October 3, 2018 Analysts predict that chatbots will overtake websites and apps as your customers’ preferred interface in the near future. How do you get past the exciting, carefully staged demo presentation into the world of real-life customers? Demos are brief and can be successful with only a few lines of conversation, guided by some simple rules. This is how almost all chatbots work today. But tech content is textual and not rule-based. In fact, it is impossible to revamp the many thousands of pieces of content written for human readers into a formal rules-based system. The problem is how to connect the textual content, in any format or structure, with the inner processes of the bot. One way or another we are going to be having verbal conversations with our devices. We will review the various approaches and what the maturity of this technology allows. Presented by: Fabrice Lacroix is the founder of Fluid Topics, the company that puts enterprise content to work. A serial entrepreneur, he has been working for 25 years on the development of solutions that help customers make the most of their content and enhance their operating efficiency
Recorded: May 10, 2016 In the age of IoT, connected devices have opened up a whole new way of supporting your customer. Learn how you can leverage real-time device information to provide your customers with an immediate diagnosis and troubleshooting walkthroughs before they even notice the problem. In this session you will learn:
- How to create adaptive decision workflows as part of your documentation
- How to trigger the right workflow at the right time based on device information
- How to serve the workflow to customers through your web or mobile application
March 9, 2021 Ironically, the terms utilized to describe a vocabulary of words used to organize and catalog information within a content corpus often are used inconsistently or interchangeably. However, each term represents a point, on an increasing scale of complexity and resulting data richness and applicability. In this two-part webinar, Dawn Stevens of Comtech Services defines key points along this scale, comparing and contrasting the scope and domain to which each term applies, suggesting when each might be used, and recommending the processes for creating it. Dawn is joined by Rik Page of Bluestream, who will demonstrate real-life examples of each in use. Participants will gain clarity about the approach required to make content more accessible for their users. View part 2 of this webinar here. Presented by: Dawn Stevens is the President, and owner of Comtech Services and the Director of the Center for Information-Development Management. With over 25 years of experience, including 20 years at Comtech, Dawn has practical experience in virtually every role within a documentation and training department, including project management, instructional design, writing, editing, and multimedia programming. With both engineering and technical communication degrees, Dawn combines a solid technical foundation with strong writing and design skills to identify and remove the challenges her clients face in producing usable, technical information and training. Rik Page is Sales and Marketing Director at Bluestream Software and has been working with both component content and document management solutions since 2001. During this time, he has worked with custom DTDs and Schemas, S1000D, iSpec2200 and since 2005 DITA. His practical experience ranges from data capture/content creation through to dynamic multichannel delivery, achieved in a wide range of industries including banking and finance, manufacturing, central government and education. A keen advocate of technology and innovation Rik has taken part in multiple consultancy projects and helped formulate solutions all over the world. Away from the office Rik is a Scout Leader working with young people and helping them to develop new skills whilst having fun.
March 4, 2020 Technical documentation is rarely created by lone writers, so there is a constant need for collaboration. Collaboration can be with other writers or with people with other roles, usually referred to as subject matter experts, who may be part of your organization or external experts. In order to be successful, the collaboration needs to be enabled by integrating it as part of the usual processes or workflows each user performs. In this presentation, we will explore a few collaboration scenarios that show how to implement continuous improvement loops for published documentation, how to integrate documentation as part of the product development workflow, and how immediate collaboration can take place. Presented by: George Bina is one of the founders of Syncro Soft SRL, the company that develops oXygen XML suite of XML editing, authoring, development, publishing and collaboration tools. He has more than 20 years of experience in working with XML and related technologies, bringing many innovative ideas to reality and contributing to XML-related open-source projects. He presented at many XML, DITA, and technical communication conferences, giving passionate presentations and challenging the technological status quo, trying to get the audience to think outside the box, and re-imagine the future.
February 5, 2020 If you are implementing a large-scale infrastructure project such as a cCMS implementation or migration to DITA at your organization, then you know about predictable costs such as purchasing hardware, licensing software, and training writers. Predictable expenses are easy to manage and plan for as you know when they will be due, and at least approximately how much they are going to cost. There are, however, other potential costs that may be unknown, either because your requirements have iterated since the original project scope was defined or you have uncovered something unexpected in your environment. These unpredictable expenses can add risk to the overall project timeline or impact the actual cost. They may be challenging to fit into your existing plan or require additional planning. In this webinar, Sabine Ocker will discuss some top hidden costs and provide insights on how to identify, plan for, and mitigate the impact of common examples such as changes to project scope, lack of appropriate standards, and content conversions. Presented by: Sabine Ocker has 20 plus years’ experience helping companies solve their interesting business problems. Solutions have included DITA migrations, content conversions, new tools or CMS, information modeling, content strategy, multi-channel publishing, and taxonomy development.
Recorded: January 20, 2016 DITA-based technical documents are inherently sophisticated and complex hyperdocuments. They are developed through complex revision processes, often by highly-distributed teams. Thus DITA documents and their management present a number of challenges inherent in the nature of sophisticated technical documentation. While the value of this sophisticated approach to documentation has tremendous value to organizations as a whole, it can make the life of individual authors much more challenging, leading to the common complaint “DITA is too hard”. This talk presents the link and configuration management challenges inherent in sophisticated hyperlinked documentation and discusses the features of DITA and DITA component content management systems that address these challenges. If authors and managers understand the challenges inherent in DITA-based authoring they can at least set their expectations and provision tools and resources appropriately. What can attendees expect to learn?
- The way in which DITA documents are sophisticated hyperdocuments
- What “configuration management” means in the context of DITA-based documentation
- The fundamental link and configuration management challenges DITA hyperdocuments present
- The DITA features that enable and support hyperdocument
- The link and configuration management features DITA-aware component configuration management systems must provide in order to support authors.
- A little bit about Aikido
Date: June 12, 2019 Abstract: Ever since DITA was first used, the greatest obstacle to adoption has been usability. Whilst technical authors have been prepared to learn the intricacies of DITA, others in the content creation lifecycle have been more obstinate. Bluestream together with Simply XML will show how the extensible XDocs CCMS can be integrated with clear browser and desktop authoring environments to allow subject matter experts to create and collaborate on content without ever having to see a tag. Presented by: Rik Page is Sales and Marketing Director at Bluestream Software and has been working with both component content and document management solutions since 2001. During this time he has worked with custom DTDs and Schemas, S1000D, iSpec2200 and DITA. His experience covers a wide range of industries including education, banking and finance, manufacturing and healthcare. A keen advocate of technology and innovation Rik has taken part in multiple consultancy projects and helped formulate solutions all over the world. Over more than two decades, Doug Gorman commercialized the structured writing methodology known as Information Mapping. In the process he realized that XML(DITA) could be used beyond Technical Publication Departments to modernize the enterprise content supply chain. The authoring and repository tools, however, would need to be easy to use. XML would need to be utilized but hidden “under the covers.” Simply XML’s authoring tool, Content Mapper, is a Word Plug-in where the author sees a Word User Interface and the CMS uses DITA XML. Content Mapper is designed for organizations that understand the value of XML as the content architecture, but with many of the 1 Billion plus non-technical authors who use MS Word on a PC. Content Mapper is integrated with Bluestream’s XDocs CCMS to help organizations achieve better content for readers with the important efficiencies of content reuse, single source publishing, and other process improvements.
February 5, 2019 Your technical content is a valuable yet hidden asset: It impacts every stage of your customer journey and forms a significant - and often, the largest - component of your overall web presence. Easy access to personalized content is therefore key to the overall digital and user experience for your customers. In this webinar we explore the role of taxonomy and metadata to deliver on the promise of role-based and personalized experiences, taking into account a variety of content types. Presented by: Joe Gelb has over twenty years of experience helping enterprises implement, maintain and capitalize on structured content. At Zoomin Software, he has spearheaded the development of advanced technology solutions for dynamic content delivery. Prior to founding Zoomin and Suite Solutions, Joe was the CTO at Live Linx, a leading provider of software and system integration services for technical product information, where he designed and implemented solutions for aerospace, defense, manufacturing and hi-tech companies. Joe holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology.
Recorded: October 13, 2016 Change is difficult and often avoided, and everyone knows insurance companies are risk averse. However, that didn’t stop a small team of technical writers from upending the way they created content for California Casualty. By embracing modular structured content, unproven in their industry at the time, they were able to dramatically increase content findability which had a ripple effect on their entire business. Now California Casualty is an example to other insurance companies on how change can sometimes be a good thing. Join our webinar with Susan Lalor, Senior Information Designer at California Casualty, to find out how her team was able to accomplish this transformation. See how internal stakeholders and content users are just as important as customers. And most importantly, learn best practices for sowing your own seeds of transformation. Susan Lalor wrote her first computer user manual in 1982 when she wondered how the big blank screen sitting on her desk actually worked. She knew then that technical writing was her passion. For the last 13 years, she’s worked as a Senior Information Designer for California Casualty where she is a champion for single sourcing and user experience. She’s also been lucky enough to dabble in web and graphic design, project management, and business analysis over the past 30 years. Susan has a B.S. degree with a concentration in professional writing and has been a STC member since 1998. Chip Gettinger is VP, Solutions, SDL. He manages a team working with SDL customers to maximize their own customer experience by deploying SDL Knowledge Delivery applications. Chip has over 20 years’ experience in global publishing, content strategies, customer experience management, business management, and content management solutions, working closely with industry organizations, partners, and customers in technology solutions and deployment.
Recorded: February 17, 2016 As software has moved to the cloud and evolved into Software as a Service, there’s been an increasing need for software documentation to evolve as well. Documentation processes and project management methodologies that relied on long release cycles don’t work in the more agile world of continuous software updates. While working through this evolution, the Microsoft Dynamics AX Content Publishing team was hit with a massive layoff, reducing a team of 40 people to a team of 10. Suddenly, the idea of reinventing how we worked and how we delivered content in a more agile way took on a much more extreme meaning. Over the past year, we’ve worked through a true reinvention. We developed a model where the role of the writer has changed to the role of Content Strategist, the role of the manager has changed to one of empowering the team rather than trying to solve the team’s problems, the role of creating content has moved to a variety of subject matter experts, and the role of ensuring content quality has been distributed across teams who work most closely with customers. We’ve learned a great deal through this reinvention, and this talk shares the highlights of what we’ve learned. This talk looks at how the Microsoft Dynamics AX Content Publishing team reinvented their roles, authoring tools, and content creation and publishing processes in an environment where staffing levels are so low that writers can no longer write. You’ll learn about this team’s experience in moving away from traditional content publishing practices and instead, collaborating with other subject matter experts in planning content, identifying appropriate authors, incenting subject matter experts to create the content, and leveraging teams outside of Content Publishing to ensure content quality. The talk covers aspects of change management, influencing without authority, collaboration, partnering, creative problem solving, and teamwork. Presented by Ann Beebe, Microsoft Dynamics AX Ann Beebe has been leading content publishing teams at Microsoft for 18 years. She’s managed the documentation teams for Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Business Framework, Visual Studio, Home and Small Business Server, and is currently leading the documentation teams for Microsoft Dynamics’ AX and GP products. Prior to joining Microsoft, Ann managed documentation, training, and corporate communications for Barfield, Cauthen & Associates in Atlanta, and managed documentation and usability teams for Sales Technologies, Inc. in Atlanta.
Recorded: April 13, 2017Working with global teams is more than just the mechanics of coordinating different time zones and understanding local holidays. It is about the human aspect of recognizing and understanding a different view point – perspective to help improve your process and communication to complete your work. This presentation will explore how you can understand different cultural viewpoints to improve your communication and improve your work flow. Real life examples, quotes, and examples from experts will be used to aid in the suggestions presented to you.What the Audience will learn:
- Active listening communication
- Communication style with a diverse team
- Sharing and relationship building
Presented by Leticia Guzzetta, Imagination TechnologiesLeticia Guzzetta has been a Technical Publications manager at Imagination for 3 years. She has 17 years management experience and 30 years tech pubs experience. Leticia has working knowledge and experience on improving publishing processes and content strategies with some expertise in XML, DITA, CMS, CCMS, and FrameMaker. At Imagination Technologies, Leticia manages the MIPS documentation writing projects and team. She works closely with her overseas peers to improve and modernize Imagination’s publishing process. Leticia has a BA and MA in English.
April 8, 2020 Technical Communication is in constant change: Requirements and expectations from both authors and consumers of technical content have changed dramatically over the last decade. The rise in digital experience innovation creates new customer expectations and demands. And enterprises around the world are exploring new ways to create new Content Interaction Experiences for their customers. In this presentation, Stefan Gentz will give insights from the Adobe Technical Communication Worldwide Survey 2019/2020. TechComm professionals from 60 countries participated in the survey. He will discuss the driving factors for enterprises around the world when it comes to technical communication. Why do companies choose to work with structured content, and why do they go for a CCMS? How do they deliver their content today – and how will they provide content tomorrow? KEY TAKEAWAYS
- Understand the key factors that are driving companies to move to structured content
- Understand which technologies companies use to author and deliver content today
- Know which are the “hottest” content delivery channels in the future to provide technical content to customers
Recorded: October 29, 2015 Were you taught how to write a classical five-paragraph essay in elementary school? Did you ever learn about beginning paragraphs with topic sentences? Do you know that legal documents like contracts have standard sections in a standard order? Do you think action steps should be in the order they are performed? If none of these structures are new to you, you already know something about structured writing. Yet, the thought of moving to writing with a consistent, prescribed, and semantic structure often strikes fear into the hearts of technical writers and subject-matter experts alike. In this webinar, learn why structured authoring is essential to clear and consistent communication. Consider why using a semantic structure enhances the quality of your writing while also making it available for repurposing and retrieval. Rather than considering structure something to avoid, think of it as something to embrace to make your writing more understandable for your readers. And, consider ways to help those who resist a move to structure to understand its benefits by providing them with a supportive authoring environment. Presented by: JoAnn Hackos, Comtech Services Dr. JoAnn Hackos is President of Comtech Services, a content-management and information-design firm based in Denver, Colorado, which she founded in 1978. She is Director of the Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM), a membership organization focused on content-management and information-development best practices. Dr. Hackos and colleagues are called upon by corporate executives worldwide to consult on strategies for content management, development and organizational management, product interface design, customer studies, Web and traditional information architecture, and tools and technology selection.
Recorded: February 25, 2016 A content strategy may fall short in delivering on expectations for many reasons – among them failure to send a consistent message about what you expect content developers to do with the strategy, and failure to guide developers as they implement the strategy in their content. Until recently, our practice was to develop a strategy, present it to the team, and leave it to managers and developers to decide how to implement the strategy in their content. This approach produced inconsistent implementation of the strategy, resulting in a lot of content that seemed to have been developed by different organizations. Ron explains how Siemens PLM implemented the content strategy team, shares lessons learned and successes thus far, and describe next steps. Presented by: Ron Hickman, Siemens PLM Software Ron Hickman is Director of Learning Media Development for Siemens PLM Software. He has been with Siemens PLM Software (and predecessor companies) for more than 36 years, leading several different teams, including the Americas customer support team and the Teamcenter Program Office. He joined Learning Media Development in February 2011 as senior manager for Teamcenter documentation and courseware, and became director of Learning Media Development in June 2013. When he’s not working, Ron enjoys time with his family, including 5 grandchildren, hiking, and serving in the community.
Recorded: December 14, 2016
In this session, join Dr. JoAnn Hackos, OASIS DITA Technical Committee and ISO standards developer, and Bill Burns Vasont Systems' Applications Engineer, for an understanding of a new way to develop and publish standards. Learn why the status quo (Word docs and other unstructured file submissions) doesn’t work anymore. Understand how structured content and content management can reduce content-development overhead. Learn what tool vendors have been doing to make structured content development and content management less painful. Discover how content can be output to multiple devices in multiple formats without extra effort.
Presented by: JoAnn Hackos Comtech Services and Bill Burns, Vasont Systems
July 15, 2020 The Fourth Industrial Revolution, sometimes described as the perfect storm of new technologies combined with the asteroid of digital information, has forced companies to adopt new organizational structures to create and distribute content. This presentation will define the new exponential organizations, companies that grow often at 10 times faster than comparable companies, and are guided by a massive transformational purpose to deliver Information Enablement through innovations such as “Content as A Service” – CAAS. Presented by: Michael Rosinski has lead a successful career as a technology executive in the enterprise software industry. Presently, Michael is President of Astoria Software which is the premier CCMS – Component Content Management System in the Technical Product Documentation Vertical. At Astoria, he was first to market to launch the Enterprise SaaS Model and Mobility Platforms. Michael merged the Goldman Sachs venture to TransPerfect, the largest private translation company in the world. Prior to Astoria, Michael was a founding member of American Software’s management team, grew revenues to $ 100M+ and made it to the Forbes Best 200 Small Companies in America list. At American, Michael completed one of the first IPO’s in the ERP market, and later contributed to the successful spin off IPO of Logility in the Supply Chain Management Space. Michael leveraged his international experience as President of Augeo Software, a French/Dutch company in the PSA Professional Automation Space where Computerworld designated them as one of “The Top 100 Companies to Watch” Michael also held Management positions at Johnson & Johnson and Nestle.. Michael holds a Bachelors Degree in Management and Organizational Behavior at Rider University, and has completed MBA study at Fairleigh Dickinson University.
June 3, 2020 In these difficult times, it’s absolutely critical to demonstrate your value to your organization. As a technical communicator, your mission is to make sure you’re getting the right information to the right people. Part of the solution is to find the right tools – but they will only take you so far. Good content is crucial. You must write content in a way that best suits your audience and best matches their search patterns, so they can organically surface the information they need. Join Lawrence Orin, Product Evangelist and Customer Implementation Expert at Zoomin, as he takes an intriguing look at content strategy, and reveals a down-to-earth, practical approach that will ensure your writing is making a visible impact on your company. In it this webinar, you’ll learn:
- Practical steps to improving your writing skills
- Best practices for structuring content
- How to tailor your writing to your audience
June 5, 2019 In today’s market, companies with service organizations are responsible for contributing 30%+ to overall company profit. While much of the effort in the last five years has gone into automating task management for Service Managers and technicians, a large gap remains in the way service organizations effectively find, use, and capture critical content specific to the task. Service Information Delivery solves the age-old struggle of providing accurate and relevant content to field service personnel as the task or job is being performed. It also captures and shares data during the process and provides audit trail and analytics upon completion. All critical functions to help the Service organization perform at the highest level within the business. Attendees will learn: 1. What is Service Information Delivery? 2. Why Service information delivery is critical in today’s business environment? 3. How can this impact the overall Service business and bottom line? Presented by: Stephanie Castillo is VP Business Operations – Titania Partnership, a leading provider of expert services and software. For more than 20 years Stephanie has been managing global documentation initiatives and writing teams for global organizations. Throughout her career she has architected solutions, managed global implementations, defined processes, and supervised requirements gathering and tools selection projects for multichannel content publishing systems as well as global translation management systems. Stephanie holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, BA in communications from University of Wisconsin. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her daughter and husband, running and playing soccer.
July 21, 2021 With this webinar, we are pleased to announce the release of the first-ever e-learning course to train technical writers and subject matter experts on the use of Simplified Technical English (STE), the global standard for writing clear and concise content. Most of the world’s leading companies have accelerated their digital transformation efforts during the pandemic—efforts that are not slowing down. Content plays a key role in digitalization, as it has an important impact on the customer experience, where good quality content will help grow and create new business and service models and ensure safe product use. Because of this key role, it is important that global writing teams learn how to write content that is accurate, clear, aligned, and easy to find by their customers. Through STE companies can maximize the value of their enterprise content, whether this is for technical documentation, marketing, or support. Technical writers will be able to further improve their skills and show industry credibility through an e-learning course, which one could do at any time and from any location. During this webinar, participants will learn more about STE, the values it brings, and how this e-learning course will help you create the best possible content. Presented by: Berry Braster has been in the technical documentation field for over 18 years and has helped implement content strategies, including the use of DITA and HyperSTE controlled language software. As Technology Director, Berry is involved with connecting technical documentation to IoT, and how to leverage on technologies like Augmented and Virtual Reality.
March 6, 2019 In a world where Google sets the gold standard for providing relevant search results, how can technical documentation teams create findability that is always spot-on for every single reader? Relevance of search is determined by a combination of content metadata, contextual knowledge about the user, and the search query itself. The challenge therefore resides in collecting and analyzing these elements, and applying them systematically to every search query to create truly personalized search results. Presented by: Fabrice Lacroix is a known Web pioneer and the founder of Antidot, the company that puts enterprise content to work. As an entrepreneur, he has been working for 25 years on the development of the Internet and of the Web through several major companies.
March 31, 2021 How do you ensure that your content is consistent and follows your brand’s guidelines? How do you begin a project that’s consistent across your technical communications? Is it an achievable goal? What results should I expect? In this webinar, learn how the combination of easyDITA's CCMS and HyperSTE allows you to check your content against your specific style guide, as well as industry standard grammar and terminology rules. The result is not only scalable and single-sourced content, but clear and concise content across the board. Content that's more cost effective, brand aligned, and ready to attract new customers. Attendees will learn:
- The value of combining an XML CCMS with a Grammarly-like content checker
- A live demo of easyDITA with HyperSTE that shows how the tools work together to help content creators
- A general project plan to help you get started in achieving great results
- An example of a customer implementation and their results
Date: August 12, 2020 Squatches, yeti, and kraken: oh, my! Learn about cryptozoology, cryptids, and… oh yes: the future of content strategy and digital experiences. Chad Dybdahl, Adobe Solutions Consultant, walks you through importing content from Microsoft Word, creating intelligent, structured content that can then be used across a wide range of delivery channels and platforms. In this session, we’ll see both traditional and headless delivery strategies that will inspire you to think about content in new and exciting ways.
- Strategies to repurpose your technical content in new ways
- Headless content delivery: what is it and why you need it
- Creating structure from (MS Word) chaos
June 10, 2020 Abstract World has seen a very different modus operandi in the last couple of months. This only emphasizes the fact that collaborating without physically being in the same space is fast becoming the norm where team members are either located in different geographical locations or are working from home. At this time, a smooth review and collaboration process for technical content can be a real boon to your organization. In this session, Ayush Gupta, Product Manager at Adobe, will discuss how organizations can transform their mundane, time consuming and cyclic review process into a more meaningful, error-free and productive collaboration experience for Content Creators and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). Key takeaways:
- Why rethink about current review processes
- What are the benefits of adopting online review process for DITA content
- What are the basic tenets and features of an online review process
- A walkthrough of a typical collaborative review workflow and how to make it an experience for business users
Recorded: January 30, 2018 Borrowing the title of Fisher and Ury’s popular work, this session suggests strategies and invites conversation around the challenge of negotiating with your business partners—no matter who they are in your organization. In today’s environment, our technical content organizations are continually asked to support additional services with fewer team members. But doing more with less simply isn’t always possible. Informing a business partner that you cannot support a request can spark a fraught conversation, but adding more to your plate might risk sending your team into overload. Even asking for trust in your decisions as the authority in your area can be tough. Yet these conversations don’t have to become uncomfortable, and can instead provide an opportunity for dialog leading to mutual gains. You can get what your team needs, draw boundaries, and inspire confidence at the same time. Within the context of technical content’s organizational position and business value, this session will cover core negotiation strategies that achieve win-win outcomes and how to avoid zero-sum exchanges. Since relationships are key, we’ll discuss how to identify allies and when to call on them. Finally, we’ll address the inevitable question of data—seemingly irrefutable information that can turn opinion into hard fact. Presented by: Jill Orofino, DellEMC California born and raised, Jill attended UCLA where she received her B.A. in English, and then pursued graduate studies at Boston University. Jill went on to teach at BU for seven years before moving into high tech. Technical content development, research and writing made up the most of Jill’s teaching experience. Jill loves to learn new things and help others reach their goals. Five years into her career in technical content, Jill assumed leadership of a technical writing team at a Boston start-up called Acme Packet. Management was another natural extension of teaching, championing staff members and motivating them. Jill started at EMC (now Dell EMC) about five years ago, bringing with her a focus on customer experience and a drive for simplicity. Jill led the global technical content teams that support core storage for four years before taking a role in Product Marketing. Jill is now exploring a new part of the content ecosystem and its relationship to the unified customer experience.