It is not perfect. In fact, it can be gimmicked, tricked, and gamed. But it works. On a project to develop a multiprocessor industrial controller, the other technical writer was a young guy from an advertising agency. He did not know manufacturing, but he was good writer. We enjoyed finding some of the many failings in the MS-Word readability scales. We still used them. They proved that we documented the interactive debugger to a 6th grade reading level. When the line is down, no one is looking for a literary experience. You need answers.
|Texas Department of Information Resources|
IT Policy - Originally at 12.9 reading level
|Same IT Policy - Rewritten to 12.0 reading level.|
The fact remains that we have an objective measure for readability.
Also on Necessary Facts
Visualizing Complex Data
Documentation is Specification
The Art of Typography
The Genius of Design
How to Hire a Technical Writer