Re: Indexes for online use

Subject: Re: Indexes for online use
From: cjcbrown -at- comcast -dot- net
Date: Thu, 8 Apr 2010 17:04:12 +0000 (UTC)



Good question. I haven't seen any research. I wouldn't expect to either, because when it comes to search, it seems all the research is directed to better algorithms to full-text search. (research on hand-built indexes being less commercially valuable)



That said, as a tech writer needing a content management system, I would want the index, yes.

I use them if they're there.



In my world the readers have told us they prioritize this way:



1. Good full-text search in the final deliverable

2. Well-done index by hand

3. Table of contents



Connie




----- Original Message -----
From: "M. Maler" <mmaler -at- videotron -dot- ca>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 5:20:18 PM GMT -08:00 US/Canada Pacific
Subject: Indexes for online use

Has anyone seen any literature about the utility of indexing content
that is primarily destined for online display?

I know that maybe15 years ago (at least) there were articles in the STC
Technical Communication magazine (and elsewhere) on how much an index
contributed to user satisfaction. ÂBut I'm wondering if there's been any
more recent research into the topic.

I've convinced my current client to invest in a decent index, but as I
work on it, I find myself using full-text search to locate my own index
entries to check their targets, and I'm starting to wonder if maybe my
end users might not be inclined to do the same.

BTW -- I'm producing documentation for users of a content-management
system (primarily tech writers). The primary display format is Eclipse
Help, but users have access to a PDF version of the document.

TIA,
Mary

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References:
Indexes for online use: From: M. Maler

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