memorandum to: | Microsoft Corporation | subject: | Critique of MS Outlook Product Guide | date: | February 3, 2014 | Microsoft Outlook has become a vital part of the academic and professional experiences of many people. The application is often utilized strictly for its capacity as an e-mail client, but the program has a variety of uses. Outlook allows users to do some basic photo editing, manage tasks and add them to calendars, and also has a number of social features fully integrated into the application (“Microsoft Outlook Product Guide”, 2010). Those are just a small sample of what a trained user can accomplish using Outlook. While the wide range of features included into Microsoft Outlook is ultimately a boon for users, for
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Users only need to go to the areas designated by the guide in order to use the calendar or edit a photo, for example. However, while the guide is very good at highlight how to access certain features, it is not very adept at explaining to users how to actually use the features it highlights in any capacity. For example, the guide highlights the application’s editing functionality, stating that one can easily crop and add filters to photographs, but it never tells you exactly how to go about doing that (“Microsoft Outlook Product Guide”, 2010). The guide would have been more effective if it had utilized the screenshots to show users how to actually implement some of the key features of Outlook, as well as showing how to access them.
This aspect also speaks to the thoroughness of the guide, or rather the lack thereof. While the guide does do a thorough job listing features, instructions on how to actually us them is lacking. Given the fact that MS Outlook is such a powerful program, it would have been a very exhaustive guide if it went through how to accomplish every task step-by-step. Also, the guide does show users how to access tutorial videos and specific help sections both locally on individual computers and on line (“Microsoft Outlook Product Guide”, 2010). However, the guide seemed to be pushing the use of certain newer features, such as photo editing and View, so those features, at the very least should have been explained more thoroughly (“Microsoft Outlook