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The job is whatever was negotiated.
There is not a global job description for tech writers, and if one is ever imposed, I'll probably find some other line of work.
Andrew is writing from a consulting perspective. I work as an employee.
Andrew and his team are expected to do the assigned task. I am expected to help create products, focusing on the documentation.
If Andrew spends clock time on tasks that have not been assigned, he is cheating his client. I am expected to apply my skills wherever they benefit the product team or company.
Andrew's job is to make the sign. Mine is to make sure people don't fall in the hole.
mike -dot- huber -at- software -dot- rockwell -dot- com
nax -at- execpc -dot- com
> From: John Wilson [mailto:jwilson -at- AMADEUS -dot- NET]
> Sent: Monday, May 03, 1999 4:46 AM
> To: TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU
> Subject: Re: Educating Rita
> I must disagree with Andrew who says that a technical writer's job is to
> write documentation about what engineers design. User comprehension is the
> end. Documentation is only the means, and only one of the means, along with
> the design, user interface, and so on. If there is a hole in the road,
> putting up a warning sign (documentation) is better than nothing, but it is
> not the solution. The solution is to fix the hole. Similar reasoning is
> applied to most professional activity.