Jacques Dehee wrote,   Mon, 11 Dec 2006 04:51:59 -0500

> Hi,

> Instruction booklets need a vast language.

> Best regards,

> Jacques

> *

Sorry, but long and often frustrating experience with instruction manuals has led me to believe 
that the main problem with them is not so much the language as the poor quality of the diagrams.

Whether or not I still have it, I once filed away hilarious instructions for assembling a child's toy 
from a flat-pack. The translation was more or less incomprehensible, but construction would still 
have been simple enough if the diagrams were (1) large enough, and detailed enough, to 
accurately identify and portray the parts in question (2) fully labelled (3) step-by-step - with no 
significant steps omitted.

This episode only highlighted what I've often found to be true: for practical purposes it doesn't 
matter whether a part is called by its technical name - all that matters is whether it can be 
identified long enough to be put in the right place the right way around. Even "thing A, thing B, 
thing C etc." is sufficient description if the accompanying diagram is adequate.

I believe that an initial "global pidgin' IAL would have sufficient vocabulary to cope with all 
mundane objects and situations, given the better illustrations, videos etc. that might be afforded 
by companies no longer having to produce expensive multi-language manuals.


Antony Alexander