Re: Recommend TW Book?

Subject: Re: Recommend TW Book?
From: Chuck <writer -at- BEST -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 6 Jul 1999 20:36:14 -0700

Danny Ramsey wrote:
> Please recommend to a programmer a useful book on technical writing of
> software user manuals. Thank you.
It almost looks like you're asking for an all-in-one "Technical Writing
for Dummies" type of book. None exists that I know of, in large part
because good technical communication comes from the mastery of several
disciplines, with writing but one. One way to see this easily is if you
have the viewpoint that a large part of software documentation is the
software interface and design itself, which contains very little

Just a smattering of essential books that are part of my own "technical
writing" library:
"Technical Writing, A Reader-centered Approach," Paul V. Anderson, ISBN
"Technical Editing," Carolyn D. Rude, ISBN 0-534-15000-4
"Handbook of Technical Writing," Brusllaw, Alred, & Oliu, ISBN
"About Face, The Essentials of User Interface Design," Alan Cooper, ISBN
"The Design of Everyday Things," Donald A. Norman, ISBN 0-385-2677406
"How to Write a Computer Manual, A Handbook of Software Documentation,"
Jonathan Price, ISBN 0-8053-6870-1 (note: this book was published in
1984 and I don't know if it's ever been updated)
"Bugs in Writing," Lyn Dupre, ISBN 0-201-60019-6
"The Chicago Manual of Style"
"The Microsoft Manual of Style for Technical Publications"
the list goes on and on......

"[Programmers] cannot successfully be asked to design for users
because...inevitably, they will make judgments based on the
difficult of coding and not on the user's real needs."
- Alan Cooper
"About Face: The Essentials of User Interface Design"

Chuck Martin

From ??? -at- ??? Sun Jan 00 00:00:00 0000=

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