CIDM e-newsletter
Volume 4, Issue 9
September 2004

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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News & Events

CIDM Best Practices conference 2004 — October 18–20, 2004

Read more about the conference and how you can register.

The Rare Bird Award

The Rare Bird Award recognizes outstanding managers and/or team practices that make organizations more efficient and effective on behalf of their companies and customers. Read more about the Rare Bird.

Showcase poster presentation at the Best Practices conference

If you have a great idea for change or can demonstrate how a new idea has worked in your organization, propose a Showcase poster presentation. Find out more about the Showcase and how you can sign up.

Upcoming Workshops

The CIDM sponsors the following workshops:

User and Task Analysis for Information Design
Bill Hackos,
October 6–7
Hillsboro, OR

XML for Writers
Jen Linton,
October 26–27
Durham, NC

XML for Writers
Jen Linton,
November 2–3
Marlborough, MA

Developing a Content Management Strategy
JoAnn Hackos,
December 14–15
Santa Monica, CA

For more information on these and other workshops, visit the JoAnn Hackos Workshop Series Web site

Speaking Events

Join JoAnn Hackos for the following speaking events:

Vasont User’s Group Meeting
October 4–6, 2004
Hershey, PA

Trisoft Conference on Technical Communication
October 11–13, 2004
Antwerp, Belgium

Belgium/Holland STC Chapter Event
October 12, 2004
Antwerp, Belgium

Finnish STD Autumn Conference 2004
October 15, 2004
Tampere, Finland

The Nut Island Effect
JoAnn Hackos, PhD
CIDM Director

As many publications managers recognize, managing remote teams takes much more involvement and care than any of us would have imagined, especially when the remote teams have a history of acting independently. We encounter even more challenging issues when the remote teams are inexperienced in information development because they are located offshore in emerging economies. Recently, a colleague reminded me about an article in the March 2001 issue of the Harvard Business Review, in which Paul Levy describes the Nut Island disaster. For more than 30 years, Nut Island was the Boston area sewage treatment plan, located just far enough from Boston and city managers to become isolated. What seemed like a dream team of self-sufficient workers was responsible for the worst pollution disaster in Boston history, releasing billions of gallons of raw sewage into Boston Harbor.

Read the article

More articles
In Defense of Your Staff…
WebWorks FinalDraft

2004 Best Practices conference
October 18–20, 2004, Chatham, Massachusetts

Register for the conference before September 17 and save!

Innovator’s Forum
October 21, 2004, Chatham, Massachusetts

2004 Best Practices conference
Innovator’s Forum

Based on the Best Practices conference theme and the stimulating presentations, spend October 21, 2004, working directly on your plan to introduce and implement innovative ideas and behaviors within your organization. Join your professional colleagues and a select team of mentor/coaches as you work together through structured planning activities. Find ways to make change happen.

The Innovators Forum includes

  • a one day workshop immediately following the Best Practices conference (Thursday) to prepare your plan to introduce an innovation to your organization
  • support by professional colleagues and CIDM mentors at the workshop
  • ongoing support through a special Forum listserv and group calls throughout the year
  • follow-up two-day workshop to discuss progress and challenges and to generate new ideas for success at the Content Management Strategies conference
  • accumulated knowledge and experience in a White Paper report to the participants
  • Best Practices 2005 presentation of Forum results

In Defense of Your Staff…
Palmer Pearson
Cadence Design Systems, Inc.

It is a cruel world out there and occasionally you need to shelter your staff from the bad guys. Of course, it was so much easier identifying the bad guys when they all wore black hats (or carried red pencils). But times have changed.

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WebWorks FinalDraft
Lisa Finger
CIDM Administrator

WebWorks FinalDraft is an interactive edit and review system for technical writers and other content authors who include reviewers in the information-development process. FinalDraft allows both the authors and reviewers to work easily and independently from office, home, or on the road with no need to be tied into a network.

Read the article