6 Replies Latest reply on Jan 19, 2014 11:38 AM by Peter Grainge

    Way to dynamically create web output based on conditional text?

    kdeuler

      Hi. Can anyone tell me if there's a way to dynamically expose conditional text in a RoboHelp output?

       

      I write documentation for a software company using FrameMaker, from which I make PDF outputs. The Frame files are loaded with conditional text. Most of the conditions specify whether or not the text should be exposed or not according to the version of the software that I'm creating a document for.

       

      I'd be very interested to know if a user of RoboHelps web output could be first prompted to input the version of the software that they own. Once specified, the output would dynamically display text that is relevant to that user, and hide text that isn't. For example, the user specifies version "5.4", then the output would expose conditional text labeled, say, "5.4_only" and "5.4_+", and "5.3_+", but HIDE conditions labeled "5.3_only" and "pre_5.4".

       

      Use of version-based conditional text works OK for me now. Before I create a PDF, I simply expose the conditional text relevant to the version I'm printing, then do the PDF. Where the process bogs down is when I make revisions of docs. For example, if I find that a step needs to be changes for versions 5.4 and later, I have to re-PDF versions 5.4, 5.5, 5.6, etc.

       

      It seems to me that if we moved to a dynamic media like the web, these publishing maintenance issues would be greatly reduced. I understand that as a writer I'd have to maintain a table of some kind which controls what conditions are exposed/hidden according to the user-selected version. But this would be a lot easier than doing all that manual PDF work. The additional benefits of Web-based output (eg searches) would also be realized.

       

      Thanks much in advance!