Binder (Was: Covers and color)

Subject: Binder (Was: Covers and color)
From: Stuart Burnfield <slb -at- FS -dot- COM -dot- AU>
Date: Fri, 21 Jul 1995 10:27:48 +0800

> I am in the process of writing a brand new User Guide. The User Guide will
> be placed in 3-ring binders. I need ideas for the cover, especially for
> colors. This User Guide will be used by people working in the area of law
> enforcement.

No opinion about the cover, except to say be careful about guessing
what might appeal to a policeman. Imagine some police officers trying
to design a manual cover that they thought would appeal to technical
writers :^/

About the 3-ring binder, though: did you consider alternatives? Where
will the manual be used - on a crowded desk? someone's lap? in a car?
in the field?

The best single piece of feedback I got from a user was to ditch our
3-ring A4 binders. We changed to A5 ( ~ 6" x 8") manuals with a concealed
wire-wrap binder. This doesn't take up much space, sits open by itself,
and leaves your user free to use both hands to type, operate the device,
shoot people, unwrap the burger, or whatever.

The theory of ring binders is that they are easier to update. In practice,
I've rarely seen a properly updated manual, but I've seen plenty that
had a sheaf of updated pages falling out of the back.

Stuart Burnfield (slb -at- fs -dot- com -dot- au) Voice: +61 9 328 8288
Functional Software Fax: +61 9 328 8616
PO Box 192
Leederville, Western Australia, 6903

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