Re[1]: Making Manuals User Friendlier

Subject: Re[1]: Making Manuals User Friendlier
From: SANDRA CHARKER <scharker -at- OZEMAIL -dot- COM -dot- AU>
Date: Thu, 7 Mar 1996 09:09:50 +1000

> We need more studies based on real-world situations. We
> need more information on using the tools and technologies
> available today to accomplish "making manuals user
> friendlier" rather than a simplistic, one-shot approach.

Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes!!!

I'd also like some foolproof way of deciding whether to learn and use tools and
technologies myself, or get in an expert and have to specify and verify the

I've just taken over a project documenting procedures for an IT operations
centre. Haven't written a word yet; I've been teaching myself to use MS-Access
and setting up a document register. I've called it a pilot, and I started it
because (a) there are memos going back years about the need for something
better than lists in Word of documents and files (b) I have no memory for paths
and directories (c) there's no way I could convince the client to get someone
else to set it up (d) (let's be honest here) I've been itching to try out
Access. The client's happy; the register is necessary; a database is the right
tool for the job; it's taken me less than 2 days to get a reasonable little
database application going, tho' I've got a couple of usability enhancements to

But it's a funny kind of technical writing.

Sandra Charker

scharker -at- ozemail -dot- com -dot- au

'The first principle is that you
must not fool yourself - and you
are the easiest person to fool.'

.. Richard Feynman

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