Re: Online documentation

Subject: Re: Online documentation
From: Dave Prior <triton!dap -at- UUSTAR -dot- STARNET -dot- NET>
Date: Wed, 17 May 1995 08:45:41 -0500

Here's what happened at Strata:

>We are currently in the early stages of planning our online doc
>project. . . . .

>1. Did you replace your paper doc or continue to provide paper doc
>as a supplement to the online system? If you still provide paper doc
>to your users, is it a full-blown set or a condensed version?

We support many customers who use older versions of our products. Requests
for replacement documentation are honored in paper form. Our sales people
still encourage those customers to convert to newer versions and online

>2. Were your users receptive to the change to online doc?

At a recent User's Group meeting, customers were very excited about the
demonstrations of online user's manuals and help. Most returned to their
companies and requested P.O.'s for both.

>3. Did you provide the online information as part of the help system,
>or did you convert the documentation so that it could be viewed online
>(e.g., Adobe Acrobat)? What tool did you use?

As part of a new product development project, we have expanded online help
using the tools which came with the GUI development package (JAM). At the
same time, we are developing user documentation on a number of platforms
which makes the use of Acrobat perfect. We can create a document once,
then port it to a PC running Windows, a Mac, or a Unix system using the
Acrobat Reader for each.

>4. Did you hire a consultant, or were you brave enough to tackle the
>project on your own? If you did the work yourself, how much of a
>learning curve did you encounter? Any recommendations on training?

I went to the Solutions seminar "Online Documentation that Works"; then, we
followed the decision making techniques from that. It worked.

Hope this helps.

Dave Prior - Product Communications Specialist
STRATA Group, St. Louis, MO
(314) 770 - 9619
triton!dap -at- uustar -dot- starnet -dot- net
"My opinions, not STRATA's"

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