Technical Communication:
Developing a Publications Department (Read Me First! Appendix A)


Answer the questions in this quiz to see how well you've read and understood the chapter. Feel free to look up answers in the book and retake this quiz until you get all the answers right.

This quiz is based on Read Me First! A Style Guide for the Computer Industry by Sun Technical Publications, 3rd ed.

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  1. Who is the author and what is the title of the document that sets forth levels of maturity in documentation organizations?
    JoaAnn Hackos, Managing Your Documentation Process
    Janice Redish, "Adding Value as a Professional Technical Communicator"
    JoaAnn Hackos, "Adding Value as a Professional Technical Communicator"
    Janice Redish, Managing Your Documentation Process

  2. Does this appendix maintain that the "value add" of a documentation organization can be measured in costs saved?
    Yes, especially in terms of customer satisfaction.
    Yes, especially in terms of fewer calls to technical support.
    No.

  3. Although nowhere defined in the book, testing the "validity" of technical documentation most likely means which of the following?
    How easily users can learn the product from the documentation and begin accomplishing their tasks with the product.
    How difficult the product is for users to learn and use and how well the documentation bridges that gap.
    How accurate and complete the documentation is in terms of actual product functions.

  4. Which of the following best describes the work of a graphic designer?
    Designs the interface of the product; the organization and placement of menu items, buttons, and other on-screen elements of the user interface.
    Creates the drawings, illustrations, and photographs that will be used in the documentation for the product.
    Determines typography, page size, covers, use of color, general layout, and graphic themes for the documentation.

  5. Which of the following explains how the positive worth of a documentation group can be measured in terms of dollars and cents?
    Increase in number of customer phone calls to technical support for the product.
    Decrease in number of customer phone calls to technical support for the product.
    Increase in customer satisfaction as calculated by customer satisfaction surveys.
    Decrease in technical errors found in product specification developed by engineers.

  6. Assume you have a new, never-before-written 350-page book project that is going to be handled by a team consisting of one writer (who will also do the indexing), one editor, and one project manager. Which of the following states the lowest number of people hours the project will take, using the formulas in this book?
    Note: Appendix A of the 3rd edition has a huge mistake about editing estimates: it should be 6-8 pages per hour, not hours per page!
    1050 hours
    1219 hours
    219 hours

  7. When the interface is "frozen," what happens?
    No further changes are permitted to that interface.
    The interface is designated as ready for alpha testing.
    The interface is designated as ready for beta testing.
    The interface is tossed out, and development of a new interface is started.

  8. Which of the following best defines the documentation plan?
    A summary of technical and editorial changes that must be made to documentation being developed for a product.
    Details about the function, audience, cost, reliability, and marketability of a product that is in development.
    Plans for the documents to be developed for a product, their contents, media, schedule, and resources needed.

  9. Which of the following best explains what happens in a technical review meeting?
    Participants in the meeting study the documentation for writing-related problems and convey these problems verbally to the writer.
    Participants in the meeting study the documentation for problems involving technical inaccuracy or incompleteness and convey these problems verbally to the writer.
    Participants in the meeting study the documentation both for writing-related problems and for problems involving technical inaccuracy or incompleteness and convey these problems verbally to the writer.
    Participants in the meeting resolve conflicting or rejected comments concerning writing-related problems and sign off on the documentation indicating their acceptance of it.
    Participants in the meeting resolve conflicting or rejected comments concerning technical inaccuracy or incompleteness and sign off on the documentation indicating their acceptance of it.
    Participants in the meeting resolve conflicting or rejected comments concerning both writing-related problems and problems involving technical inaccuracy or incompleteness and sign off on the documentation indicating their acceptance of it.

  10. If you are writing about a product that is likely to need only about 750 copies of the documentation, which of the following types of print production should you use?
    Offset printing
    Photocopying
    Three-ring binders



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