Re: Writing for on-line

Subject: Re: Writing for on-line
From: Bruce Byfield <bbyfield -at- AXIONET -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 18 Feb 1998 20:13:40 -0500

Scott Miller <smiller -at- CORP -dot- PORTAL -dot- COM> wrote:

>In the sense of writing concisely for any media, that's true, >but I've done the single-source thing, and it doesn't work. >Just one example: there is no print equivalent of an online >popup. Using popups makes a huge difference in how you write >and organize information. Also, users never get "lost in >hyperspace" in a book. Print and online are very different >media, and require very different writing approaches. Of
>course, good writing is required by both media.

What you say, of course, is true. No medium is exactly like another, and
it may be that single-sourcing is never going to be completely
successful. But, in many cases,the full advantages of the on-line medium
aren't used in single-sourcing anyway.

Moreover, since single-sourcing is increasingly expected, we need to
start thinking how to accomplish it. I suggest that the way to start
that thinking is to stop emphasizing the differences in media, and to
start thinking about the similarities.

Bruce Byfield, Outlaw Communications
(bbyfield -at- axionet -dot- com) (604) 421-7189 or 687-2133 X. 269 (updated 17 Feb 1998)

"Dow Jones going into a stall,
Spray paint saying it on every wall,
The rise was fine,
Now it's time to decline and fall."
--Richard Thompson

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