John Sgammato wrote:
> I think you're right on, Lin. 
> You know the tools you need to produce your deliverables. 
> I don't tell my plumber what kind of wrench to use...
> john 

Sounds more like a case of "I don't tell my plumber which voltmeter to 

Does Mr./Ms. Quality understand why "Help" is in the RoboHelp name?  Why 
on earth would you choose such a tool to create a whole list of 
deliverables *none of which* is Help??  (Because when all you have is a 
hammer, everything looks like nails...)

You're right to stick to your guns, Lin -- you're using the best tool 
there is for the job you have to do.  It would be very foolish and 
counterproductive indeed to standardize on RH for your deliverables.

Good luck!

> -----Original Message-----
> From: at
> [ at] On
> Behalf Of Lin Surasky
> Sent: Wednesday, June 20, 2007 2:10 PM
> To: framers at
> Subject: FM v. RoboHelp
> No, it's not a typo. No, we're not being asked to use Word.... 
> The person in charge of "quality" for our company does not seem to
> understand why we don't use RoboHelp to create content for our software
> manuals. After all, every office has RoboHelp (not the Adobe version),
> so what's the big deal? To me, the big deal is that we deliver PDFs, not
> CHMs, to our customers, and they like the layout. And it's faster to
> work in FM than it is in RH. My rule is, if I have to provide a TOC,
> it's a book. If I'm providing a book, I'm working in FM. If they decide
> they ALSO want HTML or CHM files, I can do that too, with FrameMaker and
> MIF2Go. I can't create a CHM in RH and then effortlessly have a pretty
> PDF to give our other customers, or can I?
> For the record, we are not currently delivering ANY online help. We
> deliver User Guides, Admin Guides, Release Notes, and
> whitepapers/reports. All are electronic -- no printing except for the
> pages our users want to print for themselves. Am I wrong to stick so
> stubbornly to my FM process?
> FM Process: Source content created and maintained in FM book. For
> delivery, PDFs are generated with live x-refs/links where necessary
> using Acrobat. If users want or need HTML, MIF2Go is ready to -- er, go.
> (No one in the US has EVER asked for a CHM, but if it should happen, use
> HTML Help Workshop to compile the HTML Help from MIF2Go.)
> RH Process: Source content created and maintained in RH. For delivery,
> PDFs are generated and look awful because there's no clean page layout
> formatting OR CHMs are delivered.
> Does it even make sense to deliver CHM for browser-based software being
> accessed over a network, since CHMs need to be accessed from the hard
> drive (unless you get into registry edits, which is NOT an option for
> us.)
> (We're also not doing much file-swapping amongst writers; we all kind of
> do our own thing, and there's not much room for content reuse right now,
> but still they want everyone to follow the same process...)
> Ideas? Feedback? I promised I would get opinions from the experts over
> here, as I apparently don't qualify as one myself... So what would you
> do, wise ones?
> Lin
> _______________________________________________

Stuart Rogers
Technical Communicator
Phoenix Geophysics Limited
Toronto, ON, Canada
+1 (416) 491-7340 x 325

srogers phoenix-geophysics com

"Developers explain How the Product Works.
Technical writers explain How to Work the Product."

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