Re: Rant continued from previous page (was Re: Another Word guru question)
If the reader only has one of the pages, and continuation markers are
used, the reader at least knows that he doesn't have all the
information. In the case I cited, he would have known that there were
further exceptions to the general. He'd know that he couldn't be sure
of the torque setting for any fastener for which he didn't have an
explicit value until he'd had sight of the continuation page.
I agree that the reader knows that he doesn't have all the
information, but would he really know exactly what information he
didn't have? Was there something in the first part of the table that
indicated that the following page included more exceptions or that he
needed more information to verify the torque settings?
In the case I cited, the engineer didn't want to get the manual dirty,
and so was in the habit of photocopying the pages he needed for the
task in hand and leaving the almost pristine original back at the
office. He got rocks for the incident - but I learned a lot as well
and try to guard against a similar thing happening again. (The crazy
thing is that we both worked for the same company and I provided
replacement copies of the company's manuals "on demand".)
I see this as being two issues:
- the engineer didn't look at the next page to see if the table was continued
- the table didn't include warnings or other indicators stating that
really important information was at the bottom (which ended up on the
The second doesn't mean that "continued" is the only solution.
Numerous solutions could resolve the problem:
- add a note at the top of the table that tells folks to read the
entire procedure, which might be continued on the next page
- make sure the table prints on one page, not split across two. For
example, add a page break before it. (Yes, one page will have more
white space than folks would like. But that forces a decision between
less white space or more danger.)
- put an asterisk next to the torque values that have a warning (or
add some other kind of indicator) so that folks look for the rest of
- add "continued on next page". (This one seems to require the most
There is no "one size fits all" solution here.
Char James-Tanny ~ JTF Associates, Inc. ~ http://www.helpstuff.com
Please send follow-up questions to the list. (Inquires sent off-list
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Contact me directly (CharJT at helpstuff dot com) with business inquiries.
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Re: Rant continued from previous page (was Re: Another Word guru question): From: Mike Starr
Re: Rant continued from previous page (was Re: Another Word guru question): From: Geoff Lane
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