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Convert Pagemaker and InDesign files to Arbortext

ptc-761125
1-Newbie

Convert Pagemaker and InDesign files to Arbortext

My company is beginning an Arbortext implementation so I am exploring ways to convert Pagemaker and InDesign files to Arbortext. I'm looking for some advice on the best approach as well as any software recommendations.


Thanks in advance,


Tim

5 REPLIES 5

There's many ways to go about this Tim. Arbortext can use many file formats, natively: Word, RTF, XML, etc.


How is your content stored? Do you have a repository like a CMS or is it in Word, Pagemaker, or Indd?



In Reply to Tim Cauley:



My company is beginning an Arbortext implementation so I am exploring ways to convert Pagemaker and InDesign files to Arbortext. I'm looking for some advice on the best approach as well as any software recommendations.


Thanks in advance,


Tim


GarethOakes
14-Alexandrite
(To:ptc-761125)

Seeing as you're moving to Arbortext, I think your best bet is to
standardise your new documentation on an XML format suited to your industry
and type of documentation, such as DITA.



Generally speaking there are two approaches most people take to get their
old stuff into the new system:

1. Automated conversion tool

a. Requires reasonably consistent source material

b. Usually only economically feasible if the business is regularly
generating or receiving new source content files for import

c. Requires someone technical to design and build the conversion tool
via off the shelf software or hand-rolled programming

2. Manual conversions (outsourced/offshored)

a. More likely to be useful for a once off conversion of a large pile
of unstructured source material

b. Source files are sent to an offshore service provider and the
resultant XML files QC'd upon return



Of course the final option, if you're not dealing with a large amount of
legacy content, is to do-it-yourself by copy and pasting old content into
the new system as required J



Hope that helps.



-Gareth


If you are working with government/DoD documents, outsourcing the data offshore is probably not an option. However, there are a few U.S.-based companies employing U.S. citizens that can do this type of work. Data Conversion Laboratories (DCL) is one such company. We used them back in the mid-1990's for converting thousands of procedures from our old, non-hierarchical, composition-driven markup format to SGML. They would normally ship the documents offshore for conversion, which was cheaper. However, if no foreign nationals could see the data, they could use US citizens and do the work in-house. (Just add $$$.) At the time, I believe that DCL was the only company that we could find to accommodate this requirement. They may still be.



In Reply to Jeff Stevenson:



Hey Jeff, currently all of our literature resides on one network drive. The files are created using either InDesign or Pagemaker and the released document is a PDF format. We have Windchill and we intend to use it for our content management; therefore, all files will be migrated to Arbortext and managed within the Windchill environment moving forward.



Tim




There's many ways to go about this Tim. Arbortext can use many file formats, natively: Word, RTF, XML, etc.


How is your content stored? Do you have a repository like a CMS or is it in Word, Pagemaker, or Indd?



In Reply to Tim Cauley:



My company is beginning an Arbortext implementation so I am exploring ways to convert Pagemaker and InDesign files to Arbortext. I'm looking for some advice on the best approach as well as any software recommendations.


Thanks in advance,


Tim





In Reply to Gareth Oakes:


Gareth:


We have entered into an agreement with PTC services to assist in the Arbortext implementation. We have twobusiness sectors whowill be undergoing theArbortext transition and one sector uses Framemaker. We have been informed by PTC that Framemaker is much easier to convert and they will develop an automated script to perform that.They also informed us that Pagemaker and InDesign are much more difficult; therefore, we are seeking some software to confert those files to RTF and then into Arbortext realizing there will be manual clean up envolved.


As it stands, we want to convert the document as painless as possible and we are seeking a temp resource to manually clean up those documents after conversion.



Tim






Seeing as you're moving to Arbortext, I think your best bet is to
standardise your new documentation on an XML format suited to your industry
and type of documentation, such as DITA.



Generally speaking there are two approaches most people take to get their
old stuff into the new system:

1. Automated conversion tool

a. Requires reasonably consistent source material

b. Usually only economically feasible if the business is regularly
generating or receiving new source content files for import

c. Requires someone technical to design and build the conversion tool
via off the shelf software or hand-rolled programming

2. Manual conversions (outsourced/offshored)

a. More likely to be useful for a once off conversion of a large pile
of unstructured source material

b. Source files are sent to an offshore service provider and the
resultant XML files QC'd upon return



Of course the final option, if you're not dealing with a large amount of
legacy content, is to do-it-yourself by copy and pasting old content into
the new system as required J



Hope that helps.



-Gareth


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