RE: Managing Engineers

Subject: RE: Managing Engineers
From: "Stevenson, Rebecca" <rstevens -at- hubdata -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2000 14:20:31 -0500

Maybe I've been reading too much Slashdot, but I'm surprised at you, Andrew.
:-) How are the users ever going to learn *anything* if we use the word we
think they'll understand, rather than the term that's considered correct by
the people you're talking about? Making the distinction costs 1 letter and
maybe a brief explanatory note, and it might educate the audience a bit.

Though if they're buying network security software, I'd be pretty surprised
if they didn't know the difference anyway.

Happy Thanksgiving, Americans! Happy Thursday to everyone else. :-)

Technical Writing/Development
Hub Data, Inc. (for the moment)

-----Original Message-----
From: Andrew Plato [mailto:intrepid_es -at- yahoo -dot- com]
Sent: Wednesday, November 22, 2000 1:12 PM
Cc: bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com; dmbrown -at- brown-inc -dot- com
Subject: Re: Managing Engineers

Funny you would mention this, Bruce. My company has a permanent contract to
all tech and user docs for a network security firm (Network ICE). We faced
this exact issue early in the documentation cycle. The Network ICE CTO, a
brilliant genius type, was insistent to me that I not use the term "hacker"
a derogatory way. This spawned a debate between us. My contention was that
average joe cannot or does not discern this difference. When people hear
"hacker" they think of Wargames or Sneakers. They don't think of cute,
nerds tinkering with computers. The CTO felt this was an unfair stereotype
people who just like to figure out complex puzzles.

Eventually, I won that battle but not after conceding to differentiate that
difference at least to some extent in the documentation. The results of that
battle are peppered throughout our docs.

Andrew Plato

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