Re: Usability -- page numbering

Subject: Re: Usability -- page numbering
From: Kelly Hoffman <kelly -at- NASHUA -dot- HP -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 1993 18:07:45 EST

Charles Fisher <decrsc!charles -at- UUNET -dot- UU -dot- NET> writes:

> We use the 1-1, 1-2, ... method here because of frequent updates and
> revisions.

Do your readers actually update their copies with these frequent updates
and revisions? Really? (In a previous job, I did one update kit, then
polled a number of customers. One out of about 30 had actually put the
revised pages into the manual. Maybe your readers are more motivated
than mine were?)

> We don't use the 12a, 12b, etc. method because we might
> have the case where we need to insert another page between 12b and 12c, then
> things get really messy (12bi, 12bii ???).

Well, that's true. Hadn't thought that far ahead, I guess. I find the
idea of one update kit unpleasant enough, without adding others on top
of that. ;-)

> In short, the chap #/page # method of pagination is a good way of
> reducing the impact of adding new pages (aka the "ripple effect") in a
> document. It also saves a lot of trees.

If your readers are actually motivated enough to use the replacement
pages, then I can see the value in using compound page numbers. If the
question is what's most *usable*, though, I don't think that argument
is necessarily relevant.

Let's revise the question, then. If my docs are produced with perfect
binding (no update kits are possible), is there any advantage to
compound page numbering?

Kelly K. Hoffman kelly -at- nashua -dot- hp -dot- com
Learning Products Engineer
Hewlett-Packard, Network Test Division "Reading the manual is
One Tara Blvd., Nashua, NH 03062 admitting defeat."

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