| Sairam Venugopalan, Qualcomm
May 1, 2022
Dogu is an inanimate inhabitant in the scientific literature mansion,
With its amusing nickname arising from a Documented & Guide fusion.
At least, we know we aren’t characterizing any creature,
That exists in live and true form to feel any pressure.
Serving the needs of its innumerable readers with info-tidbits,
It joyously traverses the globe in the technical library kits.
Thankless a job that it unceasingly does with its knowledge rays,
This critter is equally subjected to critical reviewers’ gaze.
Similar to a building that towers up from its foundation,
A tech manual is also a thrifty brick-by-brick manifestation.
Design docs and product specs need to be studied intently,
Before a roadmap for the book can be made repletely.
As the skeleton is sketched with headings and captions,
The blueprint is baked for the content fresh additions.
The ToC forms the first of the unending review carousels,
As the writer sends Dogu to the editor and engineer cells.
A single section might be sliced into a couple coherent siblings,
While a few titles might be shuffled around from their lodgings.
The developer might pad in a new chapter to capture more prose,
As they might have been vital product workings that lately arose.
A strike here, an insertion there, and a markup clutter to bear,
The outline safely lands at its writing carpenter, who has a stare.
“If only the plan and order of captions can get so much of a stab,”
“What will be my plight with text in it?”, as the file bemoaned in blab.
Still at square one of the end, the writer mops and makes amends,
Honing the titles to be descriptive and well-formed for one who fends.
Semantic sand-filling is needed next, but an approval comes calling first,
Oh…yes, every comma and colon injected must pass the go-ahead test.
The draft of the ToC is again on its grace-me beseeching spree,
As the potent reviewers sign off and let it breathe a bit free.
With the framework in place after a bit of sweat it caused to break,
The crucial content cramming is all set for the toll it’ll take.
Scourging the functional and design collaterals with full gusto,
Laying hands on any allied source material to achieve in-toto.
The author starts draping and dressing the outline with info,
To bolster Dogu with descriptions and figures for a sublime show.
As the first-cut file is readied with all ingredients in the right mix,
Mind-numbing jargons and cryptic stanzas cause a deciphering fix.
If only the writer can’t fathom the meaning of these alien inscriptions,
The document can cause a cranial-seizure at end-user subscriptions.
Swiftly decoding the riddles and seeking alternative phrases,
The drafter saves Dogu the blushes that it’s fated for in phases.
Deftly darned with paras of parables, list items, and tables,
Illustrators are in want to offer animated gifs and graphic fables.
“Why not embellish dainty Dogu with vibrant embedded videos?”
“As neat pixels are impacting than boring blurbs in burrows, no?”
The prelim draft is nearly ready, though more can be spun,
A spell-check and a grammar sanity test for language are done.
A re-scrutiny of those dazzling source artifacts sounded a bugle,
A UI option to add, an API syntax to change brought a struggle.
Voila! A timely sighting of these chinks thwarted a reviewer rap,
As they might have been frowned upon during validation lap.
Never being sure, in no mood to let Dogu go off its fondling,
The writer warden sees the devious deadline comes calling.
“I must anyhow send the draft for its excruciating evaluation,”
“Even if it be that I could have bolstered its articulation.”
With goodwill hopes and a plea to the heavens to bail out,
Dogu goes trotting to the inspection camps that hold clout.
Logical as it might have been for the file to get a tech-trample,
Before it met its tryst with the editing examiner to be its eye apple.
Cut-off dates, and punishing schedules didn’t offer that cushion,
Needing the draft to be sent to all-who-mattered in unison.
Amusing as it might be, this concurrent check by all had its troubles,
Causing the editor to amend a para the engineer sent to shambles.
A factual blemish or a dated explanation of a utility was the cause,
That made the designer to bring that piece of description to pause.
If only info-veracity had been vetted by the tech-geek in advance,
Such a peculiar paradox could have been averted by all chance.
Even if a perusal is intended to be bounded to the matter-accuracy,
And its adequacy as part of the tech-test of Dogu’s content-tree.
A nit about article usage, despite the “an” for a right vowel-sounding word,
A dense rephrased construction to cause a dangling modifier sword.
Such linguistic lamination comes jutting from an enthusiastic engineer,
Which are to be not just duly discarded, but clarified with no sneer.
The draft is smothered and sliced, akin to a specimen under microscope,
Leaving both the writer and its baby, the file itself, with a crushed hope.
All of this wrestling is only from the tabernacle of a tester or a programmer,
More wars to wage as many brickbats bleed from the editor hammer.
What are the fallibilities in Dogu that the editing empress garners?
Incoherent sentences, noun stacks, ambiguous antecedents are dampeners.
Puzzling participles, fuzzy gerunds, and missing infinitives to implode,
Minimalism sermon and whip-the-weasel clarion cause more inroads.
Dogu is now drenched deep in yellow banner and red roller,
Needing torniquets and bandages to arrest the drooping valor.
Restoration begins, the wounds are nursed and applied with soothing balm,
To absorb all the feedback and annotations with poise and calm.
A resurrected form of Dogu is now ready for another verification loop
Thankfully, this might be the final hurdle and not land it in further soup.
That’s because this iteration is for the publication to be blessed,
By all the stakeholders to certify that their redlines are addressed.
It takes a village to publish a book, and its no different for Dogu,
Coders to QA sleuths to tech support to marcom monarch queue.
A signoff on the doc-review tool causes the book to beam in glee
As its writing owner sighs in relief and sees the shackles go free.
Dogu is run through the publish engine and the production pipeline,
To build the output formats, be it pdf, epub, or the html, as ezine.
A printed copy of the book isn’t usually the norm these days,
Unless a quick-start or a safety compliance is for hardware trays.
Coronated on the web, the manual is now a legitimate mouthpiece,
Proclaiming the company’s proud product benefits and capabilities.
Sometimes a walled garden, a free-for-all access on the web at others,
Heavy footfall and download hits can be seen for the document’s feathers.
Several topics of Dogu result in the embedded web feedback form mews,
But any silence is a sign of appreciation, no news means good news.
Flak and fusillades from eagle-eyed readers rain with no relent,
Though scores of readers might have been content with the content.
“Can I ever get a notion of being wholly done?” as goes Dogu’s sentiment,
“As I’m only humble English verse and so all and sundry come to comment.”
“Had I been Python or Perl code delivered as a binary or an executable,”
“I might have been flogged by only the tech-savy experts,” is Dogu’s decibel.
Incessant overhauling, never-ending repairs are a common sight,
As Dogu seems to wage a daily deplorable, yet audacious, fight.
“Did they not get me all knotted up despite the rigorous reviews?”
“Ah…isn’t perfection possible only in utopian world rules?”
Maintenance of the manuscript is a lifelong tedious expedition,
With one or the other finding rejigging and rolling a revision.
As Dogu survives and braves the flurry of onslaughts,
It takes things into stride and obediently resiliently retorts.