Significance of Document Numbering?

Subject: Significance of Document Numbering?
From: Geoff Hart <ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca>
To: techwr-l List <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>, Michael Ronquillo <mronquillo -at- equitrac -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 01 Apr 2008 09:34:20 -0400

Michael Ronquillo wondered: <<What are your thoughts on document
numbering? Important? Not so important? What's the value of it?>>

Value? In my MANOVA, I found an F value of 27.3, which is significant
at P < 0.01. Thus, highly significant. <g>

Seriously? The importance of numbering is as follows: numbers are
used to denote a sequence or things that must be counted or measured.
If your document numbering challenge relates to either of these
purposes, then numbering is important because it supports both
purposes. If not, it's of questionable utility.

There's an obvious exception that fits neither criterion: Where
numbering follows an established convention, as in technical
specifications, legislation, and other specialized areas, then it's
not important whether the numbering is actually effective or more
effective than alternatives (often, it's not); the more important
point is the audience's familiarity with the numbering system. Since
it's tax time, most of us are familiar with this in the context of
discussing the numbers of the various tax forms (e.g., 1040, 1099)
and the line numbers on each form: both are inherently meaningless to
us until we memorize their meanings, but they speak volumes to
accountants and IRS bureaucrats.

-- Geoff Hart
ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca / geoffhart -at- mac -dot- com
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Significance of Document Numbering?: From: Ronquillo, Michael

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