Re: Hyphenation in technical documentation

Subject: Re: Hyphenation in technical documentation
From: David Neeley <dbneeley -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 1 Dec 2004 18:52:53 -0600


"Experience" also shows that there are precious few who know *how* to
produce a truly well-set text--justified or otherwise. Most simply
follow the presets in their software rather blindly...and then rarely
do they understand how to make the often painstaking alterations to
increase the readability of the justified text.

Many on this list, for instance, have eyes that no doubt begin to
glaze over when one mentions "kerning" or "tracking"--or optical vs.
metric kerning, etc.

Too few also set the line spacing to something that is less of a
compromise than the built-in settings.

For all of these reasons, I suggest that those who are not truly
craftsmen avoid right-justified docs. Depending upon the automated
settings is likely to result in a disaster.

As for hyphens, with a little care it is easy enough to use them
beneficially. If they are to be used, in addition to the various
comments in the style guides about them I suggest that "newbies" learn
the difference between discretionary and "hard" hyphens. That
eliminates the problem of the hyphens carried over into the midst of
the text when a document is reformatted.


On Wed, 01 Dec 2004 14:09:35 -0500, Dick Margulis <margulisd -at- comcast -dot- net> wrote:

> *Experience* has shown that well set justified text is every bit as
> readable as well set ragged text.
> *Experience* in this case consists of over 500 years of craft tradition
> focused on making words on the page readable.
> Dick



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RE: Hyphenation in technical documentation: From: Barb Einarsen
Re: Hyphenation in technical documentation: From: Dick Margulis

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