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Chapter 3. Navigating Within Access > In the Real World—HTML Help or Hindrance

In the Real World—HTML Help or Hindrance

The new feature of Access 2000 that users of prior Access versions probably will find most traumatic is the move from the traditional Windows help system (WinHelp32) to HTML Help. Changing to HTML Help violates one of the primary tenets of software development—"If it ain't broke, don't fix it." WinHelp32 is a mature, stable help system that's part of the Windows 9x and Windows NT operating system. Many excellent third-party authoring tools are available for WinHelp32. Microsoft's Office 2000 implementation of HTML Help version 1.2 has the hallmarks of a work in progress.

"If it's meant to be read, convert it to HTML" is today's variation on the navy's "If it doesn't move, paint it" rule. It's a reasonably safe bet that the number of HTML pages on the World Wide Web exceeds the number of pages of books in the average public library. Leading publishers are converting popular books to the special HTML format required by the electronic books typified by NuvoMedia's Rocket eBook (http://www.nuvomedia.com/).


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