Re: Using tables for content

Subject: Re: Using tables for content
From: Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 24 Oct 2013 10:56:59 -0700

Most of the tedious hours I've spent converting tables to ordered
lists were to make things easier to read for users. It would usually
have been more convenient for me to leave them as they were.

In any case, efficiency and quality of documentation are directly
related when resources are limited. If you don't have enough time to
do everything you would like to as well as possible, you have to set
priorities, and the more time you spend fiddling with more complicated
formatting, the less content you are able to create and update.

On Thu, Oct 24, 2013 at 10:24 AM, Janoff, Steven <Steven -dot- Janoff -at- ga -dot- com> wrote:
> Disagree. You're making too many assumptions about Sean's process.
>
> Sean had a good idea and should be encouraged to explore it if he so desires.
>
> And again, all of your objections come from the author convenience standpoint. There's nothing about usability here, and that to me is the ultimate question.
>
> Steve
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: On Behalf Of Robert Lauriston
> Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2013 10:17 AM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Re: Using tables for content
>
> It's not an analogy. I've mapped Word styles to HTML and CSS (or
> vice-versa) many times.
>
> The need to do that sort of thing is exactly why it's a bad idea to use tables to define ordered lists. The amount of time I've spent undoing messes other people made with tables probably adds up to several months at this point.
>
> Sean had a bad idea and should be discouraged from pursuing it.
>
> On Thu, Oct 24, 2013 at 9:59 AM, Janoff, Steven <Steven -dot- Janoff -at- ga -dot- com> wrote:
>> The CSS analogy doesn't apply here. That has to do with coding practice. Using Word styles has nothing to do with coding in HTML & CSS.
>>
>> This is about (1) author convenience, and (2) usability (or Information Design, or whatever you want to call it).
>>
>> From an author convenience standpoint, if you can rock tables, that's a great skill.
>>
>> From a usability standpoint, if you're good at organizing information, you can rock a table-style presentation. As to who needs feedback on using tables for procedures, I'd say anybody considering that as a presentation mode vs. the usual ordered list-style presentation.
>>
>> The old documents from the 60s and 70s that used this style were very effective, as I recall. There's no reason you can't make it work.
>


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Follow-Ups:

References:
Using tables for content: From: Sean
RE: Using tables for content: From: Janoff, Steven
Re: Using tables for content: From: Haim Roman
RE: Using tables for content: From: Paul Hanson
RE: Using tables for content: From: Janoff, Steven
Re: Using tables for content: From: Robert Lauriston
RE: Using tables for content: From: Janoff, Steven

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