It’s frustrating – and all too common – that documentation is written, and programs are constructed with the mindset of a knowledgeable user – and not with the critical eye of a novice.
How many times have you worked with software where a the function of a given setting is simply confusing- and the available documentation does little to clarify. Too many times, we’re left with just experimenting with the program, discovering what effects a setting has, and re-documenting it ourselves.
Just ran into a backup program, in there were two settings – for overwrite and append. Each had an “Infinite” option… the problem is that the Infinite option for overwrite has the effect of NEVER being able to overwrite – but the Append’s “infinite” option means it can always append (or write) to a tape (or disk, file).
At HBM, we use this frustration in our daily work, producing notes and documentation for users that, while not perfect, is better, more detailed and useful – than the often feeble manufacturer’s manual or knowledge base. .Documentation is far too often written by (and for) someone that already knows the program – not for someone that does not.
Another Gary rant… 🙂