Do techies really know what other techies need? -Reply

Subject: Do techies really know what other techies need? -Reply
From: Bill Sullivan <bsullivan -at- SMTPLINK -dot- DELTECPOWER -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 20 Mar 1997 17:13:50 -0800

Sella writes:
>>My problem is that the programmer I work most closely with despises
all my tries at making text more accessible.

>>So, does anyone have any clever techniques for dealing with this
argument? BTW--he really does *not* appreciate discussions about
good writing technique.

Unfortunately, it's a not uncommon problem, not unlike a marital
difficulty. I know of no sure-fire way to change the mind of a
person with the attitude you describe -- all kinds of kindness,
shmoozing, and taking the person to lunch never bear fruit when it
counts. Sometimes over time, you can gain more of the person's
respect just by being yourself and continuing to grow in your job and
your knowledge of the product. Or you possibly can reorganize the
signoff structure to eliminate the person.

Or, you might possibly get someplace by making usability studies and
videotaping them -- you could videotape two or three people using the
software following his version of the manual and two or three people
following yours. It might be instructive to you both. [I would
videotape because I have found I have learned from repeated
viewings.] I am thinking that usability studies might lead a a
sensible kind of compromise that you each could live with.

It's too bad you can't divorce the bum and get alimony. I wonder why
no one has thought of that <g>.

Bill Sullivan
bsullivan -at- deltecpower -dot- com
San Diego, California

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