Re: "Technical Writing as a Part of User Experience"

Subject: Re: "Technical Writing as a Part of User Experience"
From: Chris Despopoulos <despopoulos_chriss -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Sat, 19 May 2018 08:43:47 +0000 (UTC)

I can't not feeling help was this article that has been the writing of ESL. And this is an important issue. The base of GUI is linguistic... You have nouns (what you select) and verbs (commands), and you have adverbs (command modifiers) and adjectives (properties of the things you select). You string these together to produce sentences. And the innovation (not to mention the QA problem) is that you can produce unanticipated sentences. So good GUI design requires good language skills. And what about the cultural issues? Does it matter that you GUI is designed by native speakers of X and intended for native speakers of Y? Frankly, I kind of think so.

Another point... I the GUI is a channel of information and your docs are a channel of information, hat's the dividing line? People are often unclear on that, and this article did nothing to address it. Throw into the mix the fact that doc channels can now become PART of the GUI, and you have room for real confusion and conflict. What are the criteria we use to draw the line between GUI and doc?

Finally (for this missive anyway), the article barely touches on a truism of Docs... If you can't describe it, the design sucks. Either the work flow is off, or the labels are misleading, or the paradigm is unclear (or variable)... Whatever. If you can't write it up, don't code it!

============Interesting read. See if you can access it.

Craig Cardimon | Senior Technical Writer
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