Is there PDF documentation For PanX available outside of the web site version?
There isn’t any PDF documentation at all. It’s all html, in the Help file, and online.
Older versions of Panorama used PDF documentation. However, there were some problems with this:
- PDF publication tools start having serious problems with PDF files over 2,500 pages. The Panorama X documentation is now nearly 4x that length.
- By using HTML, the documentation can include animated illustrations, which isn’t possible in PDF format. The Panorama documentation includes hundreds of animated illustrations, which I think greatly enhances the experience.
- You may be surprised to learn that many users are unfamiliar with using PDF documents. Even though the PDF file was automatically installed with the software, we would get many questions from users that didn’t even realize it was there, or didn’t know how to use a PDF file. That doesn’t happen with the HTML documentation.
- With the HTML documentation, it’s much easier to give a user a link to the topic they are interested in, rather than telling them “look on page 647, third paragraph”.
- The HTML documentation allowed us to create an automated system that allows users to submit corrections. Many users would submit corrections manually before, now it’s much easier both for them and for us.
- The HTML documentation can be searched both within the Panorama Help window and by search engines.
- Finally, HTML is future proof, we don’t have to rely on proprietary tools from Adobe to generate the HTML files. Adobe discontinued the tools we used to use (FrameMaker for Mac), so we are reluctant to rely on Adobe for a critical tool going forward.
Earlier this year I did a talk about how the Panorama X documentation is generated, some of you might find this interesting.