Microsoft Writing Style Guide- A Review
This is a quick review of Microsoft Writing Style Guide. Although I have not read the guide word for word I’m confident to say the best style guide for technical writers I’ve ever come across.
The editorial team of Microsoft has done a great job our hat’s off to the team.
The new name of Microsoft Manual of Style is The Microsoft Writing Style Guide.
If you are new to a technical writing career, let me introduce Microsoft Writing Style Guide to you.
Microsoft Writing Style Guide is a most popular style guide among technical writers.
The inspiration of all other style guides for technical communication new version is updated with a load of new guideline to make technical communicators world better.
From the day of its publication of the first version, Microsoft Style guide is the go-to reference for technical writers across the globe for most of the organizations.
I forgot the number of times in my twelve years career when this universal style guide helped me settle the style arguments that would never have been settled.
I personally try to abide by this guide whenever I can and this guide is also an integral part of Information Developers Foundation training program.
The new Microsoft Writing Style Guide is the replacement for the Microsoft Manual of Style, 4th Edition and before the 4th edition, it used to be MSTP (Microsoft Technical publication).
First edition was published in 1995 and until today it is numero uno.
The first thing which attracted my attention in the 4th edition was Microsoft style and Not Microsoft style which used to be correct and wrong and MS dropped the hyphen from “email” and stopped capitalizing “web” in the 4th edition.
In this new 5th edition Chatbot and virtual agent attract my attention. This new guide emphasizes write like a more human than robot.
This style guide is also a reflection of how time is changing and the machine is making way in our life.
The Microsoft Writing Style Guide is completely updated and also features new guidance.
Chatbots and virtual agents, Content planning, and Responsive content are the new exciting topics and also quick tips kind of reading are also available.
Good to see elaborated section on keyword research and recommended tools which were normally used by bloggers and emphasis on scannable content.
More for API documentation and localization could have made this marvel better.
One thing is beyond my understanding why UI illustration is removed from chapter 5. Lot of guesswork is required if you are not aware of the names.
Now the latest and greatest version of Microsoft Writing Style Guide is available online.
Download Microsoft Writing Style Guide
You can also download PDF of MWSG. This is more than 1000+ page.
The in-depth review will be available soon. Waiting to take this book in hand soon.
If you are looking for the reference guide for the internal developers you can read this post, recently Google made its internal developers guide public. The brief review of the internal developer documentation style guide.
To fully appreciate a guide like this, it’s important to understand the context in which it exists.
You also go through it and do not forget to post your comment.
If you do not own a textbook of technical writing, I will highly recommend you to get your copy of the Microsoft Manual of Style now.
We highly recommend every technology writer should keep this book in their drawer. Click on the book to get the best price.