RE: Worthless Tech Comm Degrees

Subject: RE: Worthless Tech Comm Degrees
From: "Scudder, Beth" <beth_scudder -at- retek -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2000 17:45:56 -0600

Andrew Plato (intrepid_es -at- yahoo -dot- com <mailto:intrepid_es -at- yahoo -dot- com> ) touched
off a feisty commentary by saying (among other things) that:

Now - I know you're all going to have 97 3/4 hissy fits explaining
how layout
and organization are important to a document. Feh. Never at expense
of the
data, Bubba.

Deliberately using hyperbole: If all we really need is the data, then can we
just hand our users a big fat technical dictionary and tell them to have at
it? After all, all of the words are there, and the sentences are just how we
organize them!!

(Of course any technical writer worth *anything* knows that the data is of
paramount importance. It is, after all, what we are trying to communicate to
our audience. However, any technical writer worth *anything* also knows that
the organizational structure of said data is worth far more than one might
think. Among many other things, a good organizational structure allows the
user to find the appropriate information easily. Without that structure, the
data will never be found, or used... big help the user manual is then.)

I know other people have said this whole thing better, more eloquently, and
will pontificate more about this than I have here, but I needed to respond.
That statement really ticked me off. Long day, I guess.


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