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How can I learn FrameMaker?

Community Beginner ,
Jan 09, 2016

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Can anyone recommend materials like books, videos, or web tutorials for learning FrameMaker that are aimed at beginners?

The only book on FrameMaker I could find on Amazon that's been published in the last couple of years is intended to be a reference for experienced FrameMaker users. Everything on the Adobe site seems to be on very specific FrameMaker topics, presented in no particular order, and there are overviews of new features, but nothing to orient a new user. The most recent Classroom in a Book on FrameMaker is for Version 11. I'm inclined to get a copy of that, but I don't know how much may be missing from it.

In case it's helpful, my situation is that I'm interested in a career change to become a technical writer, and I've completed a Technical Writing certificate program at the local community college, but there was no exposure to FrameMaker in that course series.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Andy

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Bob_Niland | Adobe Community Professional

See also: Adobe FrameMaker seems like a very difficult program to learn. Should I buy?

For anyone who wants to add FM to their skills portfolio, collecting training material and hardcopy manuals on older versions has some value, and you can often find such material cheaply on eBay and from used book sellers.

Not every shop is on the current version of FM. The one I recently retired from was still using FM7.1/Unix and FM6/Unix for most of its production. In any case, an entry position is very likely to involve maintaining legacy documents, perhaps in a legacy FM.

The use model is also going vary wildly, with shops focused on any of (but not limited to):

  • unstructured FM
  • structured FM
  • workflow to Postscript for print
  • workflow to PDF (historically the most likely)
  • (increasingly) workflow to HTML, XML and/or ebook
  • FM as part of an automated real-time DB-driven document generation system

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How can I learn FrameMaker?

Community Beginner ,
Jan 09, 2016

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Can anyone recommend materials like books, videos, or web tutorials for learning FrameMaker that are aimed at beginners?

The only book on FrameMaker I could find on Amazon that's been published in the last couple of years is intended to be a reference for experienced FrameMaker users. Everything on the Adobe site seems to be on very specific FrameMaker topics, presented in no particular order, and there are overviews of new features, but nothing to orient a new user. The most recent Classroom in a Book on FrameMaker is for Version 11. I'm inclined to get a copy of that, but I don't know how much may be missing from it.

In case it's helpful, my situation is that I'm interested in a career change to become a technical writer, and I've completed a Technical Writing certificate program at the local community college, but there was no exposure to FrameMaker in that course series.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Andy

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by Bob_Niland | Adobe Community Professional

See also: Adobe FrameMaker seems like a very difficult program to learn. Should I buy?

For anyone who wants to add FM to their skills portfolio, collecting training material and hardcopy manuals on older versions has some value, and you can often find such material cheaply on eBay and from used book sellers.

Not every shop is on the current version of FM. The one I recently retired from was still using FM7.1/Unix and FM6/Unix for most of its production. In any case, an entry position is very likely to involve maintaining legacy documents, perhaps in a legacy FM.

The use model is also going vary wildly, with shops focused on any of (but not limited to):

  • unstructured FM
  • structured FM
  • workflow to Postscript for print
  • workflow to PDF (historically the most likely)
  • (increasingly) workflow to HTML, XML and/or ebook
  • FM as part of an automated real-time DB-driven document generation system

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Jan 09, 2016 0
Adobe Employee ,
Jan 10, 2016

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Hi Andy,

take a look at “FrameMaker - Creating and publishing content: Learn to use, manage, and publish content with Adobe F...” (ISBN 0996715797) by Matt Sullivan (user here: techcommtools) and Rick Quatro‌ (user here: frameexpert).

It was published in October 2015 and covers the latest version FrameMaker (2015 Release).

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Jan 10, 2016 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2016

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See also: Adobe FrameMaker seems like a very difficult program to learn. Should I buy?

For anyone who wants to add FM to their skills portfolio, collecting training material and hardcopy manuals on older versions has some value, and you can often find such material cheaply on eBay and from used book sellers.

Not every shop is on the current version of FM. The one I recently retired from was still using FM7.1/Unix and FM6/Unix for most of its production. In any case, an entry position is very likely to involve maintaining legacy documents, perhaps in a legacy FM.

The use model is also going vary wildly, with shops focused on any of (but not limited to):

  • unstructured FM
  • structured FM
  • workflow to Postscript for print
  • workflow to PDF (historically the most likely)
  • (increasingly) workflow to HTML, XML and/or ebook
  • FM as part of an automated real-time DB-driven document generation system

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Jan 10, 2016 1
Adobe Employee ,
Jan 13, 2016

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andrewstuartallen‌, did have our answers been helpful? If so, please consider to mark our answers as correct or let us know if you found other learning ressources.

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Jan 13, 2016 0
Community Beginner ,
Jan 13, 2016

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Thank you both for your responses!

I'd seen the Sullivan and Quatro book listed on Amazon, but in the description, they say "This book is intended as user reference, not as a training guide.," so I didn't consider purchasing it. For now, I've ordered a used copy of the FrameMaker 9 Classroom in a Book, which I hope will at least get me started. It appears to be the last edition of that book that was printed (as opposed to the version 11 edition that seems only to be available as an ebook).

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Jan 13, 2016 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 14, 2016

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Hi Andrew, yes, the Fm 9 CIB is the latest CIB version in print, and the Fm 11 CIB is the last CIB version in ebook. How have you found the material in the Fm 9 CIB? For me, the examples were overly complex. For example, the number and names of the styles made things seem tougher than they needed to be. Also, these versions didn't really address any functionality, and the FrameMaker 11 CIB seemed to be a rewrite of the FrameMaker 7 book I used for years in class.

And yes, my FrameMaker 11 and FrameMaker 2015 books are reference and not filled with specific exercises. However, you'll likely find that you'll want a good reference book handy when working with FrameMaker, especially if you need to modify the formatting of your documents.

If you're considering a training class, I run live online FrameMaker classes through roundpeg.com. (Use checkout code Matt for 10% off of their classes)

Also, I'm currently developing a basic FrameMaker online course (different from a class, in that it runs over the course of weeks, not days), as well as one on FrameMaker digital publishing. If you're interested in either of these, please let me know.

Matt Sullivan

Author, FrameMaker - Creating and Editing Content

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Jan 14, 2016 0