Wiki Pages > Producing Information > Tools and Technologies > Tools for Authoring Content

Content Authoring Tools

Tools include any program or application used to create, edit, maintain, or otherwise support creating or editing content. Some tools overlap functions and may be detailed in one location only. For example, some people may consider a tool to be useful for both creating content (a word processor) and for managing content (a review and tracking tool). Some tools have both functions. Therefore tools will, on occasion, be found in unexpected locations. Below is a collection of programs or applications used to create, edit, maintain, or otherwise support creating and editing in the context of technical communications. This includes tools used for text, audio, and visual content.

Tools for visual communication

TereLyn Hepple provided this list of tools that can be used for visual and other types of technical communication:
  • Adobe Illustrator vector drawing software
  • Adobe Photoshop and other photo editing software
  • Microsoft Excel and other spreadsheet/charting software
  • MicrosoftPowerpoint and other presentation software
  • MicrosoftAccess and other database visualization software
  • SmartDraw, Microsoft Visio, and other diagramming software
  • TechSmith SnagIt and other screen shot software
  • TechSmith Camtasia, Adobe Captivate, and other demonstration video software
  • Video editing and animation software

Tool list

This list is not all inclusive. Instead, it is a developing list of tools that are available to serve the needs of technical communicators.

Adobe

The following partial list outlines tools that are owned by Adobe Systems and commonly used in the creation of content.
Tool name General Function Notes
Dreamweaver Website/HTML editor
GoLive Website/HTML editor No longer supported or developed by Adobe
FrameMaker Text/graphic/print/PDF
Illustrator Graphic/vector
InDesign Text/graphic/print/PDF
PageMaker Text/graphic/print/PDF No longer supported or developed by Adobe
Photoshop Graphic/raster
RoboHelp Help/CHM/Webhelp

JustSystems

The following partial list outlines tools that are owned by JustSystems and commonly used to create content.
Tool name General Function Notes
XMetaL XML/DITA

Madcap

The following partial list outlines tools that are owned by Madcap Software and commonly used to create content.
Tool name General Function Notes
Blaze XML/DITA
Echo Flare Mimic

Microsoft

Word Publisher

PTC

Arbortext

Quark

XPress