I think someone mentioned that the DD should be something done on the fly and I kind of agree. If the DD is 100% complete then there would be no need to come back to it time after time, but if its not then it needs to be updated as programmers identify issues.
'On the fly' and updating from programmer's issues are very different things. On the fly suggests we start using it before it is finished, which is very bad design practice, at least unless you make sure certain aspects of it are completed before they are needed.
We will however want programmers to be able to update the DD after programming begins and problems are found. This is just common iteration which all software projects should make use of.
I don't think that a wiki would be good for the DD, everyone can just change everything.
I agree that we'd need some access rights. If we use MediaWiki, is anyone aware how we can make a certain section of the wiki editable only by a group or selection of people and the rest editable by everyone?
Yeah Latexeting it up would *look* more professional, but I'm more interested in content. If the person in charge of writing it is unable or unwilling to use Latex then so be it.
Ofcourse this can be solved by limiting access but you also have that in a .doc.
I've done two large software engineering projects over the past year. The last of these involved fully requirements gathering, design, implementation and testing. I can say from experience that Microsoft Word is awful for large documents, especially
when multiple people are submitting work in bits for the same document. Things can look horrible, special things that Word uses can not work and this is ignoring the fact that not everyone has the latest version of Word.
I've used Latex all of once and I'm sure that will provide a better way of providing a consistent and useful design document. Sure, it involves a bit of know-how, but I think the result is worth the extra effort.