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Making It Look Good

There are numerous features for "dressing up" your output. The two basic methods for accomplishing formatting tasks are the use of styles and local formatting.

  • Styles and Stylesheets You can take advantage of cascading stylesheets (CSS files) and the rules around them to control the look of your output in one place. This helps to keep the content separate from its presentation, which is very important when it comes to single-sourcing. CSS isn’t a MadCap Software idea. It’s an international standard for formatting web content, and it was developed by a group called the World Wide Web Consortium (or W3C). You can learn all about the W3C at w3.org. See About Styles and Stylesheets.

  • Local Formatting Local formatting is a way to change the look and feel of content directly so that the changes are applied only to that specific content (as opposed to applying the changes via the use of styles). See Local Formatting.

Following are some of the primary ways that you can make your project look good, through the use of external stylesheets or local formatting.

  • Autonumbers Autonumbering is just what it sounds like—a feature where content is numbered automatically. It is often used to place numbers on chapter titles, table captions, image captions, and so on. See About Autonumbers.
  • Color You can apply color to text, as well as set the background color on many elements. See About Color.
  • Fonts Contributor supports both TrueType and OpenType fonts. You can perform multiple tasks, such as applying fonts to content, creating font sets, and pinning fonts. See About Fonts.
  • Horizontal Rules A rule is a horizontal line (or bar) that you can insert into a topic. You might use a rule, for example, as a design element to separate your topic title from the content. See About Horizontal Rules.
  • Lists Contributor lets you work with numbered and bulleted lists in a variety of ways. This includes creating simple, multi-level, and custom format lists. See About Lists.
  • Local Formatting Local formatting is a way to change the look and feel of content directly so that the changes are applied only to that specific content (as opposed to applying the changes via the use of styles). See Local Formatting.
  • Paragraph Formatting You can affect the look and behavior of paragraphs in various ways. These settings can be applied locally or to the style used for the paragraph. Modifying the style is typically preferable to changing the settings locally for a single paragraph. See About Paragraph Formatting.
  • Positioning Elements You can adjust the positioning of content by using absolute positioning or floats. See About Positioning Elements.
  • Styles and Stylesheets One of the most important aspects of Contributor is the use of styles and stylesheets. Quite simply, styles are the best, most efficient way to affect the look of your output. See About Styles and Stylesheets.