Effective tools to create and design Manuals Manuals are one of the most important documents in any kind of business. Making a Manual might seem to be a tedious and complicated process to some. But to make it simpler and easier, there are five most common tools or applications, that you can use to create a Manual.
Good organization, complete information, and clear writing are, of course, key to the success of any design document, but there are some other, less-obvious techniques you can use to make your documents more readable and understandable.
Here are a few of them. Know your audience Writing effective design documentation like design itself is really all about making sure you serve the needs of your audience. Most important is to know who your primary audience is. Is it programmers, project managers, executives, designers, marketing people?
It can be difficult to satisfy every reader in a single document, so, if possible, pick just one target group of people and write for them. If you must serve everyone in a single document, organize it so that each audience can read just the section that applies to them, and not be bothered with the other stuff.
What will satisfy their goals?
Do they need something to help them make a decision? Do they want to better understand who the users are? Do they need to know exactly how the interface behaves and looks?
The answers to questions like these should inform the structure, tone, and emphasis of your documentation. Also important is the culture of your audience. You must be aware of the ways in which your audience uses documentation, and when.
What other kinds of documents do they use, and how? Does a paper document make sense, or would a presentation be more appropriate? As you go, regularly double-check yourself to make sure you are still on track to deliver your audience what they need. Tell a story A major goal of design documentation, especially in the early stages of a project, is to educate its readers about the value of the design itself rather than the specifics of itand convince them that the product is worth building and producing.
One effective way to help people learn and understand these concepts is to present them as narratives: Instead of thinking of your document as simply a well-organized collection of specifications, descriptions, illustrations, and diagrams, try telling a story. Using characters All novels have a main character, and your design document should, too.
Since personas represent the goals and needs of the people who use the design, they are a natural choice for the main characters of your documentation. They even have names, backgrounds, preferences, ambitions, and goals, just like people in a book. Throughout your document, refer to your personas by name, and refer to them often.
If you are describing how a product might fit into a market, write a story about how Alison benefits from using the product in her life.
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Using scenes Two excellent ways of presenting the narrative of the design are scenarios and walk-throughs. Scenarios are like short stories: Scenarios are especially useful in the early stages of a project, when conveying the value and purpose of the product is key.
She decides to check ShopAround.
Walk-throughs, on the other hand, are good lower-level communication tools. They are basically step-by-step procedures that explain how the persona does something with the product, each action she takes, and each response she gets from the system.
Walk-throughs are great for explaining interface behaviors. Both scenarios and walk-throughs work best when accompanied by illustrations or screenshots of the design.
The text part of a walk-through might look something like this: Display user name in the Sign In module 4.
Query for search string 7. Load page with search results Be careful when using a narrative-based document structure, though. For example, some design documents are used as reference guides for developers; those documents must present information clearly and concisely, and in a way that makes it easy for programmers to find what they need.
Here, story-telling might get in the way. One approach is to use narrative to provide an overview of each element of the design, then use a more straight-forward format, like bullets or numbered lists, to convey the nitty-gritty details of each element.TPW Writing Technical Documentation (Units: 3) Prerequisites: ENG or equivalent with grade of C or better; TPW Standards and methods for designing, writing, producing technical information presented in electronic formats, such as online help, support Assist with computer laboratory teaching and complete related projects.
Documentation is a vital part of developing and using a computer-based system and an integral part of what is now called software engineering. In some commercial organizations, 20% or even more of the total development effort goes into the documentation of the new system, recording how it is to work and how it was developed.
Designing Business Documents Adapted by Chris Burke from the Monotype Desktop Solutions series by Alison Black, Paul Stiff, and Robert Waller Software The text for this publication was written in Microsoft Word Pages When designing, you should put yourself in the reader’s place.
Try to think through everything you do from the. This comprehensive guide gives step-by-step instructions needed to build quality into every phase of the computer documentation process - from determining users' needs to . Advanced study of theory and practice in designing, writing and producing computer documentation for end users.
Emphasizes documentation design and production, online documentation, usability testing, and writing of user's guide for computer hardware and software. CAD, or computer-aided design and drafting (CADD), is technology for design and technical documentation, which replaces manual drafting with an automated process.
If you’re a designer, drafter, architect, or engineer, you’ve probably used 2D or 3D CAD programs such as AutoCAD or .