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Subject:RE: XML conversion From:Michael West <mbwest -at- bigpond -dot- net -dot- au> To:"TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Tue, 22 Jul 2003 09:48:07 +1000
> A major business goal for the project is to provide
> users with a unique, highly customized product
> interaction. This business goal also applies to
> documentation. As I mentioned before, a user's roles
> determine what they can see and the functionality they
> can use. After much discussion we concluded that the
> documentation should only describe those things that
> the user can see and use.
> We had the opportunity to test the validity of our
> conclusion with users. In the past, their interaction
> with our product documentation had been less than
> satisfactory because they had to filter out a lot of
> information that did not relate to their specific
I'm sure there are good reasons for your approach,
but I wanted to understand whether you were
suggesting that it is, in some universal sense,
"unacceptable" for end-user assistance material
to contain categories of information that only some
After all, every manual, every reference work, every
library contains a very high percentage of information
that some users will never need.
The key to usability is good visual design,
well-planned access points, thoughtful organization,
good look-up aids, and similar attributes.
It is just possible that your users' problems with
previous documentation could have been reduced or
eliminated by proven traditional design techniques
rather than technological innovation.
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