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Topics opening first occurrence in TOC

Community Beginner ,
Jun 14, 2016

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Background: I have created Responsive HTML5 Help using RH 2015 for a web-based application. I have organized the Hep by Role, then by pages users with those roles can access, and then by tasks users can perform on that page. In several cases, a topic is listed under multiple roles and for re-use and efficiency, I’ve just dragged that same topic from the topic list into the TOC where applicable.

I’ve also used conditionalized text on the TOC level by role. Using the example below, I have conditions for Physician, Nurse, and Patient but I don’t think that’s part of the issue though. Conditionalized roles were created for filtering purposes.

The issue: I have Overview topics that include hyperlinks to the topics in red in the example below for each role. When a user clicks on the hyperlink in that Overview topic, it brings them to the FIRST occurrence of that topic in the TOC, not the link that is associated with their role. When a user with the Patient role is in the Overview topic for their role and clicks on the hyperlink to “Searching for patients,” Help opens that topic, but the “Searching for patients” in the Physician role topic set in the TOC to the left is highlighted.  Not a show-stopper, but it is confusing for users.

Also, we had originally planned to use the filter feature to filter help topics by role. When I filter to only show a specific role (Nurse), and do the steps above, clicking the Overview hyperlink “Searching for patients” opens but there is no highlighting in the TOC because that first occurrence is hidden in the Physician set of topics.

Note: This issue does not happen when I generate the content as WebHelp.

What I want to happen: When the Nurse clicks the hyperlink to “Searching for patients” from their Overview topic, the Searching for patients topic is opened and Searching for patients is highlighted in the TOC under Nurse, not the first occurrence (Physician).

The questions: Is this a bug or is it fixable? And is it possible to fix it without creating role-specific topics such as Physican-Searching for Patients, Nurse-Searching for Patients, and so on? I've tried deleting the TOC and starting over, but the issue persists.

Here’s an example:

Physician            

                Patient Portal page

                            Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below--Viewing patient demograhic data, Searching for patients, Renewing prescriptions)

                Viewing patient demographic data

                Searching for patients

Renewing prescriptions

Nurse

                Patient Portal page

                                Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below)

Viewing patient demographic data

            Searching for patients

Viewing prescriptions

Patient

                Patient Portal page

                            Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below)

                Updating your demographic data

                Viewing your prescrpitions

My opinion would be that it is expected behavior. My theory is that there's no intelligence within the hyperlink syntax. A hyperlink is coded such that when you click it, you are taken to the destination page, as if sending the message "find the page named <whatever_it_is> and display it per the parameters specified." What is happening is that the hyperlink goes to the first instance of that HTML page in your TOC (.hhc file). There's no intelligence It doesn't "know" that you are in the Physician section or the Nurse section - it only knows that the page specified in the TOC is listed in the file and thus, it takes you there. The hyperlink syntax doesn't "know" where you are in the help system.

Just also wanted to point out the typo in the Patient section, Viewing your prescriptions   of your example, assuming that you copied and pasted into this thread....

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Topics opening first occurrence in TOC

Community Beginner ,
Jun 14, 2016

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Background: I have created Responsive HTML5 Help using RH 2015 for a web-based application. I have organized the Hep by Role, then by pages users with those roles can access, and then by tasks users can perform on that page. In several cases, a topic is listed under multiple roles and for re-use and efficiency, I’ve just dragged that same topic from the topic list into the TOC where applicable.

I’ve also used conditionalized text on the TOC level by role. Using the example below, I have conditions for Physician, Nurse, and Patient but I don’t think that’s part of the issue though. Conditionalized roles were created for filtering purposes.

The issue: I have Overview topics that include hyperlinks to the topics in red in the example below for each role. When a user clicks on the hyperlink in that Overview topic, it brings them to the FIRST occurrence of that topic in the TOC, not the link that is associated with their role. When a user with the Patient role is in the Overview topic for their role and clicks on the hyperlink to “Searching for patients,” Help opens that topic, but the “Searching for patients” in the Physician role topic set in the TOC to the left is highlighted.  Not a show-stopper, but it is confusing for users.

Also, we had originally planned to use the filter feature to filter help topics by role. When I filter to only show a specific role (Nurse), and do the steps above, clicking the Overview hyperlink “Searching for patients” opens but there is no highlighting in the TOC because that first occurrence is hidden in the Physician set of topics.

Note: This issue does not happen when I generate the content as WebHelp.

What I want to happen: When the Nurse clicks the hyperlink to “Searching for patients” from their Overview topic, the Searching for patients topic is opened and Searching for patients is highlighted in the TOC under Nurse, not the first occurrence (Physician).

The questions: Is this a bug or is it fixable? And is it possible to fix it without creating role-specific topics such as Physican-Searching for Patients, Nurse-Searching for Patients, and so on? I've tried deleting the TOC and starting over, but the issue persists.

Here’s an example:

Physician            

                Patient Portal page

                            Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below--Viewing patient demograhic data, Searching for patients, Renewing prescriptions)

                Viewing patient demographic data

                Searching for patients

Renewing prescriptions

Nurse

                Patient Portal page

                                Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below)

Viewing patient demographic data

            Searching for patients

Viewing prescriptions

Patient

                Patient Portal page

                            Overview (includes hyperlinks to the topics below)

                Updating your demographic data

                Viewing your prescrpitions

My opinion would be that it is expected behavior. My theory is that there's no intelligence within the hyperlink syntax. A hyperlink is coded such that when you click it, you are taken to the destination page, as if sending the message "find the page named <whatever_it_is> and display it per the parameters specified." What is happening is that the hyperlink goes to the first instance of that HTML page in your TOC (.hhc file). There's no intelligence It doesn't "know" that you are in the Physician section or the Nurse section - it only knows that the page specified in the TOC is listed in the file and thus, it takes you there. The hyperlink syntax doesn't "know" where you are in the help system.

Just also wanted to point out the typo in the Patient section, Viewing your prescriptions   of your example, assuming that you copied and pasted into this thread....

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LEGEND ,
Jun 14, 2016

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Hi there

I'm honestly surprised to hear you say the same doesn't happen when you output WebHelp. But who knows, perhaps you are handlng things differently with build tags and whatnot.

Please allow me to restate the issue to ensure that I'm understanding correctly.

You have some topics that are used in multiple places in your Table of Contents. And when things sync up, the correct TOC location isn't accurate.

If this is what is happening, here is one workaround. Create unique topics that are used for each TOC occurrence. And in each of these unique topics, insert an Inline Frame (IFRAME) where the IFRAME is configured to present the actual topic you want to see. This should then provide an easy way to sync only to the desired topic.

Cheers... Rick

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Contributor ,
Jun 14, 2016

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When you wrote "In several cases, a topic is listed under multiple roles and for re-use and efficiency, I’ve just dragged that same topic from the topic list into the TOC where applicable," I had a feeling I knew where you were heading. I worked with user documentation online Help systems that had multiple user roles. What we did was to not focus on the specific tasks that were available to a user role (where I was, the tasks that a user role could "do" were in constant flux and was a hamster wheel to keep on top of).

We came up with an alternative approach that I'll suggest below. I'll also just say that I have ZERO idea if this suggestion will be appropriate to your situation - only you can decide that!

Okay, first of all, you could not even focus on the user role in the TOC.

|

  1. Manage Prescriptions
    1. Renew prescriptions
    2. View prescriptions
  2. Manage Patient
    1. Searching for patients
  3. Manage Demographics
    1. View and Update demographic data

|

Then, on each of the pages that are applicable to multiple user roles, you could simply have a blurb with wording like this (as a snippet):

|

Some features are only available to some user accounts. Each user account has a user role(s) and permissions associated with it. These permissions control the data the user can view and actions the user can perform. If you do not see a specific feature, your account is not configured to access it.

|

Where I worked, the user already knew "who" they were - in your situation, I assume they know if they are a patient, a nurse, or a doctor. You can leapfrog making the user's job easier by focusing not on who they are, but on what they need to do - what task are they trying to accomplish? If your content has distinct categories of content - such as prescriptions, patients, and demographics - then the user only has to think about what they want to do, whether it is to renew, view, search, or update "something" in those categories.

See if that works for you. I really like Rick's idea as well - I'm just throwing this out there in case what worked for the users I worked with would work for you too.

Paul

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 15, 2016

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Rick and Paul--thanks so much for your quick and useful responses!

Rick--I will investigate the use of IFRAME but will probably not use it for this project as the delivery clock is ticking. Looks like a cool feature!

Paul--It seems reorganizing the TOC is the logical answer for now. I've already set up the User Guide TOC (printed documentation) that follows the format you had suggested and it's easy enough to use the same TOC for the Help output.

However, this doesn't really address the issue of being able to use a topic in multiple places in the Help and the TOC synchronizing to highlight just the first occurrence. I can work around it for now, but it'd be nice to know if this is the expected behavior, or if there's an actual fix without having to create new topics for each occurrence.

Thanks again,

Karen

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Contributor ,
Jun 15, 2016

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My opinion would be that it is expected behavior. My theory is that there's no intelligence within the hyperlink syntax. A hyperlink is coded such that when you click it, you are taken to the destination page, as if sending the message "find the page named <whatever_it_is> and display it per the parameters specified." What is happening is that the hyperlink goes to the first instance of that HTML page in your TOC (.hhc file). There's no intelligence It doesn't "know" that you are in the Physician section or the Nurse section - it only knows that the page specified in the TOC is listed in the file and thus, it takes you there. The hyperlink syntax doesn't "know" where you are in the help system.

Just also wanted to point out the typo in the Patient section, Viewing your prescriptions   of your example, assuming that you copied and pasted into this thread....

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LEGEND ,
Jun 15, 2016

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LOL, I was popping in to reply and I see no further explanation is actually needed. Paul did a superb job of describing it! Kudos!

Cheers... Rick

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 15, 2016

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Thanks Paul. That does make sense now. I was hoping I could use smarter hyperlinks, but keeping it simple makes the most sense.

Thanks too for the heads-up on the typo. The examples I used are not real, but I do use that word in my real project...and I consistently misspell it there too! Thankfully, I make good use of the Auto Correct feature in RoboHelp's Spelling Options!

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