Re: Question on Word Macros

Subject: Re: Question on Word Macros
From: Dave Chisma & Gail Hodgson <chisma -at- C031 -dot- AONE -dot- NET -dot- AU>
Date: Sat, 30 Aug 1997 09:06:24 +1000

Marie C. Paretti wrote:
> Ok, I have a very naive, simple question. Yesterday someone wrote:
> "Frame can't search for text across chapters, has no outline mode, is
> harder to export to HLP, and lacks Word's simple macro interface."
> I've never really used Word's macro interface, and since I'm currently
> thinking about moving to Frame, as y'all know, what exactly will I be
> losing. In other words, those of you who use macros in writing manuals,
> what the heck do you use them for? Is there something I could be doing to
> make my life easier that I've been missing all these months??

Dave Chisma wrote:

We use Word macros to take care of some of the details that users tend
to forget about when producing company documents. Our internal documents
contain header and footers with things like the title, file name, user
name, creation date, and so on. (I've seen one document where the
subject was placed three times on the same page (in the title line, in
the header, and in the footer.) It gets a bit much at times.

This is a lot to ask a casual user to remember to do, so we have a macro
that runs when a new document is created that interrogates the user for
all of this information. On using the File Print command, we have
another macro that updates all the fields before printing.

On a more useful note, you can quickly create a macro in Word to replace
a tedious or repetitive series of commands. This can be a real time
saver sometimes. However, using Frame, I don't miss these functions very
much. All the macros in the world can't compensate for the loss of time
in trying to use the wrong tool for the job.

The manuals we were producing in Word had 'hit the wall' in terms of
Word's ability to handle large documents. They became unprintable and
horribly slow to do anything with. After moving to Frame, I might have
lost the ability to use macros, but the net result was a massive
increase in speed and reliability.

The manual that was the bane on my existence last year (in Word) is just
another routine task this year (in Frame).

PS: (no pun intended) the bloated Word document I mentioned wouldn't
print from Word. Word would crash every time, no matter what printer I
tried to use. Except for Acrobat. I could make a PDF file from Word and
print from that. Weird.

Cheers, Dave chisma
chisma -at- c031 -dot- a0ne -dot- net -dot- au

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