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Part 3: Easy to find

Part 3: Easy to find

Finding information is essential, whether you're a new user trying to figure out where to start and what to do or an experienced user looking for a parameter for a command. The organization, retrievability, and visual effectiveness of information contribute most to whether users can find the information that they need.


 

Chapter 8 Organization

  

Organize information into discrete topics by type

  

Organize tasks by order of use

  

Organize topics for quick retrieval

  

Separate contextual information from other types of information

  

Organize information consistently

  

Provide an appropriate number of subentries for each branch

  

Emphasize main points; subordinate secondary points

  

Reveal how the pieces fit together

  

In sum

 

Chapter 9 Retrievability

  

Facilitate navigation and search

  

Provide a complete and consistent index

  

Use an appropriate level of detail in the table of contents

  

Provide helpful entry points

  

Link appropriately

  

Design helpful links

  

        Ensure that a link describes the information that it links to

  

        In similar links and cross-references, emphasize the text that is different

  

        Minimize the effort that is needed to reach related information

  

        Avoid redundant links

  

Make linked-to information easy to find in the target topic

  

In sum

 

Chapter 10 Visual Effectiveness

  

Use graphics that are meaningful and appropriate

  

        Illustrate significant concepts

  

        Avoid illustrating what is already visible

  

Choose graphics that complement the text

  

Use visual elements for emphasis

  

        Emphasize the appropriate information

  

        Ensure that your visual elements are not distracting

  

Use visual elements logically and consistently

  

        Use a visually simple but distinct heading hierarchy

  

        Maintain consistent placement of document elements

  

        Ensure that the look and feel of multimedia presentations is consistent

  

        Use icons and symbols consistently

  

Balance the number and placement of visual elements

  

Use visual cues to help users find what they need

  

        Visually identify recurring alternatives or contexts

  

        Ensure that visual cues are usable in all environments

  

Ensure that textual elements are legible

  

        Use a legible typeface and size

  

        Ensure that the text fits in the available space

  

        Ensure that the contrast between text and background is adequate

  

Use color and shading discreetly and appropriately

  

Ensure that all users can access the information

  

In sum


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