Hi Diane,

This is my experience.

First I bought Rick Quatro's book and followed 
the exercises - that helps alot. You can even 
modify the scripts a bit and apply them to your needs.

Then there is a steep initial learning curve in 
that you have to learn (a) a new way of looking 
at FrameMaker - by objects - big objects 
(documents) that contain lists of smaller 
objects, etc. - I found that to be exciting but 
it can also be time-consuming until you find what 
you need, and (b) what FrameMaker commands to use 
to process what objects correspond to your task. 
But at this stage every wrong turn you take is a 
right turn in that you are still learning about objects and commands.

Finally, you make a script that servers YOUR 
needs and you are hooked! My first script printed 
8 different versions of the same document using 
conditional text, and the same with a second 
document - for Marketing. Manually it took 30 
minutes to set/hide conditional text and print 
the 16 documents to PDF. I also had to change the 
value of a variable. My script did the task in 
between 11-12 seconds! When I showed my boss he 
said the investment - FrameScript (150) and book (100) - already paid off.

Since then I have made an interface for printing 
all of my PDF documentation with check boxes and 
Choose All items. The printing sets conditional 
text, updates the book, can be done from a test 
or an official directory, can show the documents 
being processed (visibility) or not for increased 
speed, has a verbose mode to print progress 
statements or not - I have full control and the 
job is done fast and perfectly each time. A 2.5 
hour manual task is reduced to 10 mins if the 
documents are local, or 20 mins if they are network.

I admit to having spent 2 days looking for a bug 
in a script, and it came down to not a 
FrameScript error but an improperly defined text 
inset...I have lost some time working things out 
but this only added to my experience.

If you like development you are sure to GAIN big 
time with scripts - for big and small jobs. For 
example we wanted to standardize file names. I 
wrote a script that went through my books, 
displayed each image name (imported by reference) 
, let me change the file name, and updated the 
name in the FM document. I used code written 
initially for another application and it went well.

In the first year I spent a 4-5 weeks on 
FrameScript but my partners know that my 
documents can be printed on demand, they know 
there will be no mistakes in production, and they 
feel that we work professionally in 
Documentation. You give a better, faster service 
and can optimize future procedures. Go for it! Good luck.

At 15:28 2007-01-22, Rick Quatro wrote:
>Hi Diane,
>It depends on how much time you are willing to 
>invest and what kind of projects you are going 
>to practice with. I would say that you can get 
>up to speed with it in a couple of months if you 
>faithfully work with it an hour a day. I may be 
>way off on my estimate, but if it makes you feel 
>any better, I am still learning after more than 8 years of working with it.
>At the risk of sounding self-serving, some of my 
>clients have learned by buying a few scripts 
>first and then learning from them, especially if 
>they are well-commented. One thing I can say 
>without hesitation: whether you buy scripts or 
>write your own (or a combination of both), 
>FrameScript will pay for itself very quickly. 
>Well-planned automation is a benefit to any workflow.
>When you buy FrameScript, make sure you work 
>through the free tutorials on my web site. You 
>should also join the FrameScript group at http://groups.yahoo.com.
>Rick Quatro
>Carmen Publishing
>>Hi all,
>>I'm considering asking my manager to buy FrameScript for me and I have to
>>justify it of course.  Does anyone have any data on how long it takes to
>>become reasonably proficient using it. I have 4 years of sw dev experience
>>and 15 years of FM experience.
>You are currently subscribed to Framers as sobrien at innovmetric.com.
>Send list messages to framers at lists.frameusers.com.
>To unsubscribe send a blank email to framers-unsubscribe at 
>or visit 
>Send administrative questions to listadmin at frameusers.com. Visit
>http://www.frameusers.com/ for more resources and info.

Stephen O'Brien, R?dacteur technique / Technical Writer
InnovMetric Logiciels inc. / InnovMetric Software Inc.
2014, Jean-Talon Nord, Suite 310
Qu?bec (Qu?bec), Canada G1N 4N6

Tel./T?l.: (418) 688-2061
Fax/Telec.: (418) 688-3001
courriel/e-mail: sobrien at innovmetric.com

PolyWorks, the Universal 3D Metrology Software Platform for Manufacturing (TM)

Reply via email to