As far as I know:
- Users want the information they want in the least amount of time possible.
- The longer it takes to find the information the worse it is
- Clutter also impedes this
- For the most part with manuals, it is unavoidable to have to sift through a certain amount of uninteresting stuff to get to the money.
Based on this, I've come up with the following layout for my Installation Instructions Chapter which attempts to keep everything regarding it in one page, however information of interest stays hidden until noted otherwise:
If everything were to be simply open, the clutter speaks for itself specially since some of the content is almost the same for both cases:
So, I'm at a conundrum between what's more user-friendly for a digital/web manual: Making more, shorter pages for a chapter where users will have to search for, click through and load (0% clutter); or making large chapter pages where the topics are simply hidden?
With anchors and links I can make buttons that take users anywhere in both cases, but from what I've seen people interacting with the page they ignore the links in the Table of Contents entirely for the most part, and just scroll down until they find what they want.