Re[2]: Online Help "Click" vs. "Press"

Subject: Re[2]: Online Help "Click" vs. "Press"
From: Virginia Day <Virginia_Day -at- DATACARD -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 1998 12:32:24 -0600

As a user who dislikes using a mouse (due to RSI), I'm especially
aware of this terminology. For a typical GUI, keyboard shortcuts are
available for most actions. I'm not sure this is true in your case.

I use "select" in most cases for interface controls. If clicking or
double-clicking is the only reasonable way to perform an action, I use
"click" or "double-click." I tell users when they need to "press" a
key--again when that is the only reasonable way to perform an action.
In most cases, I cannot predict the state of the interface when the
user enters it, so I avoid telling them to select something when I
really want them to make sure it is selected--it might be selected
already. Again, this might not apply in your case.

If I was writing for users who were not expected to be PC literate, I
would include a section on using the interface, where I would explain
all these details, then I'd follow the conventions I described
earlier. If I had question about users performing successfully, I'd
write a few test procedures, sit down with some users, and see what
worked for them.

Is summary, I don't agree with your vendor. "Press" is not an
accurate usage. But, "click" might not be the best choice, either.

Regards, Virginia

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