Information Management News
August 2012

A monthly e-newsletter from The Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM)
JoAnn T. Hackos, PhD, CIDM Director

If you would like to receive the CIDM e-newsletter in plain-text format, visit and choose the plain-text format.

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CIDM News and Events

For a complete Calendar of Events, click on these links:




Other Events


The Best Practices Conference 2012 will be held September 10-12 in Monterey, California. For more information click here.

The CMS/DITA Europe Conference 2012 will be held November 12-13 in Frankfurt, Germany. For more information click here.

The CMS/DITA North America Conference 2013 will be held April 15-17 in Providence, Rhode Island. For more information click here.

Upcoming Workshops

DITA Getting Started
August 7-8, 2012
St. Paul, MN

In this workshop, you learn that DITA is a standard for authoring topic-based technical information, that using DITA provides significant business advantages, and that you can get started immediately with the DITA Open Toolkit.

DITA Boot Camp
August 13-17, 2012
Cupertino, CA

This workshop covers the concepts needed to move to DITA successfully. The Boot Camp takes you from the DITA Basics to the skills you’ll need to create a specific standard for your industry and your content.

Developing Quality Documentation in an Agile Environment
September 18-19, 2012
Research Triangle Park, NC

This workshop focuses on the Scrum Agile methodology and how documentation departments can adjust to this high-speed development environment.

Building Reusable Learning Objects in DITA
October 2-4, 2012
Palo Alto, CA

In this workshop, you are introduced to the OASIS DITA standard and begin using it to create basic training content, including training plans, concept, task, and reference content, and assessments.

Upcoming Webinars

What’s new in FrameMaker 11

Presented by Kapil Verma, Adobe Systems
August 7, 2012, 1pm EDT

Getting Change to Happen—DCL Learning Series

Presented by Data Conversion Laboratory & CIDM
August 9, 2012, 1pm EDT
September 20, 2012, 1pm EDT
October 18, 2012, 1pm EDT

What’s new in RoboHelp 10

Presented by Ankur Jain, Adobe Systems
August 14, 2012, 1pm EDT

What’s new in Technical Communication Suite 4

Presented by Ankur Jain, Adobe Systems
August 21, 2012, 1pm EDT

Delivering Effective Mobile User Assistance

Presented by Marta Rauch, Oracle Corporation
August 23, 2012, 12pm EDT

Dynamic Content Meets Social Engagement

Presented by easyDITA
August 29, 2012, 12pm EDT

Political Savvy

Presented by Daphne Walmer, Medtronic
August 30, 2012, 12pm EDT

Click here for recorded webinars.


Industry Veteran PG Bartlett Joins Acrolinx

Adobe launches Technical Communication Suite 4, FrameMaker 11 and RoboHelp 10!

Acrolinx 2.9 Expands Authoring Tool Support, Enhances Reporting, Improves Terminology Exchange

Survey: The State of Collaboration 2012

JoAnn Hackos to speak at SDL DITA Roundtable in Austin

Video: The Future of Tech Comm

Click here for more announcements.

Showcase Your Best Practice

As a valued friend of the CIDM, we invite you to participate in the Best Practices Showcase at the Best Practices conference, September 10-12, 2012. The Showcase will give you a wonderful opportunity to learn about more best practices than we could possibly fit into the sessions.

Click here to submit your showcase. The submission deadline isAugust 17.

DITA Europe Call for Speakers

The Center for Information-Development Management and Dr. JoAnn Hackos announce a call for participation in the upcomingDITA Europe conference to take place 12-13 November 2012, in Frankfurt, Germany. If you are interested in presenting at the conference, please complete the form and submit to Lisa Lambert before 3 August 2012.

Making Change Happen
JoAnn Hackos, Comtech Services, Inc.

What pushes a manager and a team to change the way the system works? How does an information-development manager get the attention of upper management to support the need for change? Join me in September in Monterey CA at the 2012 Best Practices conference to hear the success stories and learn about the challenges inherent in any change initiative.

Read the article.

Teaching an Old Kat New Tricks
Kathryn Showers, Symitar

About this time of year everyone is dreading the return to work after summer vacations. Not I, as I’m too fired up over all the ideas I was exposed to at the April 2012 CMS Conference. I’m ready to work!

Read the article.

Grammar in Neverland—Publishing a Style Guide at a Big Tech Company
Mike Maass, Citrix Systems, Inc.

Citrix is a peculiar place to be an editor. Largely engineering driven—though certainly becoming more design centric—this is a place where technical know-how and gadget-y awareness are the norm. At Citrix, words like “virtualization” and “cloud computing” are common parlance, and being “connected” means accessing your work files and computer from anywhere, anytime, on any device. For a simple grammar guy like me, it is a place of wonder. A living science fiction story. A strange and magnificent milieu of technology and Man.

Read the article.

Reducing Employee Reading Time to Follow Procedures
Raymond E. Urgo, Urgo & Associates
Printed with permission from

How can we reduce the amount of time needed for employees to read instructions, so they can easily follow procedures? Is there a way to layout the procedure and the supplementary information so it is not intertwined?

Read the article.

August 2012 Best Practices Newsletter
Table of Contents



Developing Scenario-based Content

Margaret Parsons & Julie MacAller, Microsoft Corporation

Changing your Organization’s Culture

JoAnn Hackos, CIDM

Structuring Technical Publications and Instructional Materials to Maximize Reuse

Dawn Stevens, Comtech Services, Inc.

OAXAL—Open Architecture for XML Authoring and Localization

Andrzej Zydroń, XTM International

Influencing the Bottom Line: Using Information Architecture to Effect Business Success

JoAnn Hackos, Comtech Services, Inc.

How Much DITA and/or CMS Do You Need?

Tom Aldous, Adobe Systems

Book Review
The Power of Habit—A Challenge for our Traditional Information-Developer Habits

Bill Hackos, Comtech Services, Inc.

If you are not a CIDM member, you can subscribe to the Best Practices newsletter online. An electronic version of the Best Practices newsletter is $99 USD. An electronic and print version is $129 USD.

**Please note that the printed newsletter and the enewsletter do not contain the same content.**

Welcome New CIDM Member—Omnicell, Inc.

Omnicell is recognized as a leading provider of comprehensive, technologically advanced automation that enables healthcare facilities to acquire, manage, dispense, and deliver medications and supplies more effectively. By focusing on improving the distribution process, they have helped more than 2,500 hospitals reduce medication errors, improve efficiency, and decrease costs.

Learn more about CIDM (Center for Information-Development Management) here.

bestpractices CIDM is calling for contributions to the bimonthly publication, Best Practices. Please contact our Editor, Lisa Larson, for more information.

CIDM is now on Facebook! Click here to join our group.

Join CIDM’s LinkedIn Group Today!

CIDM’s LinkedIn Group is growing exponentially! Join over 1,000 members today to take part in informative discussions about our industry.

bestpractices The Center for Information-Development Management unites the info dev community to share information on industry trends, best practices, and developments. Click here to follow CIDM on Twitter.Click here to follow JoAnn Hackos on Twitter.