Operation Cleanup: CSS refactoring for InfoDevs

INFORMAZE

Hey, fellow writers who work in MadCap Flare! Have you ever opened your CSS style sheet in a text editor and checked if it contains conflicting entries, style duplicates, or empty style definitions? Maybe there are unnecessary repetitions of a property assigned to child elements, but this property is already assigned to a parent element? (I had this problem with fonts and colors).

Being unsure of what is going on with your CSS, you might be surprised to find that, for example, after you changed one property, half of your document inexplicably changed its color or indentation level. And there you are wasting time trying to apply a quick fix that most probably breaks something else. It is only then that you finally realize that the CSS refactoring time has come.

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Book review: Logic made easy. How to know when language deceives you?

INFORMAZE

Logical thinking is high on the list of qualities expected from any Information Developer. But what exactly is “being logical”? If my writing is seemingly clear and makes sense to anyone who reviewed it, am I thinking logically? My layman’s definition of “logical” used to be “making sense”, but recently the book Logic made easy has come my way and added a lot to my understanding.

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MFUG April 2016 – Using Flexbox with Madcap Flare

Melbourne Flare User Group

Using Flexbox with Madcap Flare

Last week, Tom Marshall demonstrated an incredibly simple yet effective way of using Flexbox with Madcap Flare projects. Madcap Flare currently supports the Zurb Foundation Grid for creating responsive output, but you can use Flexbox independently of the Foundation Grid.

Flexbox stands for flexible box layout, a set of positioning elements in CSS3.

Here are some of the advantages of using Flexbox over grids:

  • Easier to implement
  • Simpler to use
  • Clean, easy CSS

Tom also pointed out some of the shortcomings of Flexbox:

  • It doesn’t work with Flare user interface as is, lots of CSS, but all your Flexbox code will work in your HTML5 output
  • It doesn’t work for PDF, so it is an online only solution

Using his Madcap certification project as a Work in Progress site (http://www.atomdocs.com/flare/thailand/Content/home.htm), he demonstrated how he has been using Flexbox to create boxes he can manipulate easily.

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Chatbots are coming. Why should InfoDevs care?

INFORMAZE

From today’s perspective, the chatbots advancement and popularity may not be as revolutionary as expected by the enthusiasts a few years back. Anyway, the number of bots on various platforms has grown to such an extent that we can now speak of chatbots as a new way of user assistance that Information Developers should be aware of.

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Color theory: the mystery unveiled

INFORMAZE

Today I want to share with you a brilliant post covering all the basics that an Information Developer should know about how colors work, brought to you by Dave Gash, a Technical Writer at Google.

In a nutshell, it’s a great read—both fun and educational—that explains how colors work. It’s all there – physics, optics, additive and subtractive color systems, hexadecimal arithmetic (!) and, most importantly, demonstration of how it all works together in real life (I mean, in a real-life CSS).

Believe it or not, CSS color codes really are intuitive. You’ll be surprised to see how obvious it is that “#000000 can’t be anything but black“, and “#ff0000 cannot possibly be anything but bright red“. On top of that, there’s a quiz, real-life CSS examples, and links to useful resources and tools, which all adds immensely to the post’s educational value.

Thanks to the author…

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How to write release notes

ffeathers

Release notes, sometimes called a changelog, let customers know when something’s happened in or to a product that could affect them. Various groups of people are involved in creating the release notes. Sometimes it’s hard to know what to include in the release notes. Here are some thoughts from me, after writing release notes for different types of products over the last few years.

The most important function of release notes is to let customers know that something has changed in the product, particularly when that something may affect the way the customer uses the product. The change may be a new feature in the product, an entirely new product, a change to the way the product works, a change to the way the customer uses the product, the removal of a feature, or even the deprecation of the entire product.

Examples of release notes

Atlassian creates comprehensive release notes…

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