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RE: Revising documents: use change bars or a character tag??

Jane, You have 3 options to mark revisions in FM::

1: Automatic change bars:  Go to format>document>change bars.  You can set
the color and location of the change bar to suit your needs.  Check the box
for "automatic change bars." Click set.  Advantage: Now whenever you make
changes to the document, change bars will automatically appear. Also, I
don't think FM treats this as an override.  Disadvantage:  If you make a
mistake in editing the document and re-edit the mistake out, you might wind
up with a change bar where no net change is made.

2: Character tag:  Go to format>characters>designer.  In the dialog box,
under commands, "set window to as is."  Click the change bar box (black, not
gray). Assign a new character tag name and store in catalog.  Advantage:
You can flag important changes (technical content, for example), and not
flag incidental content [incidental to a technician end-user, no hate mail
from grammarians, please] (spelling, punctuation corrections, etc.).
Disadvantage:  You have to remember to apply the character tag to every
occurrence you want flagged.  Also, FM treats these as format overrides and
will remember these even if you later go to the change bar dialog box and
check "clear all change bars."  Unless you apply the "default" character tag
to remove the "change bar" character tag, these change bars will
mysteriously reappear at some point down the road when you're not expecting

3:  FM doc says for very occasional changes you can select the text, do
format>characters>designer, click on change bar, and apply.  I've never done
this and do not recommend it.  It will create format overrides.

FM 6 to my knowledge still only permits a single level of change bar,
inexplicably inferior to multiple levels supported by otherwise undesirable
Gates Empire products.

David L. Schriber
Technical Writer
The Raymond Corporation

-----Original Message-----
From: Jane Post [mailto:jane@asconline.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, August 06, 2003 8:38 AM
To: framers@omsys.com
Subject: Revising documentsL use change bars or a character tag??

A member of our department (who also happens to be an owner whose job is to
write code for  one of our application programs) needs to update one of our
manuals. He is very well versed and really the best person to update the

He wanted to use Word (egads!) and note changes with its Change Tracking
feature. I told him no, we'd already converted the doc to FrameMaker. He
doesn't use FrameMaker at all -- although he did attend a class I taught 2
years ago.

What is the best way for him to apply changes?? Using the change bar or
creating a character tag that can be applied to any change? If the latter,
then I need some help in creating that tag. I'd like it to be similar to the
Emphasis tag that I can apply to any text and it still retains the original
attributes (except for the font color and change bar being applied). If I'm
on the wrong track -- please advise.

Thanks for your help.

Jane E. Post

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