Category Archives: Technical Writing

How To Get More Traffic To Your Technical Writing Blog

To quote Van Halen, ‘everybody wants some.’ And what you want is traffic. Why write a blog if no-one visits, right? I have 17 technical writers’ blogs in my Google Reader & RSS feeds. Most are fine but… if they used some of the following tactics, they’d get more traffic, comments, money and Nobel prizes. […]

Writing Technical Documentation for Japanese Readers

Carsten Mende explains how loan words are used in China and Japan. These are English words that are commonly used in everyday Chinese, (i.e. loaned) but may not translate correctly if taken literally. He looks at how the ‘Chinese and Japanese languages incorporate English terms and how they are used’ and gives suggestions on what […]

How Social Media Will Make You A Better Technical Writer

Gina Blednyh launched the Technical Communication 2.0 group in Facebook in 2009. It explores the interplay between Web 2.0 and technical communication. It’s a terrific place to exchange ideas about collaborative technologies and new approaches to delivering information. In this interview, I ask her how Technical Writers can use Social Media and the types of […]

How To Write Technical Documentation For APIs

One of the threads on LinkedIn is how to write technical documentation for APIs. It’s been many years since I’ve documented an API (Java & Oracle) so if you have any thoughts on the best way to do this, then please jump in. An application programming interface (API) is an interface implemented by a software […]

User Guide vs User Manual – which is right?

Let’s say you’re setting up a new Tech Docs Dept. You need to create new guidelines, style guides and naming conventions. Should you call the user ‘documents’ User Guides or User Manuals? Which one is right? I was asked this question by a colleague in India who is setting up a Technical Publishing Dept in […]

Does your technical writing have an accent?

Maybe you don’t hear your accent, but others do. When you read their documents, does the accent come through?

Are technical documents a waste of time?

“Don’t worry” she said. “No one reads this stuff anyway. Just get it done.” Sounds familiar?

How to Write a Target Audience Questionnaire

Creating a training plan? Before you do this, you need to step a step back and work out what your colleagues need to learn.

How To Write Technical Documents Faster

What to know how to type faster and get those documents out the door quicker? Most people don’t know what the AutoCorrect feature in Word really does. Most people think it’s there to correct the odd typo and clean up your document AFTER you have written it. That’s true but… I use to correct the document […]

Can Outsourcing Help Your Technical Writing Career?

Image by Ivan Walsh via Flickr Most technical writers see outsourcing as a real threat. But, if you look at it from another angle, it’s one huge business opportunity.

How to Study Technical Writing Online

The University of Limerick, Ireland offers an excellent online course for those who want to study technical writing at home. This university has a pretty amazing campus, specializes in the Arts and provides a conveyor belt of freshly-minted technical writers to Microsoft, Google and IBM in Ireland. It’s one of the few universities in Europe […]

Favorite 10 Technical Writing Tools

I’ve used the same technical writing tools for the last 5 years. A few products have come across my desk but nothing that really blown me away. Here’s a run-down of what I use to write my technical documents. No order of preference. Which should I keep? Which should I replace?

Create Greek Dummy Text in Word

Image via Wikipedia Lorem Ipsum is dummy text that has its origins in the printing and typesetting industry. It has been the printing industry’s standard dummy text since the 1500s, when a printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book. It came back into popularity in the 1960s […]