Re: Online help for GUI/web-based config app of HW telecom products

Subject: Re: Online help for GUI/web-based config app of HW telecom products
From: "Peter Neilson" <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 26 Apr 2016 08:16:26 -0400

On Tue, 26 Apr 2016 07:58:51 -0400, Erika Yanovich <ERIKA_y -at- rad -dot- com> wrote:

This is for writers who documented or used web- or GUI-based configuration applications of telecom products (such as routers, switches, multiplexers, etc.) and I don't mean a network management application.

We have a differences of opinions here regarding whether or not online help in these applications exists or is expected to exist by users. My take is that online help is expected for any application, regardless what it does. However, product management thinks that online help will not add value to such applications, on the contrary, it may create needless complications. However, if I can find telecom vendors who provide such help, they will change their minds.

So, if any of you documented or used configuration applications for telecom products, please let me know.

I've never documented any of that stuff but occasionally find that I need to configure or install some of it.

Either it's a piece of cake, because it's all stuff I know already, or else there is some new corner of a protocol or some crazy option I've not previously encountered. Once in a while it's the former until I discover that it's really the latter.

If I need to understand some new aspect, the printed documentation is rarely sufficient, because it assumes that I already know the new terminology. Going and poking around on the Internet until I find a good explanation is often helpful. In years past (before the Internet) the best method was to find the local guru. Sometimes I was the local guru. There now is no local guru, but instead some guy on the phone in Far-off-landia who reads to you from the printed not-quite-a-manual. Or so it seems. The current best resource seems to be stackoverflow.com.
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References:
Social or Corporate Docs? [was Re: Developments in the review cycle]: From: Chris Despopoulos
Online help for GUI/web-based config app of HW telecom products: From: Erika Yanovich

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