Click here to Skip to main content
15,562,378 members

Survey Results

Do you expect users to read the instructions when using your apps?

Survey period: 15 Aug 2022 to 22 Aug 2022

OptionVotes% 
Yes. If they don't read the docs they will have no chance of using the software92.11
Yes, because they know our docs will help them be more productive102.34
Yes, eventually, when they get stuck trying to do something tricky8319.44
Probably, at least when first starting4911.48
Probably not13732.08
No. I never believe anyone actually reads our docs9923.19
No, because we don't provide docs. Our software is intuitive enough235.39
I don't write user-facing code173.98



 
GeneralManuals are useless Pin
Behzad Sedighzadeh19-Aug-22 18:48
Behzad Sedighzadeh19-Aug-22 18:48 
Generalnot all documentation is instructions, or something Pin
maze317-Aug-22 3:53
professionalmaze317-Aug-22 3:53 
GeneralMissing choice: "other" Pin
Graeme_Grant16-Aug-22 17:57
mvaGraeme_Grant16-Aug-22 17:57 
GeneralRe: Missing choice: "other" Pin
trønderen17-Aug-22 7:06
trønderen17-Aug-22 7:06 
GeneralRe: Missing choice: "other" Pin
PIEBALDconsult17-Aug-22 18:28
professionalPIEBALDconsult17-Aug-22 18:28 
GeneralSuperior Documentation Pin
Matt Bond16-Aug-22 12:15
Matt Bond16-Aug-22 12:15 
GeneralMy boss wants me to write documentation... Pin
PIEBALDconsult16-Aug-22 9:54
professionalPIEBALDconsult16-Aug-22 9:54 
GeneralI can't even get them to read the bloody error messages PinPopular
Gary Wheeler16-Aug-22 4:22
Gary Wheeler16-Aug-22 4:22 
GeneralRe: I can't even get them to read the bloody error messages Pin
Member 1344462716-Aug-22 22:41
Member 1344462716-Aug-22 22:41 
GeneralRe: I can't even get them to read the bloody error messages Pin
Gary Wheeler17-Aug-22 2:50
Gary Wheeler17-Aug-22 2:50 
GeneralRe: I can't even get them to read the bloody error messages Pin
trønderen17-Aug-22 7:36
trønderen17-Aug-22 7:36 
Ages ago, I was teaching an office automation course, advanced level with macro programing and such, to office users who had been using typewriters up until six months earlier, when the computer arrived and typewriters were replaced with terminals. This was before PCs - the terminals were character only, with RS232-lines to the machine.

These course participants were very dissatisfied with the terminals: If you enter the setup (e.g. to select national character set), and make a mistake, you have to do it all anew, there is no way to cancel what you just did!
I didn't grasp it: These terminals (TDV 2215) had an excellent menu based configuration system, multi-level, and you could revert your changes at any level. I asked them to show me the problem.
So they opened the configuration system, made a change and hit ESC three times before I could stop them. I was too late in my "Stop it - There!
"That's the way to set it up - we learned that at the introduction course. You end it by hitting ESC three times."
"But didn't you see that 'undo changes' option, after both the first and the second ESC?"
"No ... is there anything there? I just did as we learned to do: Three times ESC."

So I repeated the change, hitting ESC once, and the ladies exclaimed "Wow!"s and cheers when I selected 'Undo' to go back and make another choice. Then I repeated the same operation at the outer level, after having pressed ESC twice, going into another submenu to make a second change before finally committing the entire batch of changes with the third ESC.

That made me the hero of the day. They were so impressed by how advanced these computers and screens are! Learning to notice the 'Undo' option before hitting ESC raised the terminals from being a bother to a great device!

When did this happen? At the very start of the 1980s, I guess. But users haven't changed much, even though the tools may be more complex. It has little to do with education level: I have had very similar experiences with my coworkers, generally master level graduates, needing my help to find a command in that in-house tool I was maintaining: Oh, is it located in that submenu? Well, now that you tell me, it is the natural place ... So it has nothing to do with education level. But with laziness.
GeneralRe: I can't even get them to read the bloody error messages Pin
Sander Rossel22-Sep-22 22:31
professionalSander Rossel22-Sep-22 22:31 
GeneralRe: I can't even get them to read the bloody error messages Pin
Gary Wheeler23-Sep-22 2:26
Gary Wheeler23-Sep-22 2:26 
GeneralProvide user Training Pin
Jacquers15-Aug-22 21:53
Jacquers15-Aug-22 21:53 
GeneralPrinted 3x Pin
Gaston Verelst15-Aug-22 21:19
Gaston Verelst15-Aug-22 21:19 
GeneralMissing choice: "What instructions?" Pin
Marc Clifton15-Aug-22 3:51
mvaMarc Clifton15-Aug-22 3:51 
GeneralTL;DR Pin
Ron Anders15-Aug-22 2:55
Ron Anders15-Aug-22 2:55 
GeneralDoc Never Read Pin
SpearFL15-Aug-22 2:19
SpearFL15-Aug-22 2:19 
GeneralI used to ... Pin
Kornfeld Eliyahu Peter15-Aug-22 1:25
professionalKornfeld Eliyahu Peter15-Aug-22 1:25 
GeneralTried it once... Pin
Sander Rossel14-Aug-22 22:55
professionalSander Rossel14-Aug-22 22:55 
GeneralRe: Tried it once... Pin
trønderen15-Aug-22 13:09
trønderen15-Aug-22 13:09 
GeneralRe: Tried it once... Pin
Sander Rossel15-Aug-22 22:12
professionalSander Rossel15-Aug-22 22:12 
GeneralRe: Tried it once... Pin
Memtha21-Sep-22 15:55
Memtha21-Sep-22 15:55 
GeneralWhen you get a "Help!" request, you know. You know. Pin
OriginalGriff14-Aug-22 20:06
mvaOriginalGriff14-Aug-22 20:06 
GeneralRe: When you get a "Help!" request, you know. You know. Pin
Fueled By Decaff15-Aug-22 0:31
Fueled By Decaff15-Aug-22 0:31 

General General    News News    Suggestion Suggestion    Question Question    Bug Bug    Answer Answer    Joke Joke    Praise Praise    Rant Rant    Admin Admin   

Use Ctrl+Left/Right to switch messages, Ctrl+Up/Down to switch threads, Ctrl+Shift+Left/Right to switch pages.