It certainly is a bit of a challenge. For both tip 3 and 4, follow the directions given after the equals sign. The pattern is telling you how to work the decrease called for even if they have a somewhat cryptic name for the decrease (resp probably means right and left edge, respectively). For example, for the right edge, work one edge stitch, k3, k3tog. Both sides refers to the front edges, on the right and the left edge. Work all the dec on the RS rows (right side as opposed to wrong side [WS] rows).
The dec are given for the front edges with a repeat every so many rows. There are also dec at the 3 marked sts every so many rows. It'll help to keep track of these decreases with separate row counters or with a pencil and paper since some are occurring at the same time. The dec don't go across the row, only at the marked sts or the front edges.