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DOC-20220530-WA0018..pdf

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DOC-20220530-WA0018..pdf

  1. 1. ➢ The process to create a document is called Document Development Life Cycle (DDLC). It involves stages like Analyse, Design, Information Gathering, Outline Structuring, and so on, which will be discussed in the latter part of this document. ➢ The Document Development Life Cycle runs parallel to the Software Development Life Cycle in the organization. DDLC is required in an organization to set up a process for developing a new document and maintaining the existing documentation. ➢ Technical Writers (TWs) are responsible to implement the DDLC in the organization. Sometimes, TWs are also known as Information Developers or Technical Communicators. Different phases of the Document Development Life Cycle: 1. Analysis (Information Gathering): The document development begins with analysis and information gathering of the following components: a. Audience: The understanding level of the audience becomes very imperative while writing a document. The document for the beginners 'level covers basic features of the product and uses a simple language, wherein you can include advanced features and use technical jargon and flowery language for the expert audience. b. Type of Document: There is a range of documents that can be delivered e.g. User manuals, PowerPoint presentations, online help, multimedia, and so on. The best suitable document for the product needs to be understood before writing. For example, Online help is the best suitable for the software which has a user interface whereas for hardware products a physical user manual document is useful. c. Software: The technical writing process requires a few software to accomplish the task. The writers develop documents using authoring tools like Robohelp, Framemaker, Microsoft Word, and more. Screenshots are also part of the documents and to capture them there are many open- source screen capture software available like SM Snap, MS paint, and more. The type of document to be delivered is the deciding factor for the selection of software, for example, to create user manuals, the Frame
  2. 2. maker and Microsoft Word are the best software to work. Robohelp is used to create online help and web help for the application. 2. Design: Design of the following involves in this phase: a. Style Guides/Style Sheets: Style consists of standards that help to develop consistency throughout the documentation. There are many style guides available by different publications e.g. Microsoft Style of Technical Publication, Chicago Manual of Style, Style of elements by Shrunk & White, and more. Every organization customizes the style guide based on their product and follows it while developing the document. b. Templates: To establish a structure of the document, a Template or Outline is created which consists of the different levels of headings, the number of tables and images in the document, and so on. c. Project Planning: The project plan is created in which every detail of the project is filled. This comprises the total number of topics involved in the documentation, number of Technical Writers involved in the project, tentative time spent in writing, time spent reviewing the documents by different parties, and more. 3. Write: Technical writers write the first draft of the document and sent it for technical review to the Subject Matter Expert (SME). 4. Review: There are a minimum of two rounds of review to maintain the consistency and accuracy of the content. a. Technical Review: This review ensures the technical accuracy of the content and is generally done by the Developers and Testers. b. Language Review: This review is done to ensure language consistency. This review also ensures that the style guide has been followed. The Technical writers incorporate the given feedback in the documents to attain quality. The review rounds could be multiple depending on the quality of the document. 5. Deliver: The document is delivered to the client in a pre-decided format.
  3. 3. 6. Maintain: This is an important stage of this cycle; the documents are preserved for future use. A content Management System (CMS) is used to preserve the documentation for reusability. There are numerous CMS available in the market, for example, Microsoft SharePoint, Astoria, and Documentum are the popular ones. Terminologies in DDLC Template: A template is a file that serves as a starting point for a new document. Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is a style sheet language used to describe the presentation of a document written in HTML or XML. CSS describes how elements should be rendered on screen, on paper, in speech, or on other media. Style Sheet: In word processing and desktop publishing, a style sheet is a file or form that defines the layout of a document. A table of contents, usually headed simply "Contents" and abbreviated informally as TOC, is a list, usually found on a page before the start of a written work, of its chapter or section titles or brief descriptions with their commencing page numbers. Single-source publishing: The process of publication where a single source document/file is used to generate multiple documentation deliverables or formats.

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