“A manual provides instruction and other information necessary to accomplish something—that is, to solve a problem” (2010). From savvy businessmen to home mechanics, a properly created manual can make the difference between success and failure. User manuals are found with every device we use today and many do their intended job professionally: Solve problems. The online user manual for the ASUS X51V motherboard provides the reader with instructions on how to update the BIOS and Drivers through a program called ASUS Live Update. The manual consists of a numbered list accompanied by an image for each number. While ASUS does succeed in solving the problem provided, the quality of the guide lacking and barely does the job of catering to the reader. Considering the Reader
The ASUS Live Update guide was published in 2010, a year after the release of Windows 7, but utilizes Windows XP for their example. While it may unnecessary to include older versions of windows, due to compatibility issues, the reader could be confused by the images if they are using a user interface from Windows Vista or Windows 7. The method for opening the file displayed on the image may be very similar across the Operating Systems but not every user will find this as obvious. In this sense, the images are hindering the user more than they are helping the reader. The author also seems to assume that the reader has knowledge of everything within the manual and feels no need to describe just what the BIOS or Drivers are. A low-end user who may just be experimenting or has been told that they should look into these may be entirely lost on the subject. Unfortunately, ASUS is not there to hold the reader’s hand or explain anything to them, only to usher them on so it can get back to work. Format and Design
Images can be a very helpful addition to any user manual, when implemented properly. ASUS does a good...