Explainist (yay! they're back) has a new post about Explanatory Filenames and how to think about the person on the other end. Quote:
But think about the guy on the other end who receives proposals from 10
different candidates on the deadline day, all with the same filename.
The first thing he has to do is rename each of them. If you’re thinking
about your audience, you’d save the proposal with your company’s name
in the filename — e.g. TomCo-Annihilatrix_Proposal.pdf.
I think the key point is about the perspective of the explainer. As I wrote in a comment, it’s this awareness of the other person and their needs that helps so
much with explanation - being able to put the idea in the other
Another example is giving driving directions (before Google Maps anyway). I bet that good explainers are also good at giving directions. When I've been lost in the past, I could see that the person giving directions had a hard time understanding what it was like to drive from A to B for the first time. Good directions account for the driver's perspective and context just like good explanations account for the learner's perspective and context.