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Subject:Re: PDF v paper From:"Smith, Don" <dasmith -at- HAYES -dot- COM> Date:Wed, 16 Dec 1998 09:15:05 -0500
On Wed, 16 Dec 1998 12:58:22 +0100, David Thompson wrote:
>Why is there a need for paper doc. to be shipped with a software product?
>For example: I write the doc. in Word, I convert it to PDF and put it on a
>CD. The final user can then view the doc. or print the doc. if need be.
>Production costs are reduced. No printing and lighter packages to ship.
>Am I over simplifying the situation?
I have heard things like what you are saying from those in our company who
see the dollar value of not having to print, handle, package, etc., printed
manuals. And I must admit, there are those who *prefer* to have there
manuals in Help Files or as PDF documents with their software. These people,
however, are far in the minority.
The classic example I can think of on this subject (for me anyway), is
Corel's release of Version 7 of Ventura Publisher. The vice present of
marketing (I think it was marketing) choose to supply *only* an online
manual! No hard copy! Wow, you should have heard the results of that.
Particularly when you consider that this is a program for writers!. He has
since admitted publicly, that he made a big mistake by thinking the public
is ready for no hard copy.
On the other hand, we have been supplying certain modems with no printed
manual, except a few pages of "Quick Start".
For me, I want to have my manual in my hand. Be able to take it home (if it
is a work program I have to learn) to study. Or to read in the
doctor/dentist office, while I am waiting for my appointment, etc. (Or as
Matt says, "to the bathroom".)
No, I think the time is not yet!
Donald A. Smith
"I must be coming or going, because I'm moving."
Sr. Tech Writer
Hayes Microcomputer Products, Inc.
Gaithersburg, Maryland USA