What is Documentation

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In this tutorial, you will learn about, What is Documentation?

Documentation is a description of the system.it is used to communicate, instruct, and record information for historical reference or operational purposes.

Uses Of Documentation:

  1. Documentation facilitates communication about an application between the technical development person and non-technical users.
  2. It is necessary during abnormal maintenance that is when a new programmer has to maintain all the software systems.
  3. It is also very helpful to print the users in the user, good documentation will provide a self-instructional approach that will allow employees to learn at their own pace.
  4. It is helpful in troubleshooting.

Documentation of a computer-based information system must be a clear and complete description of the functioning system. It must be updated to retain its relevance. Documentation provides a general outline as well as a detailed description of the overall program structure.

We have two types of documents:

  1. Technical documents.
  2. User Level document.

1)Technical Documents: the technical documents are for programmers who may be working on the system for its development or modification.

2)User-level documentation: the user level document is for the user of the system, it is also known as a user manual. Good user documentation Is essential if a program needs to be a useful tool.

The aim of documentation:

  1. To help in the design of a system by working to a set of standards and for making available a clear description of work done so far.
  2. Good documentation ensures that all those who are involved in the system fully understand how their aspects of the system will work.it is to ensure that the system can be maintained after completion even if the original programmers change.

Contents of A Documentation:

  1. System specification (Requirements & design).
  2. System flowchart and data flow diagram.
  3. If databases are involved in the ER diagram.
  4. Description of all the purpose of each program within the system.
  5. The layout of each file.
  6. The layout of all the screenshots.
  7. All the testing information. ie. Test data and expected results.

Types of Documents:

As we know documentation is a very important phase of system development and it continues throughout the System Development Life Cycle. During the development of the software many types of documents are created they can be Named As:

  1. Analysis documents.
  2. Design documentation.
  3. Interface documentation.
  4. Internal program documentation.
  5. User-oriented documentation.

These documents are prepared to communicate the information about the system to its user and developer.

The process of Documentation:

There are various steps involved in the process of documentation. Which can be explained by a given figure.

  1. Source material for documentation: The material collected for documentation includes specification, formats, screen layouts, and reports layouts. A copy of the operational software is helpful for preparing the documentation for users.
  2. Documents plan: here the documents specify the details of the work to be carried out to prepare the documents. It also defines the target audience.
  3. Review of the plan: the plan as said out in the process above is reviewed to see that the materials acquired are correct and complete.
  4. Creation of documents: the documents are prepared with the help of a document generator or manually.
  5. Testing of documents: the document created is tested for its usability as required by the target audience.
  6. Maintaining document: once the document is created and distributed it must be kept updated with the new version of the software product.

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