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Subject:Re: Clue me in From:Penny Staples <pstaples -at- AIRWIRE -dot- COM> Date:Wed, 21 May 1997 11:48:43 -0500
This is kind of going off on a tangent from your original question,
but I thought it might be of interest.
I work for a small (<20 employees) computer engineering company.
We don't use HTML help here, but we do put all of our project
documentation on-line using HTML.
Our internal project web-site includes:
- requirements documents
- design documents
- work breakdown documents
- technical datasheets
- vendor names, addresses and contact info
- an on-line system for reporting ECNs (Engineering Change Notices)
- an ECN repository, complete with illustrative diagrams
- schematics, parts lists and autocad drawings
- meeting minutes
Netscape and MSIE can both handle all kinds of extensions, so I have
the web pages link to all kinds of documents -- Word documents,
spreadsheets, PDF files etc. I haven't found a format yet that I can't
deal with one way or another. I started it on a whim (to be honest), but it
quickly grew and took on a life of its own, as the engineers realized that
they weren't going to have to keep huge binders of documents (and
revisions). The current revision is always on the web-site, and they know
that I can find old revisions for them if necessary. For us, it makes the
information much more quickly accessible that paper methods. And when
the project winds down, we burn the web-site material into a CD, instead
of keeping shelves full of binders.
As a Technical Writer, I'm finding all of this very exciting and
I get to organize project information that I might not otherwise have seen,
and by organizing it, I've found that I've automatically become more
in project planning. The result is that I'm more involved in what's going
in the project than I would have been had I just stuck to writing manuals.
And, because I know more about the project details, it's helping me write
better documentation (I think!).
pstaples -at- airwire -dot- com
> From: Hillary Jones <hillary -at- NICHIMEN -dot- COM>
> To: TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU
> Subject: Clue me in
> Date: May 21, 1997 10:46 AM
> I'm sorry if I'm representing the bottom of the "smarts" barrel here,
> but I hear about HTML-help from every direction, and even my own company
> distributes documentation as HTML files--my question is, how does it
> work? Now, please don't refer me to references on creating HTML files,
> because I know how to do that. What I want to know is how do people use
> documentation or online help that is in the form of HTML?
> I have never used software that has HTML help, and it seems that on the
> typical little computer screen, it would be awfully hard to be working
> with your software and reading steps off of an HTML browser at the same
> time--how would all the windows fit on your screen? Are these HTML help
> files integrated into the software in some way?
> If you're experienced with HTML-help or have seen it in action, please
> clue me in! You can respond to me privately if you want.
> Thanks in advance!
> Hillary Jones
> hillary -at- nichimen -dot- com
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