#WriteRight 8) FrameMaker & Word: Anchored Frames and Parts Tables linked to 3D Graphics

One of the most common complaints I have heard from Microsoft Word users is the amount of time they spend trying to reposition “slippery” graphics that fall off of the page near a page break. With effort, it is possible to create a true anchored frame to control an image somewhat, but the choices for positing anchored frames w/in Word are much more limited than those provided in FrameMaker.

Automatic anchored frames upon import of graphics

In FrameMaker 11, when you import a graphic, you get a much better set of defaults than with Word. The graphic is (a) externally referenced, (b) wrapped in an anchored frame with (c) displays, centered, below the line that had your insertion point. These are the most common choices for anchored graphics used in technical documentation. In contrast, in Word, the default upon importing a graphic is to produce an embedded graphic that sits on the current line. That default would be OK for a very small graphic (like a keyboard character image), but is hardly ideal for full sized graphics. As a consequence, most Word users must go through additional steps to achieve what FrameMaker provides automatically with a simple imported image.

Where would you like the graphic to appear?

Usually, you wish to have a graphic appear immediately after text that describes a screen shot or image. There are, however, times that you want the graphic to be in the general vicinity of the text reference, but not immediately adjacent to it. FrameMaker 11 allows you to position a graphic:

FrameMaker 11 gives you a great deal of manual control over anchored frames, but this has been vastly increased by FrameMaker 11’s new graphic object styles, which enable you to globally update the positioning of multiple frames with the same name. If you fast forward to 3 Minutes and 30 Second in the video “FrameMaker and Word: Style Catalogs; globally update paras, text, tables, even graphics,” you can get a quick look at this powerful feature.

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 manipulate anchored frames.


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.