Text, ConText, and HyperText: Writing with and for the Computer
Text, ConText, and HyperText presents recent developments in three related and important areas of technical communication: the design of effective documentation; the impact of new technology and research on technical writing; and the training and management of technical writers. The contributors are all authorities drawn from universities and industry who are active in defining and analyzing the role of computing in technical documentation and the role of documentation in the development of computing technology. This first synthesis of their diverse but related research provides a unique conceptualization of the field of computers and writing and documentation. The book first examines techniques for writing online documentation and the value of usability testing. It presents new research into the impact of human factors in screen design and designing online help, and looks at the impact of desktop publishing on documentation, and at visual literacy and graphic design. Artificial intelligence and documentation processing are then addressed with discussion of data acquisition, automated formatting in expert systems, and document databases; the uses of HyperText in documentation; and the future of technical writing in this new environment. Text, ConText, and HyperText concludes by examining the training and management of documentation groups: how they "learn to write" in industry, management of large-scale documentation projects and their effect on product development; and the "two cultures" of engineering and documentation.
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