Re: Imperatives in procedures?

Subject: Re: Imperatives in procedures?
From: Jeff Scattini <jeff -dot- scattini -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: Steven DeWitt <news -at- stevendewitt -dot- ca>
Date: Tue, 22 Nov 2005 09:34:41 -0800

Hi everyone,

Thank you so much for your comments and insights. I really appreciate it!

Jeff

On 11/22/05, Steven DeWitt <news -at- stevendewitt -dot- ca> wrote:
> Hi Jeff,
>
> The guideline I follow is to put the imperative at the start unless
> the reader absolutely needs to know other information first in order
> to avoid "Throw out bathwater (after removing baby)" situations. If
> there is navigation info that the reader needs to know, is it
> possible to put it at the end of the previous instruction instead of
> at the start of the next?
>
> Good luck
>
> Steven
>
> --
> Steven DeWitt, C. Tran. (FR>EN, ES>EN, en>fr)
> Fredericton NB CANADA
> mail [at] stevendewitt [dot] ca
>
>
> Le 21-nov-2005 à 17:51, Jeff Scattini a écrit :
>
>
> > Hi all,
> >
> > I'm currently writing a series of task-oriented documents for a
> > software application.
> >
> > I learned that one should always put the user-imperative at the
> > beginning of each step:
> >
> > 1. Click Start on the toolbar.
> > 2. Select the program you want and double click that program.
> >
> > However, one of my product managers wants to bury the imperative in
> > surrounding text:
> >
> > 1. On the left-hand side of the toolbar, click the Start button.
> > 2. You can from there, search for the program that you want and then
> > click that program to open it. The program window will then open.
> >
> > I have searched the MS Manual of Style, (which is what we've used as a
> > starting point for our in-house style guide) and it states that you
> > can put the navigation before the imperative. Our in-house style guide
> > states to use the imperative first, but the in-house styles are less
> > than 6 months old and still fairly fluid.
> >
> > I'm trying to get a sense if I'm picking a dumb battle or if people
> > have found that using the imperative is more or less usable for their
> > readers.
> >
> > Thanks,
> > Jeff
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>
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>
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Help. And online anything else. Redesigned interface with a new
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content and configure Help in MS Word or any HTML editor. No
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References:
re: Imperatives in procedures?: From: Steven DeWitt

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