Documentation Designer Tips and Trips Don Kranz: Coad-Certified Mentor
Welcome A software project’s primary goal is the production of frequent, tangible, working systems. It is important to make sure that ALL of the team (Managers, Marketing, Sales, Users(production), Analysts, and Developers) know what are the goals, how they are getting there, and what to do once they've arrived. That is the reason documentation is core to a project's success. Introductions
… it is possible to write requirements and specifications that customers, testers, programmers and technical writers will actually read, understand and use.
Benjamin L. Kovitz ,Practical Software Requirements: A Manual of Content and Style
What’s the same … Need for accurate and maintainable documentation
Andy Carmichael , Object UK
Your challenge is to deliver the documentation without unduly restricting the development. …The documentation must be developed concurrently with the system.
Murray R. Cantor , Object-Oriented Project Management with UML
Often the last item “thrown together” by the project team.
Often not read by intended audience.
Why We Don’t Write Documentation
Not “cool” part of project
Lack writing skills
Why We Don’t Read Documentation
Difficult to use
Doesn’t Match Delivered System
Documentation In Together ®
Difficult to use
Speed doc generation
Make docs easily available
Tools for Tech writer
Simplify finding needed information
Allow implementation of best writing practices
Don’s DocGen Comments
The DocGen utility exists to simplify the production of printed or on-line documentation for our users. We should continually improve this portion of our product with that goal in mind. Currently some things are pretty cool (very powerful) for helping the user, others require a deeper knowledge of the product, and some things are missing or just plain ugly.
Working with DocGen is a great way to prepare yourself for working with Together on a deeper level. Once you start using the expression you will need to learn about the RWI openapi. Next you will want to customize the property inspector (or diagrams) which requires knowledge of the config files (or now the java source for the inspector). Then you will begin to modify the behavior of DocGen itself this leads you to the metamodel. Eventually all this will lead you to working with the API directly. Hopefully this will the encourage you to work with templates and patterns to get information into the models in the most efficient manner.
All of this is focused towards making Together a more productive environment for the end user. The entire cycle seems to feed off of itself, and help improve the product as a whole.
Launching Documentation Designer
Main Menu: Tools | Documentation | Design Template
Generate Documentation Dialog: Design button
Explorer Pane, Modules tab: Design Documentation module