RE: What do you call these little triangles?

Subject: RE: What do you call these little triangles?
From: Chris Despopoulos <despopoulos_chriss -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Thu, 8 Aug 2019 08:32:34 +0000 (UTC)

I have to agree with Robert and disagree with Lynne on this. You don't need a name for the thing, you just need to say "Expand the entry". HOW to expand it will be clear in the GUI, as are so many other things we no longer state explicitly.Â

You don't need to say "Click the mouse on the OK button" -- You just say "Click OK."You don't need to say "Navigate your HTML browser to the URL, HTTP_blah" -- You just say "Visit HTTP_blah."You don't need to say "Click the forward button, enter the address of the person you want to forward the message to, and then click the Send button" -- You just say "Forward the message."
I could go on and on. Giving a name to this thing does not add to the information we transmit to the reader, IMO. Or let me say that you have a very special, and very small, set of readers who would be informed by a name for this thing. If it adds syllables but doesn't add information, it qualifies as noise.Â

The so-called task-oriented approach to docs is in a crisis. Why? Because we have not updated our concept of what constitutes a task. We haven't kept up with cultural changes and GUI changes. If your instructions are too finely detailed (you are at the wrong level for your task), then the user loses the forest for the trees. Have you never heard of "Death by GPS"?Â

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