CIDM eNews

January 2019
A monthly e-newsletter from The Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM)
Dawn Stevens, CIDM Director

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CIDM News and Events


The IDEAS Winter Online Conference will be held January 22-23, 2019.

The CMS/DITA North America Conference will be held April 15-17, 2019 in Durham, North Carolina.

Upcoming Workshops

Publishing for DITA—Online Course
Two-hour sessions held weekly, every Thursday
January 31-April 4, 2019

Minimalism: Creating Information People Really Need
February 4-5, 2019
Wakefield, Massachusetts

Advanced Reuse Strategies
February 6-8, 2019
Wakefield, Massachusetts

Advanced Reuse Strategies
February 18-20, 2019
Athlone, Ireland

Creating an Effective Information Taxonomy
February 21-22, 2019
Athlone, Ireland

DITA Basics—Online Course
Two-hour sessions held weekly, every Tuesday
February 26-April 2, 2019

Minimalism: Creating Information People Really Need
March 19-20, 2019
San Diego, California

Creating an Effective Information Taxonomy
March 21-22, 2019
San Diego, California

More Workshops.

CIDM Webinars

Get your Salesforce to integrate your technical content
February 6, 2019, 12pm ET

The challenge of delivering a truly personalized search experience
March 6, 2019, 12pm ET

Recorded webinars.

Other Webinars

Translation project management for beginners
January 16, 2019, 5am ET


Our next managers’ round table will be Wednesday, January 16th at 2pm ET. To sign-up, contact us.

DCL Newsletter – January 2019

easyDITA Newsletter – January 2019

LearningDITA Live 2019

Adobe Summit 2019

STC Summit 2019

More Announcements.

Round Table Highlights: Taxonomy Development

Sabine Ocker, Comtech Services

We are sharing 2.5 quintillion bytes of data  on the internet daily. According to the IBM Marketing Cloud Study, 90% of the existing content on the internet has been created since 2016. We have heard this sheer magnitude of new information available to us each and every day referred to as the “content tsunami.” Emerging paradigms such as the Internet of Things and interactive content access such as chatbots will only continue to accelerate the volume and velocity of the giant wave of new information. Given this reality, the user’s challenge to find and filter information quickly and effectively increases exponentially, no matter the context of the information they are seeking. As taxonomies are an integral part of effective finding and filtering content, so their significance is only expected to grow as well.

Read the article.

Use Case: Technical Documentation Team
SmartDocs for creating and maintaining customer-facing document sets Challenge

Lisa Pietrangeli, 36Software

Many of our customers have in-house technical writing teams that create, edit, and maintain product documentation. One particular customer was experiencing associated challenges with their creation and maintenance of customized, modular content. They needed a system that would help them produce customized manuals for their customers on-demand to accompany each unique sale. The organization’s technical writing team recognized the benefits of applying content reuse and conditional text to their content in an effort to streamline the process and get documents into their customers’ hands faster.

Read the article.

Evolving from writers to UX writers

Elizabeth Hui Reese, Microsoft

Talk to anyone who started out as a tech writer at the beginning of this century, and they’ll regale you with stories of spending time in big docs, long publishing times, and an inability to change things quickly. I started out during this period, editing big binders of training materials for our customers who were studying to gain Microsoft certifications. These days, it’s rare for me to write an article that’s more than 100 words. The focus of the writers on my team is no longer on text-heavy documentation, but on how to craft the right in-product messaging that’s targeted, helpful, and delightful—all in phrases that are sometimes shorter than a 140-character tweet.

Read the article.

Our New Tool for Your Organization—An Information Modeling Aid

Use the DITA Information Modeling Deck to plan your DITA implementation and create your DITA information model. The DITA Deck describes the technical content subset of DITA elements, including the six primary topic types, map and bookmap, common block and inline elements, and metadata elements. Each card contains best practice guidelines to help you choose which elements you need, and the content models to help you further define the element structure most appropriate to your content. Use your sorted and annotated cards as a specification for any necessary constraints development, as well as a quick reference to your information model.

Welcome New CIDM Member—Amazon
Amazon Web Services is a subsidiary of Amazon that provides on-demand cloud computing platforms to individuals, companies and governments, on a paid subscription basis. The technology allows subscribers to have at their disposal a virtual cluster of computers, available all the time, through the Internet.

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

CIDM eNews Wants To Hear From You
Working on an exciting project? Developed a new strategy? Creating content in new ways? Delivering content in new media? Let us know what interesting developments you’ve been working on. We would love to have a short article from you (1,000 words or so) for the e-newsletter. Our readers would love to know what is working and even what hasn’t. Please contact Susie Christmas with your idea.

CIDM is calling for contributions to the bimonthly publication, Best Practices. Please contact Susie Christmas for more information.

CIDM’s LinkedIn Group is growing exponentially! Join over 3,300 members today to take part in informative discussions about our industry.

The Center for Information-Development Management unites the info dev community to share information on industry trends, best practices, and developments. Follow CIDM on Twitter.