Time flies…

Hard to believe that’s six months of the year gone already. But it has and that means that Glastonbury is only three weeks away! I really need to buy me some wellies. Other than that, life is good. I’m on the verge of, finally, buying a bike through the Cycle to Work scheme, which I’m just waiting on being launched at my workplace, and I’m managing to get to the gym a couple of times a week with the odd game of badminton thrown in for fun. Still not really reading all that much, and my new camera has been severely underused, but that’s mostly because my new role as webmaster for the ISTC is taking up a fair bit …

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I did done a guest post

Odd how writing for someone else sparks my creative side yet I struggle to write for my own blog… Anyhoo, Lori asked, I said yes and the resulting blog post is now available on her blog – Rarely Wears Lipstick: But, honestly. But don’t just read my guest post, check out the other guest posts as well. Go. Now. GO!

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What else do you do?

If ever I needed proof that I am not a bastard I need only look at what I tend to do in my spare time. For not only do I look and crack the same crap jokes as my Dad, I also seem to have the same need to be busy that he has. Admittedly, looking through the archives of this blog, that’s something that is fairly well documented here but a recent development has finally cemented this quiet thought in my mind. After agreeing to take over the running of the ISTC website (including a rebuild and redesign which are underway), I’ve recently agreed to serve on the Council of said organisation. That means reports, budgets, minutes, meetings and …

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Points of confusion

What are you thinking when you review documentation? We recently had a short discussion about how peer review, what we thought it was and how it should work. For us, having another member of the documentation team look over your work is useful for several reasons. Whilst we have distinct technical and editorial review stages, having another technical writer look over your work helps highlight things concerning structure, ordering and the killer of all killers, confusion. Seth Godin nicely captured the reason why this is an important stage of information production: If you’re building for digital, for a place where you can’t possibly be present to guide or to answer questions, I think it’s vital you have someone who can …

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ISTC West of Scotland Area Group meeting

The next ISTC West of Scotland area group meeting in Glasgow will take place on Thursday 9th June 2011, from 7.30 pm onwards. Come along to talk about latest news and trends in communication, or just to meet other communication professionals. The event is free and open to anyone interested in technical communication, such as technical authors, information architects, internal communication professionals, report writers, marketing writers, web content writers and graphic designers. Venue: Waxy O’Connors pub, 44 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 1DH. Please make your way to McTurk’s Room on the middle level. Please forward this message on to your colleagues or anyone else who may be interested. For more information, contact westscotland_areagroup@istc.org.uk.

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Putting Your Money Where Your Mouth Is: Closing the Loop in Content Strategy

A guest post by Noz Urbina, Mekon Senior Consultant and Congility 2011* Conference Chairperson * Keep reading for discounted and even free entry opportunity. The Hole in Holistic There’s an industry buzz about Content Strategy. But, in it, there’s a tendency to define Content Strategy as near synonymous with internet marketing strategy, or worse, clever web copy writing. There’s regularly an assumption that we’re talking about B2C mass-market writing where we’re trying to drive web conversions, ‘excite’ customers, and drive click-throughs. Although web marketing projects need content strategy, I don’t think that adequately defines the discipline. All dentists are doctors, but not all doctors are dentists. Content Strategy is in its adolescence, and the discipline is asking: Who are we? …

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Just came down from…

Like many people, I recently “spent” 3 days holiday allowance to get an 11 day holiday (wonderful combination of bank holidays and the royal wedding). So, what did I do on this mini-holiday? Spent a couple of days surrounded by amazing scenery on the Isle of Skye for starters. We took a small (four car max) ferry across to the island, dined in a wonderful fresh fish restaurant on Portree harbour, fed some Highland cows, stood at the top of a big cliff, lost count of the number of times we both exhaled a “WOW” at the stunning views, took a boat trip out to see the seals, and experienced the settling of the gloaming as we drove back down …

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