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Ideal -ible FORMAT?? Answered

Back in the day, I read Popular mechanics all the time. They had a page for nifty home projects. Kind of the instructables of the time. As I recall, the whole idea was conveyed in 1 pic.  If you knew how to use tools, you could do it. 

I find myself annoyed  with having to click through pages of steps in instructables. But maybe that's just me. Maybe that's a better format for a generation without shop class and scoutmasters.

I'm looking for feedback here. Am I the only one who likes all the instructions on 1 page? Do my -ibles with 1 big block of text and  "refer to fig 3"  work for you guys? (it would be nice if photo -ibles could have figure numbers on pics)  But maybe that's too old school.  https://www.instructables.com/id/HarpoonGrappling-Hook-Gun/

One of my buddies said my format would make printing it up easy. Usually I like to have directions on paper if I'm gonna  refer to them while turning a wrench and gettin filthy. 

As far as a typical reader on -ibles, what's the best format?

Discussions

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smallinson
smallinson

7 years ago

Depending on the project, I'm open to either approach (single versus multi-page). Something that would make it easier to follow is if you numbered your steps. Separate paragraphs are good, but it's easier if things are also numbered.

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Toga_Dan
Toga_Dan

Reply 7 years ago

Good idea. I'll go edit them. I also learn that it's possible to number, or title pics. I'll have to try that.

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mpilchfamily
mpilchfamily

7 years ago

Many items require a more in depth step by step instructable. The projects pictured in Popular Mechanics are tailored for the 1 or 2 image format and where chosen to fit that format. But the magazine is also tailored for a more knowledgeable crowd. Instuctables is tailored for the noobs and experts alike.

Now the creator of an instructable can add tags to the images. The idea is by reading the instructable you an easily figure out what picture is being referred too. But it is great when people openly label and reference there images.

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Toga_Dan
Toga_Dan

Reply 7 years ago

I didn't know we could add tags to photos. I'll have to try that. I'm a noob on makin instructables. How do you tag images?

Sometimes in reading for comprehension, I scan back and forward in text. So sentence 10 might raise a question in my mind: "Didn't you say to use CARBON steel?' Scanning back a few sentences, I see that, NO... they wrote STAINLESS steel." It's tough to do that with multipage format.

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mpilchfamily
mpilchfamily

Reply 7 years ago

While editing your instructable click on the large image and a box shows up. You can move and resize that box to cover whatever area of the image you want. Then you can type in some text into that box. I'm sure you've seen some boxes in images outlining things.

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caitlinsdad
caitlinsdad

7 years ago

The ideal format is what you as the author want to use or what format the contest criteria states if you are entering it in a contest.

That said, the clarity or thoroughness of an instructable is a reflection of the skill of the author. You may have a high expectation of what an instructable should be but many times that goal may not be met. By commenting on the instructable you can provide feedback and get any questions answered.

It really depends on what kind of project it is or how experienced you are. I guess I have read through so many mold/cast/fiberglass/etc. that I can do with a one page photo ible. But sometimes you want to see greater detail or want to skip the page where someone goes through the screenshots of using some software. As long as someone decides to share what they make, it's all good.