This style guide lists a set of standards for design and writing of KB documents. This document defines the standards and conventions used in KB User's Guide Documents. These guidelines are provided to ensure that all documents use the same style, format, and HTML standards. Consistency in documentation makes it easier for users to utilize the KnowledgeBase.
When creating, reviewing, or editing a document please follow these guidelines.
The title of your document should be clear and concise. It should fit the following format:Product Name (Restrictions) - Descriptive Title
Title words are automatically included so there is no need for the author to include them.
Keywords should include:
You may also include:
The body contains in-depth information about a product, service or guides users through a series of detailed instructions or troubleshooting steps. The body section should use the following format guidelines:
Accurate Content - Make sure all text and screenshots are accurate. During review make sure text and screenshots are still accurate. This includes making sure that all links work.
Validate HTML Formatting - Correct and compliant HTML formatting is required in the Body field. Quick code links are provided to assist with correct and consistent coding. For more information on HTML formatting and standards, see KB User's Guide - Documents Tab - Basic XHTML Commands. An HTML validation tool is provided to check coding for errors. For more information on the Validation tool, see KB User's Guide - Documents Tab - Validation Tools. For more information on the document editor buttons see the Guide to Document Editor Buttons.
Headings - Headings should be used to introduce new sections of documents. The Heading 2 (h2) heading is used to
introduce major topics or sections, and the Heading 3 (h3) and Heading 4 (h4) headings are used to introduce subsections. Because the document title is displayed as a Heading 1 (h1), you should use only Heading 2 (h2), Heading 3 (h3), and Heading 4 (h4) heading sizes in your documents. You may leverage these headings to create an in-page table of contents.
Grammar and Spelling - Accurate spelling and grammar are very important. Make sure to proofread documents after they are completed. Most major browsers have a built-in spell checker. Use that to verify correct spelling.
KnowledgeBase - verify spelling of the word "KnowledgeBase". It should be spelled as one word; capital K, capital B.
Spacing After Periods - Do NOT double-space after periods. It is no longer the standard and it doesn't show up any differently than single spacing after periods due to HTML standards.
Images and Attachments - Images and other attachments (such as Word documents, PDF files, and video files) can be added to enhance or illustrate your document. Images should not be used in place of clear and concise instructions and explanations; they should, rather, emphasize your instructions. For guidelines on images, see KB User's Guide - Documents Tab - Image Guidelines.
|Bold||To instruct a reader to actively do something on screen.
To instruct a reader to press a key on the keyboard.
|Click on Start.
Press F1 on the computer keyboard.
|Italics||To denote text that a user will need to type.
To cite special credits.
Adapted from Apple KB.
|Underline||Using underlines is not recommended in order to avoid confusion with hyperlinks.|
|"Quotation Marks"||To indicate error messages, screen prompts, or field names.||"Error: type 1".|
Fill in the "Host" field.
Conventions - When documenting a series of buttons or items a user must click on, use the > (it must be entered as > due to HTML standards) to separate the items and bold the entire thing. For example, to tell a user to click on tools and then go to options, format it as such: Click on Tools > Options.
Check Links - When authoring docs be sure that all links work. When reviewing docs be sure all links work. At every six month review, be sure to double check that the links still work. The KB has a broken link checking feature, for more information, see KB User's Guide - Documents Tab- Identifying Broken Hyperlinks on your KB documents .
Lists - Ordered and Unordered - either all items should end in a period or none. It may depend on whether or not the information is more like a sentence or a list of phrases. Be sure to make it consistent for any given list. Use Ordered Lists for step by step directions and Unordered Lists for a list of related items.
Mobile View - Test documents on mobile device to check formatting. Click here for more info on the KB4U Mobile App.
Browsers - Occasionally spot check documents on something other than your preferred browser.
This field is located under the expandable Show Additional Fields section found at the bottom of the document edit screen.