Thoughts…Words…

Tips for Technical writing in English

Posted in Community, Education, Empowerment, Income Generation by udoit on March 4, 2012

Recently, my friend asked me to review some technical document and requested me to give some suggestions to improve it. The following paragraphs are my response. The paragraphs titled as Original Version are from the received document and the rest of them are my comments and suggestions.

Original Version

This summary provides a description of the Proposed Service offering from ABCSoft to XYZSol.

The service offering includes:

  • Technical Support Services with (ABCSE) ABCSoft certified Engineers
  • Logging and Reporting
  • POC for ABCSoft Products
  • Vulnerability Assessment

Objective is to enable ABCSoft Customers and Partners to get most from ABCSoft products after the initial sale and installation. ABCSoft specializes in Information Technology with specific focus on Technical Support Services and Cloud based POC as a service offering, these services include support from ABCSoft certified Engineers and Lab resources, which could be remotely accessed over the cloud to do demos/POCs. ABCSoft offers years of professional experience and expertise while providing a low cost solution to solving your network security support needs.

My Version

ABCSoft specializes in Technical Support Services and Cloud based Proof of Concepts (POCs) as a service offering with emphasis on enabling ABCSoft customers and partners to get most from ABCSoft products after the sale and installation. This summary describes ABCSoft’s proposed service offering to XYZSol.

The service offering includes:

  • Technical Support Services with ABCSoft certified Solution Engineers (ABCSE)
  • Logging and Reporting
  • POC for ABCSoft Products
  • Vulnerability Assessment

These services include support from ABCSoft certified Engineers and Lab resources, which could be remotely accessed over the cloud to do demos and build POCs. ABCSoft offers years of professional experience and expertise to your network security support needs with competitive prices.

Reasons for my changes

Always use full form during first time followed by acronym, subsequent occurrence can be just acronym. In this case, the acronym POC is used without full form.

The word Objective in the last paragraph of the Original version was bit confusing. I guess it mentions about the proposed service offering’s objective however the words chosen for that sentence are more appropriate to describe the objective of ABCSoft.

I am not sure demos and POCs are interchangeable. To my knowledge, you build Proof of Concepts to demonstrate the capabilities. It was bit confusing.

The words like “low cost” don’t give desired feeling to the customer, it sounds like “cheap”. Instead competitive will be a good word.

Original Version

We provide business aligned security solutions by combining the widely accepted IT best practices, models and standards using the perspectives of people, process, technology, organization, and integration. Our approach starts by having an unambiguous understanding the business strategy and we follow a structured way to define and categorize the enterprise process, technology and capability requirements.

However for any enterprise to successfully execute the business strategy, information security plays a key role in ensuring that strategic capabilities are securely planned, developed, and implemented. We obtain a thorough knowledge of security requirements, risk assessments and risk management. As Information security management system is our primary objective, we implement a security policy, its objectives and activities reflect the business objectives of the organization.

My Version

We provide business aligned security solutions by combining the widely accepted IT best practices, models and standards using the perspectives of people, process, technology, organization, and integration. Our approach is, first understand the business’s strategy clearly then follow a structured plan to define and categorize processes, technologies and capability requirements.

Information security plays a key role in any enterprise to successfully execute the business strategy. It ensures that strategic capabilities are securely planned, developed and implemented. As Information security specialists, we have thorough knowledge of assessing and managing security risks and our mission is to implement security policies that align with the objectives of the organization.

Reason for changes

The problems in the above two paragraphs are grammar and usage of words, especially the order of the words. English language prescribes a natural order for words in a sentence. Unfortunately, the natural order of words in English and Tamil (other similar languages) are opposite. Therefore, our writings (most of the time) will have confusing order of words. For example, look at this simple sentence: John practices Karate every day. Here the verb – practices – is sandwiched between two nouns. It is the natural order of words in English but in Tamil verb usually goes to last. If you follow this rule it will be easy for the reader to find what the subject is, what the verb is and what the object is. Once the reader identifies these three (subject, object, and verb) then it’s easier for them to understand the sentence. For example, consider the following 3 sentences:

  • John practices Karate every day to keep fit.
  • John stays fit by practicing Karate every day.
  • To stay fit, John practices Karate every day.

The 3rd sentence is a perfect sentence; still do you like the 3rd sentence? In my opinion, it is bit confusing because you cannot clearly identify which is Subject and which is object.