Most Popular Tools For Technical Writing will be described in this article. I have around ten years of experience as a technical writer, and over that time I have utilized a range of documentation tools as needed. Creating accurate material is the main responsibility of a technical writer.
A technical writer’s life is made easier by using the appropriate tools. Tools are available for a variety of tasks, including publishing, authoring, sketching, screen captures, picture processing, and more.
Most Popular Tools For Technical Writing In 2024
In this article, you can know about Most Popular Tools For Technical Writing here are the details below;
What is Technical Writing?
Let me begin by posing the fundamental query: what precisely is technical writing?
Let us first clarify the background before delving into the technical writing tools. Technical writing is the art of utilising simple language to teach a non-expert user how to use a technology.
Technical writing, more broadly speaking, refers to technical communication, or the simple presentation of difficult information.
Most Popular Tools for Technical Writing
The ten most often used technical writing tools will be discussed in this article, which every writer should utilise to their fullest potential while selecting content. I hope that people who are eager to broaden their horizons and aspiring technical writers will find this site to be useful.
We’ll divide this blog post into sections according to the documentation phase for which you can utilise the technical writing tools:
- publishing instruments
- Authoring Tools (cloud and on-premise)
- Tools for Screen Capturing
- Tools for Editing Images
- Tools for spelling check
- Tools for editing videos
1. Publishing instruments
1. Document 360
Unlike most other tools, Document360 is a technical writing tool with some really amazing and sophisticated capabilities. It’s a knowledge base platform that assists companies like yours in developing self-service portals so that clients may comprehend technical elements more readily.
You can compose any kind of technical writing using Document360; it’s not simply user guides and memos. Product descriptions, white papers, business proposals, and other types of content can be written by you. Selecting the appropriate technical writing tool is essential if you want to provide your customer with the exact output they want. For the same reason that a firm needs a great technical writer, so does it need the correct technical instrument.
Document360 is jam-packed with editorial features. You can use the HTML editor or the Markdown editor, which allows you to edit as you see fit. With the aid of category manager, you can organise all of your material into a well-structured hierarchy, create categories and subcategories, and put related files together. Version history allows you to go back to a prior version, which is useful, particularly if you accidentally overwrite any text.
These are a few of the most popular features. In addition, you may see the analytics and gain insightful knowledge to improve the appearance and conversion rate of your content. You get 100% cloud-based architecture, enterprise SSO, audits, and much more with fantastic and simple-to-configure features. When a tool for documentation contains all the basic functions without adding further complexity, it’s excellent. The most crucial responsibility for a technical writer is to work with other editors. You can also check SEO, make review reminders, and coordinate with them.
The best feature is that you can link your documentation to the programmes you use most frequently, such as Slack, Zendesk, Google Docs, etc.
If single source authoring—writing new material while utilising already written information—is an issue for you, Adobe FrameMaker may be a good fit.
An 100% DITA compliant XML framework allows you to produce organised documentation. Authoring software that supports DITA, FrameMaker comes with an integrated Print to PDF feature.
You can also provide templates and create content drafts based on the templates. With a few clicks, you can create the Table of Contents, Inventory of Figures, List of Tables, and automatic hyperlinks.
However, there are a few frequent drawbacks of FrameMaker, namely its high cost and challenging learning curve.
Technical writers can utilise RoboHelp, an application, to publish online documentation. One of the most widely used assistance Authoring Tools (HAT) is one that Adobe Systems created and released to assist technical writers in creating assistance projects and rendering them in a variety of formats. Businesses utilise RoboHelp to provide knowledge-based articles and online help content.
RoboHelp may produce output in the following formats:
- HTML5 assistance structure
- Written records
- Formats for Mobile Applications
- WebHelp file formats
The user-friendly RoboHelp interface makes it simple and hassle-free for users to post information. Since they are a HAT, users are able to create the documentation on their own and share the content.
RoboHelp’s (or any HAT’s) main drawback is that it takes some getting used to the programme. Also, since the content is contained within the tool, sharing it with other users becomes challenging when working with numerous people (for peer reviews). The most recent version of Adobe RoboHelp costs $1000, making it unsuitable for small enterprises or independent technical writers.
2. Authoring Tools for technical writing
For any technical writer, Microsoft Word is the first tool that immediately springs to mind when it comes to content writing. The greatest tool for technical writers is unquestionably Microsoft Word. Its comprehensive feature set together with its understated elegance is what makes it so well-liked.
One in seven people use Microsoft Word for work-related or personal purposes, according to a Microsoft research. Additionally, according to statistics, 81% of students use Microsoft Word for solo work and 12% use it for group projects.
The following qualities make Microsoft Word the greatest tool available for content writers:
- Built-in grammar check, spell check, and highlight features
- Document templates with preloads, including technical whitepapers, brochures, flyers, troubleshooting instructions, and more
- Tracks changes, which is helpful for editors and peer reviewers to examine and recommend content changes.
- Do you want to change a word across the whole thing? Most likely, “Find and Replace” will save your life.
- Save your paper in a combination of formats, including rich text format (RTF), plain text, XPS, PDF, and more.
You also have the option to specify your own style for the documentation. With the tool, you may define text and paragraph forms, make tables, add a Table of Contents to your content, and accomplish a lot more.
2. Notepad / Notepad++
Windows comes with Notepad as the default text editor. Simple text files like licence agreements and read me files can be written.
When rich formatting features are not required, notepad can be used. If you need to quickly take notes during a meeting or conference, Notepad is a superior option.
A sophisticated text/source code editor with multilingual capabilities is called Notepad++. Not only can you type text with Notepad++, but it also has features like spell checking, search and replace (which comes in quite handy when you have a long file and want to alter a word numerous times), and more.
3. Google Docs
A free application for group collaboration with multiple users, Google Docs is a part of Google Drive. It works best when several users choose to work together to curate content on a certain subject. These days, the majority of firms are implementing this technology to boost employee productivity and provide easy access to data on the cloud.
You don’t have to be concerned about versioning issues for your documentation while using Google Docs. because when users make modifications to the document’s content, you can see who is working on it. Every few minutes, changes are automatically saved to your Google Drive. This indicates that you may always access the data in your Google Drive account.
You have three choices in Google Docs: Editing, Suggesting, and Viewing. You can make direct modifications to the document while it is in editing mode, and the changes won’t be saved. Tracking will be enabled through suggesting, and your suggested adjustments will be turned into suggestions. The completed document can be viewed or printed using the Viewing mode option.
Although Google Docs is one of the most widely used free online word processors, there are a few drawbacks: in order to see or edit the documents, you must have internet connectivity. On the one hand, this is advantageous, but on the other, it turns into a drawback.
You are unable to access Google Drive or your Google Documents without an internet connection. If you do not have an internet connection, you will not be able to access the papers that you are working on. The extensive formatting options seen in conventional word processing tools are likewise absent from Google Docs.
3. Screen Capture tools
Including screenshots of a product or programme is a typical practice for technical writers and bloggers. To take screenshots, hundreds of tools are accessible.
Screenshots serve as the public face of your programme or product. When someone visits your website or reads one of your blog posts, they will initially see that. Making decisions is also much aided by including screenshots of the application in your documentation. As a result, choosing the ideal screen resolution option for your screenshot is essential.
Additionally, you must use caution while selecting what to display in the screenshot. Names and email addresses ought to be crossed out or deleted from the screenshot. It is also crucial that your screen capture tools allow you to alter the photos in this way. We’ll go over the popular screen capture programmes for technical writing in this section so you can take screenshots.
If Windows is familiar to you, a highly useful pre-built tool called the “Snipping Tool” comes with the system. With this programme, you can take a screenshot of the whole screen, just the window, or, by utilising the rectangle snip option, just a section of the screen.
Once the information has been added, you can highlight the text using the pen tool to make it stand out. The image can be saved in a combination of formats, including Single File HTML (MHT), PNG, JPEG, and GIF. The sample can also be sent straight to an email address as an attachment.
TechSmith’s SnagIt is an easy-to-use yet effective screen capture tool designed for technical writers and marketers. With SnagIt, you can register your screen and distribute it to many outputs like File, FTP, Screencast, Camtasia studio, and more. SnagIt works with both Windows and Mac OS.
You can use SnagIt to take a picture of a particular scrolling area—horizontal, vertical, or entire—from the window. SnagIt is also compatible with video recording. You can record actions on the screen by using this tool. Similar to scrolling capture, a new capability called panoramic capture is supported by recent versions of SnagIt. The ability to choose how much of the screen to capture is a key distinction.
Additionally, you may apply borders to your photographs, create arrows, text boxes, callouts, blur text, and more using paint tools. Additionally, you can merge several screenshots into a single picture.
A user-friendly knowledge base programme that makes it simple to upload content and incorporate it into any kind of application. Also check CPU Benchmark Tools
SnagIt comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a one-time licencing model that costs $50. It is an indispensable tool for any technical writer’s toolkit, offering a variety of pricing options including Personal and Professional, Education, and Government. SnagIt is also available for a free 15-day trial!
4. Image editing tools
Content writers frequently utilise royalty-free photos in their blog entries or articles. Sometimes, these photographs cannot be utilised exactly as they are. Some modifications will be necessary, and using screen capture tools to accomplish them will be challenging. To accomplish the adjustments, you will need the necessary screen editing abilities.
It’s much easier on you if your web design team is available to you. You might not always be able to contact the designer and ask for changes, though. Understanding how to use a photo editor will be quite helpful in this situation.
The fourth most popular tool among technical writers, according to the Writers UA User Assistance Tool Survey, is Adobe Photoshop. Photoshop can be used by technical writers to edit graphics and generate original images. For technical writers, knowing how to use Photoshop is always a smart idea.
Web page designs, ad banners for social network marketing, photo editing, combining many images into one, applying special effects to an image, and many more tasks are best accomplished with Adobe Photoshop.
The Photoshop learning curve is fairly steep. Technical writers should be able to use alternatives like GIMP, but it has a learning curve of its own.
5. Spell check tools
If you create technical content or blog, you are aware of the importance of proper language and spelling. Writing an article is simple; the most difficult aspect is ensuring that the text is flawlessly proofread. The blog or technical article will become of higher quality as a result.
For the majority of technical and content writers, Grammarly is their writing assistant. One of the most popular tools for technical writing is this one. Grammarly is freely accessible as an online text editor and as a free browser extension for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.
Grammarly instantly and automatically highlights flaws and provides suggestions for improving or fixing them. You can add phrases that are unique to your needs to the lexicon so that Grammarly won’t mark them as incorrect in the future.
Another intriguing aspect of Grammarly is its capacity to detect plagiarism in a manuscript. Because of its internal logic, the content is automatically categorised as having been copied from the internet.
An Acrolinx text editor with an integrated Sidebar is included with the Acrolinx Desktop Checker. It does more than just check spelling. It allows users to quickly review content from numerous sources. Acrolinx gives technical writers the ability to generate outstanding content that aligns with their goals and overall brand. You can either paste your text directly into the text box or open a file from the Acrolinx text editor to analyse a new piece of information. The Desktop Checker can also be started straight from the command line by users.
Clarity, consistency, tone, inclusive language, scannability, and other aspects of your material are all enhanced with Acrolinx. Its main goal is to help businesses in providing their clients with better content experiences by evaluating the quality and integrating with your other preferred apps.
Etteplan’s HyperSTE is one of the industry’s top content quality tools for ensuring uniformity in your technical documentation. It is intended for businesses who wish to reduce the risks they take and provide error-free documentation in any language. Customers of HyperSTE can guarantee that their documentation is of the greatest calibre and that it complies with industry safety standards.
To make your information easier to find and read, HyperSTE analyses it. In addition to downloading HyperSTE as an on-premise solution, you can access it through a secure cloud option hosted by Microsoft Azure. With its extensive variety of integrations, HyperSTE can be linked to your personal authoring environments.
You can lessen the likelihood that your documentation breaches significant requirements by comparing it to a variety of industry rules, such as the Microsoft Manual of Style and ASD-STE100 Simplified Technical English for Aerospace and Defence. Also check Remote Work Tips And Tools
6. Video editing tools
Technical writers can effectively instruct people on how to utilise their goods by making videos. Videos are the most popular way for viewers to interact with material, despite their relatively high production costs. Technical writers can employ tools to assist in this process.
Hollywood industry professionals utilise DaVinci Resolve, a video editing programme, to process and enhance their videos. Resolve is a useful tool for technical writers who want to work with video because it allows them to create engaging and educational videos for their viewers.
DaVinci Resolve allows you to create stunning visuals for your videos. It is provided as a free edition with all-in-one colour, VFX, motion graphics, and audio editing for technical writers on a tight budget. To create even better videos, you can work with 8-bit video formats and cooperate with other users.
Resolve is comparable to Apple’s Final Cut Pro X, with over 2 million users as of the last count. DaVinci Resolve Studio, the paid version, offers many additional features, such as adding an editor keyboard, colour control panel, or audio console, which allows you to work with both hands at once.
Lastly, it’s critical that technical writers select the appropriate writing instruments. Technical writers are the main people who produce high-quality documentation; they are employed by a variety of industries.
Make sure you read over the features of any technical writing tool before using it. This facilitates improved decision-making. Choosing the appropriate technical writing tools will enable you to produce high-quality, user-interesting material for your products.
A user-friendly knowledge base programme that makes it simple to upload content and incorporate it into any kind of application. Try out Document360! So, if you’re a technical writer who’s reading this blog post, do you write technical writing using any of the tools described above? How do you feel about the products?
Please feel free to comment. Please propose any superior items in place of the ones that have been provided so that our readers might gain from them.