RE: The GUI shall do...

Subject: RE: The GUI shall do...
From: "Porrello, Leonard" <lporrello -at- illumina -dot- com>
To: "Combs, Richard" <richard -dot- combs -at- Polycom -dot- com>, "salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com" <salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com>, "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2013 18:08:07 +0000

Does anyone else find it ironic that the same group that whines about word transformation also objects to the orthodox use of "shall"?

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+lporrello=illumina -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+lporrello=illumina -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of Combs, Richard
Sent: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 9:52 AM
To: salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com; techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: The GUI shall do...

Chris Morton wrote:

> You're preaching to the choir, Anne. I'm looking for the thread
> regarding this, especially as it pertains to the government backing
> away from this anachronistic standard.
>
> Thx
>
> On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 9:30 AM, Anne Robotti <arobotti -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:
>
> > I personally would fight to the death if anyone tried to make me use it.
> >
> > But that's just me....
> >
> > Anne
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 12:25 PM, Chris Morton <salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com>wrote:
> >
> >> Does anyone remember a thread here sometime last year about the use
> >> of "shall" in documentation (e.g., software GUI specs)?

Audience and purpose, folks ... audience and purpose. For most audiences and purposes, I agree. But for a formal requirements document, you should adhere to the key word usage specs laid out in RFC 2119 (www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2119.txt). It's not an anachronistic standard, it's a means of avoiding ambiguity.

That said, I'd use MUST and MUST NOT in preference to SHALL and SHALL NOT whenever possible.

Richard G. Combs
Senior Technical Writer
Polycom, Inc.
richardDOTcombs AT polycomDOTcom
303-223-5111
------
rgcombs AT gmailDOTcom
303-903-6372
------






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Follow-Ups:

References:
The GUI shall do...: From: Chris Morton
Re: The GUI shall do...: From: Anne Robotti
Re: The GUI shall do...: From: Chris Morton
RE: The GUI shall do...: From: Combs, Richard

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