Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Does Anybody Know How To Create an Index Anymore?

Lately, I've noticed that using an index in a manual or reference book is practically useless.

Latest Example

Having recently bought a new car with tons of bells and whistles, it's sometimes nice to be able to find out exactly how to use a bell or whistle correctly.  Even though most car manuals are now available in soft-copy form and are electronically searchable (making the Index irrelevant),  I decided to order a hard-copy version of my car manual to keep inside the glove compartment...because I'm old-fashioned that way.

Recently Thaddeus was a passenger and asked me how the rear-view camera angles worked and what each of the three options meant.

So, in the alphabetical index, for the manual, what letter would you look up?

 - R? - rearview camera, rear camera, reverse camera
 - C? - camera
 - B? - backup camera
 - A? - angle of camera

No, of course not you idiot.  You'd look it up under "M"

Yes, "M" - for multi-view camera

I know this sounds picky, but I have tried to use the manual's Index four times now, and have yet to ONCE find what I was looking for in the Index.  Every time, I had to scan through the manual to find what I was looking for and try to reverse-engineer where to find it in the Index.

And this isn't the only example...another two books I use pretty regularly have one of the most useless indices I've ever used.

I know most people prefer soft-copies, but if you're going to include a fucking index in a book or manual, please make it a useful one.  Don't just settle on some automated index-generating software.

Current Knitting

Finished the Sock-Ease crochet scarf and now have to price and log it into Craft-Show Inventory.

I've very pleased with how the various colors of Sock-Ease have mixed quite quell in this scarf.  I may have to consider writing up this crochet pattern.

I also finished a Tweed Lace scarf that I started a while ago.

Simple stitch pattern that looks pretty good on both sides, although definitely better on the front-side.

And I haven't given up on the endless garter stitch Biased Scarf.

I put the first/finished scarf in the bottom of the photo so you could see I'm about halfway through the second one.

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