Re(4): craft vs. science vs. art

Subject: Re(4): craft vs. science vs. art
From: Richard Lippincott <richard -dot- lippincott -at- ae -dot- ge -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 28 Jun 2002 09:14:58 -0400

>A number of years ago the US Navy made some attempts to use a Classics
>Comics format for training manuals. It was highly successful for manual
>tasks ... but they quickly found out that anything requiring analysis or
>decision became very hard to portray in graphic form.

The U.S. Army did the same thing in at least one case in the late 1960s.
They published a simplified maintenance manual for the M16 rifle in comic
book format, and hired illustrators from Marvel Comics to do the artwork.

The manual is actually still available, it's been reprinted commercially and
a new printing can be purchased from some book dealers for about $10. It's
not very big, it runs about 20 pages. The illustrations are...hmmmm...well,
they sure would have caught the attention of a young male GI in the late
'60s, but I don't think the would publish anything like that today.

Questions of taste aside, it is a very usable and concise maintenance manual
that clearly presented the information to the intended audience, and worth a
look for an example of this style of information presentation.

--Rick Lippincott
Saugus, MA

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