RE: How many options to give to readers?

Subject: RE: How many options to give to readers?
From: Steve Shepard <STEVES -at- YARDI -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 23 Mar 2001 11:54:51 -0800

We have a "Getting Started" chapter hat explains shortcuts, the toolbar,
etc. In the rest of text we only describe the most basic and **most
consistent** way of completing an action. Yeah, the Toolbar may be the most
visible, but not every menu item has a Toolbar equivalent. So if there is a
menu for it, that's what we use.

>From the File menu, choose Open.

not

>From the File menu, choose Open, or click the Open button on the toolbar.

or worse yet:

>From the File menu, choose Open. Alternately, you can click the Open button
on the toolbar, or type ATL-f-o.

steve shepard

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Walters, Christian writes:

> How many options for completing the same action do you give
> to readers?
> There are often several. The same thing can be done by clicking and
> selecting a button, or double clicking, or right-clicking and
> picking from a
> menu, or from a regular menu, or from a toolbar button, or a
> shortcut key,
> and so on. Do you guys have any rules o' thumb for that kind
> of thing?
>
> My gut feeling is to pick which one is the easiest and only
> tell them that
> one. If they are inexperienced users, too many options may
> confuse them.
> If they are experienced, too many may annoy them. As they
> gain experience,
> they will figure out other options anyway. I say dump the toolbar
> descriptions and lists of shortcut keys in a conventions section or an
> appendix and get on with it.>

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