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22. Graphics

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One of the nice things about technical writing courses is that most of the papers have graphics in them—or at least they should. A lot of professional, technical writing contains graphics—drawings, diagrams, photographs, illustrations of all sorts, tables, pie charts, bar charts, line graphs, flow charts, and so on. Once you get the hang of putting graphics like these into your writing, you should consider yourself obligated to use graphics whenever the situation naturally would call for them. Unlike what you might fear, producing graphics is not such a terrible task—in fact, it's fun. You don't have to be a professional graphics artist or technical draftsperson to get graphics into your technical writing. The Internet has advanced our sources for graphics immensely. And, if you are still living the 1970s, you can produce professional-looking graphics with tape, scissors, white-out, and a decent photocopying machine.

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