Re: Callouts on Artwork - Best Method Please?

Subject: Re: Callouts on Artwork - Best Method Please?
From: Ben Kovitz <apteryx -at- CHISP -dot- NET>
Date: Mon, 2 Nov 1998 10:08:44 -0700

Barb Philbrick wrote a very nice list of advantages and disadvantages to
putting callouts in the word processor or DTP program, going far beyond the
disadvantage that I listed (crudeness of graphic capabilities in Word).
One of the advantages was:

>* In Frame, you can use variable names in callouts (only if you use
>text frames instead of text strings), so if your variable changes, it
>changes in the callout, too.

Just wanted to add that this is also true in Word, and that a very common
reason for doing this is to refer to section and page numbers. And indeed
I like to do that a lot in graphics, though I don't think I do it so often
in callouts. A big diagram that shows all the main procedures or concepts
or whatever is sometimes also a perfect place to tell a reader where to
find the details about each one.

Nevertheless, I've *still* made these graphics in Visio and just put the
section numbers in manually. Yeah, yeah, a maintenance nightmare, and
probably not good to do in an environment where other people will work on
the document--which is to say, probably not good to do in almost any real
environment. I just couldn't stand how crude the graphics came out in
Word, though, and how hard they were to create. Maybe Visio's ability to
make OLE links could solve this problem? Nah, probably not...

BTW, interesting points from others about internationalization. I've never
worked on a document that was supposed to be translated into multiple

Ben Kovitz <apteryx -at- chisp -dot- net>
Author, _Practical Software Requirements: A Manual of Content & Style_

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