Remarkably more down-to-earth than its predecessor, the revised Wired Style guide is a handy little reference for digerati, or those who think they are. This version is much more accessible to general Internet users, not unlike the Web, which has become more mainstream in the three years since the original publication was released. (The previous edition was criticized for its pomposity and near-incomprehensibility.) This revision still delivers the inside scoop, though. You'll not only learn how to talk about cyberspace (for example, you can read about the evolution of the term "email" and why Wired prefers it without the hyphen), you'll also get an encyclopedic listing of all the trendy lingo that describes it.
Geared heavily toward high-tech communications writers but of use to any Web surfer, this pocket-size manual employs a very simple structure: it contains a short and well-organized discussion on writing technical material clearly and interestingly; a compact but thorough dictionary of relevant terms; a brief style FAQ (with answers to questions such as, "What's the deal with all those capital letters in the middle of words?"); and a petite index.
The introduction offers 10 "Principles for Writing Well in the Digital Age," encouraging you to "play with voice," "capture the colloquial," and "flaunt your subcultural literacy," all trademarks of Wired's tendency to be esoteric. Sure, it's fun and cool to be colloquial and subculturally in the know, but it's just as important to be widely understood. Luckily, in this edition, the editors have caught on to this, and have produced a guide that is smart, useful, and almost unpretentious. --Teri Kieffer [via]