RE: Are these words being used?

Subject: RE: Are these words being used?
From: Jim Shaeffer <jims -at- spsi -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 9 Nov 1999 17:04:53 -0500

Tony Markatos said:

It has been my experience (Tech Writer, QA Analyst, and Systems Analyst,
Development Project Leader) that, except for simple products, it is
impossible to "clearly translate what the SME says" without an in-depth
understanding of the of the product.

Jim Shaeffer (jims -at- spsi -dot- com <mailto:jims -at- spsi -dot- com> ) observes:

A common scenario for Technical Writers goes something like this.
1. A Subject Matter Expert (SME) gives the Tech Writer (TW) a document
that the SME has created.
2. The TW is expected to transliterate the document into correct
3. The transliterated document is returned to the SME for a check of
technical accuracy. If the TW has not slipped in any errors, away the
document goes.
If I can rearrange the words and phrases used by the SME to improve their
flow and grammar (and throw in an occasional synonym), I can do the job
without understanding the technology being discussed.

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