RE: TECHWR-L Digest, Vol 30, Issue 17

Subject: RE: TECHWR-L Digest, Vol 30, Issue 17
From: "Michael West" <mbwest -at- bigpond -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 17 Apr 2008 21:36:13 +1000

Bonnie wrote:
> Yes, there is. <g> Avoid them both, but the latter always and the former
> whenever possible. Why? Because it's "weak."
> For example: If you want to say, "There is a button in the bottom of the
> dialog box that you can click to get the Lobdu to open in a new window,"
> your reader will be happier if you say instead, "Click the red button in
> Hygzry dialog box to open the Lobdu in a new window."


And even happier if you say "To open the Lobdu in a new window, click the
red button in the
Hygzry dialog box", assuming you also tell them how to open the Hygzry
dialog box in an adjacent paragraph or hyperlink.

This is because we need to know the result of an action before we perform
the action, not after, and the sequence in which we present information
should mirror the sequence in which it can be used.

But Bonnie's right about "There is" being, more often than not, a useless,
time-wasting formula in instructional writing.

Mike West
Melbourne, Australia


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