Re: Using the Term "User"

Subject: Re: Using the Term "User"
From: Fred M Jacobson <fred -at- BOOLE -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 3 Dec 1993 12:49:13 PST

Chuck Banks's message reminded me (Rule 1: Think, then write.) that
I _do_ have third-person names for my documentation audience. My
(current) rough analysis leads me to classify the tasks required
by our product into four catagories: installation, customization
(or implementation), operation, and system administration. I want
to name my documents by function (_System_Administration_Guide_, not
_System_Adminstrator's_Guide_), at least in part because the same
individual may assume more than one of these roles. Nevertheless,
I _can_ use the "job titles" as third-person references. For
example, "If you delete a file by accident, ask your System
Administrator to restore it from a backup." Or, "To determine which
components to install, ask the Customizer which ones he or she plans
to use."

The implication is that, if you can characterize what the user does,
you may be able to find a substitute term. If I were documenting the
specs of a drawing or painting application, I could write: "The
artist ..." What do you think?

INTERNET: fred -at- boole -dot- com PHONE: (408) 526-3292 FAX: (408) 526-3055
USPS: Fred Jacobson / Boole & Babbage / 3131 Zanker Road / San Jose CA 95134

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