How much documentation for 1000 hours of programming?

Subject: How much documentation for 1000 hours of programming?
From: Richard Mateosian <srm -at- C2 -dot- ORG>
Date: Wed, 27 Mar 1996 18:32:43 -0800

>For instance, if it's estimated that an enhancement to a given software
>system is going to take 1,000 man hours to design and code; can we estimate
>how many hours to budget for a user manual (user only; no technical
>reference or system admin manuals)?

No.

Your thousand-hour enhancement might be totally invisible to the user, so no
change to documentation is required.

On the other hand, your enhancement might so thoroughly change the product's
relationship with the real-world application that you'll need a complete
revision of your entire documentation set.

There's no way to determine this information from the number of programming
hours. ...RM

Richard Mateosian Freelance Technical Writer
srm -at- c2 -dot- org Copyright 1996 Review Editor, IEEE Micro
http://www.c2.org/~srm/ All rights reserved President, Berkeley STC


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