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Re: Change bars considered harmful (Was: Re: The worst doc problem ever?)
Subject:Re: Change bars considered harmful (Was: Re: The worst doc problem ever?) From:poshedly -at- bellsouth -dot- net To:Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>, Geoff Hart <ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca> Date:Mon, 07 Apr 2008 13:52:59 +0000
I know how tough it must be. My contract is with a multinational corporation based in Europe that provides English-language manuals to its clients/customers here in the U.S.
I'm in the position of having to read every word, not just for spelling, but for syntax and all the rest.
While most of the documentation is pretty acceptable, a huge majority is really "over-written" and sometimes structurally backwards.
For instance, while we would say, "Turn the knob and the following will occur", and a bulleted list is provided, the English-language material sent to me usually goes like, "In order to obtain this, to see that, to have the thingummybob do whatever, and the burschwitzer go thataway, turn the knob." Hundreds of pages of this stuff.
And deadlines dictate that there's not really enough time to change all of it AND convert the FrameMaker docs from A4-size to US letter-size AND change the spellchecking dictionary to U.S. English.
It's all one big compromise.
But I love the work, I love the company, and the people I work with are just super (smart and nice).
-- Kenpo in Atlanta
-------------- Original message from Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>: --------------
> I've tried to be careful about handing out review copies with change
> bars or their equivalents. If the SME who is new to the project gets a
> review copy with change bars, whaddya bet he'll only look at the changed
> material and ignore the errors in the rest of the document?
> (who is currently editing a scientific paper for spelling and grammar,
> but discovering lapses in logic, in content and in scientific methodology)
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