Re: "INSTRUCTIONS NOT INCLUDED"

Subject: Re: "INSTRUCTIONS NOT INCLUDED"
From: Kathleen MacDowell <kathleen -dot- eamd -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: Mike Starr <mike -at- writestarr -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 14 Jan 2015 13:30:17 -0600

I've encountered several Adobe wannabee software vendors who exemplify
some of what Mike says. They talk about how wonderful the software is but
never provide complete instructions, unless you really work at them. They
do supplement with user examples and forums. Often you can buy resource
manuals on top of the software.

The irritating thing about both companies is that the software is supposed
to be usable out of the box, but it is only if you exactly mirror the
examples, which have huge holes.

Thinking about it, Sharon Burton has made a business of trying to highlight
some of the things we're all bi***ing about here. And much of it has also
gone on as long as we've been using computer systems and software, it's
just more widespread because the use of technology has encroached on so
much of our lives. Still annoying as heck on principle or if I get caught
up in the hype.

Kathleen

On Wed, Jan 14, 2015 at 1:00 PM, Mike Starr <mike -at- writestarr -dot- com> wrote:

> I'm not going to single out the iPhone or Apple... I don't own any Apple
> products. However, many companies are skimping on the official
> documentation and relying on outsiders to do their job for them and I feel
> they're doing their customers a disservice. IMHO, the cost of quality
> documentation should be borne by the manufacturer. If you look at the
> retail price of certain products, there's no doubt that the profit margin
> is substantial enough that the manufacture could have provided top-quality
> documentation and still made a great profit. It's the cost accountants who
> are telling them to cut down the cost of documentation in order to maximize
> profit.
>
> When we're documenting products that have, let's say, 150 tasks that can
> be done with the product and we only provide documentation for the 15 most
> common tasks, we're telling the customers that we don't care how they learn
> to do those other 135 things or even if they learn how to do them.
>
> Best Regards,
>
> Mike
> --
> Mike Starr, Writer
> Technical Writer - Online Help Developer - WordPress Websites
> Graphic Designer - Desktop Publisher - Custom Microsoft Word templates
> (262) 694-1028 - mike -at- writestarr -dot- com - http://www.writestarr.com
> President - Working Writers of Wisconsin http://www.workingwriters.org/
>
> On 1/13/2015 11:34 AM, Rick Quatro wrote:
>
>> The iPhone may come with brief instructions, but there are a bunch of
>> iPhone
>> "manuals" (third-party books) on Amazon.com. Plus, as you mentioned, there
>> are tons of videos on YouTube. Whatever your learning style, there are
>> plenty of resources available, even if they are no longer provided by the
>> manufacturer.
>>
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--
Kathleen MacDowell
kathleen -dot- eamd -at- gmail -dot- com
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Doc-To-Help: The Quickest Way to Author and Publish Online Help, Policy & Procedure Guides, eBooks, and more using Microsoft Word | http://bit.ly/doctohelp2015

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References:
RE: "INSTRUCTIONS NOT INCLUDED": From: Dan Goldstein
RE: "INSTRUCTIONS NOT INCLUDED": From: Rick Quatro
Re: "INSTRUCTIONS NOT INCLUDED": From: Mike Starr

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