Diagram Series: The role of text

A well-drawn diagram communicates a very clear and direct message. You, as an Information Developer, can explain to users the workflow, interrelationship among components, or data exchange through visual assets. Diagrams are not just about cool shapes and trendy colors, but also about the meaning—text. In this article, I will share some important rules how to phrase, format, and position the text in a diagram to make it look more distinct and professional.

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Stay trendy in the technical communication world

The world of technical communication is closely intertwined with the advancements in technologies and ways of doing business. The dynamism of the Information Developer profession presupposes that your ability to initiate and embrace the change will greatly help you in achieving a truly innovative approach to your work. This thought prompted me to do a little investigation on technical writing trends of 2018 to familiarize myself with the state of affairs in the industry. After all, forewarned is forearmed, right? Continue reading

Startups don’t need documentation. Stereotype that can cost you

As a startup owner, you care about early validation, seeing if your idea lives or dies. Saving each penny, proving your concept, getting qualified into the race we call market – documentation is the least of your concerns. Heard that, thought that? Me too, but years in product teams and I learnt better –  information can be the bridge between surviving and  thriving.

There are points in your product lifecycle when information can pave the way to product success. The trick  is to pick the right form of documentation and present the information in the most delicious and digestible way.

My assumptions are: your product is usable and smooth in every possible aspect; it brings something new, caters to different types of users, or solves several problems.

Here we go.

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Empathy map: UX practice applied to TechComm

As the IT industry changes introducing new trends and searching to propose more value to a user, technical communication should adapt as well. Technical communicators start searching for better ways to present information and predict all pains to be resolved by the documentation.

One way of doing so is to look for some useful practices outside of technical communication domain. In this article, I would like to briefly introduce a visual practice of empathy mapping that can be adopted into technical communication.

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Content Accessibility: Back to Basics

One of the many titles that we documentarians assume is user’s advocate. This means that we defend the user’s interests, cater for their information needs, and provide them with the right content at the right time. But what if some of them cannot read the help topic because the font is too small and light, or they cannot do a step in a procedure as the instructions are too vague? This means that probably, we have overlooked such thing as accessibility. Continue reading