Re: Should software documenters learn to read code?

Subject: Re: Should software documenters learn to read code?
From: Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
To: "Downing, David" <DavidDowning -at- users -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2009 10:31:46 -0500

Downing, David wrote:
> ...
> But there is a danger. ...
> technical writer who starts reading code might start thinking this way
> as well.

Not in my experience. The TW is always looking at the end result, and
(in my experience) reads to code to find features that were supposed to
be in there, but don't quite work.

"Oh yes," says the software designer, when confronted with the "-g" flag
that you discovered (by reading code) he had changed to "-w", "I did
change that. In fact, I think I must have changed it three months ago. I
just forgot to mention it to you. And I guess I didn't mention it in the
--help, either. I wonder if I should change it back?" He's the same one
who complained at yesterday's team meeting that the reason the TW
couldn't get the "-g" option to work was undoubtedly laziness or
stupidity, and that he didn't have time to deal with either of them.
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References:
Should software documenters learn to read code?: From: Downing, David

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