Re: Once you get Intuit you Can't Get Out

Subject: Re: Once you get Intuit you Can't Get Out
From: Lorelle Mennel <lorelle -at- INFORMIX -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 10:33:20 CST

>Robert Plamondon writes:
>
> If I were writing documentation for an application program, I would not
> instruct the reader in the details of inserting a CD into a CD-ROM drive.
> (This contradicts the "maximalism" school, which assumed that any program
> would be the first program the user every installed, and went into detail
> that would have made Og the Caveman a successful computer user. Too
> bad he wasn't in the target audience.)

Interesting comment. I wrote installation guides for a database
server product, and one of the customer comments we received is that
we should specifically tell how to display the files on the CD. The
audience is database administrators, although some of them are not
full-time, and may not have a great deal of experience.

One guide simply said: 1. Insert the CD and display the files.
2. Double-click setup.exe.

Another guide said: 1. Insert the CD in the drive.
(for Win95) 2. Double-click the My Computer icon.
3. Double-click the CD drive icon (usually D)
to display the files on the CD.
4. Double-click setup.exe.

I think some of the need for more detailed instructions stems from the fact
that some of our audience isn't used to GUIs/wizards, etc., and even though
they may be "easier" to use, the audience is not as familiar with them.
I think it must be kind of like when I switched from vi to a word processor. :)

Lorelle Mennel
lorelle -at- informix -dot- com

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