atw: Re: If you couldn't write procedures with 1, 2, 3 - then how would you do it?

  • From: Michael Lewis <mlewis@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: austechwriter@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 3 Dec 2017 11:54:56 +1100

Some good ideas here, but very dependent on the audience. I know that my own response to a cartoon strip would be very negative; I would feel that I was being talked down to.

As I commented earlier, numbered steps have been used for a very long time, for the simple but compelling reason that they work. Ditching a tried-and-tested technique because it's "dated" reflects the marketing mindset that prefers fancy typography because the easy-to-read faces are "old fashioned".

Incidentally, if the procedure is at all iterative (as in "repeat steps 5-9 for each subsequent item"), cross-referencing an un-numbered step is not going to be easy to do for the writer, nor easy to interpret for the reader.

- Michael Lewis



On 03/12/2017 09:29, Julia Williams wrote:

- Put them in a table (although this might also rate as dated).
- Put them in descending ladder with each step indented a little more to 
indicate sequence (and perhaps a tastefully curved arrow arching down to the 
next step)
- Put them in some imaginary dialog with images of the speakers - like: Neophyte: "What do I do first 
...?"; Expert: "First, prepare the potions" etc. You could lay this out in the style of, say, 
"What's App" or any chat tool with the two speakers aligned left and right.
- Make a cartoon strip. The panels could include a lot of text if necessary but 
people understand the implied sequence.
Depends on the material and the context of course.

J

-----Original Message-----
From: austechwriter-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
[mailto:austechwriter-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of D
Sent: Saturday, 2 December 2017 5:12 PM
To: austechwriter@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: atw: If you couldn't write procedures with 1, 2, 3 - then how would 
you do it?

So, I'm potentially faced with writing tasks but not wanting to number them 1, 
2, 3, etc. because it doesn't fit the style of existing marketing material and 
looks somewhat dated. How would you do it?



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