Re: what's the point (was Graphics! Graphics! Graphics!)

Subject: Re: what's the point (was Graphics! Graphics! Graphics!)
From: "Michael West" <mbwest -at- bigpond -dot- com>
To: "Ward, Curtis \(DBS-CLT\)" <curtis_ward -at- dbs-systems -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 1 Sep 2000 07:35:31 +1100

Curtis Ward writes:
>Not an accusation, Michael.

I don't see any accusations in there, Curtis.

Assuming you mean "how often it is
assumed that a document SHOULD BE
(not 'is') essentially textual when it NEED NOT
be (not 'is not' )", I agree, and this of course is
one of the reasons why many prefer the terms
"technical communications" or "information
design" to "technical writing."

Another good application of the textless approach,
by the way, is the instruction sheet that comes with
the amazing new Apple "Cube."

Except in those rare cases where the information
designer is also an expert illustator, I would strongly
urge the designer to farm out the illustration to the
best talent one can afford. Nothing is tackier than
a tacky illustration. Fortunately screenshots can
be easily executed even by 'graphically-challenged'
tech writers.

None of this, by the way, qualifies my original point
about the need to tie screenshots together
explicitly with the text they are intended to illustrate.

--
Michael West,
Melbourne, Australia

I imagine that someday there will be a new kind
of sadomasochistic role-playing in which the
technologically adept will pay dominatrices to
treat them like newbies.
-- Dennis Cass (Harper's Magazine, July 2000)










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