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I know this wasn't part of your question, and quite possibly you're already
planning to do something like this--so, if your check's in the mail, please
disregard this notice, so to speak. *grin*
I went to Tennessee to get information about an add-on unit for one of our
machines a couple of years ago. I used an audio cassette recorder to tape
question and answer periods with the SME, then used transcription equipment
back at the hotel and typed everything up each evening. It helped me
tremendously because I could focus on hearing and comprehending what he was
saying rather than frantically taking notes.
A couple of weeks ago, I did a similar thing here for a prototype machine
that I had two days to get the information for. This time, I used two
video cameras, one stationary and one mobile (on a tripod for stability).
I started both cameras at the same time, and recorded about 45 minutes of
the engineer going through the ins and outs of the machine. Now, I have
the video to refer to as I write the manual *and* I am using the footage to
put together some sample pdf files with mpg clips in them. Our service
technicians will love it if this works out--so much easier to carry a CD
and a laptop than six 350-page manuals!
Good luck and best regards,
Associate Technical Writer
Evergreen Packaging Equipment
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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