RE: What graphics tasks do you perform?

Subject: RE: What graphics tasks do you perform?
From: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
To: sphilip <applehelpwriter -at- gmail -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 20 Feb 2013 10:29:04 -0500

I read. I just don't like a lot of the interactive tutorials I've encountered over the years. ("For the love of ! -at- #$%*&, get ON with it!!")

I also like video instructions for physical things, like how to perform an exercise properly, or how to disassemble or repair a household appliance (so THAT's how that lid-catch works!) Or... didn't I already mention replacing the MBP's optical drive with an SSD...? But I can't stand them for computer/software instruction.
Either they're too agonizingly slow, OR they are like somebody else described the other day, with the presenter clicking two steps ahead of where my eyes are still trying to focus... "Wait-wait-wait... HOW did you get to this dialog?"

I'm the guy that reads the BBQ assembly instructions all the way through, and lays out (and counts) the parts before picking up a screwdriver. Finding 13 of the JQ-short screws, when the part-count calls for 12 is cause for a smile ("Aw, the thoughtful souls tossed in a spare"). Finding only 11 of them is cause for extended cursing.
Same for the IKEA pictorial instructions. I try to understand the sequence before I jump in.

Of course, that's not my nature. It's learned behavior after having partially disassembled a few projects, in order to resume with the hole pattern flipped. "I guess that wasn't just an ink-spot on the drawing... it's two screw holes, one dowel hole and then another screw hole at the BACK of that shelf... but at the FRONT of the shelves above and below... arrrgh!"

Where I've always stumbled, with written instruction is translation. I use a product for years, and learn to think of actions by the terminology that the product uses. Then I start using another product and can't find how to do (what should be) the simplest things, because I'm asking the wrong questions. It all eventually sorts out, but it's the time that's usually the problem. Of course, it's not the basic-basics that one can read off the menu-bar headings (or less-readily, off the beloved Ribbon tabs), it's the secondary and tertiary actions that are the actual meat of what I'm trying to do. So, a handy part of any documentation is like the Flare for RoboHelp users, Flare for FrameMaker users, GIMP for PhotoShop users ... sections intended to help former users of approximately-equivalent tools learn to adapt in short order.





-----Original Message-----
From: sphilip [mailto:applehelpwriter -at- gmail -dot- com]
Sent: February-20-13 5:55 AM
To: McLauchlan, Kevin
Cc: salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com; techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Re: What graphics tasks do you perform?

On 20 Feb 2013, at 03:33, "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com> wrote:

> I rarely have the patience for tutorials,

And you, brethren tech writer, don't even RTFM!

Cripes, when we don't do it ourselves, we have our work cut out trying to get anyone else to, there's the truth. ;)







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Follow-Ups:

References:
What graphics tasks do you perform?: From: Nancy Allison
Re: What graphics tasks do you perform?: From: Chris Morton
RE: What graphics tasks do you perform?: From: McLauchlan, Kevin

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