Technical writing vs. engineering (one last comment)

Subject: Technical writing vs. engineering (one last comment)
From: "Cristian J. Perez" <perezc2 -at- RPI -dot- EDU>
Date: Fri, 28 Apr 1995 20:07:38 -0400

It seems to me like a many people have this idea that you are either a writer
or an engineer and not both. Honestly, I feel that and engineer or computer
scientist who decides to become a technical writer is taking a career path
(given that he/she is good at both). Let's face it, many engineers and
scientists can't write...I don't think they should all be able to write.

I want to be a technical communicator because I think that there are a lot of
computer scientists out there whose programming skills are just amazing.
However, many of them can't really communicate. Let's nor forget that a
scientist or engineer who decides to become a writer is still using his
expertise in order to be able to write. As I look at it, many technical
writers are good engineers or scientists who have the extra ability to
communicate well. Does he/she not have a certain advantage? I think so.

Writing is a very subtle thing to many people...I think a lot of people do not
appreciate technical writers because they are not the ones who built a certain
machine or whatever...but how can you use the machine if the instructions are
not well written?

Many of us are too familiar with the frustrations involved in trying to
understand manuals for VCRs, software packages, and modem


perezc2 -at- rpi -dot- edu

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