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Daniel_R says

Hello creative nation! Hope you are working hard to get where you want to be… lol

Quick suggestion to Authors:

1. Please use html help files instead of PDF versions.

2. Remember you are dealing with different end users (beginners, intermediate, etc). Do not assume they know how to do everything. Explain it and document it@

THANK YOU !

p.D. Thanks to those who are using html

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JamiGibbs says

Thanks for the feedback, Daniel.

Out of curiosity, why do you prefer the HTML version over PDF ? I’ve used both in the past and generally I prefer creating it as a PDF mostly because all users know how to open and use a PDF help file. The HTML version sometimes causes more confusion than good.

But it’s great to hear opinions on which way is easer for you as a buyer.

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Daniel_R says

Thanks for the feedback, Daniel.

Out of curiosity, why do you prefer the HTML version over PDF ? I’ve used both in the past and generally I prefer creating it as a PDF mostly because all users know how to open and use a PDF help file. The HTML version sometimes causes more confusion than good.

But it’s great to hear opinions on which way is easer for you as a buyer.

Jami,

I agree with you on the everyone can open PDF ’s. Actually, thank you for using both, that will be just great!

From what I’ve seen around the templates I’ve purchased, the html versions seems to be more complete and easy to navigate and find what you are looking for if you are an advanced user and for instance you don’t necessary have to go to the installations steps, etc.

I’ve also purchased templates with PDF ’s help files and probably they are so compressed and the quality of everything is just so bad, specially if they have included pictures (Which is always the case)

Html also gives you the advantage that if you want to use a screencast for example, like I’ve seen some authors implemented.

I don’t know if it just me but when Im reading a PDF , I don’t see an index of the document which is super helpful to quickly skim around the document.

Generally that’s why I prefer Html help files.

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Daniel_R says

Also, If you guys implement some way to rate or feedback system on their help files, like a form, etc. Im pretty sure buyers will give you tons of information.

For those authors using support forums to give customer support:

1. I understand that other customers can help each other solving problems but from my experience, I will go to the item details / comments and search all over the comments (sometimes a lot) to find a solution to a problem I’m having. So, 99% of the time, the comments are probably the most visit section from users when looking for answers. Improving this section with a search option, etc may be better than the whole support forum but I also understand this depends on Envato not the author itself.

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fillerspace says

I don’t know if it just me but when Im reading a PDF , I don’t see an index of the document which is super helpful to quickly skim around the document. Generally that’s why I prefer Html help files.

Maybe authors should create a linked table of contents in the PDF file to make it easy to jump around. I use OpenOffice, and this functionality is built in.

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Parallelus says

I don’t know why I have trouble with PDF ’s but I just never feel “comfortable” when I have to access them for long periods. It makes me feel “boxed in” or claustrophobic or something that I can’t explain. I mean as a reader when I’m accessing them, not creating them. Is that weird?

I’ve always use HTML help files and never had a customer ask how to open it. I get the occasional, “Where is your help document?”, question but that’s most likely because I name it “readme.html” instead of “Documentation.html” or “Help.html” if I had to guess.

Seriously, it’s called “read me” and some users can’t figure that out? I guess we all have those times where something is staring us in the face and we miss it. :)

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sevenspark Volunteer moderator says

I like writing my help docs in HTML , this way I can post a copy online and always keep it up to date (I also link to this page in the help file that is distributed with the product). If users have a question that’s in the doc, I can send them a link to it directly. If there’s something that isn’t in there but should be, I can update it immediately so everyone can benefit.


I don’t know why I have trouble with PDF ’s but I just never feel “comfortable” when I have to access them for long periods. It makes me feel “boxed in” or claustrophobic or something that I can’t explain. I mean as a reader when I’m accessing them, not creating them. Is that weird?

Hahaha it is weird…. and I know exactly how you feel ;) I really dislike PDFs. It feels like I’m reading an image most of the time… or the content is protected behind fiberglass. It’s unnatural :P

I wonder if anyone uses public googledocs? They can be converted to both PDF and HTML easily (though the code is really ugly) and still keep a ‘live’ copy online.

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tonvie says

Interesting thread…count me in for html…pdf sucks especially when they’re secured and I have to scan them into ABBYY first before I can copy the contents :P

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rvision_ says

I don’t know why I have trouble with PDF ’s but I just never feel “comfortable” when I have to access them for long periods. It makes me feel “boxed in” or claustrophobic or something that I can’t explain. I mean as a reader when I’m accessing them, not creating them. Is that weird?

Same here …

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Daniel_R says

I wonder if anyone uses public googledocs? They can be converted to both PDF and HTML easily (though the code is really ugly) and still keep a ‘live’ copy online.

Interesting, but anyone can see them, right?

@Parallelus: the same feeling is the one that I have when reading from PDF ’s. It’s just weird and I’m more comfortable around the html version many times. If a file has both versions, I will usually open the html version.

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