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January 15, 2004 03:30 AM

Broken: Technical documentation

Paul Schreiber points us to this visual warning on a Dell PC box. Taken from the very entertaining Hall of Technical Documentation Weirdness by Darren Barefoot, the caption is "If you drop this box on a dog, don't trip over its tail."


Whoa there. You have a giant mistake there that needs to be adressed. That isn't a dog. It's the twine under the box, and the picture is warning the person not to trip over it. I assume the box had twine underneath for easy carrying. I dunno, maybe I'm wrong, but that doesn't look like a dog to me.

Posted by: never mind that at January 18, 2004 08:41 PM

It's referring to the plastic strapping that holds the box closed. These particular boxes come with plastic strapping held in place by some sort of widget that doesn't require you to cut the strap to open the box. Moreover, it's fixed in place under the box either because it's actually fastened to the bottom of hte box or the box is too heavy to let you pull the strapping out and set it to the side.

As a result, that plastic strapping piles up around the box, right where you're going to have to walk to empty the box, and it doesn't lay neatly on the floor; it sticks up here and there and is a very easy thing to trip on.

Posted by: Chaz Larson at January 19, 2004 09:11 AM

Ah. So it wasn't the dog that was broken, but the fact that you have to put a warning label to justify the dangerous box.

Posted by: never mind that at January 21, 2004 04:23 PM

Thanks for the plug. I'm in the midst of finally revising the site with about double the number of submissions. I'll ping you with it once it's updated.

I got Slashdotted on this last September, and I can't tell you number of people who wrote in explaining the actual meaning behind the various warning signs. Has everyone lost their sense of irony?

Posted by: Darren at March 31, 2004 02:09 PM

yeah that is defintiley a hilarious website thatnks for the link, man!

Posted by: sonikuu at November 30, 2004 12:03 PM

uh guys this is supposed to be making fun of the poorly done signs... not necessarily broken just hilariously funny that they would make fun of these signs!!!if you haven't checked out this awesome website that "just for fun" kindly posted a link to.

Posted by: sonikuu at November 30, 2004 12:09 PM

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