Thursday, September 9, 2010
What Happened to the Old DOS Manual Authors?
Or Why I Hate the Bluebook
Remember those old DOS manuals? Remember when computers actually came with manuals? I've wondered whatever happened to those delightful technical writers who wrote those exemplary pieces of literature that drew so much confusion and consternation to computer users. These manuals would swing between providing so little information about a command that the instruction would be useless, or to including every damned tidbit about the command which again made the instructions worthless.
Well, I think I found where those guys went who use to write those DOS manuals. They are on the editing staff for the legal Bluebooks. When I first picked up a bluebook (and it really is blue), I had a sense of déjà vu. The instructions are so generic that it renders the instructions almost worthless. Thank god for the internet.