What comes to your mind when you see a picture of an umbrella? I think of a typical rainy day in Hamburg. In India, this image could trigger a completely different response – bad memories of the colonial era.
Images in technical documentation show our readers which button to click, which pane to select, and which cable goes in which socket. With a screenshot or illustration, we can often explain more than with a long, descriptive text.
When we use images in documentation, we have to consider our target audience. Could our readers interpret an image differently, like in the example above? Could the image cause an unwanted reaction?
Images are important for international audiences. It's not always given that the language of the documentation is also the native language of the reader. Images increase comprehensibility, warn against danger, or help avoid mistakes.
In the new knowledge base article "Visualize information - say it with pictures", Katrin Mehl and Elisabeth Fischer show how we can create a good and meaningful image, explain the different depiction types, and point out possible obstacles.