RE: Procedures - Must we use numbered steps?

Subject: RE: Procedures - Must we use numbered steps?
From: "Johnson, Tom" <TJohnson -at- starcutter -dot- com>
To: "Surag R" <suragtechwriter -at- gmail -dot- com>, "Steven Brown" <stevenabrown -at- yahoo -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 18 Apr 2006 10:11:41 -0400

Surag said, I think recipe writers should learn from technical writers :)

To which I say, "Why do you say that?" Maybe recipe writers are more efficient than we are.

Steven brought up an interesting question and it is probably worth some thought. What makes recipes different so that cooks and bakers are able to use them effectively without the numbering structure? I don't know what it is. Even though I number steps in my manuals, I think I use page position as my reference point when coming back to a procedure and don't bother looking at the numbers.

Here's a related question, "Should we be using 'Step' to preface the numbers? That convention was in place here long before I started working here and I've continued it, but I wonder if that extra word has any value. I'm thinking it probably doesn't and I could probably make the change without it ever being questioned.

Tom Johnson
tjohnson -at- starcutter -dot- com

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