2. If you have large documents, Word has difficulty handling the size.
FrameMaker's book file capability allows you to generate large documents easily
and quickly. Other timing and space issues can also depend on the hardware you
have.

3. If you use a lot of tables in your doc, Frame allows you to define your own
table formats. Editing and manipulating tables in FM is a breeze; in Word, they
are a nightmare.

4. If you use structured writing methodologies (such as Information Mapping), it
is much easier and faster to create the templates for your documents in
FrameMaker. You can also create tags that automatically produce lines or text
such as "continued on next page."

5. You can use FrameMaker source files to create HTML and Acrobat files if you
need multiple delivery mechanisms. We convert files to .rtf for our Word users.
You often lose the graphics, but the rest of the format, including tables, stays
intact. Word users can modify the .rtf file. (We send .rtfs to our offices in
Europe. They also have the issue of the page size being different.)


Quite frankly, I can't imagine any "pros" for using Word to create printed
documentation. The only thing that I've found Word can do that FM doesn't is a
mail merge. I use Word on those occasions when I am sending out form letters.

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Word instead of FrameMaker
Author: Tan Joo Khim <jktan -at- CTHOST -dot- CT -dot- CREAF -dot- COM>
Sender: "Technical Writers
List; for al at ~INTERNET
Date: 1/14/97 8:23 PM



Pls advise on the pros and cons of using Word instead of FrameMaker for
printed documentation.

>From our point of view, the immediate benefit of using Word instead of
FrameMaker are:
1. Currently, there are no Asian versions of FM. Standardizing on Word
would mean that worldwide loc offices can all work on the original
documents that HQ
has created.

2. Word is also a good platform for generating WinHelp and HTML.
Eventually, we
probably should standardize on HTML as this will mean one consistent
interface for
the user instead of three different online solutions: WinHelp, Acrobat
and HTML.

tks... merci... gracias...
- jookhim +

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