douwriteright 6) FrameMaker and Word: Catalogs for text and graphics, format override restorations

Monday, March 25 2013 @ 12:23 PM, By Maxwell Hoffmann

There is a a considerable contrast between Microsoft Word and FrameMaker regarding the way that styles, catalogs and removal of format overrides are handles. Word displays character styles (e.g. emphasized words) and paragraph styles (e.g. lists of headings) together in one style catalog. FrameMaker has a separate catalog for:

  • paragraph styles
  • character styles
  • table styles
  • graphic object styles

The last catalog category was introduced in the latest release of FrameMaker, version 11. In general the creation of style definitions in FrameMaker 11 offers more choices, and features you may choose from are fewer mouse clicks away than in Word. FrameMaker is unique in it’s powerful Table styles, which can globally update only those tables which have a certain style assigned to them. This is highly useful for a number of vertical markets and specific workflows.

Globally updated anchored frames or graphics, just like paragraph styles

For years, tech comm content creators have been used to globally updating the positioning or appearance of headings or lists. Now that power has been extended in FrameMaker 11 to graphics and anchored frames through Object Styles. A new Object Style Designer menu clusters all graphic and anchored frame values together in discreet categories. The template designer or author may create a style that will enable named anchored frames to swiftly change their position. For example, a series of anchored frames that display on the current baseline can globally change to display within the paragraph (with text wrap) and align with the right column margin.

Getting rid of unwanted format overrides

One of the biggest headaches we have all struggled with for years is finding a way to (a) locate paragraph or character format overrides and (b) restore such instances to the normal catalog style definition. FrameMaker allows you to do this with the FIND command. You may FIND:

  • paragraph format overrides
  • character format overrides
  • table format overrides and
  • graphic object style overrides

Once you have located such an override, you may click on the RESTORE button in the menu, which appears where REPLACE would normally display in a regular FIND/REPLACE action. The RESTORE will strip out overrides in any of the categories lists above and replace them with values from the appropriate catalog.

Seeing is believing; watch the video

Watch the video below to see a swift contrast between Word and FrameMaker, and see just how easy it is to perform the functions mentioned above.

 

Have your own hands-on with FrameMaker 11 and decide how you can use it

Adobe Technical Communication Suite 4 includes FrameMaker 11, which is an excellent authoring solution and also a versatile structured editor for DITA/XML. The possibilities with these new tools are as limitless as the profiles of our existing and potential customers. To discover how you can use FrameMaker, download a trial copy of FrameMaker 11 today. After having your own hands-on, you may decide in favor of the best bargain of all, obtaining a cloud subscription to the entire Tech Comm Suite 4, which includes RoboHelp 10, Captivate 6 and other products in addition to FrameMaker 11.

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