Past Webinars

  • December 16, 2020 A step by step guide to getting started with Schematron and Schematron Quick Fixes. Schematron and Schematron QuickFix (SQF) languages can be used to improve efficiency and quality when editing DITA documents. You can define actions that will add complex structure in your documents, or make modifications in multiple places or actions that will convert a structure into another. These changes are made by keeping the document structure valid and conforming to your project specification and will help the content writer add content more easily and without making mistakes. Join us to see:
    • How to create business rules with Schematron
    • How Schematron rules are applied
    • How to apply specific Schematron rules on all DITA files
    • How to develop Schematron Quick Fixes to make it very easy to solve the reported problems
    Presented by: Octavian is a software architect at Syncro Soft Ltd, the company that produces Oxygen XML Editor. With more than 15 years of experience in working with XML technologies, he contributes to a number of XML-related open source projects. He also acts as co-editor of the Schematron QuickFix specification developed by a W3C community group.
  • August 10, 2020 Content developers and managers worldwide are coming together to share ideas and inspire each other at ConVEx in September. When first announced, we said ConVEx is not an online simulation of an in-person conference, but an immersive experience designed from the ground up to use our e-resources in the best possible way to bring you a wealth of ideas and information to support your efforts in defining and executing a comprehensive content strategy. During this Webinar, Dawn Stevens explains what we mean by this statement and what you can expect and gain from this new event format. We'll discuss the event format, the technology we'll use, and highlight the many networking activities provided. By the end of the Webinar, you'll know why you should attend ConVEx — it's an opportunity to have a positive experience, converge with others in the industry, focus your attention on industry issues, and magnify your value to your organization. Presented by: Dawn Stevens, President, Comtech Services and Director of CIDM has 28 years of practical experience in virtually every role within a documentation and training department, including project management, instructional design, writing, editing, and multimedia programming. Dawn is the perfect advisor to identify and remove the challenges you face in producing usable, technical information and training content. With both engineering and technical communication degrees, Dawn combines her solid technical foundation with strong writing and design skills to lead our team of consultants and specialists in providing the expertise you need.
  • April 6, 2021 Ironically, the terms used to describe a vocabulary of words that organize and catalog information within a content corpus are often used inconsistently or interchangeably. However, each term represents a point on an increasing scale of complexity and resulting data richness and applicability. Following Part 1 of this webinar in which Dawn Stevens of Comtech Services defined and compared these points along the taxonomy spectrum (view part 1 recording), Rik Page of Bluestream now demonstrates the technology and tools that enable you to define and manage your terms and relationships, as well as those that consume what you have defined. Participants will see practical, real-life applications of the taxonomical concepts previously presented. Click here to download the reading list referenced during this webinar. 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 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.
  • Recorded: November 29, 2016 Continuous delivery (CD) and application release automation (ARA) are usually associated with software. These methodologies can be extended to other parts of your business, such as technical documentation. The output of a build/deploy/test/release software process and a build/publish tech doc process are similar – both produce sets of files that can be executed, uploaded, or published to multiple sites. When companies or organizations think of CD and ARA, they most often apply it to the software build/deploy/test/release process. There are many sources of information about how to do this, such as reference books, blogs, communities, and conferences where information is shared and new ideas arise. Let’s look at another way to apply CD and ARA in a company or organization. The process for technical documentation can also follow the build/deploy/test/release pattern.   At Electric Cloud, the process to build and publish (deploy and release) technical documentation was manual and time-consuming. A typical documentation set for a software release consists of six targets. The build process is run through the authoring tool and can take up to 30 minutes to build only one target. During this time, the authoring tool cannot be used to edit other files, and the PC performance can be adversely affected. To publish the documentation, the technical writer has to manually push the file set for each target and keep track of the progress. The publishing process can take up to several hours, depending on the number of targets to publish, the number of files for each target, and the number of servers to which the targets will be published. In this presentation, Jennifer will show how she modified her documentation workflow from doing things manually to having multiple documentation targets automated and publishing them to one or more sites. Jennifer will briefly describe the manual build and publish processes and how long it took to perform them as well as challenges of running this process consistently. Then she will describe and show how these processes were automated and summarize the improvements (spoiler alert: 50% speed up) resulting from it. This is an example of thinking outside of the box when it comes to improving your documentation processes by implementing DevOps, a methodology usually used in software development and release. CD and ARA can be applied to processes used by enterprise teams as well as small teams or groups in other areas of your business. The implementations are similar – only the process details are different. Presented by: Jennifer Chew, Nuage Networks Jennifer Chew is a senior technical writer at Nuage Networks in Mountain View, CA. Prior to this, she worked at Electric Cloud, Juniper Networks, Cisco Systems, and IBM. She is always looking for ways to combine her engineering experience with her writing projects.
  • 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
    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. Dushko Radevski is a Senior Solutions Representative at Jorsek, the makers of easyDITA. Dushko is best described as a problem solver. Every day, he invests his days working closely with technical documentation teams who are looking for help with their document creation and publishing problems. Dushko is exceptional at helping to identify underlying issues and bringing the most effective solution to the table. Outside of his role at Jorsek, Dushko has an interest in languages and is currently studying German to add to his multilingual communications capabilities.
  • 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
    Presented by: Chad Dybdahl is a Solutions Consultant for Technical Communication at Adobe. Chad helps organizations around the world craft a vision for their content strategy with an eye towards future delivery platforms. Chad lives in Wisconsin with his wife, daughter, and two dogs. In his spare time, he enjoys tinkering with home automation, restoring vintage hi-fi equipment, and gardening.
  • 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
  • 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, 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: July 1, 2015

    We talk a big game: DITA helps you reuse content with ease. Business cases are built on this promise, but many find the goal elusive. It seems to take just as much effort to manage reusable content as it did to simply copy and paste it. Sure, we might have missed some versions of that content in subsequent updates, but now we can destroy someone else’s deliverables by unwittingly changing content they were reusing. The problems are different, but the impact is the same, as we fail to realize the promised benefits and cost savings. At least in the “good old days” we understood what we were doing – Ctrl-C, Ctrl-V, and voila! Everyone could do it! Now we struggle with the difference between a keyref and conkeyref, we can’t decide whether to use a conditional attribute or a key, and we have never even made a conref push work, let alone find an application for it. Why isn’t DITA delivering on its reuse promises in so many organizations? In this presentation, Dawn Stevens asserts that the promises can indeed be met, but you must use the right tool for the job. Dawn provides guidance for choosing the appropriate reuse mechanism in the DITA standard as she compares and contrasts each feature, including the forthcoming 1.3 capabilities of scoped keys and branch filtering.

    Presented by: Dawn Stevens, Comtech Services, Inc.

    Dawn Stevens is a Senior Consultant specializing in information development, instructional design, and management consulting. With 25 years of experience, including 13 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.

  • August 7, 2018 It's not the same old "here is how to get a CCMS" session you may have heard about or attended before. During this webinar we provide a brief CCMS primer, then dive into core steps to choose a CCMS, and explore a case study of a client who migrated 2 years ago. We explore their drivers for a CCMS, the numbers that make them tick, and where they are two years later. Real data, real history, real ideas. Presented by: Bernard Aschwanden has excelled in technical communication as a trainer, courseware developer, team leader, manager, and business owner. A Past President of the STC and the founder of Publishing Smarter, Bernard works with organizations to create, manage, and distribute content based on technical communication best practices. He guides companies on how to make the business case that content is the most crucial business asset.
  • Date: October 2, 2019 Prior to DITA, there wasn’t much we could do when it came to strategizing with the rest of the enterprise and pooling our tools, processes, and content. That’s no longer the case; as we see more and more DITA adoption from many expected and unexpected divisions, from Training and Support to Academic Publishers, Operations and Insurance. A unified, DITA-driven, enterprise-wide approach to content can have a profound impact on the enterprise. When content created by the enterprise is treated as a valued and valuable corporate asset, it’s a win-win-win situation. It’s more efficient for the enterprise and easier for content creators. But end users reap the real benefit by getting the content they need when they need it. In this webinar, Bernard Aschwanden, will take you through 10 ways in which DITA can help drive unified content strategy. Presented by: Bernard solves documentation-based problems and helps companies generate more revenue. He guides clients through the best processes to create, manage, and deliver content. Once content is delivered, he helps socialize the message, understand and act on feedback, and improve the process and workflow. He is the founder of Publishing Smarter (www.publishingsmarter.com), an Associate Fellow of STC, and a Past President of STC. Bernard has helped hundreds of companies implement successful solutions. He is focused on publishing better, publishing faster, and publishing smarter.
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