Yes we admit it, this week’s poll has more to do with looking forward to the STC Summit than with technical writing issues or trends… but it’s tangentially related–honest. Movies are written, and there are some great ones set in that toddlin’ town of Chicago. They have audiences, and great technical writers are supposed to know theirs. Movies rely on personas, so does a lot of technical writing. Great movies obviously make good use of visuals to demonstrate how do something important, or relevant or geeky or cool… you get the idea. (We’ve spent a lot of years on the TechWhirl email discussion list, and learned from the masters on how to relate almost anything to technical writing.)
We’re actually wondering how many technical writers have also taken a turn as an advertising exec, salesman, baseball player, musician, gangster, g-man, con artist, addict, or truant. Well at least we’re wondering about the first four, and we’re hoping none on the last group. Chicago is one of those great cities where you can do any of those things, and then turn around and get into technical communications, or hang out with content strategists and information designers, and maybe one day write a screenplay.
Quite a few movies have been set in Chicago (or Chicago-like “mid-western industrial cities), and we picked nine that run the gamut of time and subject matter. You only get to vote for one, but if you don’t like our choices, we’d really like to know what your favorite Chicago movie. Feel free to discuss your rationale, or develop single-sourced procedural content that describes how to choose a favorite movie (after all, it’s good practice in case it’s on those pesky technical writing tests have to take to land the perfect job). Post a comment here, or on the discussion list. In the meantime, we’re almost ready to start packing for the Summit.