Advice for Single-Sourcing

by Hedley Finger

I have seen the future and it works. We have just finished our first single-sourcing project using mif2go to convert FrameMaker source files to HTML Help *.chm files. These files are also the source of our printed user guide AND a hyperlinked PDF of the user guide placed on the distribution CD.

There was considerable once-off pain setting up conversion templates (including CSS files) and conversion options but our next project will be much faster. The converted files DO NOT require ANY hand tweaking -- we just hand over to the release people to put the *.chm file on the installer CD.

Our testing and support people are rapt, and consider the new help far better than the old help. An outsider would have no inkling that the help was produced in this way.

WHAT IS THE RATIONALE?

Be clear WHY you want to single-source.

RULES FOR SUCCESS

Single-sourcing can work if you follow these rules:

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