CIDM e-newsletter
Volume 2, Issue 11
November 2002

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.

Important Subscription Information
Subscribe to the e-newsletterUnsubscribe from the e-newsletterChange your email address

News & Events

XML for Writers presented by Tina Hedlund for the Rocky Mountain Chapter (STC) on December 6, 2002, in Denver, CO.

For more information, visit

Buyer’s Guide to Content-Management Systems presented by Tina Hedlund for InterLab 2002: DOE Laboratory Web Development and Management Conference on December 4-6, 2002, in Denver, CO.

For more information, visit

Upcoming Workshops
The CIDM sponsors the following workshops between December 2002 and July 2003. Sign up now:

Developing a Strategy for Minimalism: Creating Manuals People Will Use
JoAnn Hackos, PhD,
December 4-5, Santa Monica, CA
March 25-26, 2003, St. Paul, MN
May 13-14, 2003, Lexington, KY

XML for Writers
Tina Hedlund,
December 6, 2002, Denver, CO
January 28-29, 2003, Dallas, TX

User and Task Analysis for Information Design
Bill Hackos, PhD,
December 10-11, 2002, Sunnyvale, CA
January 27-28, 2003, Austin, TX

Structured Writing for Single Sourcing
JoAnn Hackos, PhD,
January 28-29, 2003, San Diego, CA
April 8-9, 2003, Indianapolis, IN

Developing Online Information for Help and Web-Based Delivery
JoAnn Hackos, PhD,
February 3-4, 2003, Longmont, CO
April 2-3, 2003, Portland, OR

Managing Your Documentation Projects
JoAnn Hackos, PhD
May 6-7, 2003, Boston, MA

Developing a Content-Management Strategy
JoAnn Hackos, PhD
July 15-16, 2003, Rochester, NY

For more information on these and other workshops, visit the Seminars in Usable Design Web site at

2003 Conferences
Bill Hackos, PhD
Vice President, Comtech Services, Inc.

We’ve just heard that this year’s Comdex show will have less than half the exhibitors that displayed in 2000 and they are expecting about half the attendance of the 2000 show. We’d like to assure you that the CIDM’s conferences are thriving. We have three conferences planned for 2003.

Read about the conferences

Letters to the Editor

In last month’s issue of the CIDM e-newsletter, JoAnn Hackos wrote about what makes an effective information-development manager. The following are responses to that article.

Read the responses

News From Down Under
Robert N. Phillips
CEO, Lasotell Pty Ltd.

How many times have you tried to “improve” a “system” in the workplace only to find that, after all the hard work and after deep-down, middle-of-the-night, honest reflection, the improvement has been only a modest success? Are you still basically amazed at the number of things that did not seem to fit quite the way you thought they would? Do you also feel, in all honesty, that the longevity of the new system has more to do with your continued presence rather than with people believing in its inherent worthiness?

Why do such things happen? After all, you identified the requirements, planned the work, and did all those good things. Why did the “owner” of the system and everybody else keep finding all these wrinkly, irritating bits and pieces along the way?

This article is the first of several articles about Soft System Methodology, which is best described as an organised way of tackling messy situations in the real world.

Read the full article

From the Continent
Vesa Purho
Development Manager, Nokia

When you plan your documentation strategy or think of making major changes in your documentation environment, like moving into single sourcing, you must think about the various stakeholders who have interest in and power over your decisions. A method called Stakeholder Mapping can assist you in identifying the various stakeholders and planning how to communicate with them.

Read the full article

The Center For Information-Development Management
The Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM) is an organization of information-development, training, and support managers across the United States and internationally. The CIDM is directed by Dr. JoAnn Hackos, international leader in the management of the design, development, and dissemination of information to customers and employees. Under her leadership, the CIDM conducts benchmark studies among member organizations and elsewhere, sponsors research into information development and its management, and gathers and disseminates results and resources through newsletters, the Web, seminars, an annual conference, and research white papers. The CIDM facilitates the sharing of information among the most skilled managers in the information industry.

If you are interested in reading more in-depth articles, you should consider subscribing to the Best Practices newsletter at