RE: Click X, or click the X button?

Subject: RE: Click X, or click the X button?
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 23 Oct 2009 10:03:54 -0400


Regarding pictures of buttons and 'cognitive load' and other stuff that's come up, I was just wondering...
Does anybody have a problem with what I do?

I use a single convention for click or press actions, with perhaps a little text to indicate where the clickable or pressable thingie is to be found, and then only if it isn't already apparent from the context.

Click [Back] if you wish to change any item in the summary.

Click [Next] to confirm the settings in the summary.

Insert the blue Security Officer PED Key and press [Enter] on the PED keypad.

Press [<] on the PED keypad to go to the PED main menu, then press [7] for the Remote menu.



It's easy to pick out of a page or paragraph, it's easy and quick to type, it doesn't add any graphic load to the document, it seems reasonably unmistakable in intent, since it's always accompanied by a verb like "click" or "press".



The only other place that I habitually use square brackets is for options in command-line syntax, and it's pretty-much self-evident that no clicking or pressing is being invoked in that context.


Comments?

Other than the fact that it's not recommended in this-or-that style guide, would anybody have trouble getting the meaning, or be confused if they encountered "Click [Next]" or "Press [Yes] on the PED keypad" in a help page, with no 'Typographical conventions' page nearby to explain the mystery?


- Kevin


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RE: Click X, or click the X button?: From: Claudine CHAUSSON

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