2 Replies Latest reply on Jul 6, 2007 3:44 AM by timmo08

    HTML vs Word

    timmo08
      Just following up on another recent query on this subject. With Vista not supporting Winhelp we've moved to producing HTML outputs but still using Word for the base document.
      What are the main advantages of using the HTML editor over Word ?
      We did try a sample conversion but it made a mess of the text styles and formats. However, we're experiencing a number of problems with the project in Word and wondering if moving to HTML will help. A colleague (more knowledgable than me) is of the view that using Word for help docs is a dying practice and may be difficult to support in future. Maybe but most people are familiar with Word rather than a separate editor so I'm hesitant about moving even if we can resolve the conversion issues (and alas the document is full of local styles).
        • 1. Re: HTML vs Word
          RoboWizard Level 4
          Hi timmo08

          With Vista not supporting Winhelp is not true. WinHelp still operates on Vista. 16 bit WinHelp operates as it did before and 32 bit WinHelp requires a download, but still works.

          However, moving to .CHM output is a step in the right direction.

          Word was created to create paper documents. Later, it was used to edit Rich Text Format (RTF) files, that when properly marked up with the right code, created WinHelp files. Then along came the merry world of HTML and tossed a huge monkey wrench into the works.

          If you use Word, it will create all sorts of unwanted "extras", that exist as a way to work around the limitations of the paper based world and create HTML pages. This results in all sorts of odd code and sometimes odd behavior that ends up affecting (sometimes severely) the way your HTML pages work and look. As you have seen, you usually end up with a mess of styles and formats.

          If I were in your shoes (and once upon a time many years ago I was) I would move to RoboHelp HTML and drop Word like a hot potato. The WYSIWYG editor in RoboHelp HTML is very "Word Like", so you do have some level of comfort. To be very honest, about the only thing I truly missed after migrating the the world of HTML, was the Non-Scrolling regions. But now I don't even miss those.

          Cheers... Rick
          • 2. Re: HTML vs Word
            timmo08 Level 1
            Thanks for the feedback. I guess I'll have a nibble at the bullet sooner than later and see if it stops the problems we've been having. Seems a slightly retrograde step though, to lose the Word link. Oh well.