Saturday, February 10, 2007

What Makes an Excellent Tutorial?

I got across this CSS tutorial by chance while Googling around for a specific CSS question. The tutorial explains how to make a horizontal menu by styling an HTML list using CSS.

What I really loved about this tutorial was the method by which it guided you through the steps. It's really an excellent example of what a good tutorial should be made of. First of all, it follows a gradual approach to building the final thing. It goes only one small step at a time. It uses very simple, short and clear titles for each step. It shows how the outcome of each step would look like. Finally, it shows the code needed for each step, clearly pointing out the newly added code in that step with a different color. Googling through this tutorial was a peaceful and lovely trip, I didn't even need to read the instructions written in it, just following the title of each step, the code and its highlighted section and seeing the outcome of that step was enough to make me understand and absorb all the information. Hands up for this tutorial. I hope others creating tutorials would use this one as an ideal model for how excellent tutorials should be done.