Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Guidance Explorer Revisited - Part 3

In my previous posts on Guidance Explorer Part 1 and Part 2, I discussed about features in GE for guidance Consumption. In this post I am going to talk about GE features enabling Creation of consistent high quality guidance. GE allows users to author new guidance items or modify existing items.

Following features in GE enables the Creation of guidance.

Built in Guidance Types - GE by default provides number of built in guidance types like Checklists Items, Code Examples, Explained, FAQ, Guidelines, How Tos, Patterns etc. They allow you to pick guidance type most suitable for your needs. Guidance Types encourage authors to write fine grained guidance items. For example one Guideline at a time vs. creating a monolithic document that covers all Guidelines for an area of concern.

Templates - GE by default provides Templates for all the default built in guidance types. The templates allows you to write consistent guidance.

Test Cases - With each Template GE provides set of test cases targeted to various sections of the template. The test cases ensures that guidance modules you create meet optimum quality.

Custom Guidance Types - GE also allows you to create new guidance types. To create a new guidance type the you have to provide an icon that will represent the guidance type in the tree, a template that authors can use to create the guidance type and an example that authors can use to see the guidance type in action.

My Library - Its a node in the GE, which is your workspace to create guidance, you can add any number of libraries you want and create guidance items in the specific library. You can modify items from a read only library like patterns & practices Library and save them to you library.

Hope this inspires you to create the guidance which you have been procrastinating forever. Happy authoring!!


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