Information is not a commodity

The modern day technical writer, in fact I think we’ll go with technical communicator for this on, has a myriad of tools at their disposal. Be they authoring tools, publishing formats, or ways to collaborate, we are spoiled for choice. I can write content and make it available to the world in mere minutes if I so choose (and I do, frequently, you are reading it). Of course, there is more to our job than the tools of our trade, so much more that at times I think we can forget that our value lies elsewhere and if we are forgetting that, can we really blame others for losing sight of it too? We are more than our knowledge of …

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How to embed linked images in Microsoft Word

Have you ever shared a Word document with someone only to find the images it included didn’t get sent over? This is probably because the images you had were linked rather than embedded. You now have two options: ZIP the entire folder with the Word document and all the images (and hope that the links are relative and not absolute). I use 7Zip for such things (it’s free). Change all the linked images to be embedded within the Word document. The latter option will result in a larger file size, but means you are only sending one file. But how do you do it? Microsoft haven’t made it very easy but the key is locating the Links dialog. This shows …

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How to embed linked images in Word 2010

One of the most popular posts on my blog was written a few years ago but still gets a lot of visits and comments; How to embed linked images in Word 2007. Some of the comments have offered better solutions and one in particular I found myself searching for today. Having upgrade to Office 2010 I’ve realised that Microsoft has, again, “improved” the user interface by moving things around! So, courtesy of Sarah, here are the updated instructions for how to embed linked images in Microsoft Word 2010: With your Word document open, click the File tab, top-left of the window. On the left-hand side, select Info. On the right-hand side, near the bottom, click Edit Links to Files. In …

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Author-it & Word

A teeny tiny gotcha that I thought I’d mention here. I can’t find explicit mention of it in the Author-it Knowledge Center and it’s tripped me up a bit. Quite simply, and I realise these will sound obvious, make sure everyone who is using Author-it is using the same version of Microsoft Word. My particular scenario has my laptop running Word 2007, making changes to the template, but when publishing from a machine running Word 2003, the footers weren’t being displayed despite the AutoText entry being available in the output Word document. Naturally I’m discovering this delightful quirk on the final day of the project as we do a final publish and check on our deliverables. And people wonder why …

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Conference Connections

I’m still tweaking my presentation for the Technical Communications UK conference, Thursday morning is looming larger and larger in my view so I’m distracting myself with considering the other good things that happen at conferences. For me people are the primary reason for attending a conference. Don’t get me wrong, the value can be measured by the quality of the speakers and the information provided, but that tends to be transitory, so it’s the connections you make that count in the longer term. I’m lucky that I’ve met some of the people I know through this blog, and I’m hoping to add to that tally this week. Part of me did consider trying to organise a little “meetup” of bloggers …

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Willpower-less

Popped into Waterstones at lunchtime in the vague hope of finding a decent book about Microsoft Word (2003). Nothing on the shelves worth bothering with so I left. Somehow, when I arrived back at work, I was carrying a bag containing 3 recently purchased books. Such is the power of the ubiquitous 3 for 2 offer. There’s a thought, are there ANY bookstores that don’t have sales on? Anyway, I can now add the following to my “to be read” stack: How we are hungry by Dave Eggers Blink by Malcolm Gladwell The Optimists by Andrew Miller Suggestions on which to read first are welcomed.

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50 million

£50million, that’s a lot of money. Makes me wonder…. Would it spoil some vast eternal plan If I were a wealthy man? – Topol Personally I don’t think the uppermost priority in my mind would be to build a house with “one long staircase just going up, and one even longer coming down, and one more leading nowhere just for show” as, frankly, if I had a house built and the architect put in a staircase “just for show” I’d have him taken to the top of it and shoved off. Since the introduction of the National Lottery a common pondering is “what would you do if you won?”. A more common pondering is “why do they STILL have those …

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Grammarian

Microsoft Word Grammar Checker Are No Good, Scholar Conclude I’d wager that the majority of my beloved readership (yup, all three of you) have used this software product at some point. Some may use it every single day and you have my pity as, no doubt, it is STILL invading your work, suggesting improvements, alternatives and generally annoying the crap out of you. FYI – The latter statement is widely used and accepted by many a usability expert, for example; When the autocorrect feature changes some of your text, how annoying is it on a scale from 1 [not annoying] to 10 [annoys the crap out of you]? Of course here in blogland we don’t have the benefit of grammar …

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