Re: Two kinds of people theory

Subject: Re: Two kinds of people theory
From: "Karen E. Black" <kblack_text -at- hotmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 08 Jul 2003 19:18:05 -0400

Today I coached a developer (who I have a great deal of respect for) to use a template a team of us designed to help document our applications for developers (The <application> Developer's Reference Guides). The template was set up to guide the developer in documenting how to create and modify modules in the assigned application (including trouble-shooting, tables, configuration, user and developer desktop setup, etc.). My cow-orker's problem was that the template wasn't set up for an application with no user interface: he's doc'ing a backend application that distributes order data among plants, and consists of rules and criteria for adding to and modifying databases, which is tested in the Dev environment, and then moved to production.

So, we yakked a bit about his background (architecture, printing, graphic arts, UNIX), and then we worked on how to use the template to document this app. I found out he HATES technical writing, but loves creative writing (and he's pretty good at both), so I tried to get him to have some fun with the doc while he's putting it together in a way that will be meaningful to the next person who has to use it to understand what he or she will be doing.

So I'd divide the two kinds of people into two subsets:

1a Those who love writing and are good at it
1b Those who love writing and are awful shlubs at it. These people of course don't know they're shlubs.

2a Those who hate writing, yet are good at it
2b Those who hate writing and are terrible at it. You can probably further divide this subset with people who KNOW they're terrible at it...

Is fearr socrú dá dhonacht ná dlí dá fheabhas.
It's better to solve the problem than to improve the law.

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