Tables for notes, tips, etc.

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Tables for notes, tips, etc.

Postby mwmartz on Tue Sep 18, 2007 4:05 pm

This is similar to the \"Calling attention to notes, ...\" post, but that doesn't quite address my need. Is there any way I can have a standard table that I can use repeatedly that includes the standard text I need? For example, I'd like to have a standard Item/Description table with those headings already in place without having to enter that text every time. I'd also like to create a Notes table and Tips table (for multiple bulleted items) that already includes the word \"Notes\" and \"Tips\" as appropriate. For example, I have a Note style that has a border and a background, with the word \"Note:\" as an auto-number value, that works fine for a single note. However, if I hit return to enter some additional bulleted comments within that note, I get a space between them. So, I'd like to create a Notes table that looks like my Note style with the same background and border, but that will allow me to enter multiple items such as the following:

Notes: [Intro text]
First bullet [text]
Second bullet [text]
Third bullet [text]

I'd like the word \"Notes:\" already in place as well as the bullets with some \"instructional text\" for our other writers to use as a guideline. I've managed to create a table style with the background and border I want, but I can't figure out how to get the standard text in there, and at the correct size.

Also, is there any way for this to be a truly standard style? For example, when I go to insert a Note table, it should automatically be entered in the topic as 1 column x 1 row with no header and no footer with this standard text in place at 80 percent of the body style. Templates appear to be pretty useless in this regard. :?

Sorry for the long post, but naturally, deadlines are tight at the moment. I'm sure you all can sympathize.

Any and all help is appreciated!
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Postby KevinDAmery on Wed Sep 19, 2007 5:18 am

I would create a snippet of an empty table for each type, then insert it, convert it to text (so that you can put unique content in it), then add the callout text.
Until next time....
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Re: Tables for notes, tips, etc.

Postby SteveS on Wed Sep 19, 2007 8:00 pm

mwmartz wrote:... However, if I hit return to enter some additional bulleted comments within that note, I get a space between them. ..

Pressing enter will add a new list item. You can control line spacing by setting the margin-top and margin-bottom properties in the style sheet.

If you want a new line for the existing list item you can get a soft return by using [shift] + [enter].

I use something similar in my documentation, easy to implement for online help but Word proved to be tricky. This code works for me:

Code: Select all
<table align="left" class="message">
            <col style="width: 150px;" />
            <col style="width: auto;" />
            <tr>
                <td class="headingL" style="text-align: center;" />
                <td class="headingR" style="text-align: center;">
                    <p class="headstyle">Tip</p>
                </td>
            </tr>
            <tr>
                <td class="icon" style="text-align: center;">
                    <p class="iconstyle">
                        <img src="Resources/Images/Warnings/tip.png" />
                    </p>
                </td>
                <td class="definition" style="text-align: center;">
                    <p>A <b>tip</b> is something that will make your life easier. Ignoring a tip will not affect the program.</p>
                </td>
            </tr>
        </table>


and the style sheet:

Code: Select all
p.headstyle
{
   text-align: center;
   font-weight: bold;
   font-size: 1.25em;
   margin-top: .25em;
   margin-bottom: 0em;
}

p.iconstyle
{
   text-align: center;
}

table.message
{
   align: center;
   margin-right: 1pt;
   margin-left: 1pt;
   background-color: LightYellow;
   border-collapse: collapse;
   width: 85%;
}

td.headingL
{
   border-top-style: solid;
   border-top-width: 2pt;
   border-top-color: black;
   border-left-style: solid;
   border-left-width: 2pt;
   border-left-color: black;
   border-bottom-style: solid;
   border-bottom-width: 1pt;
   border-bottom-color: LightYellow;
   border-right-style: solid;
   border-right-width: 1pt;
   border-right-color: LightYellow;
}

td.headingR
{
   border-top-style: solid;
   border-top-width: 2pt;
   border-top-color: black;
   border-left-style: solid;
   border-left-width: 1pt;
   border-left-color: LightYellow;
   border-bottom-style: solid;
   border-bottom-width: 1pt;
   border-bottom-color: LightYellow;
   border-right-style: solid;
   border-right-width: 2pt;
   border-right-color: black;
}

td.icon
{
   border-top-style: solid;
   border-top-width: 1pt;
   border-top-color: LightYellow;
   border-left-style: solid;
   border-left-width: 2pt;
   border-left-color: black;
   border-bottom-style: solid;
   border-bottom-width: 2pt;
   border-bottom-color: black;
   border-right-style: solid;
   border-right-width: 1pt;
   border-right-color: LightYellow;
   vertical-align: middle;
}

td.definition
{
   border-top-style: solid;
   border-top-width: 1pt;
   border-top-color: LightYellow;
   border-left-style: solid;
   border-left-width: 1pt;
   border-left-color: LightYellow;
   border-bottom-style: solid;
   border-bottom-width: 2pt;
   border-bottom-color: black;
   border-right-style: solid;
   border-right-width: 2pt;
   border-right-color: black;
}


HTH
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Postby mwmartz on Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:20 am

Thanks, Kevin and Steve. I started creating the snippets yesterday, but didn't have time to post here till now. The snippets aren't the cleanest way of handling this IMHO, but they're suiting our purpose for now. Besides, I'm the only one who has the headache of creating them. 8) All the other writers have to do once they're created is insert them.

Steve, I may not have been clear about the problem. We have a style (for example) called p.note that has a border and a background color with the word\"Note\" already present in bold. If I hit return to add a second, but related note, or to add a list of bulleted items, I got another, separate paragraph with that border and background and the word \"Note\" with white space between the two paragraphs. A soft return wouldn't work because then I could format each paragraph as needed (i.e., bullets). Hence, the need for a table to handle everything.

So, I created a note table style with the border and background colors I want, plus the appropriate margins, etc. Then, I created a note tabe snippet using that table style and inserted the word \"Notes\" in bold, complete with colon, instructional text for the other writers, and three \"starter\" bullets.

Thank you again, for your suggestions! :)
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Postby mwmartz on Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:23 am

\"A soft return wouldn't work because then I [b]could [/b]format each paragraph as needed (i.e., bullets). \"

Should have said, \"... [b]couldn't [/b]format each paragraph...\".

:oops:
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Postby LTinker68 on Thu Sep 20, 2007 10:31 am

Oooh, I love finding new tricks.

mwmartz, this might do something of what you want, but you'll have to play with it a bit and test it thoroughly, since I just did a quick test of WebHelp output. I should also mention that this worked in Firefox but not IE6. I don't have IE7 installed, so I can't test to see if that works, but I would hope it does, since FF supports it.

There is a property you can set that allows you to specify text before the list. The caveat is that if you put it on the <ul> then there will be a line break between the content and the bullet. So you wouldn't be able to have customizable text -- it would have to be hard-coded as \"Notes: \" or \"Notes: Here are some things to keep in mind about this feature\", for example. But you could play around with the styles and properties to see if you could get something close to what you want.

Try inserting the following code into your stylesheet (it's easier doing it initially using the Internal Text Editor). Then create a list and apply the \"note\" class to the <ul> tag (NOT the <li> tag). When you do, you'll see a line that says \"Note: \" with that text at the far left, and indented below that the bullets. If you want the \"Note: \" text to line up with the bullet, then just remove the margin-left property. Note that this will display correctly in the XML Editor and in the WebHelp output, BUT it doesn't display in the Preview window in Flare. Go figure.

Code: Select all
ul.note:before
{
   display: block;
   content: \"Note: \";
   margin-left: -40px;
}
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Re:

Postby SteveS on Thu Sep 20, 2007 3:39 pm

LTinker68 wrote:...this worked in Firefox but not IE6...

... BUT it doesn't display in the Preview window in Flare. Go figure...


Guess what Flare uses for the preview window? :roll:

If I get a chance I'm going to test in IE7 (busy day ahead but I, too, love new tricks!).
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Re: Tables for notes, tips, etc.

Postby Darci on Fri Aug 01, 2008 2:53 pm

I know this is long past when you asked for help here, but we use icons to symbolize Note, Info, etc. I creted Paragraph style settings for each that have the exact pic, and background, font type and margins we want. I also created a similar generic one with the background but without the Icon pic so that when you have multiple lines of text underneath, it will have all of the same settings except repeaing the Icon in the left margin of the P setting. It looks and works great. It took some Flare help and some time to get the margins/padding just right, but now we have about 5 of these different settings and it saves a lot of time over the course of a project.

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