An example of substantive editing

Some years ago I edited a quarterly magazine for the users of a large Australian computing network. This example (from 1985) is fairly typical of the technical articles I received from department managers. I include here the unedited text and my revised version.

The first thing you’ll notice is the ancient technology, but it was cutting-edge stuff at the time. Try to ignore that and attempt to make sense of the text.

Unedited text

—–(beginning of sample)—–

Connecting to OurNetwork

OurNetwork is an Australia wide network with regional offices or agencies in all capital cities. Batch facilities such as printing and plotting are provided in these places as well as access for interactive terminals.

Interactive terminals may be connected with dedicated Telecom lines or used in dial up mode. Dial up requires that the user provide a suitable modem and terminal; the dedicated (leased) line comes with a suitable modem but it is considerably more expensive.

Basic modem types are:

V22bis     2400/1200 bps (240/120 chars per sec) synchronous or asynchronous
V22 1200 bps asynchronous (Full duplex, not V23 1200/75)
V21 300 bps asynchronous

Asynchronous modems are used with asynchronous (dumb, ascii, VT100 style, line by line) terminals and synchronous modems with 3270 Bisync terminals.

The following table indicates the terminal and modem types needed for particular databases. Where a number of choices exists, these are explained later.

Database Terminal     Modem
Database 1     Sync V22bis
  Async V22bis V22 V21
Database 2 Async V22bis V22 V21
Database 3 Async V22bis V22 V21

If two terminal types are listed against the database, the first is the preferred method but the other will perform satisfactorily. Similarly, where a number of modems are listed, the first will give the highest (fastest) performance.

Some examples of modems and terminals are:

Modem

V22 bis     Case     Datacraft     Scitec
V22 Case Datacraft  
V21 Case    

Terminal

Synchronous 3270 Bisync from IBM, Beehive, Fujitsu, ITT, Telex or appropriate software on a personal computer
Asynchronous     VT100, VT220 (Digital Equipment Corporation), Beehive, TAB, Wyse or appropriate software on a personal computer

Note that these are examples; there are many different machines that can perform these tasks. In general, OurNetwork will be moving towards V22bis services for dial up and for new purchases where access to other networks is not needed, the purchase of V22bis modems is suggested.

—–(end of sample)—–

My reactions on reading this were, “What are they really trying to tell the users?” and “There really are two entirely separate messages in here, all jumbled up together.”

After some discussions with the author of this article, I cut out some irrelevant information, added some details to better relate the article to the users’ needs, and reorganised everything. Here’s my version. Reading it over now, I can spot a few places where I could have done a better job, but with a publishing deadline looming, just making sense out of the jumble seemed quite a triumph. Some paragraphs were included in both articles deliberately.

Edited text

(First article)

—–(beginning of sample)—–

Modems for dial-in access

Basic modem types supported by OurNetwork

Type (1)     Speed Service
V22bis 2400/1200 bps     synchronous or asynchronous
V22 1200 bps asynchronous, full duplex (2)
V21 300 bps asynchronous
  1. V21 includes both private modems and acoustic couplers; V22 and V22bis are available in private modems only.
  2. OurNetwork does not support V23, 1200/75 or half duplex standards

Accessing databases

Databases accessible through OurNetwork require specific terminal and modem types. In the table below, where two terminal types are listed against the database, the first is preferred. Where a number of modems are listed, the first will give the highest (fastest) performance.

Database Terminal Modem
Database 1       synchronous
asynchronous
V22bis
V22bis, V22, V21
Database 2 asynchronous       V22bis, V22, V21
Gateway (3) synchronous
asynchronous
V22bis
V21, V22
  1. Gateway is a gateway service to overseas databases, provided by the Overseas Telecommunications Commission (OTC) and accessible through OurNetwork.

Examples of modem suppliers (4)

  Modem Types
Supplier   V21     V22   V22bis
Case X X X
Datacraft         X X
Scitec     X
Sendata X X X

Note that you also have the option of renting a suitable modem from Telecom Australia.

Examples of terminals (4)

Synchronous: IBM 3270 Bisync, FuJitsu, Beehive, ITT, Telex or appropriate software on a personal computer

Asynchronous: DEC VT100, VT220, Beehive, TAB, Wyse or appropriate software on a personal computer

Users Manual Volume 2, “Network Users Manual”, Chapter 5 describes the types of equipment available for dial-in access, regulations governing its use, registration formalities, and how to use the dial-in facilities.

  1. Note that these are merely examples. There are many different machines that can perform these tasks.

—–(end of sample)—–

(Second article)

—–(beginning of sample)—–

Dial-in access to OurNetwork

Dial-in facilities cater for users who wish to access OurNetwork facilities from an interactive terminal, personal computer or workstation, but who are not connected to a node directly or via a leased line.

Which service you choose will depend largely on where you are located, the volume of traffic you expect between your equipment and OurNetwork, the speed with which you wish to transfer data, and the necessity for that data to transfer uncorrupted. The leased line has fewer errors, but the newer plugged-in modems (not acoustically coupled) give quite acceptable error performance.

If you wish to use a dial-in service, you must provide a suitable modem. (A leased line comes with a suitable modem but is considerably more expensive.)

Factors you may which to consider before purchasing a modem relate to the use you expect to be making of the connection. Will you be accessing a host, a database service, an overseas service, special periperals, or all of these?

There are three basic modem types supported by OurNetwork, however the public-access databases accessible through OurNetwork require specific terminal and modem types.

Note also that OurNetwork will be moving towards a type of dial~in service called “V22bis”, and you may wish to consider compatible equipment for new purchases where access to other networks is not required.

OurNetwork Users Manual Volume 2, “Network Users Manual”, Chapter 5 describes the types of equipment available for dial-in access, regulations governing its use, registration formalities, and how to use the dial-in facilities.

Staff in OurNetwork’s Hardware Section will be happy to advise you on your choice of equipment. Modem suppliers include Case, Datacraft, Scitec and Sendata. Suitable terminals include synchronous models from IBM (3270 Bisync), Fujitsu, Beehive, ITT, or Telex; asynchronous models include DEC VT100, VT220, Beehive, TAB, and Wyse.*

*Note that these are merely examples. There are many different machines that can perform these tasks.

—–(end of sample)—-


Last updated 31 December 2001

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