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Wow, I'm glad I asked the second question (about WWP). Yes, we do use
FrameMaker, that's why we want to buy WWP. However, I come from the camp
that believes it's best to write the online help first, then port the topics
into manual format. And it sounds like people are saying that WWP expects
you to create your single-sourcing text in manual format (Frame) first, then
port it out to help when it's complete.
This is disturbing because for years, I've found I can get my work done
faster by creating the help first. I've found it's faster because help is so
modular. First, I create all context-sensitive topics (screen help), then I
use those topics to create the how-to's. After all that text is approved, I
start bringing the topics into Frame and tweaking them into manual format.
It's a very fast way to work. If I try to approximate that technique using
WWP, I'll be adding a lot of time onto the project.
I also prefer to create the help first because it gives the early customers
answers to their questions about the product, right there, built into the
interface. This, then, gives you a grace period, extra time to develop the
best possible manual.
Thanks to everyone for your replies!
bethkane -at- tcisolutions -dot- com
Senior Technical Writer
Total Control Information
| Also: If I create Winhelp OR RoboHTML (using either RH 7.0 or 2000), does
| anyone know whether it will be easy to convert it to WebWorks Publisher's
| HTML-based help? We might be buying WWP in a couple months.
<snip>...it could be awful
time-consuming. First, you'll have to get your WinHelp or HTML Help files
into FrameMaker, then you'll have to do some tweaking in Frame. Then, you'd
build the WebWorks template and be ready to produce the WebWorks Help
output. This can be done. The painful part is: what do you do when you need
to change the original WinHelp or HTML project? Answer: Repeat the whole
process of converting from RoboHELP to FrameMaker.