I recently had to put together a fifty-page document that needed lots of pictures, cross-references and able to look up information quickly. So I used the built-in styles in the word processor and let it generate a table of contents. Then I went through and marked words that should be in an index and had the program generate the index as well.
The document was given to people who work with computers for a living. And every single one of them commented on the amount of time it must have taken me to put together the table of contents and index, as well as make the document formatting consistent.
It made me remember one of my favorite quotes from Arthur C. Clarke: “All sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”
I knew the magic, and it wasn’t hard. But to those who had never worked with styles, it looked like magic.
Just because it looks hard doesn’t mean it is.
Sometimes it really isn’t rocket science.
Photo by Jen Montes