Sarah Maddox talks about her recent experience at the first Write the Docs meetup in Brisbane Australia. She talks about how they started out with just some introductions and a little bit about themselves before getting into the presentations. 3 speakers presented talking about 3 different topics relating to tech writing and new technology
Jared Morgan talked about how he had this idea to create a open source help product. The tools he used was….
- Asciidoctor for source content
- Middleman as static site builder
- Franklin as static site framework
- GitLab for on premises hosting
When they had to release to customers the system needed to go through QA to prepare for release. His take-aways were
- Developers do care about docs.
- DevOps teams to get things done, and are worth getting to know.
- It’s good to get outside your comfort zone, and learn the challenges the developers have.
- You can think outside the box, and not let your department define the scope of your role as tech writer.
Next was Laura Bailey who talked about no-contact customers. These people essentially are the end product customers that you really dont have any contact with. A tech writer needs to know their audience which is why like she says you need to be your own data scientists.
Using customer proxies would help. A customer proxy would be the people or systems that are close to your audiance while still being in your company, these include
- sales staff
- data scientists
- support requests
- site metrics
From there you must take the data that you received and scrub it for the info that you need.
Lastly was Josh Wulf’s Talk about his experience in developing magikcraft.io. His talk was a lot about language and how it creates worlds. She says It gives us the ability to observe our own actions. Then goes on to give the example of bug reports and diagrams. The last little thing she learned was of a good way to help people by asking them to tell you and to tell themselves
- What I did.
- What it did.