Re: [ISTC_D] how useful are video tutorials/screencasts?

Subject: Re: [ISTC_D] how useful are video tutorials/screencasts?
From: Phil Stokes <philstokes03 -at- googlemail -dot- com>
To: ISTC_Discussion -at- yahoogroups -dot- com
Date: Wed, 17 Aug 2011 19:47:28 +0700

> Consider Haynes Manuals, mostly photo based information, they are almost a
> 'printed video'. Are they better or worse than pages of text? Better or
> worse than a short video?

Haynes manuals (of which I was once an avid collector before expat life forced me to leave them, and my love of collecting old bangers, far behind...) are an excellent example.

I'd dispute that they are 'mostly photo based information' — on the whole they contain far more textual, procedural, information than visual information — but the point is that the text often uses numerous technical terms (e.g., "line up the notch on the distributor shaft with the mark on the fan pulley") which might not be in the vocabulary of amateur users. It's far quicker to show what this means with a picture than to give a textual explanation or definitions (though many manuals do both).

As you say, Gordon, it often depends on context and audience. If you're a trained mechanic and just need to know the specific procedure for a particular model of vehicle, a quick 1,2,3 text procedure would probably be preferable. If you're new to the game, a video (or photo-story) is no doubt more reassuring.



Phil Stokes BA MA TESOLcert
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