Features of Technical Writing • Clarity – easily understood by intended audience • Accuracy – factual, correct, free from bias • Comprehensiveness – all necessary information included • Accessibility – headings, indexes, table of contents • Conciseness – clear without excess verbiage • Correctness – grammatical and follows conventions • Using Appropriate Writing Style • Understanding Why You are Writing (Purpose) Difference Between general writing and technical writing : General writing, such as writing your thoughts and opinions about a social issue, is totally differentfrom another style of writing called as technical writing.While general writing, the writer must placehimself in the shoes of a reader to see the effect of his own writing. Writing a weak piece of prose is notthat serious when compared to a piece full of errors. This is when the readers get confused anddistracted. People respect high quality writing and tend to take the writer seriously when the piece iserror free and the message comes out clearly.2****Features Elaboration:Understanding Why You are Writing (Purpose)Is the purpose of writing… To inform: to provide information without expecting any action on the part of the reader? To instruct: to give information in the form of directions, instructions, procedures, so that readers will be able to do something? To propose: to respond to a request for proposals (RFP) or to suggest a plan of action for a specific problem? To recommend: to suggest an action or series of actions based on alternative possibilities that have been evaluated? To persuade: to convince readers to take action, to change their attitudes or behaviors based on valid opinions and evidence?Using Appropriate Writing StyleTechnical writing tends to be rather “dry.” This is because, compared to other types of writing, the purpose of technical writing is to inform rather than to entertain. Engineers and scientists are called upon to record and document information in an objective manner, and in doing so, the style of writing reflects this objective approach.
Avoid Personal Pronouns: for most documents, it is unnecessary to use “I,” “we,” “us,” and especially “you.” Instead of saying, “I (or we) took measurements,” it is acceptable to say, “Measurements were taken.” Passive Voice is OK: while active voice is preferred in most cases, it is completely acceptable to use passive voice in technical writing.
–Passive Control of the flow is provided by a DJ-12 valve. –Active A DJ-12 valve controls the flow. –Passive An ASM chart . Avoid Conversational Tone: technical documents (including most emails) should employ a formal writing style. Conversational language and phrasing should be avoided.
–Conversational This lab gave us a good feel for state machines. –Formal This exercise provided a good background on state machine design. –Conversational The D-flip flop was hooked up to the board.
–Formal The D-flip flop was connected to the board for testing.