Re: Assumptions (was: Designing a new help system)

Subject: Re: Assumptions (was: Designing a new help system)
From: Scottie Lover <iluvscotties -at- mindspring -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 03 Dec 1999 21:15:55 -0500

At 08:58 PM 12/3/99 , Jane Bergen wrote:
> Many times I've used the full-text search, contents,
> index, or other links to get to a page. My pet peeve
> is in not being told how to GET to that page.

MINE is in iffy indices.

Although I can't think of a good example in technical manuals, the same
thing happens with cookbooks. If I'm looking for a recipe for a carrot
casserole, surely it should be under carrots, casseroles, or vegetables -- NOT
Lisa Lou's Carrot Casserole. (I think it is fine and dandy that the author
give credit to the person who gave her
the recipe -- but, since new readers have no way of knowing that, it is
insane to include them ONLY that way in the index.)

Many technical manuals are written the same way ... i.e., without regard
for the way users will INTUITIVELY search for the information. Although we
obviously can't anticipate all contingencies, we should nonetheless try to
see things from the user's perspective.




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