Check-box terminology: "make sure" approach

Subject: Check-box terminology: "make sure" approach
From: beth_staats -at- ARTISOFT -dot- COM
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996 11:32:57 MTN

<snip from Heli Roosild's message:>
FWIW, the new MS Style Guide recommends "select" and "clear."

Oh, brother. First they get rid of "select" and "choose" entirely,
replacing it with the more explicit "click." Now they're going
_back_ to select? We conform to Microsoft's styles in general but
some of them we overrule (such as their declining to use
contractions (in the Win 95 booklet)). The "clear" option is a good
idea, though.

Here's what we say:
"Make sure the Drives check box is checked/isn't checked."
We handle it this way because in our software some of the check boxes are
checked by default! Telling them to click it would toggle it and that
might be the wrong thing to do, depending on the task at hand.

We don't say "uncheck" and we don't say "select" any more if we can help
it. We say "click" if we have to ("click the <xxx> check box to activate
the <xxx> option..."), but almost always use the "make sure" phrase for
safety's sake.

By the way, in Microsoft's book _The Windows Interface Guidelines for
Software Design_ (1995), check box is two words, not hyphenated.

Tucson Arizona...where the lizards and scorpions play
bstaats -at- artisoft -dot- com

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