Re: What about minimalism?

Subject: Re: What about minimalism?
From: Caryn Rizell <caryn -at- HPPTC95 -dot- ROSE -dot- HP -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 5 Oct 1994 11:01:58 PDT


I agree completely. I too have the same reputation. I
don't always find what I need in the documentation and don't
always love paper docs, but I am willing to start there
to figure out a problem.


> Research tells us that there is a difference between the act of
> reading to learn (as students do) and reading to do (as workers
> do). Too much technical documentation is written for students;
> we need to write for workers. There's plenty of anecdotal evi-
> dence that this is the case.

> That said, I've got to be honest about saying that my reaction
> to all the messages about not knowing a certain WP product despite
> the voluminous documentation is that I consider I have a significant
> competitive advantage over you because I have read the documentation.
> I have acquired the reputation of knowing how to use the tool,
> and people are beginning to come to me with questions, even though
> what I do is pull out the manuals and look up the information in the
> index. I guess that's what makes me proficient 8^)

> I'm writing this somewhat tongue in cheek (indeed, I'm writing it
> somewhat donut in cheek), but if more people realized the connection
> between the statement 'I don't know how to do something' and
> 'I don't read the documentation' we'd all be better off.
> I certainly am *not* singling out the author of the item I've
> references; it is a general and wide-spread problem.

> Steve Jong
> Digital Equipment Corporation

> P.S.: I do not consider myself an expert in the tool 8^)

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