We were given a task to create an instruction manual, showing people how to use the photography studio and equipment, as well as how to build a pinhole camera. I did a little research and found a couple of useful examples:
IKEA – This is a link to an ikea manual, which I took inspiration from when creating my own. There is very little text and a lot of basic, easy to follow images that arn’t too confusing. I like the idea of using the images, but I believe I would need more text due to the complexity of the equipment. I liked how the manual flows, and how it’s easy to leave and come back to later.
photography-comp-T&Cs – This is a link to a manual by Canon, for their 650D Camera. I found this very confusing to read, and quite difficult to navigate through. It’s also very text heavy, but this is due to the product being so complicated.
For my manual, I’ve decided to create an interactive digital manual that can be navigated through easily. I will need to include large amounts of text however, because the information I’ll be showing is fairly complex. I will also be including images to accompany the text, in colour, so that the text is backed up well enough.
We are asked in the brief to produce an artifact of some kind to accompany the manual. Because mine will be digital, I have decided to create a postcard of some sort, that has a QR code printed on it. This will allow the user to scan the code with a smartphone, and instantly be taken to the manual online. A QR code looks like this: http://www.qrstuff.com/images/sample.png
There are a number of ways to create an interactive digital manual, each with their positives and negatives. I can either use Prezi (a sophisticated presentation creator), use a program such as Adobe Flash or Fireworks (Graphics design and animation software), or something simple like powerpoint. After doing some research, I’ve found that Prezi will give me the best results. This is because it has a very creative editing style, which allows the user to ‘zoom’ around the screen to different areas. This will help the user to navigate to areas that they want to read through, making the whole process easier to understand. Powerpoint would give me an unprofessional looking manual, as it’s very basic. Flash and Fireworks are very complicated programs to use, and so I don’t think I would be able to create a satisfactory manual in the time given.