A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.

Style Sheets

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1.
#25835

AuthorIT: Creating a 2-Column Glossary in Word   (PDF)

How to modify AuthorIT objects to get a 2-column glossary in the Word output.

Bracey, Rhonda. CyberText Consulting (2003). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets

2.
#25834

AuthorIT: Creating Newspaper-Style Columns in Word  (link broken)   (PDF)

How to modify AuthorIT objects to get newspaper-style columns in the Word output.

Bracey, Rhonda. CyberText Consulting (2004). Resources>Software>Style Sheets

3.
#35466

Automate Your Designs with Nested Styles in Adobe InDesign

We’re all used to working with style sheets (or least we should be). With each new version of InDesign, there seems to be a new way to style your content. We started with paragraph and character styles, then we got nested styles, followed by object styles, and finally table styles in InDesign CS3. As you can see, nested styles is not really new but it’s something that you should be taking advantage of, so let’s get to it.

White, Terry. Layers Magazine (2009). Design>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe InDesign

4.
#33612

Behind the Curtains: Table Styles

Table Styles are my favorite type of Style in Word. They allow you to quickly and consistently format the table itself (e.g. borders, shading, etc.), the content within the table (E.g. line spacing, font color, font size, etc.), and they can also can tell a table when to do these (e.g. shade every other row, bold text in the first column, etc.). The first two enable you to create really rich tables, and the last one (which I'll call Conditional Formatting for the rest of this post) enables you to easily work with those rich tables. Both are quite important.

Microsoft (2008). Articles>Document Design>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

5.
#36470

Don’t be Normal!

Microsoft Word is great many kinds of documents, but it isn’t suitable for everything. If you do find yourself using Microsoft Word there are a few things you do well to look out for. Two of those things are called “Normal”, and my advice is to stay away from both of them.

Farbey, David. DavidFarbey.co.uk (2010). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

6.
#15126

Editing with Style (Sheets)  (link broken)   (PDF)

Offers editors tips on creating and using style sheets.

Hart, Geoffrey J.S. Intercom (2002). Design>Information Design>Style Sheets

7.
#20480

Enhance Text Design with Nested Styles  (link broken)

Creating nested styles is a great way to add unusual text effects to your document.With Adobe InDesign® CS, you can apply one character style to the beginning of a paragraph, and then determine where that character style stops and the next character style begins. By creating a paragraph style that includes these nested styles, you can quickly apply the effect to multiple paragraphs.

Adobe. Design>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe InDesign

8.
#25730

Find Your Node: Advanced XPATH Commands

All that XSLT does is applying code-templates on XML-nodes. In order to do this you need to find the right node. XPATH offers you an advanced toolkit to do that within an XSL-file.

Opitz, Pascal. Content with Style (2005). Design>Web Design>Style Sheets>XSL

9.
#20482

Format Text with Style Sheets   (members only)

Format text once and apply the same style repeatedly and with ease. Style sheets in Adobe® InDesign® CS are a shortcut to formatting text.

Adobe. Articles>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe InDesign

10.
#34029

How to Create a New Paragraph Style in a FrameMaker Document  (link broken)

Adobe FrameMaker is the information design platform of choice for most professional technical writers and technical communicators across the globe. Like all powerful software applications, FrameMaker also has a lot of features and configuration possibilities. One of those features is the ability to create new paragraph styles. Each paragraph style in FrameMaker is represented by a “Paragraph Tag.” So to create a new formatting style you actually create a “tag.” Here is how you can create a new paragraph style/tag for your FrameMaker (FM) document.

Akinci, Ugur. Technical Communication Center (2008). Articles>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe FrameMaker

11.
#34022

How to Format Your Technical Documents Consistently With a Template

Consistency of a technical documentation is what creates that subliminal sense of trust and confidence in the end-users. Someone once quipped: “it ain’t technical documentation if it ain’t boring.” This of course is not true since I always found technical documents very interesting indeed. I’m the sort of geekish person who can marvel at a well-designed user’s manual for hours and appreciate its beauty and all the effort and thinking that went into its production. I imagine how happy people would be when they use that manual and solve their problems and that, believe it or not, makes me happy as well. That’s the main reason why I’m in this business.

Akinci, Ugur. Technical Communication Center (2009). Articles>Document Design>Style Sheets>Technical Writing

12.
#33613

How to Make the Formatting in Your Document Consistent  (link broken)

If you've ever worked document with more than one person, then you've likely had to deal with this type of nonsense: Sally likes to emphasize text by making it 13 point and bold, Sam prefers to change the font and italicize it, Billy used Emphasis Style, and on, and on. Because of this, not only do you have to work to make the language in your co-authored document consistent, but you've got to deal with formatting inconsistencies as well.

Microsoft (2008). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

13.
#27238

How to Safely Update a Document's Styles from its Template Without Using the Organizer

If you want to update the style definitions of a document with the style definitions in its attached template, you can manually select Tools + Templates and Add-ins, check the box which says 'Automatically update document styles', click OK; and then, because that setting is sticky (and most of the time, undesirable), immediately select Tools + Templates and Add-ins again, deselect the 'Automatically update document styles' box, and click OK.

Rado, Dave, Margaret Aldis, Ian Sharpe and Beth Melton. Word MVP Site, The (2002). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

14.
#36071

The Importance of the !important CSS Declaration

The !important declaration is a very useful and powerful expression that much deserves its place in our CSS world. This article offers a guide to what the declaration is, what it does and how you should use it.

Simard, Brigitte. Webcredible (2010). Articles>Web Design>Style Sheets>CSS

15.
#26070

InDesign Tutorial: Add Style and Save Time with Paragraph Style Sheets  (link broken)

Paragraph Style Sheets can be real time savers for designers especially in the creation of long or multi-page documents.

Bruno, Elisabetta. Designorati (2005). Design>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe InDesign

16.
#25876

Introduction to Styles in Microsoft Word  (link broken)   (Word)

You can increase your efficiency and at the same time, improve the appearance of your Microsoft® Word documents by using styles.

Unwalla, Mike. TechScribe (2004). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

17.
#33614

Make That Look Like This

Have you ever wanted to make some text in your document look like other text in your document? Or maybe you made a picture look just right in last week's status report and really don't want to start from scratch on the picture in this week's status report. Either way, this week's tip will save you some time.

Microsoft (2008). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

18.
#37298

Organizing Content 13: Using Mediawiki Templates to Organize Content

In my last series post on organizing content, I argued that traditional help authoring tools will be replaced by web platforms suitable for authoring help content. Web platforms have many advantages over help authoring tools. They provide everything from search engine optimization to interactivity and social media integration. Some of the more common HAT features, such as single sourcing and print, may not be as important in the future, since the long printed manual is losing popularity.

Johnson, Tom H. I'd Rather Be Writing (2010). Articles>Content Management>Style Sheets

19.
#36059

Overcoming Hard-Coded Styles in Madcap Flare

After several months away from Madcap Flare, coming back to work on it again, I’m reminded that one of the reasons I like this technical authoring tool is that it uses standard XHTML. So, if you’re using Flare to produce online help, you can modify your pages just like you could any Web page. So, for example, because I don’t like Flare’s default (text-only) glossary popups, I’ve replaced those with my own variety that allow text formatting and images, and can be dragged around the screen.

ITauthor (2009). Articles>Documentation>Style Sheets>Madcap Flare

20.
#27038

Pretty-Print XML Using a Generic Identity Stylesheet and Xalan

Sometimes your XML output from various programs is less than attractive. Spruce it up in a hurry with Xalan C++ and an identity transform.

O'Reilly and Associates (2005). Articles>Information Design>Style Sheets>XML

21.
#35857

Smart Running Heads

One of the FrameMaker features I rely on heavily for my technical documents is the use of "live" headers and footers. Once I get them set up, they will automatically pull text off of my page into the running heads so that the reader can quickly see what chapter they are in, or what section, or both. I accomplish this through the use of System Variables.

Binder, Barbara. I Came, I Saw, I Learned (2009). Articles>Document Design>Style Sheets>Adobe FrameMaker

22.
#33617

Styles, Doc Defaults, Style Sets, and Themes

In all previous versions of Word the Document Defaults were hardcoded into Word. That is, you couldn't change them. This means that the way you would change the default properties applied to your documents would either be to change the Styles within the Template used to create the document, or to write a macro that went through all documents and updated the properties defined by the Normal Style (the paragraph Style applied to text by default). In Word 2007, you can certainly still do the former, but should know the following before you do the later: by default, the Normal Style is empty.

Microsoft (2008). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

23.
#33618

Styles' Order of Operations

In Word, a style defines a set of formatting properties that are indirectly applied to characters, paragraphs, list, or tables. Instead of directly applying bold, then 14 point font, and then red to text, you can use a style to indirectly apply these three things in a single click. This is useful because you can quickly and consistently apply rich formatting, and can later change the definition of the style all the text the style is applied will change.

Microsoft (2008). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Microsoft Word

24.
#35579

Word 2007: Using Quick Tables

Quick Tables are a quick and easy way to insert a pre-formatted table. However, the default tables are probably not what you want, so you need to know how to add your own.

Cybertext Consulting (2009). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets>Information Design

25.
#35570

Word 2007: Using Table Styles

You have an existing table in a Word 2007 document. It’s pretty plain and you want to jazz it up a little. Here’s how to quickly change the styles applied to your table.

CyberText Consulting (2009). Articles>Word Processing>Style Sheets

 
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