Re: Checking the checkers through inaccurate information

Subject: Re: Checking the checkers through inaccurate information
From: Rebecca Phillips <Rebecca -at- QRONUS -dot- CO -dot- IL>
Date: Wed, 8 Jan 1997 16:34:33 +0200

Carl Millholland writes:

>>From time to time I put a little
>>documentation joke in my draft intended for a technical review. This
>> tells me how closely the reviewers are looking at the documentation.
>> I have a couple of questions about this technique:
>> 1. Would you consider this unethical or underhanded?
No, but I am blessed with a sense of humor.
>2. If you did do this sort of thing, how to handle a "miss?"
You mean if it accidentally went to press? I think you can do only one
thing: admit that it was your fault. Hopefully it was relatively
innocuous (read, not obscene). Of course, the odds are that the users
read the manual as closely as the reviewers, so you might not get

Or do you mean if the reviewers missed it? Resort to threats of physical
violence, and let me know how it goes. It's the only means that I
haven't tried yet.
>3. Any other, perhaps more up front, methods for checking the checkers?
I have found that sign-off sheets work for some checkers. When they have
to sign a piece of paper saying they testify to the accuracy of a
document, it somehow seems more serious to them. They get those little
engineer worry-wrinkles on their foreheads and say things like "You mean
I am responsible for this?" Also, if you have a sign off sheet your rear
is covered, but that isn't the main idea here.


Rebecca M. Phillips
Documentation Manager
Qronus Interactive Ltd.
Automated System Testing
rebecca -at- qronus -dot- co -dot- il


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