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: Platform of Choice From:Mitch Berg <mberg -at- IS -dot- COM> Date:Tue, 11 Feb 1997 09:48:28 -0600
Rodney A. Hoiseth wrote:
> I've been lurking in the shadows of this list for a few weeks now and I
> have a naive question:
> Is there any particular reason the list presumes the use of Windows?
It's not really a naieve question - but I'll bet if you poll the
assembled multitude, you'll find that 80% of us (in the software biz,
anyway) earn our pay working on MS Windows related products.
Of all the shops I've consulted in the last five years, here are the way
they have broken down by operating system used (or at least, in which I
delivered the final product):
UNIX - 3
NeXT - 2
Mac - 2
DOS - 1
Other - 1
Windows - 9 (!)
I'll bet this ratio holds for most of you (although I doubt many of you
have worked on NeXT...)
> "Many of my users are not computer or Windows-proficient."
I think "Windows" is becoming like "Kleenex" - almost a generic term for
"windowing GUI system".
> "Experience: Must be proficient in using MS windows applications...."
This is the sound of an HR person who really doesn't know much about
> "I'll be giving a presentation at the Winhelp conference ."
WinHelp is a very specific help delivery system, used by Windows. It's
a rather specialized (and currently fairly lucrative) field. There is
no pre-eminent Help system, to the best of my knowledge, in any other
> In other words, what's the Platform of Choice for the users on this list --
> DOS, Windows, Mac, Unix, other, ...?
My platform of choice is whichever one pays the best!
Seriously, I love NeXT - it's the best thought-out GUI ever. It's what
Macintosh would have been if they'd done it right (and now that Mac has
bought out what's left of NeXT, it still could be...) I also like
UNIX. OS2 is great. Windows - well, it's everywhere, and that's where
the business is. Sigh.