LOST & FOUND

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It appears I have lost my words. I’m sure I’ve just left them somewhere, carelessly abandoned without thought. I’m sure I shouldn’t really panic too much, knowing they’ll turn up like an odd sock at the bottom of the wash basket, and I’m certain that it is probably a good thing they’ve chosen this moment…

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Part of the product

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Last week we held a shortened Kaizen-style event in which we discussed the requirements capture part of our product lifecycle. It was an interesting couple of days which yielded a new process that we think is an improvement on the previous one. That makes it sound very simple, it certainly wasn’t, but it was a…

Autumn Muse

Reading time: 2 mins

The once billowing grass is gone, shorn from existence, ripped from green to dirt by savage machinery. Under dripping trees at the edge of the field stands the farmer, admiring the close crop of the land as it ripples towards the horizon across the furrows of once turned soil. Standing at the top of the…

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UA Conference – Takeaway Thoughts

Reading time: 2 mins

Attending a conference is a mixed bag of experiences yet regardless of your knowledge in certain areas it is always a worthwhile to meet up with your peers and discuss the various common issues, gripes, moans and solutions that we all share. I was also lucky enough to bump into some ex-colleagues and to meet…

No read-ey, no write-y!

Reading time: 2 mins

Dearest Reader, (Yes, that’s you) I’ll keep this as simple as I can. In my previous post I stated, quite clearly, that I would be taking “the opportunity to confirm that I will not be starting to write a novel (or even a novella)”. I realise my mixing of positive and negative actions in the…

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UA Conference Notes – Day 2

Reading time: 4 mins

Notes and thoughts from Day 2 of the User Assistance Conference Session 1 – Juliette Fleming – XML Tagging and Search Facets An early start for an interesting session in which Juliette outlined how Oracle have introduced search Facets to their online help system. Essentially a facet is a tagged chunk of information or help…

Obligatory Busyness post

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As we head for another product release it is only fair that I warn you that I am stooooopidly busy over the next three weeks, and not just at work. I’ve been lucky enough to bag some web design work and have just gotten off the phone with yet another person asking for some of…

UA Conference Notes – Day 1

Reading time: 3 mins

Notes and thoughts from Day 1 of the User Assistance Conference Session 1 – Tony Self – Emerging Help Delivery Technologies It’s been quite a while since I heard Tony speak but as ever he provided an entertaining, if somewhat limited, presentation. Covering the various types of help viewing technologies he nicely summarised some of…

Miscellany

Reading time: 2 mins

Since getting my iPhone I’ve tweaked my working practises a little but, thankfully, not a lot. As most of the applications I use for my daily life (email, RSS reading, that kind of thing) are well served on the iPhone it’s been a painless transition and it’s great to have everything working, sync’d up and…

UA Conference – Day 1

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I’ll write up my thoughts in more detail but suffice to say that, as per usual, my mind is racing with a million on one possibilities. Conferences are a good thing, even if you aren’t a position to change things it’s good to talk to other people in your profession, to find out that most…

Eclectic Less

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You are what they eat, they say, in which case I’m mostly caffeine and potatoes. As for what you listen to, that too has an influence on who you are and, naturally, vice versa. With this in mind it is with some disdain that I find myself plumped among the masses when it comes to…

iTunes 8

Reading time: 2 mins

I know a lot of you bemoan the fact it grabs huge chunks of memory, and that it has the audacity to organise your music into folders for you. I know this but, as I run on a nice chunky PC with plenty of memory and I don’t really care WHERE my music is stored…

UA Conference

Reading time: 2 mins

Later on this week I’ll be attending the UA Conference in Edinburgh. Formally known as the “Online Help Conference” it’s a long running conference which I last attended back in 2001 when it was held in Copenhagen. That conference involved a dinner cruise on the canals of the city, followed by a couple… ok several…..

This is taking the…

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Biscuits, originally uploaded by Gordon. Thanks to all who voted, as it stands the humble Custard Cream is out in front, but you can change that! Ohh and the photo here does not include the Ginger Snap as, it seems, they have been discontinued! Ohh noes!

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What do you write?

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Most of my experience is based around software documentation. Whilst there are several levels to this, from task oriented User Guides through to highly technical API/SDK documentation, they tend to follow similar patterns making it easy for me to take my experience and apply it to new challenges. I’ve also been involved in writing up…