In some cases offer both versions

If some site visitors want information on the screen and others want entire documents, offer both. Many sites do.

When you link to a PDF, tell people that's what they are getting and how large it is or how long it will take to download.

Figure 5-15 shows you how employees at the U. S. Federal Aviation Administration can choose to download a PDF of their entire web content standards or get an HTML page on specific topics in the standards.


Here are key messages from Chapter 5:

• Break up large documents.

• Think "topics," not "book."

• Divide web content by

- time or sequence

- people

- type of information

- questions people ask

• Decide how much to put on one web page by considering

- how much people want in one visit

- how connected the information is

- how long the web page is

- the download time

- whether people will want to print

- how much they will want to print

• Think carefully about using PDF files for your web content.

• PDF is more of a distribution mechanism for paper documents than a good way of giving web content.

• PDFs are appropriate in some situations.

• But consider not using PDFs when

- people do not want the whole document

- people want to read from the screen

- your web users are not comfortable with PDF files or with downloading software

- accessibility is an issue

• In some cases, the best solution is to offer both PDF and HTML versions of your web information.

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