TCUK18 Speaker Derek Cooper – A STEM Sell

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Derek Cooper will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “A STEM Sell”.

Photo of Derek Cooper with a forest and lake in the background

Let me sell the case for technical communicators to become involved with STEM – the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics subjects taught in schools and colleges. We live in a world that is growing increasingly dependent on mastery of these subjects, and our economies depend on maintaining progress in these areas. I am a STEM Ambassador, and have been working with schools to promote the STEM subjects so that students might consider studying them at degree level and engaging in a related career that is exciting, rewarding, and worthwhile. This presentation describes some of the STEM projects I’ve worked on, and how the students (and teachers) responded and reacted.

About Derek Cooper

Derek is an ISTC Fellow who has worked in technical communication since 1992. Although his background is in marine electronics, his experience includes writing documentation for subjects as diverse as electron and optical microscopy, marine and seismic survey, environmental monitoring, financial services, and veterinary science. Derek has recently taken early retirement from Arm Technical Communications in Cambridge, where for four amazing years he quietly and effectively led a team of extremely talented Information Developers. He has now returned to running his own life as a freelance technical author, mentor, and STEM Ambassador. He is, incidentally, also the Chairman of TCUK.

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The first ever TCUK poster competition at TCUK18

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We are inviting anyone who is planning to attend the conference – either as a delegate or as a presenter – to submit a poster. We will choose the best 20 of the submissions and have them made into pull-up display stands that will be on display in the exhibitor area throughout the conference. Those whose posters are on display will have an opportunity to discuss their poster ideas with other delegates. The posters on display will be judged and there will be a prize for the best poster and the funniest poster.

There are only a few rules and requirements:

  • The poster must be your original work and must be on a technical communications-related subject.
  • The file must be submitted so it is suitable for printing at 800mm x 2,000mm (portrait orientation) in PDF set to 300dpi. Any images included in the banner artwork will need to be high resolution.
  • Posters can be accepted only from those who are attending the conference.
  • Entries must be received by 3rd September 2018 – send to claire.kelly@admin.co.uk.

Here are a few places that provide tips for creating good posters:

We look forward to seeing your entry!

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – TWi

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Logo for TWi

TWi is a leading technical writing and information design service provider, based in Ireland. We partner with clients who require scalable and fully managed documentation solutions to meet their changing needs. We work mainly with multinational clients in the Software, Fintech, Utilities, Engineering, and Pharma/MedTech industries. Thanks to technology and Ireland’s time zone, we’ve worked with teams around the globe.

Clients avail of our technical communication expertise and knowledge of documentation best practices, tools, and strategies to create deliverables fit to accompany their innovative creations. Typical deliverables include SOPs, technical guides, user manuals, online help, training resources, and white papers.

Partner with us to turn your documentation into an asset by:

  • Enhancing knowledge transfer
  • Promoting usability, customer safety, and user satisfaction
  • Generating increased sales
  • Growing internal capacity to meet future documentation needs
  • Supporting legal, quality, and regulatory compliance
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TCUK18 Speaker Owen Flatau – Information is a gift: it should be small and heavy

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Owen Flatau will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Information is a gift: it should be small and heavy”.

Photo of Owen Flatau

Let’s characterize the relationship with our audiences in terms of giving and receiving, and put ourselves in the receiver’s shoes. What do we like? Ideally, a gift should be small, because we like things portable and we don’t want to clutter our homes. It should also be valuable to us, and remind us of the giver. Now, putting ourselves in the giver’s shoes; we cherish our relationship with this person, so we should find or make the best gift possible (within budget). How can we do this? We may have to get creative.

About Owen Flatau

Owen is a “typical” technical communicator; he started as an electrical engineer in South Africa and then moved into writing and illustrating for an electronics company in 2001. He moved to the UK in 2002 and has since worked for small and large organizations, in solo, team, and management roles, gaining communications experience from a wide spectrum of technologies. Nowadays, he works with Cisco Systems, designing and delivering information about network-based video, chat, and meeting tools.

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TCUK18 Speaker Jörg Plöger – Using ST4: Easy, Rapid, Success and Triumph! A SCHEMA case study

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Jörg Plöger, from sponsor SCHEMA, will be presenting a case study at TCUK18 entitled “Using ST4: Easy, Rapid, Success and Triumph!” Jörg will do the presentation together with Phil Lane.

Photo of Jörg Plöger

Photo of Phil Lane

To be competitive in the growing global marketplace Triumph initiated in 2013 this project, finding a more cost-efficient way to provide Triumph’s 750 dealers with a faster and more user-friendly service.

We will give insight in evaluating and implementing a Component Content Management System (CCMS), best practice in using it and the benefits for Triumph’s motorbike owners, technical authors and dealers’ bike garage.

  • Greater Usability and Dramatic Reduction in Costs
  • Rapid Implementation
  • Delivering Results
  • Looking to the Future

Greater Usability and Dramatic Reduction in Costs
In late 2014 Triumph Motorcycles selected the XML based CCMS SCHEMA ST4. The company had several critical objectives it wanted to achieve including:

  • Finding a more cost-efficient way to publish and update service manuals and owner handbooks
  • Providing Triumph’s 750 dealers with a faster and more user-friendly service
  • Ensuring a rapidly expanding / developing product range was efficiently documented / presented
  • Making sure Triumph was fully compliant with upcoming EU legislation

Rapid Implementation
Despite the challenge of producing extremely detailed technical information for 24 models in 10 languages and with multiple market-specific variants, it took only two months for the team at Triumph, working in partnership with Imprimatur’s project management, to produce their first document using SCHEMA ST4.

Delivering Results
Since the introduction of SCHEMA ST4, Triumph’s Technical Publications team has secured a series of major financial and wider business benefits.

  • Savings of up to 70 % archived on individual projects
  • About £1million cost reduction in 1.5 years
  • Savings made to date have enabled the addition on 5 new languages
  • Key publications being made available online and with more frequent updates
  • Online system allows dealers faster and easier access to key information (… VIN …)

Looking to the Future
The advanced diagnostic tools used by dealers to service and repair is another area where SCHEMA ST4 can support Triumph with even more cost-effective and accurate online documentation.

About Jörg Plöger and Phil Lane

Jörg Plöger studied mathematics. He has worked in technical communication in a wide variety of industries for more than 20 years. As consultant and trainer, he has travelled around Europe many times. Since 2000, Jörg Plöger has been working in the software industry (Translation Memory Systems (TMS) and Content Management Systems (CMS)). He is sales representative of SCHEMA and based in Bremen, Northern Germany.

Phil Lane is a Content Strategy Specialist at Imprimatur Limited. He combines his experience in XML with his understanding of documentation processes to develop strategies and implementation plans that deliver improved documentation efficiency.

Phil particularly relishes projects in the automotive industry, where finding solutions is often challenging because of the need for simultaneously-available multi-lingual content, the pressures of a strict 12-month product cycle, and the tightly-constrained in-vehicle operating environment.

Phil holds a degree in Engineering and has a strong computer systems background reaching back over 14 years.

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TCUK18 Speaker Phil Lane – I have to create mobile apps too!?

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Phil Lane will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “I have to create mobile apps too!?”

Photo of Phil Lane

As technical communicators, one of the many varied skills we require is creating output from our carefully-crafted content. Until now, this meant creating PDF outputs, help files, or HTML packages. Now a new challenger enters the arena – mobile apps.

Compared to traditional output formats, creating a mobile app from your content is a little more complicated. This talk will show you how, using the Apache Cordova Open Source framework, you can RELEASE YOUR CONTENT by creating mobile apps directly from your technical documentation

About Phil Lane

Phil Lane is a Content Strategy Specialist at Imprimatur Limited. He combines his experience in XML with his understanding of documentation processes to develop strategies and implementation plans that deliver improved documentation efficiency.

Phil particularly relishes projects in the automotive industry, where finding solutions is often challenging because of the need for simultaneously-available multi-lingual content, the pressures of a strict 12-month product cycle, and the tightly-constrained in-vehicle operating environment.

Phil holds a degree in Engineering and has a strong computer systems background reaching back over 14 years.

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TCUK18 Speaker Marilyn Woelk – Branding Yourself As Indispensable

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Marilyn Woelk will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Branding Yourself As Indispensable”.

Photo of Marilyn Woelk

The business horizon is constantly changing. It is getting harder for technical communicators to find and keep jobs, and to be recognized for the skills they have. Technical writing is often seen as a commodity and cost center rather than as a business profit center.

There are actions you can take to establish your personal brand in order to obtain or retain a job, or advance in your career.

Marilyn will discuss good and bad personal brands she has encountered as a business owner and will show you how to brand yourself effectively.

Marilyn is also giving a workshop at TCUK18: Mind the Gap: The Client Need vs. the Client Request.

About Marilyn Woelk

Marilyn is the owner and president of Wingz Creative and Technical Group, Inc. She excels in communications consulting, process improvement, and project management for techcomm marketing, training, and documentation projects. Some of Marilyn’s clients have included Xerox Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, Fujifilm USA, and the US Postal Service. Marilyn is a frequent presenter at technical conferences on subjects related to project process, ROI, personal branding, job growth, and contract development. She is an award-winning writer, and was recognized by MindTouch as one of the Top 200 Content Experience Strategists in 2017. Marilyn was the STC Summit Program Chair in 2018.

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TCUK18 Speaker Shirley McDonnell – A Casual Contributor’s Learning Aid for DITA Structuring

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Shirley McDonnell will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “A Casual Contributor’s Learning Aid for DITA Structuring”.

Photo of Shirley McDonnell

How do you help a busy person maintain the know-how required to perform a short but complex task occasionally – a task vastly different from their day-to-day work?

This question led the technical communications team at Technically Write IT (TWi) to develop a visual aid for SMEs who spend a few days every two to three months updating training material following a software release. We share with you the reference tool that the team developed, which provides casual contributors or novice writers with a systematic method of maintaining a DITA structure when updating or adding content.

About Shirley McDonnell

Shirley McDonnell has worked in the technical communication industry for the past twelve years. She has an MSc in software design and development and a Graduate Certificate in technical writing. Shirley works as a senior information developer with Technically Write IT (TWi), an Irish company who provides outsourced technical writing, editing, and documentation solutions.

Shirley has recently worked on an online repository describing the business and scientific processes used by a division of a leading multinational player in the biopharmaceutical industry. She is passionate about software usability and the responsibility of technical writers to develop comprehensive, concise, user-friendly content.

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TCUK18 Speaker Andrea Flolid – Who’s on First

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Andrea Flolid will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Who’s on First”.

Photo of Andrea Flolid

In my early career, I wrote reports, User Guides, and technical submissions where the customer was well known, and the requirements were clearly defined. At Arm, it became very clear to me that I didn’t know who our customers were and what they were looking for in our documentation.

This presentation covers:

  • The differences between internal and external customers.
  • Techniques used with internal customers:
    • Kick-off Presentations
    • Communication
    • Surveys
  • Techniques used with external customers:
    • Empathy mapping
    • Interviewing customer-facing colleagues
    • Participating in customer training session
  • Tracking data and using it to improve the documentation.

About Andrea Flolid

Andrea Flolid is a Senior Information Developer at Arm working in Austin, TX. Andrea’s early career was spent working at Motorola designing consumer phones and remote keyless entry systems. After taking a career break, Andrea switched gears from engineering to technical writing. Since Andrea did most of her own technical writing at Motorola and assisted with the Marketing documentation, this wasn’t a very big stretch. However, switching from RF circuitry to semiconductor IP required a steep learning curve. In the end, providing her customers with high quality, technically accurate products has always been at the center of Andrea’s career.

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TCUK18 Speaker Chris Hester – The Successful Fraud

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Chris Hester will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “The Successful Fraud”.

Photo of Chris Hester

Have you ever avoided applying for a job because you didn’t feel qualified? Or submitted a project while sure the feedback would be horrible? Imposter syndrome is typically defined as feelings of fraud and self-doubt, and most of us have experienced it at some point.

In this session, we’ll look at types and examples of imposter syndrome, how it hinders and helps us, and techniques for managing it. By understanding how imposter syndrome works against us and learning how to make it work for us, we can deal with these feelings, be more productive, and feel confident in our accomplishments.

Chris is also giving a workshop at TCUK18: The Build-a-Workshop Workshop.

About Chris Hester

Chris is the founder of Red Desk Studio, an STC Fellow, and a fair-weather cyclist. She has delivered successful content strategy, training, and knowledge management projects to a variety of clients, including those in the advertising, construction management, entertainment, and healthcare industries. She has been actively involved in the technical communication community as a volunteer and academic mentor, and has presented at events such as the STC Summit, the TCUK conference, and LavaCon.

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TCUK18 Speaker Jennifer O Neill – Working with third-party content. What are the challenges?

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Jennifer O Neill will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Working with third-party content. What are the challenges?”

Photo of Jennifer O Neill

Outsourcing is big business and growing. Companies are increasingly outsourcing product development and services to reduce costs and focus on their core business. But when a company outsources the development and manufacturing of a product to another company, what happens to the documentation? How do you ensure that content quality and branding standards are maintained?

This presentation will discuss the impact of product outsourcing on technical communication. It will discuss the challenges technical writers can face when working with content developed by another company. We’ll cover content quality, legal issues, localization, tools, terminology management, as well as working with different companies, in particular Chinese companies.

About Jennifer O Neill

Jennifer works as a technical writer and localization specialist in Brussels, Belgium, for UTC Fire & Security. She is responsible for producing the documentation for video security products. She has over 20 years’ experience in the profession, mainly in the manufacturing sector. She has worked with many OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) companies around the world to customize the documentation and firmware of outsourced products for a global market.

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TCUK18 Speaker Marilyn Woelk – Mind the Gap: The Client Need vs. the Client Request (workshop)

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Marilyn Woelk will be giving a TCUK18 workshop entitled “Mind the Gap: The Client Need vs. the Client Request”.

Photo of Marilyn Woelk

Have you ever had a client or customer ask for a certain set of requirements, but be unhappy when you delivered what they asked for? Have you ever been a manager or client that assigned a project that when completed didn’t accomplish the business results you hoped for?

In this workshop, we will:

  • review how projects get planned and project requirements get set,
  • look at a complete project process from the identification of a business need (at the origination of a project), to the delivery of the corresponding solution,
  • identify key places within a project timeline where project information gaps can occur, and
  • resolve these gaps so that we don’t “miss a step” in the process and can provide true seamless solutions for our customers.

Come to this workshop with a “problem project” in mind. We will discuss it.

Marilyn is also giving a presentation at TCUK18: Branding Yourself As Indispensable.

About Marilyn Woelk

Marilyn is the owner and president of Wingz Creative and Technical Group, Inc. She excels in communications consulting, process improvement, and project management for techcomm marketing, training, and documentation projects. Some of Marilyn’s clients have included Xerox Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, Fujifilm USA, and the US Postal Service. Marilyn is a frequent presenter at technical conferences on subjects related to project process, ROI, personal branding, job growth, and contract development. She is an award-winning writer, and was recognized by MindTouch as one of the Top 200 Content Experience Strategists in 2017. Marilyn was the STC Summit Program Chair in 2018.

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TCUK18 Speaker Frances Gordon – How to write in plain language (workshop)

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Frances Gordon will be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “How to write in plain language”.

Photo of Frances Gordon

This fun and practical workshop will give you a solid grounding in plain language theory and practice. You’ll learn what plain language is (compared to other types of controlled and restricted languages) and how to evaluate whether content is written in plain language.

You’ll do practical exercises that will show you a tried-and-tested process for writing in plain language, right from initial planning through to checking your work at the end.
The purpose of the workshop is not only to show you techniques that you can use right away, but also to give you a process that you’ll find useful to share within your organisation. It’ll also help you to promote plain language at your organisation, even among the most sceptical colleagues. The Simplified plain language framework has been used to train over 8,000 professionals in the UK, Portugal, France, South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya.

About Frances Gordon

Frances’ career started in rural South Africa where she wrote and designed instructional materials for low literacy adults. During her 20-year career, she has held tenures at Datatec/Logical as communications strategist, at London-based Siegel & Gale as Head of Content (EMEA), and at Barclaycard as VP of Content Strategy (UK).

In 2004, Frances co-founded Simplified, a plain-language training and consultancy firm. Frances sat on the board of international plain language organisation, PLAIN. She was part of the advisory committee of IC Clear, an EU-funded initiative that developed a post-graduate course in clear communication. In 2017, Simplified licensed its plain language business writing course to France’s University of Strasbourg for its online master’s programme in Technical Communication and Localisation (TCLoc).

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TCUK18 Speaker Chris Hester – The Build-a-Workshop Workshop

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Chris Hester will be giving a TCUK18 workshop entitled “The Build-a-Workshop Workshop”.

Photo of Chris Hester

Have you ever been asked to develop a training class? Or asked to lead a requirements-gathering sessions or design meeting? Perhaps you considered submitting a proposal to conduct a workshop at a conference, but didn’t know where to start.

Attend this workshop and learn how to plan and run effective workshops. We’ll start with a discussion of the differences between workshops and training, characteristics of successful workshops, and strategies for activity and workshop development. Then, we will break into small groups to work through the steps of building a workshop.

You’ll leave this session with the experience of having developed a workshop, as well as a workbook, templates, and techniques you can use the next time a manager or client asks you to build a workshop.

Chris is also giving a presentation at TCUK18: The Successful Fraud.

About Chris Hester

Chris is the founder of Red Desk Studio, an STC Fellow, and a fair-weather cyclist. She has delivered successful content strategy, training, and knowledge management projects to a variety of clients, including those in the advertising, construction management, entertainment, and healthcare industries. She has been actively involved in the technical communication community as a volunteer and academic mentor, and has presented at events such as the STC Summit, the TCUK conference, and LavaCon.

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TCUK18 Speaker Sarah Thomson – Developing user-centred content in an agile world

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Sarah Thomson will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Developing user-centred content in an agile world”.

Photo of Sarah Thomson

You might be an expert communicator, but it’s users who have all the answers.

Working on GOV.UK services, every word needs to earn its place on the screen and make sense to users. If the language is meaningless, or means something else, people won’t be able to complete tasks and money will be wasted.

This session shares case studies from GOV.UK services. It explains how working in multi-disciplinary teams in an agile environment can help you to focus on the language of users; in turn, helping you to iterate the words you write as new user needs come to light.

About Sarah Thomson

Sarah is a Lead Content Designer on GOV.UK services, where she works in multi-disciplinary teams to serve citizens and organisations across England and Wales.

Before working in content design, Sarah worked for more than 10 years in content-related roles across the public, private and third sectors. After a successful career improving user experience through language and content design, Sarah now advises businesses on how to improve their services and mentors the next generation of content designers.

You can often find Sarah on Dartmoor, exploring its tors, or on the coast, sitting on rocks fishing for mackerel for dinner.

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TCUK18 Speaker David McGuire – The content alchemist: how to turn technical information into marketing gold (workshop)

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David McGuire will be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “The content alchemist: how to turn technical information into marketing gold”.

Photo of David McGuire

Here’s something marketers won’t tell you: the future belongs to great technical communicators. People don’t want to be sold to anymore. They want to feel in control of their choices, and to do their own research.

Suddenly, marketers have realised that a gift for explaining technical details clearly is a rare and valuable thing.

Since the advent of inbound marketing, B2B technology copywriter David McGuire has spent his days in the increasingly blurred space between technical content, and content marketing.

In this frank and practical workshop, David will reveal:

  • his secret ingredients for turning technical detail into content marketing assets
  • the importance of technical experts in producing authoritative B2B copy
  • five questions that reveal whether a piece of content will work in marketing copy

About David McGuire

Creative Director of Business-to-Business copywriting agency Radix Communications, David makes his living turning dry, dusty and technical subjects into compelling marketing content for the world’s biggest brands.

He’s written white papers about GPS testing, ebooks about pensions, and websites about injection moulding. To some, his electronic controller adverts, air conditioning maintenance case studies and blog posts about data segmentation are the stuff of legend. (Well, almost.)

David is also the host of the UK’s national Copywriting Conference, and co-presents the “Good Copy, Bad Copy” podcast, as well as speaking on copy and content issues for software, technology and marketing groups.

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TCUK18 Speaker Eran (Yuri) Kolber – Polymathing 365

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Eran (Yuri) Kolber will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Polymathing 365”.

Photo of Eran (Yuri) Kolber

Many of us are aware of the benefits (and costs) associated with migrating documentation to the cloud. This session looks at how cloud tools, which are often disregarded by Documentation and IT departments, can dramatically improve Documentation Team productivity, cohesion, and value delivery. We will look at how small and large documentation teams can use Office 365 workloads to better cope with a world where technology, business, and security risks are changing rapidly. We will examine less-frequently used capabilities, such as SharePoint Online, OneNote, Teams, Forms, Delve, Sway, and Flow – to evaluate what practical benefit can be gained from each.

About Eran (Yuri) Kolber

Yuri Kolber is Director of Training and Professional Services for OnTarget Communications. As part of his duties, he assists customers world-wide with Training Needs Analysis, Training Delivery, Content Creation and Management, Migration Project Planning and Execution, Knowledge Transfers, and extracting the maximum business value from technology, in the age of the Cloud and Mobility. Yuri served as a Microsoft Platform Evangelist and Regional Director for many years, and has assisted global consulting organizations, such as Holden International, to plan and roll-out content management and training programs for their customers. He also leads OnTarget’s Internship program, which helps entrants into the industry obtain the required experience.

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TCUK18 Speaker Daniele Procida – Four functions in the structure of technical documentation (and why they matter)

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Daniele Procida will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Four functions in the structure of technical documentation (and why they matter)”.

Photo of Daniele Procida

Despite the effort that gets put into it, not all technical documentation is successful. It’s often not very helpful for the users who need to rely on it, and it’s a burden and a chore for the authors who have to maintain it. Many of these issues can be traced back to problems in the documentation’s structure. There are four key functions in technical documentation. Structuring documentation according to its four distinct functions helps ensure that each of them is adequately served. It also makes it far easier to write and maintain. Using real-life examples I’ll draw out the key functions of documentation, and how they map onto different ways of writing it. Putting this into practice is simple when armed with some basic guidelines. The benefits are enormous, and available with a minimum of effort.

About Daniele Procida

I am a Python/Django programmer with a particular interest in documentation. I live in Cardiff, Wales, and work at Divio, a Swiss software company. I have contributed to or guided the documentation of a number of different software projects. I’m very involved in international open-source software communities and their activities, especially in the growing pan-African Python programming movement.

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TCUK18 Speaker Rhyne Armstrong – It’s Called Technical Communication for a Reason

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Rhyne Armstrong will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “It’s Called Technical Communication for a Reason”.

Photo of Rhyne Armstrong

You are at the point where creating structured content is second nature. You can design a crisp clean UI and conduct textbook usability sessions without breaking a sweat. You can even design a chatbot so users never know they are not typing with a human. Are those skills and that knowledge enough to get you to the next level in your career? Is how to create technical communication more important than why? Is our pursuit of perfectly authored content hurting our audience?

We are technical communicators for a reason, and it is time for us to regain our focus on the technology we support.

In this session, we will discuss the importance of technical knowledge, find out how to gain technical knowledge and skills without going back to school, and learn tips you can use to land your next job, without worrying about moving into a new industry.

About Rhyne Armstrong

Rhyne Armstrong is the Stealthwatch Documentation Manager for Cisco System, inc. in the Security Business Unit, and an Associate Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication. In his 25 years in the technical communication world, Rhyne has worked as a writer, strategist, and manager, and has held the job titles of Director of Communications, User Experience Manager, and Director of Evangelism. Today, he oversees the creation and delivery of product documentation, and leads a group of engineers tasked with conducting customer site visits.

Rhyne enjoys public speaking, and has presented to conferences and organizations in the United States, Central America, and Europe. He enjoys meeting new people, and helping others get plugged in to the global technical communication professional network. He is a soccer (football) fanatic and is a fan of Arsenal F.C. in the English Premier League, and a founding member of the Atlanta United Football Club in Major League Soccer.

Rhyne lives in Atlanta, Georgia, and works hard to juggle his day job with his other role as a soccer/ballet/gymnastics/robotics dad. He has four human kids, and five furred ones.

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TCUK18 Speaker David McCormick – Engineering high quality content through technical mentoring

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David McCormick will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Engineering high quality content through technical mentoring”.

Photo of David McCormick

In today’s fast paced technological and scientific world, the technical author is constantly challenged to provide high quality technical documentation within ever decreasing timescales. This presentation aims to show how using technical mentoring can lead to better improvements in both documentation quality and production time. It discusses the merits of technical mentoring and the relationship between acquiring subject knowledge and quality writing. It also covers the areas of improving and measuring technical product knowledge, confidence building, and learning styles. Finally, it gives some hints and tips on how you can develop and lead technical mentoring sessions.

About David McCormick

Currently a Staff Information Developer at Arm, David moved across into technical authoring from a 14-year background in microprocessor technical support and training.

When investigating a career change, I looked at what I seem to do a lot of which was writing. Whether it was drawing up plans for boarding a loft or writing instructions for re-adjusting my bicycle, it was all a form of technical communication. Since moving into my first authoring job at Arm, six years ago, I have helped new starters from all backgrounds improve and acquire technical knowledge through technical mentoring sessions.

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TCUK18 Speaker Jörg Plöger – Intelligent Information – iiRDS – a new information exchange standard of Industry 4.0 and Internet of Things

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Jörg Plöger will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Intelligent Information – iiRDS – a new information exchange standard of Industry 4.0 and Internet of Things”.

Photo of Jörg Plöger

The working group “Information 4.0” of German tekom worked for two years to elaborate concepts and standards for technical communication in the context of “Internet of things” or “Industry 4.0”. The key working result has been the creation of the open source standard iiRDS – intelligent information request and delivery standard – which is currently in evaluation to become part of a German industry standard. In this talk the audience will first get an introduction about purpose, concept and potential benefits of iiRDS. The talk will end with a showcase how robots and content delivery systems for technical communication interact thanks to iiRDS.

About Jörg Plöger

Jörg Plöger studied mathematics. He has worked in technical communication in a wide variety of industries for more than 20 years. As consultant and trainer, he has travelled around Europe many times. Since 2000, Jörg Plöger has been working in the software industry (Translation Memory Systems (TMS) and Content Management Systems (CMS)). He is sales representative of SCHEMA and based in Bremen, Northern Germany.

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TCUK18 Speaker Andrew Mills – Beyond the Book – Tech Comms for the Digital Generation (and Beyond)

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Andrew Mills will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Beyond the Book – Tech Comms for the Digital Generation (and Beyond)”.

Photo of Andrew Mills

As communication delivery methods diversify and constantly move forwards in the digital era, so too must our skills and appreciation for the many different content delivery formats that people now choose to learn with.

This presentation is a look at the new skills I’ve needed to learn as I aim to deliver enriching and memorable content that goes beyond the written word – whilst still accommodating those who prefer a less ‘visually-focused’ approach.

So, join me as I delve into the exciting world of creating educational Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Ultra High Definition content for a digital generation – and beyond.

About Andrew Mills

In March 1999, my first video game guide was published in the pages of N64 Magazine. From 2003 onwards, I became the ‘go-to’ video game guide author for most of Future Publishing – Europe’s largest magazine publisher. In turn, creating a portfolio of over 140 printed guides across multiple different gaming publications.

I continued to create and self-publish video game guides for digital platforms, such as iOS applications and e-books, before moving into the role of Technical Author in the business software sector in 2015. Today I continue to grow professionally as a Senior Information Developer for ARM in Cambridge.

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TCUK18 Speaker Ellis Pratt – What’s the deal with structured content?

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Ellis Pratt will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “What’s the deal with structured content?”.

Photo of Ellis Pratt

Content can often seem like jelly – messy and hard to manage. In this presentation, we’ll look at whether you can reduce this messiness through structured writing.

In this overview of the topic, we’ll explore what is structured writing, the origins of structured writing standards, what it promises to give its adopters, the different standards today, and the challenges that come with using structured writing.

About Ellis Pratt

Ellis Pratt, is a Consulting Technical Communicator and Director at Cherryleaf, a technical writing services company. He has been working in technical communication since the early 1990s. He has a degree in Business Studies. He is also:

  • Member of the Institute of Scientific and Technical Communicators
  • Associate of the Institution of Engineering and Technology
  • An ISTC Management Council member

In 2017, he was listed as one of the top 25 Content Experience influencers in the world.

Ellis was a contributor to two books: Current Practices and Trends in Technical Communication, and The Language of Technical Communication.

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TCUK18 Speaker Alisa Bonsignore – The Value of the Polymath Communicator

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Alisa Bonsignore will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “The Value of the Polymath Communicator”.

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Technical communicators were once thought to be single-subject experts. Today, we realize that the most successful among us are truly polymaths, bringing together subject matter expertise with our knowledge of multiple media channels, content strategy, user experience, and of course, writing. Yet for all of the skills that we bring to the workplace, we’re often uncertain about how to best communicate our value to management.

In this talk, we’ll identify some of the roadblocks to our success; how personality and temperament can affect others’ perceptions of us; and how to best advocate for our role in our organization.

Alisa Bonsignore

Alisa Bonsignore runs Clarifying Complex Ideas, a strategic communications consultancy in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her mission is to create clarity and build engagement, delivering the right information at the right time.

Alisa helps companies communicate complicated topics, including medical devices and pharmaceuticals/genomics; network security; healthcare IT; and policy development and sustainability communications surrounding companies’ efforts to improve their supply chains and meet the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). She is serving her second term on the STC board of directors.

She speaks about professional development topics to technical communicators, medical writers, content strategists, and other creative professionals.

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TCUK18 Speaker John Lee – Jack-of-all-trades

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John Lee will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Jack-of-all-trades”.

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In a long and illustrious working life there are many reasons, choices and options for getting to your destination, which I shall call the here-and-now. This is often referred to as a career path. Some are early on this path to the here-and-now, with technical authoring their first career choice. Others, are well down the path, and may have had a number of careers on the way.

This is the tale of one such journey, from schoolboy to senior technical author. Not so much a career path, more of a ramble through life. But at key points on that journey, decisions were made or events happened that influenced the direction and progress of that journey. These so-called crossroads have led me here. And along the way I have gathered a variety of skills and experiences that have moulded me into the individual standing in front of you.

They say “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing”; I have lots and lots of clusters of “a little knowledge”, so how dangerous am I?

About John Lee

John gained his electronics training in the British Army, rising from apprentice technician through to system engineer in a 23-year career. He used his technical writing experiences within the Army to start a second career as a Technical Author almost 20 years ago. He spent 9 years at Motorola, before branching out as a contractor. John has worked on a variety of projects, from microelectronics, educational software, military hardware and the financial sector. He currently works for ARM as a permanent colleague in a Staff Information Developer role.

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TCUK18 Speaker Bridget Khursheed – Cybersecurity and documentation: security considerations for authors

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Bridget Khursheed will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “Cybersecurity and documentation: security considerations for authors”.

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When APIs make documentation synonymous with the product, what security considerations should authors be aware of? In a PSD2 world where cybersecurity is key what vulnerabilities might documents expose to an attacker? This talk explores how you can maximise security in API and other documentation and learn a defensive mindset to promote and protect company information through security best practice.

About Bridget Khursheed

Bridget Khursheed is a poet and geek from the Scottish Borders. She works at KAL, a fintech company based in Edinburg,h as Global Documentation Manager and is currently studying for an MSc in Advanced Security and Digital Forensics.

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TCUK18 Speaker Robert Kratky – Git(Hub) for Technical Writers: From Zero to Published Docs (workshop)

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Robert Kratky will be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “Git(Hub) for Technical Writers: From Zero to Published Docs”.

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Git, repositories, commits, and branches – whether these are new terms for you, or you already know your way around GitHub – come and learn how to use this platform, and what is this approach towards technical authoring.

In this workshop, we will start with an empty folder and end up with a simple system for validating our docs and an automated publishing process to get our edits to a static website. You will learn about Git, version control principles, and basics of continuous integration and delivery.

About Robert Kratky

Robert Kratky is a Principal Technical Writer at Red Hat. He has published dozens of technical and outreach articles in both print and online media, and presented about documentation topics. At Red Hat, Robert specializes on developer docs and improvement of user experience with documentation.

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TCUK18 Speaker Alison Peck – If variety is the spice of life…

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Alison Peck will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “If variety is the spice of life…”.

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I enjoy a challenge and rarely turn down a professional one– something has to be well outside my comfort zone before I say ‘No’ for lack of enthusiasm. I do consider, though, the financial impact of learning new skills and how useful they are likely to be in the future.

This session looks at some of the ‘non-standard’ things I have done – the things that some technical communicators may hand over to colleagues who are specialists in that area – and how they have worked out for me and (more importantly) for my employer/clients and the people using what I develop.

About Alison Peck

Technical communicator wasn’t on my list of possible jobs when I was at school. Like many, I fell into it. But by then, I’d developed a life-long fascination with language, with learning, and with the visual appearance of information. When I finally found myself working outside the health service, it was with small companies where everyone knew me. I sorted out their Word issues, proofread their marketing materials and even helped them phrase a CV a little better. I loved hearing “Do you think you could…?” because that often led to something I hadn’t tried before. Exciting? Maybe. Different? Definitely.

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – OnTarget Communications

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OnTarget Communications was formed in 2001 to provide a refreshingly different approach to documentation, placements, and training. We provide a wide range of content services to meet the needs of organizations in the hi-tech, telecom, bio-tech, military, security, banking, insurance, medical, education and other professional fields. Using a specialized team of professionals, with extensive experience covering a wide variety of fields, we provide a 24×7 service level for those highly-demanding and tight deadline jobs, world-wide (UK, Europe, Middle East, Asia-Pacific, USA). In the modern world of collaborative authoring and content management, we find that geographical location has become nearly irrelevant.

OnTarget is focused on helping customers obtain the maximum business value from content and documentation, and from the people involved in the process (be they customer employees, contractors, or consultants). We ensure value by providing the appropriate service in the most cost-effective manner.

Amongst the services we offer are: Technical and Marketing Authoring, Translation and Localization, Document Project Outsourcing, Placement Solutions (permanent, contract, and project), Instructional Design, Training Delivery, Content Development and Management Solutions, UI/UX Reviews, Technical Author Trainings and Apprenticeships.

Website: OnTarget Communications

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – MadCap Software

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We Develop Innovative Software Solutions Backed with World-class Technical Support

MadCap Software was formed in 2005 by industry veterans with decades of experience in the documentation industry, with the objective to develop great products backed with world-class technical support. Today, MadCap Software is a trusted resource for thousands of companies around the globe for single-source, multi-channel authoring and publishing solutions, including multimedia and translation management.

Our Focus: Technical Communication, Content Strategy and User Experience

MadCap Software understands the complexities of content delivery: authors need to get the right information, to the right people, at the right time, in the right language, on the device of the end-users’ choosing.

MadCap Software offers a complete suite of tools to give professional content developers the resources they need to succeed in a rapidly changing environment.

Website: madcapsoftware.com

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TCUK18 Speaker Ant Davey – I’m just a technical writer. Actually, no.

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Ant Davey will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 entitled “I’m just a technical writer. Actually, no.”

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At a conference some years ago, I was listening to an IBM senior staff member, responsible for customer experience, about career progression. There was an audible intake of breath from some of the younger members of the audience when she suggested that technical writers couldn’t, or shouldn’t expect to, be a technical writer for the whole of their career. Coming from marketing and PR, it wasn’t news to me.

Since I started work, I’ve written and managed direct mail campaigns, educational materials, website content, even a book chapter about metal detection in the food processing industry. I have shot and edited photographs and more recently video as well. I developed an information architecture for our in-house media library, trained as a change management specialist, handled customer enquiries, advocated for a move to structured authoring, supported two new website upgrades, created company-specific Facebook pages, and written annual reports. My latest venture is into scripting and producing podcasts. This short bio-pic covers the fields of activity that I’ve been involved in as a technical communicator that are just some of those that you might be asked to do in future.

About Ant Davey

A writer and editor in marketing and PR for 15 years, before I discovered that there was such a thing as technical writing. That’s when I enrolled on the distance-learning MA in Technical Authorship at Sheffield Hallam University (other courses are still available). I dabbled in writing software user guides for a few years before I was lucky enough to find a job in the rail industry. Now working on matters engineering, operational, physiological and psychological. As well as writing and editing I’m a teacher and mentor, photographer, videographer, video editor, and now podcast script writer and producer.

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TCUK18 Speaker Cecily Roberts – How to win followers & influence people: Tech comm lessons from writing about novels

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Cecily Roberts will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “How to win followers & influence people: Tech comm lessons from writing about novels”.

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  • Do you create content for corporate social media?
  • Are you writing stealth marketing for a web audience?
  • Are you frustrated by colleagues saying “It’s all just writing”?

I will explain what I’ve learned about creating engaging web content for a diverse and unexpected audience.

  • How a personal reading log evolved into 700 reviews, pastiches, and essays, with thousands of active followers.
  • How I’ve selectively grown my audience and encouraged participation.
  • How technical and non-technical writing help each other.
  • How to reach the right people, in the right way – and enjoy it.

It’s not “all just writing”. Context is all.

Cecily Roberts

In real life, Cecily is a child of bibliophiles who has raised another.

She fell into technical communication, but has happily stayed for more than 25 years. She writes software user guides and help, but is increasingly involved with online content.

In virtual life, Cecily writes about books. In ten years, she’s published over 700 articles and discussed them with thousands. Her motives, audience, subjects, and style have evolved. She’s also written her first short story since school, which won the ISTC 2018 competition.

Her literary writing is very different from her work-related writing, but she’s increasingly conscious of symbiosis.

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TCUK18 Speaker Holli Hamilton – Call to Action! How tech writers can improve UX (workshop)

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Holli Hamilton will be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “Call to Action! How tech writers can improve UX”.

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As tech writers, we’re often one of the first non-engineers to interact with a new system. We have to find the ins and outs of it, to document those trials for our customers. When those ins and outs become a tangled web of check boxes and popups, then a tech writer has a choice: we can document around the issue or we can put on our designer hats and submit an improvement proposal.

In this workshop, Holli will provide exercises and examples that show how a novice (like her) at User Experience can provide feedback to help improve the customer’s journey and their impression of your company’s products. Delegates coming to this workshop will require a laptop connected to the internet to interact with example sites. The content surrounds software and websites as products but the theories can hopefully be applied to technical writers working in other industries.

About

Holli is currently the sole technical writer for Corero Network Security. She has been a technical writer for over 6 years and came into the field from a Fine Art background. While that may seem odd at first glance, she believes that they share the core values of communication, information absorption, and understanding your audience. She loves nothing more than the unity of these disciplines in a perfectly functional diagram.

Outside of work, she is currently renovating her first home and enjoys frustrating her husband with the amount of pinterest ideas you can cram into a single room.

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TCUK18 Speaker Karla Reis – Increasing User Assistance Visibility

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Karla Reis will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “Increasing User Assistance Visibility”.

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This presentation is about a project that aimed at making it easier for customers to consume our content; and thus boosting technical writers visibility and standing with internal stakeholders. We wanted a data-driven approach rather than working on assumptions, so we started with customer research, and then piloted our findings.

The results of this project were so impressive that they transformed our stakeholders into advocates for our cause, and who are now willing to voice their belief that good user assistance is beneficial not only to users but to the company as a whole.

About Karla Reis

I am a technical writer who lives and works in Brazil. For the last seven years, I have been developing user assistance for Brazil-localized software at SAP. I am passionate about user experience and about using social media to get closer to users.

I graduated in Languages Portuguese/English and worked as a translator for five years, before joining SAP.

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TCUK18 Speaker Ferry Vermeulen – Using Text, Images and Video in Technical Communication

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Ferry Vermeulen will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “Using Text, Images and Video in Technical Communication”.

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The Company you may want to work for is trying to give its audience the best product experience in the world. As a technical writer, you want to contribute to that effort by creating awesome content for that product. There are many great tools out there that can help you to achieve this. These tools include text editors, and graphic and video tools. But how do you decide when to use text, images, or video for your product assistance? Join this presentation to help guide you make the best choices.

About Ferry Vermeulen

Ferry Vermeulen is director at INSTRKTIV. INSTRKTIV helps brands to create compliant and user-friendly user instructions. Ferry has travelled to over 50 countries. It is his aim to visit all countries, meanwhile sorting out how product safety regulation is organized across the world. Also read his User Manual Template Case Study, about how to create compliant user manuals for the EU.

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TCUK18 Speaker Matt Pierce – Effective & Engaging: The Key to Making Better Videos

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Matt Pierce will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “Effective & Engaging: The Key to Making Better Videos”.

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Video is taking on an important role in technical communication and is becoming a preferred medium for instructions, documentation, and communication. How can we ensure that our informational and instructional content videos will meet our goals, needs, and the expectations of our viewers? TechSmith conducted studies in the US, UK, and Germany with video viewers to shed light on questions like the ideal length of video, the importance of information placement and making content findable. We’ll explore the results from a creators’ point of view, translating data-driven insights into video design principles taking the viewers’ behaviors and expectations into account.

About Matt Pierce

Matthew Pierce, Learning & Video Ambassador from TechSmith Corporation, has created videos for learning and marketing for over a decade. Matthew has been a speaker at multiple learning and development focused and marketing conferences. He is a regular contributor to Training Magazine, and has been author for Content Marketing Institute, ReelSEO, and various other training publications. He currently leads TechSmith’s customer education initiative around video.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Toni Ressaire – Design & Test a Chatbot Conversation (workshop)

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In addition to her keynote talk, Toni Ressaire will also be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “Design & Test a Chatbot Conversation”.

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In this interactive workshop, you’ll design a customer journey, write user scenarios, and design a chatbot conversation. You’ll then have the opportunity to test your conversation in a simulator.

To make this session more interesting, I ask you to prepare by bringing an idea for a real non-profit organization. You’ll work with a group to develop a chatbot conversation. We will have a competition, and the winner will have the opportunity to turn the conversation into a published chatbot for the organization. (The organization must have an existing website.)

We’ll also talk about various chatbot platforms and how you can publish your own chatbot.

For this workshop you will need pen and paper or mind-mapping software and a computer with Internet connection. We’ll provide Internet access.

No lurkers! Come to this workshop prepared to participate!

About Toni Ressaire

Toni Ressaire is a technical communicator, trainer and consultant. She’s worked with companies in the software development industry on five continents. Toni has some rather non-traditional uses for traditional tech comm tools. She’s currently working with a team developing innovative tools and methodologies to answer the need for information applied to existing and new technologies (VR, AI, chatbots, etc.).

Toni is a founding member of the Information 4.0 Consortium, Tech Writers Without Borders and she’s an Adobe Partner. She is president of the US-based company Route 11 Publications and Info4Design, an information technology company based in France. She is currently living in Southern Italy.

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TCUK18 Speaker Mike Unwalla – To make text as clear as possible, use Simplified Technical English

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Mike Unwalla will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “To make text as clear as possible, use Simplified Technical English”.

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Human failures cause accidents. A typical cause of human failure is unclear instructions. Simplified Technical English (STE) makes text as clear as possible.

English can be difficult for people who read English as a second language. Phrasal verbs (multi-word verbs) such as ‘carry out’ and ‘put up with’ are a special problem. STE prevents this problem.

Frequently, instructions must be in the language of the readers. STE decreases the cost of translation.

The implementation of STE is not easy. Possibly, technical communicators will resist the use of STE. Terminology management and help from subject-matter experts are necessary.

About Mike Unwalla

Mike Unwalla is a freelance technical communicator who trades as TechScribe (www.techscribe.co.uk). He helps organizations to supply clear and effective user manuals to their customers. Mike uses controlled language to make his documents as clear as possible. He develops and sells a term checker for the controlled language ASD-STE100.

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TCUK18 Speaker Derek Cooper – Quiet Leadership – Why it works in proactive organisations

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Derek Cooper will be giving a presentation at TCUK18 on “Quiet Leadership – Why it works in proactive organisations”.

Photo of Derek Cooper with a forest and lake in the background

Leaders don’t have to be flamboyant, talkative, ‘do what I say’ types. Quiet leaders work with their teams, explaining the team’s objectives, and then engaging and enabling their team’s collective intelligence to develop solutions that fulfil those objectives, often in innovative and unexpected ways. Quiet leadership is about creating a team of motivated, valued and trusted people who are capable of becoming leaders in their own right, rather than forming a group of followers who are fearful of taking initiatives or making mistakes. I invite you to take another look at leadership and to recognise the subtle power of quiet.

About Derek Cooper

Derek is an ISTC Fellow who has worked in technical communication since 1992. Although his background is in marine electronics, his experience includes writing documentation for subjects as diverse as electron and optical microscopy, marine and seismic survey, environmental monitoring, financial services, and veterinary science. Derek has recently taken early retirement from Arm Technical Communications in Cambridge, where for four amazing years he quietly and effectively led a team of extremely talented Information Developers. He has now returned to running his own life as a freelance technical author, mentor, and STEM Ambassador. He is, incidentally, also the Chairman of TCUK.

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – Edissero

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Edissero has been a specialist recruiter of technical communicators since 2003, helping many different companies and organisations, from blue chips to technology start-ups, find the best technical communicators for their technical and business information needs. We help companies in the UK and Europe recruit permanent and contract, full-time and part-time technical authors (from graduates and juniors to well-seasoned), documentation managers, content strategists, knowledgebase managers, eLearning and instructional designers, editors, bid writers, and user experience designers.

With 15 years in this specialist market, we love what we do and are proud of our long-term partnerships with our clients and candidates. They tell us we are thorough, efficient, no-nonsense and nice to deal with.

We look forward to seeing you at TCUK! Please visit our stand to:

  • Register with us and discuss how we may help you further your career.
  • Discuss how we can help you recruit a technical communicator.
  • Take advantage of our 1-to-1 CV MOT service (please bring along your CV).

For more information, please email us at info@edissero.com or visit our website at www.edissero.com.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Ciaran Dunne – Creating great customer experiences through outstanding technical support and content

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Ciaran Dunne will be giving his TCUK18 keynote talk on “Creating great customer experiences through outstanding technical support and content”.

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As the technical support, content and training provider to Arm’s customer and developer base their Partner Enablement Group needs to be customer focused and deliver a high quality experience. In this presentation Ciaran Dunne will share his experiences of leading a modern technical support organisation and provide an overview of the activities and changes they have made over the last few years to ensure the team is 100% committed to supporting our customer base and how we have brought the wide range of services we provide together to build a cohesive and engaging customer experience.

About Ciaran Dunne

Ciaran Dunne started his career in the electronics and technology industry over 20 years ago having been drawn into the world of engineering from University. He’s held a number of different roles that have shaped his knowledge of the industry, spanning engineering, project management, and operations management. He freely admits that when he joined the Partner Enablement Group (PEG) at Arm he knew next to nothing about technical writing, he now claims to know ‘a little bit more’ having immersed himself in the discipline by getting to know the 70+ Information Developers in PEG, and leading them through a significant change programme. He took up the position of General Manager of PEG three years ago and it’s allowed him to fulfil his passion for creating outstanding customer experiences, and establishing a ‘people first’ culture in the organisation.

Away from work Ciaran spends as much time as he can with his family and slightly bonkers border terrier.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Ciaran Dunne

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We are pleased to announce Ciaran Dunne as a keynote speaker for TCUK 2018.

Ciaran Dunne photo

Ciaran started his career in the electronics and technology industry over 20 years ago having been drawn into the world of engineering from University. He’s held a number of different roles that have shaped his knowledge of the industry, spanning engineering, project management, and operations management. He freely admits that when he joined the Partner Enablement Group (PEG) at Arm he knew next to nothing about technical writing, he now claims to know ‘a little bit more’ having immersed himself in the discipline by getting to know the 70+ Information Developers in PEG, and leading them through a significant change programme. He took up the position of General Manager of PEG three years ago and it’s allowed him to fulfil his passion for creating outstanding customer experiences, and establishing a ‘people first’ culture in the organisation.

Away from work Ciaran spends as much time as he can with his family and slightly bonkers border terrier.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Toni Ressaire – From Docs to Bots: Find Your Passion & Get a Career Makeover

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Toni Ressaire will be giving her TCUK18 keynote talk on “From Docs to Bots: Find Your Passion & Get a Career Makeover”.

Photo of Toni Ressaire

Career envy. Have you ever experienced it? You think about your dream job and wonder why you didn’t get that opportunity.

But maybe your dream job wouldn’t make you happy. Perhaps, it wouldn’t be the right fit for you.

Stop thinking about yourself in terms of your job, and start thinking about your skills and your passions. You’ll find your true dream job in these two elements.

Toni Ressaire started out as a broadcast journalist, founded a lifestyles magazine, published books, and then became a technical writer. Now, she’s learning about artificial intelligence and designing chatbots and virtual assistants. What do all of these jobs have in common? Toni will share her path from docs to bots and help you discover your path to the career you really want.

Toni is also holding a workshop at TCUK18: Design & Test a Chatbot Conversation.

About Toni Ressaire

Toni Ressaire is a technical communicator, trainer and consultant. She’s worked with companies in the software development industry on five continents. Toni has some rather non-traditional uses for traditional tech comm tools. She’s currently working with a team developing innovative tools and methodologies to answer the need for information applied to existing and new technologies (VR, AI, chatbots, etc.).

Toni is a founding member of the Information 4.0 Consortium, Tech Writers Without Borders and she’s an Adobe Partner. She is president of the US-based company Route 11 Publications and Info4Design, an information technology company based in France. She is currently living in Southern Italy.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Ben Woelk – Lessons Learned on an Introvert’s Journey to Leadership

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Ben Woelk will be giving his TCUK18 keynote talk on “Lessons Learned on an Introvert’s Journey to Leadership”.

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Many of us might agree that Western society lauds extroverted leaders and their accomplishments. However, introverts make great contributions and can be effective leaders too. As technical communication professionals, many of you are introverts, and you certainly work with a lot of introverts. Those of us who are introverts may not believe or recognize that we have strong leadership skills, and we certainly don’t seem like the extroverted leaders that are the norm in Western society.

My introversion informs my approach to leadership, and I’ve found that self-understanding has helped me learn how to harness my strengths as an introvert to become an influential leader and to achieve great results.

Join me as I share personal insights and experiences from my leadership journey from shy team member to recognized leader. I’ll also identify the key steps I took that helped me become a successful leader and discuss how you can apply these steps to become a leader and influencer.

Ben is also holding a workshop–Temperament-based Strategies for Excelling in the Workplace–and a presentation–Digital Self Defense—Tips, Tools, and Best Practices to Stay Safe Online–at TCUK18.

About Ben Woelk

Ben Woelk, CISSP, CPTC, is Vice President and Associate Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication (STC). A frequent conference presenter, Ben has received numerous Society and local awards, including the 2017 STC President’s Award.

Ben’s 20+ years techcomm experience includes management, SW and HW documentation, ISO 9001 documentation, instructor-led and web-based training, end user communications, and policies and procedures.

As Information Security Program Manager at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), he’s created a leading security awareness program, and teaches Computing Security and Technical Communication courses at RIT. In the EDUCAUSE Higher Education Information Security Council Awareness and Training Working Group, Ben works to develop cyber security awareness programs.

Ben guest edited STC’s February 2017 Intercom, “Personality, Temperament, and Technical Communication,” and authored Shock Proofing Your Use of Social Media (Kindle). Ben manages a virtual Introverted Leadership community, and mentors and advocates for aspiring introverted leaders.

Ben holds degrees from the University of Florida (BA), Trinity International University (MA), University of Rochester (MA, PhD Candidate), and RIT (Advanced Certificate in Technical Information Design).

Find Ben on his website, Benwoelk.com, or on Twitter as @benwoelk.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Toni Ressaire

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We are pleased to announce Toni Ressaire as a keynote speaker for TCUK 2018.

Photo of Toni Ressaire

Toni Ressaire is a technical communicator, trainer and consultant. She’s worked with companies in the software development industry on five continents. Toni has some rather non-traditional uses for traditional tech comm tools. She’s currently working with a team developing innovative tools and methodologies to answer the need for information applied to existing and new technologies (VR, AI, chatbots, etc.).

Toni is a founding member of the Information 4.0 Consortium, Tech Writers Without Borders and she’s an Adobe Partner. She is president of the US-based company Route 11 Publications and Info4Design, an information technology company based in France. She is currently living in Southern Italy.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Ben Woelk – Temperament-based Strategies for Excelling in the Workplace (workshop)

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In addition to his keynote talk, Ben Woelk will also be giving a TCUK18 workshop on “Temperament-based Strategies for Excelling in the Workplace”.

Photo of Ben Woelk

Temperament types have big impacts on work relationships. Today’s workplace presents challenges for both introverted and extraverted team members. Many workplaces are adopting open space layouts that foster teamwork but provide little opportunities for introverts to contribute as individuals. Extraverts may struggle with working with Introverts. Because of Western society’s emphasis on extraversion, many introverts feel unsuited or ill-equipped to thrive in today’s workplace and are not sure how to take that next step to increase influence and improve visibility. All personality types may have issues working with coworkers or management. Is your manager a Guardian, an Idealist, a Rational, or an Artisan? How does that change how you approach them? Suitable for all attendees, you’ll benefit from understanding your temperament and how you interact best with others.

Attendees will

  • learn general and specific insights gained from personality and temperament typing
  • identify their strengths and weaknesses
  • discuss workplace challenges
  • learn strategies to mitigate these challenges
  • create an action plan to revive and thrive

Attendees will benefit most from the workshop if they know their Myers-Briggs/temperament profile in advance. I recommend taking the tests at humanmetrics.com and keirsey.com before attending.

Ben is also holding a keynote–Lessons Learned on an Introvert’s Journey to Leadership–and a presentation–Digital Self Defense—Tips, Tools, and Best Practices to Stay Safe Online–at TCUK18.

About Ben Woelk

Ben Woelk, CISSP, CPTC, is Vice President and Associate Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication (STC). A frequent conference presenter, Ben has received numerous Society and local awards, including the 2017 STC President’s Award.

Ben’s 20+ years techcomm experience includes management, SW and HW documentation, ISO 9001 documentation, instructor-led and web-based training, end user communications, and policies and procedures.

As Information Security Program Manager at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), he’s created a leading security awareness program, and teaches Computing Security and Technical Communication courses at RIT. In the EDUCAUSE Higher Education Information Security Council Awareness and Training Working Group, Ben works to develop cyber security awareness programs.

Ben guest edited STC’s February 2017 Intercom, “Personality, Temperament, and Technical Communication,” and authored Shock Proofing Your Use of Social Media (Kindle). Ben manages a virtual Introverted Leadership community, and mentors and advocates for aspiring introverted leaders.

Ben holds degrees from the University of Florida (BA), Trinity International University (MA), University of Rochester (MA, PhD Candidate), and RIT (Advanced Certificate in Technical Information Design).

Find Ben on his website, Benwoelk.com, or on Twitter as @benwoelk.

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TCUK18 Keynote Speaker Ben Woelk – Digital Self Defense—Tips, Tools, and Best Practices to Stay Safe Online (presentation)

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Ben Woelk will also be giving a TCUK18 presentation on “Digital Self Defense—Tips, Tools, and Best Practices to Stay Safe Online”.

Photo of Ben Woelk

Do you know what it takes to stay safe online? Do you know how to protect yourself and others? Are you worried about your online privacy? Did you know your smartphone can be attacked?

Cybercriminals continue to devise new ways to attack us both at work and at home. In order to meet those threats, we need to understand how to defend against them.

Join Ben for a discussion of tips, tools, and best practices that will help you enjoy the Internet more safely, whether you’re using a personal computer, smartphone, or tablet.

Ben is also holding a workshop–Temperament-based Strategies for Excelling in the Workplace–and a keynote–Lessons Learned on an Introvert’s Journey to Leadership–at TCUK18.

About Ben Woelk

Ben Woelk, CISSP, CPTC, is Vice President and Associate Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication (STC). A frequent conference presenter, Ben has received numerous Society and local awards, including the 2017 STC President’s Award.

Ben’s 20+ years techcomm experience includes management, SW and HW documentation, ISO 9001 documentation, instructor-led and web-based training, end user communications, and policies and procedures.

As Information Security Program Manager at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), he’s created a leading security awareness program, and teaches Computing Security and Technical Communication courses at RIT. In the EDUCAUSE Higher Education Information Security Council Awareness and Training Working Group, Ben works to develop cyber security awareness programs.

Ben guest edited STC’s February 2017 Intercom, “Personality, Temperament, and Technical Communication,” and authored Shock Proofing Your Use of Social Media (Kindle). Ben manages a virtual Introverted Leadership community, and mentors and advocates for aspiring introverted leaders.

Ben holds degrees from the University of Florida (BA), Trinity International University (MA), University of Rochester (MA, PhD Candidate), and RIT (Advanced Certificate in Technical Information Design).

Find Ben on his website, Benwoelk.com, or on Twitter as @benwoelk.

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – 3di Information Solutions Ltd.

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Complexity made clear

3di has delivered technical communication and localization services to global companies, government organisations, and technology and software businesses since 2002. Our in-house team of 40 is based near Guildford, in Kraków and in Edinburgh. Quite a few of us are attending TCUK as delegates.

Our customers and suppliers love working with us and keep coming back. The people we work with day-to-day like our friendly and reliable approach and our focus on quality — we don’t let them down. The people who pay the bills like our competitive rates and our focus on efficient processes — we save them money.

Visit our stand at TCUK to:

  • discuss your work and the challenges you face
  • brief us about projects you have coming up
  • tell us about your availability to work with us and our customers

For more information visit our website www.3di-info.com.

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – Kothes

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Kothes GmbH is the leading service provider for technical documentation and CE marking. We provide a wide range of services from advice on all aspects of technical documentation to the production of operating instructions and comprehensive support in the following areas:

  • CE conformity,
  • illustrations,
  • multimedia applications,
  • Smart Information Solutions
  • translations in over 50 languages.

Kothes customers include over 1,000 manufacturers, operators and importers of technical products from all key industries. With innovative research projects and a comprehensive range of advanced training courses, the company is committed to the further development of technical documentation and smart information solutions. Kothes employs 130 people at its headquarter in Kempen (Germany), as well as at its locations in Bremen, Berlin, Stuttgart, Zurich (Switzerland) and Manchester.

kothes.com

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TCUK 2018 Sponsor – SCHEMA Group

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The SCHEMA Group develops and markets high-performance solutions for information logistics. Founded in 1995, the company employs over 120 people at its headquarters and development site in Nuremberg, Germany. Relied upon by over 500 customers, the SCHEMA ST4 Component Content Management System (CCMS) and the SCHEMA CDS Content Delivery Server number among the most widely used systems for a modular approach to technical writing and documentation. The SCHEMA ST4 Component Content Management System and the SCHEMA CDS Content Delivery Server cater to all functions relating to the creation, versioning, variant control, translation, quality assurance, publication and distribution of product information – from service information on a mobile device to the final layout for a print catalogue. SCHEMA ST4 is a flexible system that can be scaled to suit the needs of small authoring teams up to entire companies. It is also available as a standard version or as a client-specific solution. SCHEMA CDS distributes information while providing its immediate availability. The SCHEMA Group’s solutions are suitable for a broad range of applications. They are deployed in a wide variety of sectors including mechanical and plant engineering, automotive, IT, electronics, medical technology and the pharmaceutical industry. Clients such as ABB, Agilent, Andritz, Bayer, Bentley, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bombardier, Bosch, Bundesanzeiger Federal Gazette, Carl Zeiss, Caterpillar, Daimler, Datev, Doppelmayr, General Electric, KSB, MAN, Miele, Austrian Federal Railways, Philips, Porsche, Roche, Schaeffler Group, SEW Eurodrive, Siemens, SMA, Toyota, TüV, Voith, Weleda, Wincor Nixdorf and many more rely on systems from SCHEMA.

SCHEMA. Complex documents made easy. www.schema.de

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