Re: quality of technical documentation

Subject: Re: quality of technical documentation
From: Jan Boomsliter <boomah -at- CONCENTRIC -dot- NET>
Date: Thu, 4 Mar 1999 20:41:05 -0800

let's see - impartial judges? editors' notes? where to find an all-knowing
guru, besides me? :-)

This list has links to pubs-type docs, several of which address usability
testing. While I am a bear about quality issues that only pubs people seem to
appreciate, I must admit that giving the customer what the customer likes is
the top consideration. [Note: not what the customer asks for, which may or may
not be the right thing to do, but what the customer likes, which is what the
customer uses and wants to use again.] Usability testing can tell you a great
deal about your docs, and you can also test your competitors docs and compare.


Poppy Quintal wrote:

> Can anyone answer the question below from one of my colleagues? We have
> been able to come up with information on various quality methods,
> metrics, etc, but so far nothing that "specifically" allows the
> measurement of quality as a comparison between different sets of
> documentation.
> Any suggestions would be appreciated.
> Poppy Quintal
> poppy_q -at- hotmail -dot- com
> ------------------------------------
> We are attempting to attain an accepted and proven form of measurement,
> if not an actual formula, as it relates to the "quality" of technical
> documentation. The assumption is that this "yard stick" could be a
> vehicle that will allow us to grade the quality of our technical
> manuals, compared to those of our competition. Quality, in this context,
> could mean accuracy, readability, consistency, etc. In essence, we are
> trying to acquire concrete empirical results from something quite
> abstract. Is there such a "yard stick" out there that we can use?
> Thanks,
> Chris
> -----------------------
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