TechWhirler Recap for June 3

This week’s update is supported by Platinum sponsor Madcap (http://www.madcapsoftware.com).

Summer is here! No more teachers, no more books. The temperature is rising around the country, which means it’s time to play hooky, grab a drink with co-workers after work and enjoy that vitamin D. Speaking as a long time technologist, I believe most of us need it. Who knows, you may even catch us at a Cubs game with our friends Cameron and Sloane in the next couple weeks.

This month’s website theme (and a little of May if we’re honest) is “Technology Trends & Tech Comm Strategies for Social Media”. After leading off with Geoff Hart’s two-part article “Taking Advantage of Social Media”, our own Connie Giordano published her part 1 (of 3) article – “The New Communications Cycle: Know Your Audience”. (http://goo.gl/JUnZB). Next week, “The Communications Cycle Part II – Transmitting Content and Tracking Feedback.” Missing any of these – head over to http://Techwr-l.com.

How is this social media thing going to change technical communications? We know that pundits are saying that it’s the greatest thing since sliced bread and, well, the Internet, but what do you think? Have your companies started tracking and responding to customers using these new tools? Let us know – it happens to be this week’s poll question (techwhirl.com) <- clever how we just added a new domain, eh?

The TechWhirl Ferrari will be speeding out of Social Media into Career Decisions & Transitions next month. Do you have an idea for an article or column? Send Connie a note (connie@inktopia.net) and let her know. We’re looking for a few great writers and think you, yes you, have what it takes. A very special thanks to Craig Cardimon, Jennifer Gutsche, Chris Bell, Dave Smith, Chris Goolsby, Kelly Anderson, Chantel Brathwaite, and Charlotte Brogdon who have already expressed interest.

That’s all for this week. We’re supposed to be at home sick after all. Have a great weekend.

The TechWhirl folks – the sausage Kings and Queens of Chicago

This Week @ TechWhirl

  • New: “The New Communications Cycle Part 1: Know Your Audience … and How They Consume and Create Content” by Connie Giordano http://goo.gl/JUnZB
  • Classic: “A Book of Your Own” by Herman Holtz http://goo.gl/y9Sq9
  • Poll: Do you monitor your organization’s social media channels to address tech comm issues? (http://techwhirl.com)

Upcoming events & Articles

  • New: “The New Communications Cycle Part 2: Transmitting Content and Tracking Feedback” by Connie Giordano
  • Classic: Conducting Effective Team Technical Reviews, by M. Katherine Brown

SPONSOR-Luv

We want to send a very special “thank you” to sponsors. Without them, we would have had to take the car home long ago.

Platinum: Madcap, Adobe, ComponentOne

Gold: EC Software, The Society for Technical Communications

Silver: Vancouver Island University

Advertising Central

Announcing HyperVars – a new FrameMaker plugin for Web-based variable management from iG5 Authoring Tools and CudSpan
Store variable definitions on a centralized Web server, and your authoring team can import them into your documents from any system that can access the server. Change variable definitions once, and know that all your team members can import the same definitions into their documents.

HyperVars turns FrameMaker into a specialized Web client that contacts the HyperVars server to request and import variable definitions.

HyperVars features include:

* Multiple variable definition sets – for example, store all company-wide definitions in one set, and store all product-wide definitions in another.
* Upload variable definitions to the server with the click of a button.
* Import variable definitions into the active document or book.
* Filtered imports – import system variables, user variables, or both.
* Selective import – import all the definitions from a set, or only a selection.

HyperVars costs $250. Test-drive HyperVars free on the CudSpan server. For more information, visit http://www.ig5authoringtools.com/plugin-directory/single-sourcing/hypervars/.

Competitive Upgrade Pricing on Flare, MadPak and MadPak ML

Looking to make the switch to MadCap Software? During the month of June only, take advantage of these special competitive upgrade prices on Flare, MadPak and MadPak ML. Plus, get FREE JumpStart Training! A $299 value!
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Contact a MadCap sales representative for more information.
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TechWhirl

TechWhirl is the largest free online resource for Technical Communicators in the world. We offer articles, news and job opportunities for technical communicators. You can connect with us on Google+ which provides a more behind the scenes look at our motley operation.

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