TechWhirl: Technical Communication Recap for August 29, 2014

technical communication recapTis the season for awards… well, one of those seasons anyway. MTV Video Awards and the Primetime Emmies impinge on the consciousness during August with high production value events, that probably cost more to produce than the combined annual salaries of every member of our email discussion list and community forums. Awards and recognition for work done in the tech comm, customer experience and content strategy space are a bit more cost-efficient to produce and promote, but no less important to the professionals who work here than to the actors, musicians, directors and so on who line up those anthropomorphic trophies on their mantels.

The Customer Experience Recognition Awards are kind of the new kid on the block when it comes to awards. We know that content professionals labor to produce effective, compelling work with small budgets and big pressure to add value to the bottom line. It’s work that deserves recognition, especially when it impacts customers in a positive and long-lasting way.  You and your team have three full weeks to put your entry together before the September 19th deadline.  And you still have time to make plans to attend the awards dinner on October 23 in San Jose. It’s being held in conjunction with Information Development World (hosted by The Content Wrangler and Content Rules). Learning and recognition in one cool package.

In the meantime, if you’re looking for inspiration and resources for next year, you could take a stroll around TechWhirl this week for some thought-provoking discussions on content issues that matter to our community.

Have a great weekend!

-Connie and the gang at TechWhirl

Burning at both ends

Burning at both ends

Tech Writer This Week for August 28, 2014

The best technical communication, content technology and content strategy articles from around the web for August 28, 2014.

 Users and the Right to Know

Users’ Advocate: The User and the Right to Know

The amount that we can know, and the ease with which we can know, has increased so greatly that it has produced a sea change in our attitudes and expectations. We now expect that information will be available and easily found whenever and however we need it.

 spotlight

Submit a CERA Nomination to Recognize Content Creators

Content continues to be increasingly important in customer purchasing decisions, and technical communicators, marketing professionals, and product developers focus more of their efforts on customer satisfaction. To this end, the first annual Customer Experience Recognition Awards (CERAs) will be held during Information Development World on October 23rd, 2014, in San Jose, California.

 The Language of Content Strategy

Book Review: The Language of Content Strategy

Making sure we’re all using the same words to mean the same thing is a vital step in the development of our profession. The Language of Content Strategy, edited by Scott Abel and Rahel Anne Bailie, has 52 contributors and 52 terms designed to give us a common lexicon for discussing, planning, and sharing content strategy.

 strategy Content Strategy Versus DITA Content Strategy (poll)Obviously all three terms–strategy, content, and content strategy–rate a lot of research and debate. Jacquie Samuels’ informative piece on Building a DITA Content Strategy also rated some debate recently, including a worthwhile blog post from Sarah O’Keefe of Scriptorium, which makes a really nice TechWhirl poll question.

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Connie Giordano

Connie Giordano is a partner in INKtopia Limited and editor of TechWhirl's Tech Writer Today online magazine. She has been a list member and contributor since the days when 14,400 baud was high speed communications, and Windows 95 was state-of-the-art.

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