Latest Podcast Is Posted on Tech Writer Voices

I just posted a podcast with Thom Haller on Tech Writer Voices. It’s an interesting podcast, with the central focus on organizing your site’s information around tasks the users want to perform. We write help documentation the same way of course, but I hadn’t really thought of applying the same principles to a website’s information.

Thom Haller

I haven’t yet applied the GECKO principle Thom talks about to my blog or podcast, but I plan to. With Tech Writer Voices, I have made subscribing to the podcast the main task I want the user to perform, and have included easy links for the user to click and listen to information. Perhaps I can include more instruction on how to actually move the MP3 files to various MP3 players, and how to subscribe with RSS readers.

It’s surprising to me that despite all the focus on user analysis, user-centered design, and user feedback, I don’t really have a standard method for going about it. That’s why I like Thom’s GECKO principle (Gather, Evaluation, Chunk, Know, Optimize). It takes a concept that we know we should do and puts it into an easy framework to follow.

To get started more with collecting user tasks, I ask you, reader, what tasks or things you’re looking to do on this blog or on Tech Writer Voices?

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By Tom Johnson

I'm a technical writer working for The 41st Parameter in San Jose, California. I'm primarily interested in topics related to technical writing, such as visual communication (video tutorials, illustrations), findability (organization, information architecture), API documentation (code examples, programming), and web publishing (web platforms, interactivity) -- pretty much everything related to technical writing. If you're trying to keep up to date about the field of technical communication, subscribe to my blog either by RSS or by email. To learn more about me, see my About page. You can also contact me if you have questions.