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Microsoft Manual of Style [Kindle Edition]

Microsoft Corporation
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Maximize the impact and precision of your message! Now in its fourth edition, the Microsoft Manual of Style provides essential guidance to content creators, journalists, technical writers, editors, and everyone else who writes about computer technology. Direct from the Editorial Style Board at Microsoft—you get a comprehensive glossary of both general technology terms and those specific to Microsoft; clear, concise usage and style guidelines with helpful examples and alternatives; guidance on grammar, tone, and voice; and best practices for writing content for the web, optimizing for accessibility, and communicating to a worldwide audience. Fully updated and optimized for ease of use, the Microsoft Manual of Style is designed to help you communicate clearly, consistently, and accurately about technical topics—across a range of audiences and media.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Developed by senior editors and content managers at Microsoft Corporation.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1920 KB
  • Print Length: 464 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press; 4 edition (January 20, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0073U0UHI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #665,215 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Kindle edition is awful May 2, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Although the book itself is fine, the Kindle format is just awful.

Tables are pasted randomly as grey IMAGES of doubtful quality and often are too small to read. You have to tweak the font size setting to get bigger scale, but then font becomes enormous while images become just slightly more readable :(

Dear Amazon, please, update the Kindle edition :(
It is inconvenient and impossible to read it the way it is right now.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Update was needed, partly fulfilled March 6, 2012
My review consists of commentary for three areas of Microsoft's update: (1) the pros and cons of the manual, (2) stylistic considerations, and (3) the need for the manual.

The Pros and Cons of the Manual

1. It is affordable. I have yet to meet someone who paid the full purchase price for the previous edition, which approximated nearly $100 upon release.

2. It includes conventions for documenting newer technologies and content. The standards for documenting XML-based content and mobile technologies will probably be helpful to me.

3. Sensible prescriptions. Although many might disagree with specific style prescriptions, I find the general prescriptions straightforward and well-advised, as described in the section "Principles of Microsoft style."

1. It lacks an electronic version. This is no small detail as the printed book is not in color. I was specifically curious to find out how Microsoft prescribes documenting its new Windows 7 color scheme in its boxes (by default, the boundaries are translucent, showing whatever is behind it). Unfortunately, the book provides no enlightenment. However, I found an advance, sample chapter on the internet, and only then could I determine that Microsoft uses a silver color, and not the default scheme (unless, of course, they are simply using the default scheme over silver wallpaper, in which case the prescription is to change the default Windows wallpaper). Color is important, and that is just one reason why an electronic version is needed.

2. It is decidedly less readable than the previous version.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Update to a Technical Publications Standard February 5, 2012
As a technical writer, the Microsoft Manual of Style is the first style guide I reach for when I am a working on documentation project when the organization doesn't have a corporate style guide. Now, Microsoft has published the Microsoft Manual of Style, 4th Edition that includes some timely updates documenting how Microsoft's editorial style is adapting and changing to meet new technologies.

The Microsoft Manual of Style is a soup to nuts guide to the Microsoft style for writing technical documentation. I like its holistic approach that includes principles of Microsoft Style, web content, international audience considerations, writing about user interface guidelines, and writing procedures. It rounds out with a well-documented usage dictionary. The Microsoft writers and editors behind this edition have put together a solid guide that can serve both experienced and novice writers alike even just to help resolve stylistic arguments during the writing and editing of documents. Some notable updates in this edition include how Microsoft handles writing about mobile phones, gestures, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and for international audiences.

Chapter 2 Content for the web could really benefit from some screen shot examples from Microsoft web properties to show examples. It also is light on Community-based content coverage. Sparing my feelings as a technical writer, I realize community provided content is playing a role in documentation and support. Unfortunately, I've had my issues with community provided content as a user seeking support online for technical issues.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS), now in its 16th edition, is the de facto a style guide for American writers. It deals with aspects of editorial practice, grammar, usage, document preparation and more. It's just one of many style guides for writers.

The Microsoft Manual of Style, just released in its 4th edition, attempts to do for the technical writers what the CMS has done for journalists and other writers.

A style guide or style manual is a set of standards for the writing and design of documents, either for general use or for a specific publication, organization or field. The implementation of a style guide provides uniformity in style and formatting of a document. There are hundreds of different style guides available - from the EU Interinstitutional style guide, The Elements of Style by Strunk and White, to the Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law and many more.

Microsoft's goal in creating this style manual is about standardizing, clarifying and simplifying the creation of content by providing the latest usage guidelines that apply across the genres of technical communications. The manual has over 1,000 items, so that each author does not have to make the same 1,000 decisions.

Anyone who has read Microsoft documentation knows it has a consistent look, feel and consistency; be it a manual for Visual C#, Forefront or Excel. With that, the Microsoft Manual of Style is an invaluable guide to anyone who wants to better the documentation they write.

For example, many writers incorrectly use words such as less, fewer and under as synonymous terms.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Don"t write IT documentation without it.
This is a clear and concise guide useful for developers (even for non-Microsoft products). A searchable electronic version that preserved the graphics would be better, but it... Read more
Published 17 days ago by Thor
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A good reference for anyone dealing with documentation. make sure you also have access to the PDF version.
Published 24 days ago by Hildreth Noronha
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent publication and will be utilized to support the documentation standards for our organization.
Published 1 month ago by David L. Yansky
5.0 out of 5 stars Must-have companion for technical writing
Very helpful information in an easy-to-follow format. The dictionary of technical terms at the end is great for a quick reference.
Published 1 month ago by gnk
2.0 out of 5 stars The Kindle version is OK for reading or browsing, but hard to...
The index links run together so its hard to tell what link goes with what index entry. The table of contents only includes level 1 headings. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Peggy Fenton
3.0 out of 5 stars A "had to buy" book for a college class. ...
A "had to buy" book for a college class. Perfunctorial.
Published 2 months ago by william Dobbins
5.0 out of 5 stars lots of good information for technical writers
lots of good information for technical writers
Published 5 months ago by Wireless Warrior
4.0 out of 5 stars good style manual
A must if you are documenting Windows based software.
Published 7 months ago by Patrick Roebuck
5.0 out of 5 stars It is very easy to find the information you need
It is very easy to find the information you need.
On top of the usual index at the end of the book, there's also a large section (part 2) entitled "Usage Dictionary"... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Miriam Ferber
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Published 9 months ago by Giovanni Diamante
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