Fewer People Read Longer Topics, and that’s Okay

Fewer people read longer topics. But it’s not something to lose sleep over, and certainly not something to shorten topics over.

Tom Johnson has a recent  series of posts on topic length (Does DITA Encourage Authors to Fragment Information into a Million Little Pieces?Do Short Topics Make Information More Findable?, and Why Long Topics Are Better for the User). The discussion around these posts dwells, as all such discussions seem to do, on the question of whether fewer people will read longer posts/topics/articles/etc. read more

Interest is Fundamental to Communication

The Web continues to invent new places for tech writers to rehash old arguments. Recently I have been seeing a number of reiterations of the old debate about technical knowledge vs. writing skill on various LinkedIn forums, and apparently Techwr-l has recently been debating yet again whether it is easier to teach tech to a writer or writing to an engineer. I am convinced that both sides in these endless debates are missing the point: the key to successful communication isn’t knowledge or writing skill, it’s interest. read more