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Alertbox on PDFs

Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox, July 14, 2003:
PDF: Unfit for Human Consumption
Users get lost inside PDF files, which are typically big, linear text
blobs that are optimized for print and unpleasant to read and
navigate online. PDF is good for printing, but that's it. Don't use
it for online presentation.




www.mshelpwiki.com demonstrates and explains a Wiki.
Basically it is a website that users can add to, alter or correct. Seems like a good idea, and yes it is moderated, so the work of people who make a mess can be rolled back.
The content of the site is everything you need to know about online documentation, help file authoring and the Microsoft file formats for this purpose. We have been contributing to it.


Editing documents in MSWord?

Be sure to check the document properties, File => Properties

These can often show information that is not consistent with the content. If the information was borrowed/stolen from someone then it may also show the original author.


Integrated development

We hold these things to be self evident:
Any manuals and online help (inc. those for software) should be created using an integrated development process.
The manual and the product it supports should be entirely consistent with each other. The content of the manual should be focussed on the functions of the product.
To do this the documentation must start with the functional specifications and be developed alongside the product.