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Every Page is Page One by Mark Baker

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8.7. Decision support and the reader’s purpose

Providing the reason and context for acting is really another way of saying, provide support for decision making. One of the most important tools of modern business is the decision support system. Such systems can be complex, but at their heart, they simply provide people with the information they need to make decisions.

In technical communication, we don’t talk much about decision support; we talk about task support. We frame our jobs as providing the information people need to complete their tasks. Unfortunately, the information we provide is often simply a procedure for operating a machine. A task is not a procedure (a theme I’ll return to in Chapter 9, EPPO Topics Conform to a Type). In many ...

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