Screencasting checklist for beginners

When you are new to the screencasting topic, starting working on your first screencast is a pretty challenging task. We’d wish that it was as easy as just recording the screen. However, fortunately, “I’ve done the procedure million times and I won’t screw it up!” – say no professional anyone. The good movies we see on the big screen are that good because nothing was done on the fly. The amount of time that people spend before the cameras actually start rolling is tremendous. Of course, we are not in Hollywood here, but why should we set for worse?

As a newbie myself, I have some fresh knowledge (and many hours of research), so I tried to summarize some tips, which will make your first experience with screencasting a smoother ride.

The question we all have – so, where do I begin? Continue reading

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The UA of the Future

We live in a rapidly changing technological world, and it’s no news that virtual, augmented, and mixed realities are gradually transitioning into mainstream usage. Chatbots bombard us from everywhere, and not just for fun—they reshape the way big companies do their businesses. AI and machine learning also drastically changed the game, as now we live along with self-driving cars, robots, face recognitions , and so on. And the predictions for 2018 are going into that direction even more.

Of course, the main reasons for such changes are always the same—better quality of services, higher customer satisfaction, and improved overall experience. In software development, those reasons are better user experience and assistance, as well as more intuitive design.

Nowadays, if you are not the first one to offer something new and innovative, you lose. And what about us, Technical Communicators? Does this mean that with perfect user assistance from the side of the application itself, the era of documentation has to end?

Of course it doesn’t. However, we cannot deny that things are changing and changing fast; the least we can do – be on the same track. Here is an article by Angel Lafchiev where you can find some interesting ideas on the future of user assistance and several pieces of advice on how not to fall out of this evolving tech world.

User Assistance: Resistance Is Futile, You Will Be Assimilated!

And a couple of things from myself.
I truly believe this is not end of an era of technical documentation at all, this is a new stage full of immense opportunities. Design and train chatbots, use VR/AR as an e-learning tool, create more personalised user assistance with the help of metadata and AI, and many more. This is only the beginning, and we, Technical Communicators, cannot miss it.

Target audience: Millennials

When writing documentation, target audience is one of the first things on mind of an information developer. Audience determines what deliverable to choose, as well as what style and tone to apply to it. Wrong idea of the target audience’s needs may result in total failure of documentation. Therefore, a good information developer should be aware of every possible target user. Having deep knowledge of the product, understanding the aim of the documentation and the audience – their needs, possibilities, desires, and preferences, results in a masterpiece documentation.
So, how do we know what our target user wants? The answer is research! And I did a little research of my own on one of the most fast-growing generations in history. Millennials. So, let’s have a closer look at them and try to do our best to meet their expectations.

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The Future of Content Publishing or What I’ve Learned at the Evolution of TC

This year I had a marvelous opportunity to attend the Evolution of TC conference in Sofia, Bulgaria. It is an annual international event for all technical communicators with a focus on innovations in software documentation. Being a place for technical writers, information developers, translators, and everyone who is interested in technical communication, it gives an excellent opportunity to exchange knowledge and ideas, learn new tendencies and trends, as well as grow network. Continue reading

5 TechComm Conferences Not to Miss in 2017

We all have different relationships with Technical Communication. For some of us it’s just started as love at first sight, for others it has been a long term relationship based on love and commitment. But all of us have been waiting for this perfect moment to be asked the question: Are you ready to carry out your New Year resolution and learn something new, grow professionally, and broaden your horizons? If yes, then pack your bags and make some room for good knowledge as the TechComm society prepared something astonishing for you in 2017. Conferences! Because everybody loves conferences, right?

Here is a list of some must-visits in 2017 located in Europe.

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