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Subject:Re: Reasons for online From:Laura Johnson <lauraj -at- CND -dot- HP -dot- COM> Date:Wed, 21 Dec 1994 16:08:09 GMT
Glen Accardo (glen -at- softint -dot- com) wrote:
: > Glen, Are you users pleased with your indexes? I'd be surprised if they
: > were . . . (I'm responding to you personally because I don't want this
: > to be perceived as a slam. My question is sincere.)
: Yes, they are. And no, you'd have to do a lot more than that for me to
: consider the question a slam.
: Let's look at a couple of "principles" of tech writing. Rule number one
: according to a gazillion experts is "consistency." I agree. If write a
: section on frobbing snobnitzes, I must use the word "frob" when I mean frob.
: If I also use "blork," "scrludz," and "plurquey" to mean the same thing
: as "frob," I wrote poorly. Granted, English gives us far too many synonyms,
: and sometimes we aren't perfectly consistent, but hey, no one is asking
: for perfection. But, we generally do try -- just look at the number of
: people trying to sort out "choose," "click," and "select."
: Rule number two could be something like "make it easy to find." How far do
: we take this? If I used the word "frob" in the text, why include the others?
: True, I should have entries like:
: other stuff
: other stuff
: This allows people to search for frobbing and snobnitzes and get to the
: information. I've had some entries posted in four or five places. But,
: I am completely opposed to idiots who think I should have used the word
: "blankelquartchen" and insist that I rewrite the manual so that they
: can find things.
: If I give someone the ability to find any word in the text, what else can
: they look for?