Re: PHIL: Tech Writing Dichotomy

Subject: Re: PHIL: Tech Writing Dichotomy
Date: Thu, 22 Feb 1996 13:14:41 EST

Just for interest Ben, the formal educational backgrounds of the six
writers in our group include the following:

English Literature
European Studies
Information Management
Computer Science

An eclectic bunch, I think you'll agree! Three of the writers combined
two of the disciplines; would you have guessed the following

Engineering and Theology
Law and Computer Science
European Studies and Information Management.

Excellent writers all, and a great team to work with.

Fionnuala Broughan
fb -at- pointdublin -dot- ccmail -dot- compuserve -dot- com

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: PHIL: Tech Writing Dichotomy
Author: INTERNET:guilden -at- iquest -dot- net at CSERVE
Date: 21y02y96 12:09


Which brings me to a larger question, really--the dichotomy of a =
technical writer--a dilemma of the division, if you will, between art =
and science. It's particularly interesting to me; I'm degreed in =
English and Mathematics and this all reminds me of college and the =
proverbial "writers" who hated science & math vs. the "engineers" who =
couldn't write (and didn't figure most liberal arts students had it in =
them to keep up). It doesn't stop with students, of course: how many =
liberal arts folks do you know that still resist computers, and how many =
technicians or programmers have you known that can't communicate worth a =
plug-nickel, verbally or in writing?


This is what's intriguing about technical writing--it bridges a gap and =
knocks down a couple nasty, smelly walls in the process. Perhaps this =
is why I, and others, are drawn to it (in the larger scheme of things). =
In its own way, it forces a resolution of the dichotomy, but not an end. =
Maybe the most important thing is not whether you win or lose the war, =
but how many battles you get to fight in.


Ben Milstead

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