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Having worked in both software and hardware documentation, I can tell
you that they both require the same basic tech writing skills, and they
both reward the same tech writing "extras."
As for the Microsoft Manual of Style -- it's just a style guide, useful
for companies that don't have their own. "This guide is intended to give
clear, up-to-date, and easy-to-use advice about usage and spelling of
both general and computer-related terms, sentence style, technical
writing issues, and design and interface elements." If you open it
looking for something completely unfamiliar, I think you'll be
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Gene Kim-Eng
> Sent: Friday, April 06, 2007 3:51 AM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Re: Tech Writing a Growing Field?
> Having never worked in the software industry, I sometimes
> get the feeling from this list that software originates on
> some other planet than products made by industries that
> cut metal and weld and bolt the pieces back together.
> One of these days I'm going to have to get myself a
> copy of this "Microsoft Guide to Style." I get the
> feeling that reading it will be an experience akin to
> my first exposure to Douglas Adams.
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