Re: Re: Scoping a DocumentationProject??

Subject: Re: Re: Scoping a DocumentationProject??
From: Susan W. Gallagher <sgallagher5 -at- cox -dot- net>
To: Tony Markos <ajmarkos -at- yahoo -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 4 Jan 2006 17:48:03 -0500


When I "scope" a documentation project, I ask two questions.

1. Does the user need to know this?
2. Is it my responsibility to tell them?

If I ask these questions about a chunk of information and the
answer is yes, the information is within the scope of the
document. For example:

How to open a file - does the user need to know? Yes. Is it
my responsibility to tell them? Unless I work for MS and
document the Windows UI, no. So documenting the Windows UI
is not within the scope of the document.

Of course, depending on the project, other questions can be
determining factors in "scoping" a project. For example, if
I'm contracting (as opposed to working as a regular employee),
whether a task is included in the Statement of Work is also
a valid question. If the SOW says "edit and format 100 pages
of text" and suddenly the client wants an additional 50 pages
done, those 50 pages could be accused of being outside the
scope of the SOW, whether or not they could be considered as
legitimately within the scope of the document.

Of course, frequently the scope of a documentation project
is simply defined as the scope of the UI of the product to
be documented. And when you deal with self-defining scope,
as we all so frequently do, it ceases to be a big deal and
tends to be taken for granted.

-Sue Gallagher

> Tony Markos:
> What we are after in scoping: Definition of the extent
> of the system. Somewhere the system has to end - it
> can not go on forever. Research "Context Diagram" to
> see what I mean.


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