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Jul 30, 2007


Tony in SV

Yes, detailed tutorials do make for better learning. Too many tech manuals are just descriptions of the product - that's the easy way.

Explaining how everything fits together (and why you should do things a certain way) is much more difficult - it requires a much deeper understanding of the product and the area (domain) it's being used in. I think it's easier for a specialized product; for example, using a MCAD product for mold design is quite different from sheet metal design or custom machine design (with many machined parts).

Do you look at other areas for ideas on how to do better books? A couple examples - the Programming in Lua book is an example of an excellent, but minimalistic, approach. And, I haven't used them, but the Head First series (e.g. Head First Design Patterns) have gotten a lot of praise.

Stefan Boeykens

For a good example of video tutorials done right, you may check http://www.3dbuzz.com
While they don't target CAD, they target 3D Animation and creative software (3ds max, photoshop, game editing etc...). The video tutorials are made in a very informal way, including joking and having fun, but at the same time the learning content is as good as it gets.

And above all, they provide a large section of their tutorial content for free.

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