FrameMaker 11 and FrameMaker Publishing Server 11 are here!

Hello Everyone,

It is my pleasure to announce the availability of the new versions of FrameMaker line of products. Yesterday, we launched** FrameMaker 11 and **FrameMaker Publishing Server 11 (FrameMaker server has been re-branded to FrameMaker Publishing Server to better communicate the product’s value to our users). Watch the video below to learn more

Expecting a datasource

The FrameMaker 11 release comes at a time when many changes are happening in the Technical Communications landscape and Technical Communications professionals are continuously being asked to “Do more with less”! As you will see shortly, this has been one of the main themes of this release. We have focused on providing several capabilities to empower our users to be more productive in their daily tasks, and to effectively manage the tremendous and exciting changes happening in the industry!

Before I go into the major enhancements in this release, let me go over the key trends in the Technical Communications space the way we see them, as they have had a significant influence in shaping the strategy of this release. There are four main trends and they are as follows.

These major trends have been at the forefront of our minds in our planning for the new release of FrameMaker. With these in mind, let’s take a look at** the major enhancements in this release.**

Meet the challenges “head on”, with enhanced support for structured/XML authoring

Multi-view XML authoring environment

In FrameMaker 11, we are very pleased to introduce the multi-view XML authoring environment. As part of this environment, authors will be able to work with the XML source natively in FrameMaker with the new XML code view. Authors will be able to create or modify XML files, work with elements and attributes and create valid XML content as per the rules in the DTD. The workflow is seamless as it doesn’t require the user to close and open any files, or to save any files. With an XML file that is currently open in FrameMaker 11, the user can seamlessly switch to the XML code view and continue to edit the XML source in this view.

Furthermore, we are also introducing a new and simplified XML Author View, which provides a stripped down environment suitable for XML authoring. This view doesn’t have any pagination, side heads, formatting options and has an overall simplified menu structure. Lastly, these views are in addition to the current WYSIWYG view and can be customized further including the ability to hide any of these views for a given user.

See the video below to learn more about the XML code view

Expecting a datasource

Support for XML technologies

Furthermore, we have enhanced our support for related XML tools. We now have support for XPath 2.0 and XSLT 2.0. XPath is a W3C standard and now FrameMaker users can run XPath expressions to query and navigate through elements and attributes in an XML document. When in XML View, XPath expressions can be run on individual XML documents, all open documents, folders or on a DITAmap/book. XPath expressions can be run through the toolbar or the query builder pod available in XML code view, and the user can easily navigate to the results through the Xpath pod. See the video below to learn more about XPath support in FrameMaker 11.

Expecting a datasource

Besides XPath, XML experts will love the ability to run XSLT from within FrameMaker 11. With XSLT you can instantly transform XML from one standard to another or process one or more files, filtering or splitting content based on this W3C standard. As an example, you can transform your XML content to HTML, which can then be viewed in a browser. Users will be able to simply run transformations by specifying an XSL. Alternatively, they can create and save reusable transformations in an XML file. The reusable transformations include information such as the XSL file, and the path of the output files.

Enhanced publishing of DITA content

In FrameMaker 11, users can now automate book file creation from a DITAMap, automatically generating various components like Title page, ToC, List of Tables (LOT), List of Figures (LOF), Index etc. In earlier versions, this was a manual process, as one had to create these components and add them manually to the book. Now, one can generate these components automatically when saving a DITAmap to a book (both nested and flat books are supported) based on the settings stored in a file. Furthermore, one can choose different template files for different components in the book (e.g. chapter, section, subsection ToC, index etc.) and configure various numbering options (e.g. chapter, page numbering) in the settings file. We believe this feature will be a significant time saver and provide more control over the final published document. We hope that our users will be able to generate professional looking output more quickly from their DITA content with FrameMaker 11.

XML Performance improvement

We have made several improvements “under the hood” and optimized FrameMaker performance when working with XML content and DITAmaps. Files would open faster and publish faster. More details on this topic in a later blog post. Stay tuned!!

XML usability enhancements

Lastly, we have enhanced the usability of several XML workflows such as the new and improved XML dialog. Further, we are also providing straw man structure and banner text, which will be useful when creating new XML content. Also, users can now create untitled XML files (without the need to save them first), automatically assign IDs to DITA elements and work with a more streamlined Error console in XML workflows.

Provide even more interactivity with Multimedia in your technical content

Technical documentation is not limited to paper. As rich media and mobile formats continue to grow, our content needs to keep up as well. In FrameMaker 11, authors can provide even more interactivity and engaging content to the end users while working with multimedia.

Now, when working with U3D (ECMA U3D 3.0 standard is now supported), you can insert links to specific views, parts and even animation stored in the 3D model. You can also create links from specific parts in 3D to defined destinations in your document (e.g. the end user can navigate from a 3D part to a section which describes the part in more detail). Lastly, users can attach custom JavaScript™ to a 3D object to provide additional capability to control it.

See the attached sample PDF to try out the new 3D functionality in FrameMaker 11.This PDF and the interactive links were created in FrameMaker11. Also, this along with another sample document is available in the install directory of FrameMaker 11. You can access these samples by clicking on Help > Samples > MoreSamples > U3d>


Video support has been enhanced with the ability to import mp4 videos. Also, we have added the ability to add links to play, pause, rewind and even jump to specific cue points in the video (available with SWF and FLV video formats). Lastly, users will be able to set the video poster by selecting a frame from the video itself.


In FrameMaker 11, users can create clickable hotspots on variety of objects such as raster images, vector drawings, and graphic objects. Basically, you can create any supported shape in FrameMaker (e.g. rectangle, oval, polygon etc.) and convert that into a hotspot. You will be able to provide links to external URLs as well as internal hypertext marker locations within your document. End users when viewing the content (in PDF/web and even mobile, depending on the mobile viewer support) will be able to click on these hotspots and navigate to the specified destination.

Take your content to Mobile devices

In FrameMaker 11, we have made significant strides forward to enhance our support for mobile publishing. Now you can generate various mobile outputs using the new, improved and re-branded FrameMaker 11 Publishing Server (formerly known as FrameMaker Server, requires a separate purchase).

One of the most exciting aspects of FrameMaker Publishing Server is support of important new formats. FrameMaker Publishing Server supports direct output to EPUB 3.0, Kindle, Multiscreen (HTML5) and native Android application formats.


You can also design different layouts for different devices such as desktop, tablet, smartphone and can adjust for different screen sizes and OS. The layout designer comes as part of Robohelp and from the same content you can publish to different devices. Also, we have expanded the support for eBooks. We have added the support for latest standard, EPUB 3.0, which supports richer content with video, JavaScript etc. Also, we have added the support for producing kindle eBooks in .mobi and KF8 format.

Lastly, FrameMaker Publishing Server enables automation and scheduling of publishing tasks. Together with the automation and scheduling features, you can now update eBooks as needed, or at scheduled intervals, ensuring the most up-to-date content is available to your users.

We will have a detailed blog post on this topic later! Stay tuned!

Do more with less!

Given the demands on the professionals in today’s environment, there is a growing need to “do more with less”. We have listened to this demand and provided a large numebr of enhancements in FrameMaker 11 to enables our users to be more productive. Here are just few of the items

Smart Paste

FrameMaker 11 introduces an incredibly efficient way to repurpose content from HTML and Microsoft® Office applications such as Word, Excel and Outlook. The “Smart Paste” feature automatically recognizes the inherent structure of content on the clipboard, and converts that content to DITA-compliant structure in your file. User can copy content from these various sources and do a “smart paste” into a DITA file, and FrameMaker will not only paste the content but also wrap DITA tags around the content. Give it a try, it is definitely cool! Lastly, “Smart Paste” is provided out-of-the-box for DITA, but can be built for a custom XML structure as well.

Smart Insert

Most FrameMaker catalogs now allow for inline insertion Smart Insert
using the “Smart Insert” feature. The Smart Insert now shows at your insertion point, rather than below in the status bar. You can use Smart Insert to insert elements, change elements or wrap elements when doing structured authoring. Also, you can use this feature to apply para/char and even conditional tags. In addition to this keyboard focused authoring, we are also providing inline attribute editor, which you can bring up by pressing Esc-i-a-e, when the cursor is in an element.

Lastly, we have listened to user feedback, and changed the ways you navigate within the Smart Insert, reverting back to the more popular FrameMaker 8 catalog navigation behavior (i.e. press a character repeatedly and quickly to circle through the catalog list). We hope that our users will like it!

Object styles

We’ve added an Object Style Designer and Catalog to allow automation of formatting when working with graphic objects such as images, anchored frames, and text frames etc. for consistent size and appearance. You can create and manage styles using the Object Syle Designer and apply them using the Object catalog. For example, you can create and apply an object style to all the anchored frames in a document to make them of the same size. We hope that this will be a huge time saver as well as a great tool for those working heavily with graphic objects in FrameMaker.

Usability enhancements

Find/Change dialog

Several enhancements have been made to this commonly used dialog

Line numbers

FrameMaker 11 now has line numbers support now. View > Line Numbers. In addition, you have robust formatting options (in Format>Document>Line Numbers) and the ability to restart numbers on each page, or continue throughout the document.

Customize your FrameMaker Interface

Workspaces help keep things tidy in almost every Adobe application. In FrameMaker 11, you have three sets of workspaces, one each for the WYSIWYG, Authoring, and XML View. Further, there are several workspaces that are shipped along with the product. Now, in FrameMaker 11, you can customize your FrameMaker menus through the menu configuration (.cfg) files and associate those with a workspace. This way you can hide menu items in certain workspaces in addition to configuring toolbars. So, using this, you can customize you FrameMaker interface to show just the things you need, in other words, now you can create your very own FrameMaker!

Track Text Changes

We have added 2 buttons to the Track Text Edit toolbar. The “Accept Edit and Show Next” and “Reject Edit and Show Next”. These commands automatically direct focus on the next proposed comment, after you are done processing a particular comment. This should reduce the number of clicks needed when processing comments.

More header/footer variables and marker types

In FrameMaker, one can create running headers and footers in which the text changes from page to page. For example, the running header can contain the current section heading and the footer can contain the page number and some text typed directly into the background text frame. Previously, display of marker text via master page headers and footers was limited to 2 specific Running Header/Footer variables. We have added 6 more Running Header/Footer variables and marker types in FrameMaker 11.

Direct OLE support referencing in XML/DITA workflows

FrameMaker now directly supports OLE (Object Linking and Embedding) in XML/DITA files. If you wish to roundtrip OLE content such as Visio diagrams, PowerPoint files etc., now you can directly refer to these OLE objects by configuring a flag in maker.ini. Any changes to the underlying OLE object will be reflected in the FrameMaker file when you open it.

Achieve seamless integration with your CMS

Build tight integration, with less effort

In the past, FrameMaker has provided integration with several of the leading CMS including out-of-the-box connectors with EMC ® Documentum and Microsoft ® Sharepoint. Now with FrameMaker 11, it is easier than ever to build connectors to your own CMS with the new CMS connector framework. In this framework, we are exposing a new connector layer connector layer, in which we are providing APIs and Extend Script functions, which can be called by clients. Now, you can build connectors to your CMS (with very much similar functionality to the native connectors to EMC Documentum and Microsoft Sharepoint, that we ship with) and build your own custom functionality as well. You will be able to build a more seamless connection to your CMS and with less effort in FrameMaker 11.

Custom metadata support with native connectors

FrameMaker 11 has native connectors with EMC ® Documentum and Microsoft ® Sharepoint Connectors. Furthermore, in FrameMaker 11, we are providing the ability to work with custom attributes on both these leading CMS. Now you can bring in custom attributes and work with these, all using the native connectors that come with the product.

Additional resources

In this post, I haven’t covered all the new functionality. For a complete list of new features, refer to the following links

Also, you can learn more about the new release by going to the following links

Furthermore, I will be hosting a webinar on August 7, 2012 from 10-11:30 AM US PST, where I will walk you through the new capabilities in Adobe FrameMaker 11. You can register for this free webinar here

Lastly, we are already starting to get some accolades on FrameMaker 11 🙂 Here is what people have said about the new release

In the coming weeks and months, I will be posting more details on the new features in both FrameMaker 11 and FrameMaker 11 Publishing Server on these pages. So stay tuned. Until the next post then….

Best Regards,

Kapil Verma

Sr. Product Manager, FrameMaker and FrameMaker Publishing Server