Technical Communication Suite 5 is here!

Hello Everyone,

Wish you all, a very happy and prosperous new year 2014!

As we begin the New Year, I am pleased to announce the availability of Technical Communication Suite 5, the latest version of the suite. Watch the video below to learn more.

This release of Technical Communication Suite has major upgrades to FrameMaker, RoboHelp, Captivate, and Presenter.

TCS 5 workflow

In this blog post, I am going to briefly elaborate on the new features in the new releases of the point products.

FrameMaker 12

The authoring experience in FrameMaker 12 has been greatly enhanced. Now you can customize the interface with the choice of colored/grey icons and large/regular sized icons. We have added support for QR Codes and MathML equations so that you can enrich your content.

At the same time, we have also enhanced several features such as Conditional Text Pod, Smart Catalog, and Regular Expressions Support, and introduced new functionality such as Session Restore and Currently Open File Pod to make authors more productive.

On the collaboration front, PDF Review Workflow has been enhanced radically. Authors can now keep changing the source while the review is in progress. The comments are imported correctly even in the changed source. The reviewers can now comment even on tablets/mobile. FrameMaker 12 now has a new CMS Connector to Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) in addition to the existing SharePoint and Documentum connectors. In addition, there is also a new Dropbox Integration so that the authors can easily share the documents across peers and access documents anytime, anywhere.

The other big enhancement is on the publishing front. FrameMaker 12 now supports out-of-the-box Publishing to 5 Electronic Formats (WebHelp, Microsoft HTML Help, Responsive HTML5, ePUB, and Kindle). This is in addition to the existing PDF publishing capability.

On structure/XML editing front, there are productivity enhancements such as Quick Element Toolbar and Expand Ditamap. At the same time, the Whitespace handling has been improved as well.

For detailed information on the FrameMaker 12 release, refer to the blog post here.

Robohelp 11

Like FrameMaker, RoboHelp also has a number of features that have been newly added or enhanced. First of all, you will notice that RoboHelp 11 interface has a new UI color scheme which is easier on the eyes.

The HTML5 Publishing Workflow has been greatly simplified with the New Responsive HTML5 layouts based workflow. There is a custom header and footers support in the printed documentation. The SWF files are also supported in the WORD/PDF outputs.

Another big enhancement is on the collaboration front where RoboHelp 11 now integrates with popular cloud services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft SkyDrive. The authors can easily share common assets such as topics, images, style sheets and multimedia and more, and always keep them in sync.

In addition, there are a number of other enhancements on existing features. For detailed information, visit the RoboHelp 11 launch blog post here.

Captivate 7

Captivate 7 has been around for about 6 months now. The latest version has been included in Technical Communication Suite 5. Here are some of the few features to watch out for:

There is support for Drag & Drop components, which enables you to create drag and drop games and make eLearning fun. You can now directly import Microsoft PowerPoint projects into Captivate 7 and publish them directly to HTML5. You can easily insert aesthetically designed interactive elements to eLearning content. There is Enhanced Accessibility Support and much more.

For more information, refer to the Captivate 7 product page.

Other notable changes

We have removed Adobe Illustrator from Technical Communication Suite 5, and accordingly, the price points of licensing and upgrades have also been reduced. For example, the full price of the suite has come down from $1,899 to $1,699. Similarly, the annual subscription price has also been reduced from $69/month to $49.99/month. Note that even though Illustrator is no longer in the suite, the integration workflows between FrameMaker/RoboHelp and Illustrator will continue to work if you have it installed on your machine.

For more detailed information on few features and workflow, please refer the following links:

If you would like to see what people have said about the new release, click here for a consolidated list of reviews.

I would encourage all of you to download Technical Communication Suite 5 trial and experience the exciting new workflows. Furthermore, I will be doing a webinar on 6th Feb 2014 from 8 – 10 am US PST, where I will talk about all these new features and show you live demos. I welcome you all to join me and register for the same here.

In the coming weeks and months, we will be starting a blog series, in which we will post more details on the new features in RoboHelp 11 and FrameMaker 12. So stay tuned.