TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Re: a framemaker issue ... or is it? (#159224) From:Bill Burns <wburns -at- MICRON -dot- COM> Date:Thu, 26 Sep 1996 09:46:54 MDT
Jean Robert writes:
>Our conviction is that the "To" is helpful to readers because it sets off all
>our procedures but is exceedingly unhelpful in a list of procedures. So we're
>proposing an alternative: substitute a gerund for "to" and delete the comma, as
>in the following:
I'm not sure I understand the reasoning. Is it unhelpful because it provides no
additional content or because it hinders your ability to use the subordinating
conjunction "to" in procedural steps? If the latter is the case, the icon you're
proposing would distinguish between task headings and procedural steps. If it's
the former, I think you're overlooking the benefits consistency in helping the
reader understand the conceptual organization of the document. Personally, I'd
use "to" for task headings and reserve gerunds for section and subsection
>* We'd like to use an icon but the advanced properties only lets you attach the
>anchored frame either above or below the line. We think it looks funky. We want
>it right on the 4Heading line! You can attach a frame to a tag but there's no
>way that I can see to keep it in the left margin. (I have to go into the
>Anchored Frame dialog box and manually choose whether to put the side farther
>from or closer to the page edge. This isn't an acceptable solution.)
You can also choose to to put it at the insertion point on the baseline.
However, it's still a manual process.
>* Zapf dingbats work just fine, but none of the zapf dingbats IMHO are cool
>enough or distinctive enough to merit using to distinguish our procedures. I
>thought a sideways triangle would be reasonably OK but there are no zapf
Wingdings has an interesting two-tone chevron you might consider. You might
consider using a run-in heading and putting in the task marker as the default
punctuation. Then create another paragraph tag and set it to follow the task
marker heading. Essentially, you just insert the marker tag, then hit return and
write your heading text.
Hope this helps.
Assembly Documentation Supervisor
wburns -at- micron -dot- com
This message brought to you by W.A.S.T.E.
and your local potsmaster.