Alternatives to PDF in Technical Documentation

BISSA Corinne, BORDELAIS Anthony, HERIBI Kenz

Paris Cité University, July 2022

Abstract

Technical documentation has become an outstanding resource in the IT industry and the last decades have witnessed a boom of high-performance technical authoring tools.
Despite the multitude of innovative technical writing tools, it has been observed that the dominant output format remains the PDF file, invented in the 1990s.
In the sight of this sluggishness as far as innovative end-user technical documentation is concerned, questions arise: Why has the PDF output survived for so long and what justifies its supremacy over other formats? Another question is, can disruptive innovations be implemented on end-user technical documentation so as to bring about more sophisticated or user-centered output formats?
By discussing with subject matter experts, we are seeking answers to these questions. We are also seeking to explore to what extent modern technologies like virtual reality, artificial intelligence devices among other alternative formats are applicable to end-user technical documentation.

Read the full article in PDF: Alternatives to PDF in Technical Documentation


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