Being Social

I’ve written about social media before, and given presentations on Blogging and the wider use of social media as part of our professional toolbox. But that was mostly with a view to how these new technologies could be used to provide a better service to our customers. So what does social media mean to me, as a professional? Personally, away from Technical Communications, I’ve been involved and actively using various forms of social media for over a decade. It’s very much something I take for granted and expect to be able to communicate with people in a variety of ways. However, because I’ve been using this stuff for so long, I tend to fall prey to the curse of knowledge …

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Content Aggregation

I have an admission. I’m lazy. I work hard to get around that basic character trait but it remains there in the background, nagging away at me. Professional pride stops it influencing my work (I manage a lean, mean to-do list to keep me on track), but when it comes to things on the periphery I happily admit I’ll look for an easy, hassle-free solution if I can find one. This has lead to me develop some little working habits which help me keep on top of the mass of information which I divert my way, largely through RSS feeds. I monitor many different feeds as I like to keep up with latest developments and discussions about our profession, it …

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How rude

There is one thing I haven’t done here for quite a while. It’s rather remiss of me so please accept my apologies. Quite simply, I wanted to say thank you. To you. Yes YOU. Thank you for visiting this blog, and more importantly, thank you for coming back and visiting again. A lot of the ideas I talk about here are made better by your comments, and I continue to find blogging to be a useful way to work through some of the thoughts and random ponderings that float around in my head. I tend, like many, to do most of my blog reading through RSS and I know that making the effort to comment on a blog is something …

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Twitter is useful

At the Technical Communications conference last year, I had a couple of discussions with people about Twitter. I was mostly trying to convince them of why I found it valuable, they were mostly of the opinion it was noise about what people had for lunch. I’ve recently been reminded of the value Twitter can have, and again it’s thanks to a conference, specifically a conference I DIDN’T attend. Like most people, budgets are limited when it comes to training and conferences, so there are limits to those I and the rest of my team can attend. The value gained from attending conferences is something we’ve proven in the past, but it doesn’t quite stretch to flying across the pond to …

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Being offline

Things I didn’t do yesterday. 1. Check my email. 2. Check Twitter. 3. Check RSS feeds for updates. 4. Look at any websites, whatsoever. And, you know what, nothing broke, the world is still spinning. Just a wee note to you all, sitting there reading this (yes, all 6 of you), now and again trying just turning everything off.

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Access is good

Yesterday we launched a new version of our developer community website. It doesn’t have many ‘community’ features as yet but that’s all to come. One thing it does now have is an HTML version of all of our product documentation, in an easily searchable format. It’s no coincidence that it looks very much like the Author-it Knowledge Center as it too was built using Author-it (alas I can’t show you our website as it requires a login). This new format of the product documentation is largely to move us away from PDF only documentation. At present we still have a set of PDFs but they aren’t particularly usable. We ran a few quiet trials of the knowledge centre format and …

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All is not me

Having my iPhone not quite working properly over the past few days made me realise just how hooked into the ‘online world’ I am. I think I have a good balance though, it’s not like I spend all day staring at screens of information, cherry-picking things I’m interested in, things I might find useful in the future, or things that I think others might want to read. Because if I did that, then I’d probably (knowing myself as well as I do) have to have a system or two in place to cope with that “information overload”. So, for example, I might use Instapaper to track blog posts that I want to read later (either from the website or using …

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Funny's Cousin*

I am hilarious. I frequently crack myself up, and the bemused looks of co-workers and general passers-by only add to the hilarity. My humour is largely sarcasm based, with a tag of “friendly banter” and I can be fairly merciless when it comes to teasing people but hey, it’s all (hilarious) good fun, right? A small example from this evening may help you better understand the depths of my witty reparte; my sister, upon arriving home during a complete downpour, remarked that her legs were wet. To which my instant, and hilariously witty, retort was to imply that she needed to improve her bladder control! HA haaaa!! Maybe you had to be there. I thought it was very funny. Mind …

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Day in the life

Woke up, fell out of bed, Dragged a comb across my head; If only the second line were true. My day has a routine, I doubt very much that this is an usual fact. I mean I’d imagine most people do pretty much what I do every day. Actually that’s probably not true. Most people in the western world perhaps and at this point I’ll pause to consider how lucky I am and how much I take my comfortable life for granted. *pauses* The alarm clicks and the radio wakens me from my slumber. I still use an alarm clock beside my bed as I like to see the time. I have tried using my phone in the past and …

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