Mr. Procedure Discusses Procedures–Documenting Software (Part 1)


The topic of documenting software came up in one request for my Writing Operating Procedures book. This is an important topic to all technical writers and would-be technical writers, because writing in support of software applications is a significant and growing piece of the technical writing pie. I personally have not written documentation for software spefically, but I have documented the software aspects of machines as part of operating procedures. Frankly, I find it the most tedious part of the procedure writing I have done.

In my current role, I write manuals for capital equipment that is entirely driven by software, so I have had to wrestle with exactly how best to document the software in a manner that benefits the equipment’s end user the most. So I will provide the insights I have gained, while at the same time asking readers to give their feedback, particularly those who have…

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One thought on “Mr. Procedure Discusses Procedures–Documenting Software (Part 1)

  1. Having a software/QA background has afforded me with a seamless transition into Technical Writing. Basically thinking like a QA analyst looking for bugs in the UI, for example, has given me a perspective on how to document the UI. The other “hat” that I tend to wear when documenting software is that of a trainer, in other words, how would I train my “audience” to use this piece of software. When documenting software that is not part of the UI, such as APIs, my QA experience still comes in handy because I may be looking for bugs in the code or logic, and that helps my understanding of the underlying systems.

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