Re: Release notes: what's your standard like?

Subject: Re: Release notes: what's your standard like?
From: "Lowe, Karen" <karen -dot- lowe -at- cgi -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 12 Oct 2005 09:47:41 -0600

Our application has been around for many years and has been owned by many
different companies. As a result, the release notes have had many
different layouts.

When I started here, I tried to get the ?Powers? to define what they
really want and who they think are using the release notes. The answer:
everything and everyone.

The audience includes existing customers (from non-technical purchasers
through ?regular? users to database installers) as well as potential
customers (same gamit).

These powers want a PDF file for web-posting, complete with a cover page
and a TOC. My small consolation is that at least I got them to realize how
wide their audience was and to start thinking about creating targeted
documents (feature list, reasons to upgrade, etc).

However, in the short term, we agreed on a standard format, which
¨ What?s new (high level overview, details in online documentation
that they get when they upgrade)
¨ Resolved Issues (bug fixes, including the tracking system number
so customers can cross-reference their own issues, but written to sound
like a great improvement to the system that we were going to do anyway?.)
¨ Known Issues (and how to work around these minor inconveniences)
¨ Installing this release (database info, computer/system
requirements as well as the ?how-to? info for upgrading from a previous
release or starting from scratch)

As a result, these notes end up as all things to all people?marketing,
sales, technical. I?m not 100% happy with the layout, but change can
happen over time.

Hope that helps.

CGI Production Field Management Team
800-5th Avenue SW, Suite 900
Calgary, AB T2P 3T6


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