On Sun, Sep 5, 2010 at 5:19 AM, David <gimp-d...@drking.co.uk> wrote:

> On 05/09/2010 11:17, Hugh Loebner wrote:
> > Why not link to Inkscape, an open source drawing program?
> Because this part of the manual is about drawing shapes in GIMP (and only
> in GIMP).
> People who read a manual generally do not want to read it. They generally
> want
> to be using the application, but cannot figure out how. So the task is to
> give
> them the information (and only that information) as quickly/succinctly as
> possible.
> "More is less". More information than needed makes the manual less useful.

That's partly a good principle, but needs to be used in a balanced way.  It
strikes me that
a brief explanation that Gimp is not designed to be used for drawing shapes,
other programs such as Inkscape are specifically intended for that purpose,
might save
the user considerable time and effort.

But beyond that, it's also true that the manual *can* be something that
people will be
able to read in order to learn how the program works, rather than just
something to
consult when there is a problem.  The ideal is to make it both.  I did a lot
of work on
Gimp Help about five years ago, and was definitely aiming to make it
something that
people could read.

  -- Bill
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