Re: I'd rather teach an engin...

Subject: Re: I'd rather teach an engin...
From: Ron Miller <RSMH -at- AOL -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 25 Apr 1995 20:13:44 -0400

My, My.

I thought my little maxim was just a harmless bit of fluff, but it certainly
has ruffled some feathers out there.

When I said,

I once heard a saying that it's easier to teach a good writer how to be
>>technical than it is to teach a technical person who lacks writing skills
>>be a good writer.

I was certainly not trying to slight technical folks, I was merely trying to
make a point that those of us who were trained as journalists could make a
smooth transition into technical writing.

Though, I still maintain, if you look at manuals that have been written by
the developers, they are often poorly written and poorly organized, but even
in cases where the writing is coherent, the technical person often assumes
that the audience has the same level knowlede as he/she does. They
consequently write way over the head of the audience, rendering the manual
virtually incomprehensible. I realize there are exceptions to this rule, and
that it is a generalization, but if there weren't some truth to it, we
wouldn't have jobs; the manuals would be written by the engineers.

Ron Miller
RSMH -at- AOL -dot- COM

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