Friday, August 25, 2006

Document Design Principles

Principles of Document Design
• Balance
• Sequence
• Consistency

Balance, Sequence, Consistency
• Use similar “weight” on both sides of a page or on facing pages.
• Ask: What’s “heavier”?

What’s heavier?
• Big over small
• Dark over light
• Color over black & white
• Unusual shapes over simple ones

Balance, Sequence, Consistency
• Recognizable order and arrangement
• Suitable for the reader

Balance, Sequence, Consistency
• Similar features in a similar style

Format elements
• Written cues – headings
• Style
• White space
• Typographic cues: typeface, boldface and underlining, lists, …

• Show hierarchies
• Call attention to specific topics
• Indicate changes
• Break up the page

• Use correct parallel structure

Working Better
ü contributes to productivity
ü increases capacity for physical work
ü builds stamina
ü muscle strength is increased

White Space
• Provides eye relief
• Isolates information in “chunks”

Typographic Cues
• Provide emphasis
• Highlight sections


Thursday, August 24, 2006

Document Design and Publication

Design Principles for Exceptional Documents
People often spend many hours of effort in writing in both academic and professional settings. Much of the energy is spent in research and writing. Little, if any time is devoted to planning about how the finished document is "going to look." If you think of your document as a means of communicating you may find that attention to the layout and design of the document will improve and enhance the communication process.
With the advent of computers the process of writing has completely changed. We no longer simply place words on paper and ask our audience to read it. A well-designed document will include text, charts, and images arranged aesthetically to engage as well as inform the reader.Basic design principles are the underlying factors in every successfully printed or electronic document we see today, such as magazines, newspapers, and television and internet websites. Some simple pre-planning or forethought of these principles towards your document design can go a long way in improving the communication value of a document. A few of these design ideas are outlined below:
Document Design, Readability and Contrast
The overall purpose of writing a document is to communicate with other people; that is to have other people read your document. If your document is single-spaced small print with no images or diagrams and no headings anywhere, just a mass of words, it may not be read as quickly as a document which is well spaced, has headings and contains pictures and diagrams. There are numerous examples of important information that was never read because the documents did not look readable.

The first principle of document design is therefore to make your document look enticing to the reader and friendly to the eyes. That doesn’t mean it has to be flashy with blinking text and more pictures than necessary, just that it be organized, easy to read and be esthetically pleasing. Contrast, or proper use of document elements (background, text, font type, size, color, margins and images) is what draws your eye into the page, it pulls you in. Contrasting elements guide your eyes around the page and create a hierarchy of your information. This principle is very important because many a reader will be potentially turned on or off by the first impression of your document or visit to your site.
Using Fonts Effectively
Using different fonts in a document can create interest and organization. If you look at this document, for example there are basically 2 fonts. Most of the text, including this sentence, is written in black 12-point Times. The font is black because, black is easiest to read on a white background, and it is 12 point because that size font is a good compromise between too large and too small. Times is a serif font because it has little curls (serifs) at the end of many of the characters. Serif fonts are easiest to read and are almost always the kind of font used in books. Other popular serif fonts are Bookman and Garamond.Compare with the font in the heading at the top of this section that says “Using Fonts Effectively”. The heading font is Arial; it’s bold, blue and is 14 point. It provides a nice contrast to the basic font under it. Arial is a font with no serifs and is therefore called sans serif. Other sans serif fonts are Helvetica and Avant Garde. It generally looks good to use a sans serif heading in a larger font with body text in a smaller serif font. Use other fonts for accents where necessary, but don’t use too many.
Consistency or Repetition
You can make your document unified by repeating the same design ideas within a document. For example, most of the headings in this document are in Blue, 14-point Arial bold type and the text is black in 12-point Times New Roman. The margins are the same on all pages. The header and footer are consistent on all pages. All headings and paragraphs are left justified. Consistency unifies the document because it makes the pages look the same. A document with too many different design patterns can look amateurish and be hard to read. The idea is that a pattern of design is developed which pulls all the parts of the document together which ultimately leads to clear communication.
Alignment refers to the how items in a document such as lines of text, paragraphs and images relate to one another visually. Every item should have a visual connection with something else on the page. On this page, for example, everything has a strong left alignment. The text is all aligned at the left margin and the headings are all left aligned. Alignment unifies and organizes a document into a strong cohesive unit. It gives your document a cleaner, more dramatic look. Many people automatically left justify text, but center heading and titles. Try using left adjustment for everything on the page. Alignment creates order and results in a more professional look.
If you have multiple images in a document, consider aligning them using either left or right alignment. It will give a clean look to your document. For example, nearly all the images and diagrams in this book are aligned with the right margin.
  • The end users performance and preferences are the final arbiters of design decisions.
  • If you forget to show people where they are in your structure, they consider you as thoughtless or rude.
  • Develop a deep understanding of how your customers do their jobs.
  • With good management, even less experienced or skilled individuals will have the opportunity to do the best work they are capable of doing.

go to the webpage here>>>

How to write it _(~)_

Designing your own document:-

Designing your own document designs gives you control of the finished product. To use Word styles, all you need to do is master a few basic design principles. (view)


Legal Writing in Plain English

The book called legal writing in Plain English published by University of Chicago Press talks about the design principles as follows;
What is the first thing a prospective employer notices about a resume? Its overall appearance. And first impressions matter. But documentation design is about much more than first impression. It is about third and fourth impressions. After all your reader may spend many hours with your work. If you know how to produce readable pages, you will minimize readers head aches and maximizes the effortless retrieval of information.

Reader Feedback in Text Design

Inside the book, Reader Feedback in Text Design: Validity of the Plus-minus Method for the Pretesting of Public...By Menno de Jong published by Rodopi; the following has been denoted;

According to Felker (1980) and Hoeken(1993), the essence of document design lies in the application of research findings that are available form other, adjacent deciplines.

Technical Writing

In another book named Technical Writing by Diana Reep published by Prentice Hall also talks about design principles. She clearly explains what is understanding Design features and the purpose of it.

Some Slides On Document Design.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

HeY IT GuYs..."Create an online work request form"
1. Introduction

This project is about creating an online work request system for a Primary School(Telok Turau); which is capable of full filling all the functionalities of the existing work request form. This describes the current work flow and the difficulties faced by different types of users. This report is a description of the work done to attain the objectives, the problems faced during different stages of the project and the solutions for the problems. This report is divided into different chapters based on the steps followed towards achieving the main objectives. Scope planning, Design, Development, Implementation procedures and Testing are the main chapters.
These chapters are named according to strategies followed while developing the system.

Scope planning; this chapter provides information about the investigation done to justify the objectives of this online work request system. It also talks about the selection process of the designing tools, coding techniques last but not least the database to be used for online work request system. This also talks about the cost involved in the overall development. Key decisions on which tools to be used for developing web pages, the database used and the web server used are taken in this chapter.

Designing; this chapter talks about the overall process flow of the online work request system, the minimum number of the web pages, and the tables needed in the database. All these have been done keeping the objectives in mind. This also describes some of the problems faced during this stage and the solutions for it.

Development; this chapter goes in details into the setting of the web server, database and the coding. This includes the steps to follow while setting up the web server, the steps involved in setting up database to be accessed by the asp pages. It also talks about the issues arise during the development stage and it’s solutions.

Implementation and Testing: This chapter talks about the implementation procedures and testing done to ensure the functionalities for the system and to find the vulnerable area in the system. This includes testing done by the developers at different stages.
1.1 Background

As mentioned above this online work request system is for Telok Kurau Primary School (TKPS), it is important to have a basic understanding of the organization. Like any primary schools, TKPS has a well organized organizational structure starting with Principal, Vice Principal, HOD’s (Head Of Department), Administration staff, Teachers etc; over all there is 105 staffs. TKPS has an external vendor supporting all the computer systems and staffs; designated as Technology Assistant (TA). TKPS is one of the fully networked schools; which means every room has at least one network point. TKPS has their own server running under windows 2000 platform which is currently used for user account management and sharing files among the staffs.
The staff in TKPS needs any support from TA or any others; they have to fill up a work request form and submit it to the particular person. This form is used to keep track of the amount of work that has been done. Currently the form looks like in Figure 1
Problem statement:-
From requestors view-
Physically look for the form; which itself is an inconvenience since there is chances of not sufficient form
Submit to the respective person in and unable to locate the person in charge.

From person in charge’s view-
Lots of papers lead to the convenience of filing.
There is only one copy of the request; supervisor has little knowledge over the work needs to be done and work status.

This problem was there from the day TKPS started. This problem was raised by different teachers at different occasions. TKPS is one of the school which gives high attention for the computer related knowledge both for students and teachers. Several courses has been organized through out the years both for students and teachers. This made each and everyone aware of the capabilities of the computer system and Information Technology. More over the Ministry of Education (MOE) Singapore is promoting Information Technology for every student from primary schools. So computer knowledge has become a basic requirement for every teacher in schools.

Going online and finding the resources has become a routine for every teacher. To add on to their option, each staff of TKPS has given a computer system (desktop computer or notebook). So having an option to request work online is an advantage for everyone.

This project was proposed by TA to HOD of Information Technology. Although this project is headed by TA; any major decision in terms of the tools to be used, server to be used will be made by HOD of Information Technology (IT). All the design has to be approved by HOD of IT. Any changes to be made has to go through HOD of IT for approval.

1.2 Objectives

The main objective of this project is to develop a online work request system. It can be further divide into two in terms of user’s rights:
Common user:
Every user should be able to request work.
Each user should be able to view the status of the requested work.
User should be able to change their password.
Admin user:
User should be able to see the work requested by other users.
User should be able to update the status of the requested work.
User should be able to Add, Edit and Delete other users.
User should be able list all the work assign to him for printing.

There should be a notification system for the admin users so that the request can be processed.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

My First Feature Film For Dental Tourism Promotion in KERALA
Medical tourism in India is a developing concept where by people from world over come to India for their treatment and relaxation needs. Kerala especially is a favorable destination for tourists because of its vast infra structure and technology in the field of healthcare and tourism which is a par with US, UK and Europe.
At Dr.Toms Cochin International Dental Centre each and every customer have direct access to highly qualified professionals and well equipped specialties to ensure world class treatment for their dental problems. Since the time of its establishment from 1998 every effort has been made to deliver a high quality dental care for its valued customers.

Dental tourism is the provision of cost effective private dental care in collaboration with the tourism industry for patients needing specialized treatment. The major advantages of dental tourism in kerala are its cost effectiveness and competency along with the attraction of tourism. The total cost including airfare, treatment expenses, hotel accommodation and the added tourism experience works out much less than the cost of a single treatment in many other countries.
Kerala the Southern most state of India is a tourist’s paradise and one of the top three tourism destinations in the world. Kerala uniquely blessed with natures bounty, rolling hills, placid lakes and enchanting back waters has gained international attention for health tourism and is fast becoming a popular health tourism destination.

Kerala since it is recognized for its excellent health care standards by world bodies like World Health Organization (WHO) attracts those patients who are not covered by insurance or are facing long delays in their own countries to get urgent and high quality dental care.

The liberal social environment and traditional hospitality of the people coupled with the tourism infrastructure makes Kerala the ideal holiday destination and a hub for health services in this part of the world.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Movie Making...My Dream

Filmmaking is the process of making a film. The nature of the film determines the size and type of crew required during filmmaking. Many Hollywood adventure films employ a cast and crew of thousands and have complicated computer generated effects (CGI), while a low-budget, independent film may be made with a skeleton crew, often paid very little. Filmmaking takes place all over the world using different technologies and techniques, and is produced in a variety of economic contexts that range from state-sponsored documentary in China to profit-oriented movie making within the American studio system.
Listen to my songs here(Lyrics Available)