Title case in documentation

Subject: Title case in documentation
From: Kim Bieler <kimbieler -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2012 10:04:35 -0400

First, thanks to all the excellent responses to my question about
screening tech writers. They were extremely helpful, in particular the
writing/editing exercise ideas.

New question: What is the best way to handle the names of features in
software documentation?

e.g., "Custom Audit offers the option to Acquire Memory Image, which
allows you to later perform acquisition of process and driver memory."

My personal preference is not to use title case for the names of
features (e.g., "Acquire Memory Image"), because it tends to make
English documentation look choppy and Germanic. However, I heard a
somewhat persuasive argument recently that it helps users understand
when they're seeing something that's named in the UI without resorting
to quote marks.

I would also prefer to use sentence case in the UI for page titles and
button and form labels, but not if we're going to use sentence case in
the help docs.

Obviously, the important thing is to pick one style and be consistent.
Just wondering if there's any usability implications to picking one
over the other. Have you seen any elegant examples of how to address
this issue?

Thanks,

Kim Bieler
www.kimbieler.com
@feadog

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