Conceptual Topics - a few questions

Topics: Conceptual Topics
Jun 24, 2008 at 5:41 PM
I have searched for an answer for several days on this so please excuse me if I seem like a real noob.

I am using MAML to create my conceptual topics.

I have 2 questions regarding conceptual topic.
  1. How do I put a logo image in the non-scrolling section of the page. I found out how to edit the title and hide the language dropdown but can't quite figure out this one. I did the former by manually editing the configuration files.
  2. Formatting the text in a conceptual topic. I want to format the text to change the font-size, weight, color, etc. I've tried adding html/css to the conceptual topic .aml file but it either gets ignored or causes the text to not appear in the help file. i.e. <para><b>Some text I want bold</b></para>

On point 1, it would be nice if some of these things could be set by a parameter of some sort. I know Dave is working on a conceptual editor so adding these things would be great. Also the ability to turn off the non scrolling area in a conceptual topic. I tried dong this in the transforms but that causes script errors.

Clif

Coordinator
Jun 24, 2008 at 7:51 PM
Edited Jun 24, 2008 at 7:51 PM
Hi Clif,

1. You'd have to modify the XSL transformations to add an image to the header.  Check out the htmlBody.xsl file in your project's Help\Presentation\Style\Transforms folder.  You may be able to add <img src="../Art/logo.jpg" style="float:right"/> at the beginning of the top table template, I think.  (Haven't tried this myself.)
2. Conceptual topics do not support HTML.  You need to use more expressive tags instead, such as ui, database, country, etc.  Note that if you've installed the Sandcastle Styles patch then you can wrap custom HTML in a markup tag, although I strongly recommend against doing that.  You may find the following blog post useful for making the decision to move completely to structured authoring instead of using HTML: 

MAML Migration: The Next Step in the Evolution of Help Authoring
http://davesexton.com/blog/blogs/blog/archive/2008/05/24/maml-migration-the-next-step-in-the-evolution-of-help-authoring.aspx

> On point 1, it would be nice if some of these things could be set by a parameter of some sort

Hiding the header is a feature that would have had to have been implemented in the presentation styles when they were designed.  If they don't support it then DocProject can't either without some major changes.  You may want to request these features of Sandcastle so that I can support them in a future release of DocProject.

DocProject's architecture does not provide a mechanism for these features since it does not read or modify the XSL transformations at all.  No assumptions are made about the transformations so that you can create your own presentation styles and have full control over customizing existing styles.  This power is more important to me than a few features that add an image or hide the header; although, they aren't bad ideas if they were to be supported natively by Sandcastle :)

- Dave
Jun 26, 2008 at 2:45 AM
Thanks Dave, that worked for the logo image. It looks great.

I decided to take your advice and not use the <markup> tag. I decided to stay with the layout the presentation style uses for the conceptual topic. "Keep it simple" as it were.


Clif