15 Replies Latest reply: Feb 10, 2012 9:57 AM by ktel_1888 RSS

    Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window

    ktel_1888

      I am outputting my Adobe Robohelp as Browser Based Help and am working to implement context-sensitivity.

       

      I've made some progress with my context-sensitive help, in that I'm able to get it to open on the right page in a popup window with the TOC pane.

      My code for this is:

      myserverroot/index.htm#<str=map_ID>>

      I've been reading the following site and it broke down the API into easy to follow chunks:
      http://www.wvanweelden.eu/robohelp/context_sensitivity_in_webhelp/meth ods_for_calling_Webhelp/regular_start_file

      Given the methods described here, I should be able to have my context-sensitive guide open up in my main browser window rather than a popup by utilizing the following string:

      myserverroot/index.htm#<str=map_ID>>newwnd=false

      However, when I run my tests, the UG still opens in a new popup window.

      How can I fix my code so that it displays in my main browser window with the TOC rather than a popup window?

        • 1. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
          Willam van Weelden CommunityMVP

          Hi,

           

          Which version of RoboHelp are you using? This article is created for WebHelp, but AirHelp *should* be the same as WebHelp. I'll need to look into the code to determine the AirHelp equivalent for the newwnd=false.

           

          Greetm

           

          Willam

          • 2. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
            ktel_1888 Community Member

            Thanks for your quick reply William. I'm using Robohelp 9.

            • 3. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
              Willam van Weelden CommunityMVP

              Hi,

               

              I took a quick peek. Unfortunately, the CSH for browser based AIR help seems to be controlled by the file cshapp.swf. Since this is a flash file, I can't look into the file to see what it does. (I'm not a flash coder and I've deleted my Flash trial a long time ago.)

              newwnd=false simply doesn't seem to work in AIR. Unless there's someone who is able to crack the SWF and tell us what it does, there's nothing more we can do.

               

              Greet,

               

              Willam

              • 4. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                ktel_1888 Community Member

                Thanks for looking into it William.

                 

                Do Adobe developers or members of the support team look at these forums?

                 

                It would be helpful if we could get some notes from someone on the inside. Maybe they know how to make the CSH work properly for Adobe Air.

                • 5. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                  Willam van Weelden CommunityMVP

                  Hi,

                   

                  Although this is a user forum, Adobe employees sometimes offer up the valuable time to help out. But the forum is not the proper channel to notify Adobe of bugs and feature requests. Please go to https://www.adobe.com/cfusion/mmform/index.cfm?name=wishform&product=38 to report bugs and request new features. I think that BB AIR works as designed, so I'd classify no popups as a feature request.

                   

                  Greet,

                   

                  Willam

                  • 6. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                    ktel_1888 Community Member

                    Hi William:

                     

                    I beg to differ re: feature request vs bug.

                     

                    Among the counts of [deleted] Adobe is committing against paying customers of TCS3, I count:

                     

                    1. Failing to provide any direction on CSH re: Adobe Air in their incredibly bad, poorly detailed User Guides.

                    2. Depending on unpaid product experts to properly detail and lay out the information users actually require within their own blogs (you, Peter Grainge et al. Peter has strenuously objected to any suggestion that he is paid for what he does. If all of you great resources are not getting paid for doing the work Adobe should have been doing, you should be putting up a hell of a fight to ensure that you are paid and paid quite well by this billion dollar company).

                    3. Depending on unpaid product experts to troll user forums, LinkedIn, etc on their own free time to answer questions that could have, should have and would have been properly answered in a UG. Of course I understand that UG's are not the be all and end all of documentation, but Adobe's not even trying when it comes to FM and RH.

                    4. Not giving the unpaid product experts any direction on where to go with some of the product updates, leading every expert site to basically say, "Well, it should be the same as WebHelp because we haven't been told any different" when it looks like that's not the case at all.

                    4. Failing to update the CSH API to include Adobe Air, the best-looking and most forward-thinking RH output option available. This is both short-sighted and stupid and the most egregious of all of the bugs I have listed.

                     

                    Needless to say, my team and I are feeling quite [deleted] right now and have no desire to revert to the ancient and outdated looking (but much more configurable) WebHelp output in order to get context-sensitivity to work properly.

                     

                    It is a shame Adobe has chosen to take the [deleted] route with FM and RH because when I look at products like Photoshop (wow!) and Premiere Pro (used to cut The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo together!), it's clear that Adobe has huge dedicated teams to keep these products going and useful and up-to-date, while it seems like the absolute bare minimum of resources have been applied to FM and RH.

                     

                    I truly appreciate your help and the help of your colleagues. Your sites are truly useful and well-put together and you seem to be the only help available out there when compared to the almost-useless RH UG, but it is a shame that Adobe does not provide you with more direction and useful information to include on the sites. I'm amazed they let Air CSH slip through the cracks like this.

                     

                    it looks like I'm going to have to download trial runs of MadCap Flare (built by ex-Robohelp developers!) and WebWorks ePublisher Pro to see if they can do a better job than RH at fulfilling our needs (we were using an older version of WebWorks on our previous documentation, but thought the TCS3 suite would, as advertised, provide a complete solution within a single framework).

                     

                    Message was edited because of unacceptable language

                    • 7. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                      Jeff_Coatsworth CommunityMVP

                      start rebuttal rant/

                       

                      You've got to remember that AIRHelp is a fledgling output format for RH. It doesn't have all the bells & whistles that WebHelp has (yet). They're still adding features to it as they go - just in this last release, they added a simple template skin editor. Does it do everything that I want it do? No, it just lets you play with the colours - but it's a start.

                       

                      Use the link that Willam gave you - that's the only place where Adobe staff "know" about anything for sure. If thousands of users pound them on this "bug" (to you), then the chances of them "fixing" it are much higher. If you don't ask, they can't read your mind to give you something.

                       

                      Secondly, if you think the help sucks so much, then add your two cents worth in helping to fix it up - the Community Help format allows for user comments to be submitted and incorporated into the next help release. It can't get better if you don't point out what's wrong or unclear.

                       

                      /end rant

                      • 8. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                        ktel_1888 Community Member

                        Thanks Jeff. I logged my bug prior to responding to William.

                        • 9. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                          Peter Grainge CommunityMVP

                          This thread is in danger of getting locked.

                           

                          ktel_1888's language is unacceptable. Say what you like elsewhere but respect the rules of this forum.

                           

                          It has been explained that this is a user to user forum. Official support is available through Adobe's Tech Support. Those of us who have tried to help do so not for any monetary reward but because we received help when we started out and now it's payback time. We help where we can but we are users who cannot know everything. The users here are mostly technical authors responsible for producing the help and with little or no knowledge of the developer side of calling help.

                           

                          Some of the folks at Adobe do help us with information on an unpaid basis and and I did in fact ask someone a few hours ago if they could take a look at the thread. Because of time zone differences that would not happen until tomorrow at best but they may be reluctant to do so now.

                           

                          The issues you have flagged are issues to be directed at Adobe, not here where people have done their best to help you.

                           


                          See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                           

                          @petergrainge

                          • 10. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                            ktel_1888 Community Member

                            I apologize for any offense, but I have given great praise to those who have tried to help me, including yourself.

                             

                            Please feel free to delete the offending comment as I have already logged a bug with Adobe.

                            • 11. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                              Piyush Bhatnagar Employee Hosts

                              Hi,

                               

                              Please provide me with the bug#/reference# for the bug that you have logged so that we can have a look at it on priority.

                               

                              Thanks and regards,

                              Piyush Bhatnagar

                              • 12. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                                Willam van Weelden CommunityMVP

                                Hi,

                                 

                                A small follow-up: I did some testing with AIR help context sensitivity and put my findings in a small article: http://www.wvanweelden.eu/robohelp/context_sensitivity_in_browser_based_airhelp

                                 

                                Greet,

                                 

                                Willam

                                • 13. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                                  ktel_1888 Community Member

                                  Thanks for the research and the update to your blog William.

                                   

                                  It is a shame there is nothing we can do about the popup at the moment, but now that Adobe's on the case, I hope a fix is made available sometime in the near future.

                                  • 14. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                                    Peter Grainge CommunityMVP

                                    Have you seen the post from Piyush? He is from Adobe and has offered to fasttrack the problem is you advise him of the bug number. If you didn't make a note of the number, just indicate that here.

                                     


                                    See www.grainge.org for RoboHelp and Authoring tips

                                     

                                    @petergrainge

                                    • 15. Re: Context Sensitive Help in the Main Browser Window
                                      ktel_1888 Community Member

                                      Thanks Peter. Piyush and I are exchanging messages privately.