Archive | Hide and Seek

There are no Prerequisites

There are few worse ideas in technical communication than the idea that procedures have prerequisites. There are no prerequisites. There are only steps. To illustrate: Last weekend I paid a visit to some family members who were camping at a nearby campground. They were struggling to inflate the new air mattress they had bought. The mattress […]

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By Karora (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Design for Wayfinding

Much of the time we spend with technical documentation is concerned with wayfinding. That is, it is not about performing the actual operation, but about finding which operation to perform, and finding the piece of content that describes the operation in a form that we can understand. Note that there are two distinct components to […]

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Why Your Content Needs More Links

Technical Communications needs to make far greater use of linking than it does today. Here’s why. In a blog post WordPress for Beginners: Too Many Choices? Sufyan bin Uzayr quotes an email from novelist Meg Justus about her frustrations trying to get started with WordPress: The reason I’m finding self-hosted WordPress so complicated is that it asks me to find […]

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Hand reaching for apple.

Optimize Your Content for Social Curation

We worry a lot about Search Engine Optimization (SEO). I suspect we don’t worry enough about Social Curation Optimization (hereby dubbed SCO). Social curation plays a large role in how people find content on the Web. Google’s Eric Schmidt was recently quoted as saying: Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter also allow users to leverage their social […]

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