problems with docs in ascii format

Subject: problems with docs in ascii format
From: "Tamara Miller, Computer Documentation Specialist" <tmiller -at- DESIRE -dot- WRIGHT -dot- EDU>
Date: Mon, 30 Jan 1995 23:04:43 EST

I work in a university Computing Services department. Over the past several
weeks, I have been converting all of our software documentation to be posted
on our university gopher, in ascii format. I'm also reformatting all of our
printed documentation using PageMaker.

I've been struggling with how to present commands in the ascii version of the
documentation. I've checked several other university gopher sites for ideas,
but none that I've found use a consistent method: some use both all-caps and
double quotes in the same document. All-caps wouldn't be bad, but it
won't work for our Unix docs, because Unix commands are case sensitive. I'm
also concerned that no matter how many notation keys I include, if I use
quotes, people will think that they are part of the command. As I'm working, I
am trying to separate the commands on separate lines - is that enough?

I'd like to take advantage of bolding and italics in the printed docs, but I'm
worried that the docs in both formats won't look consistent and will be
confusing.

(Listen to this tech writer ramble!!)

Has anyone else dealt with a similar situation? Any suggestion?

Thank you!

Tamara Miller


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