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Adobe FrameMaker

Podcast: What Is the Technical Writer's Role in Interface Design? Interview with Bogo Vatovec

Dec 14, 2008 • podcasts

Download MP3 (to download, right-click and select Save Target As)
Duration: 38 min.

In this podcast, I interview Bogo Vatovec, an expert in change management, user experience, and knowledge engineering, about the technical writer's role in interface design. Specifically, we cover the following in the podcast:

  • What the technical writer's role should be in the company
  • Why the technical writer's skills are often "accepted but not respected"
  • Why a technical writer needs to do more than just what he or she is told
  • What the technical writer's role is in relation to design and usability
  • The importance of spinning your criticisms of prototypes in positive ways
  • How early the technical writer should get involved with a project
  • The semantics and implications of names ("technical writer" versus "information designer")
  • How the role of an information designer differs from the role of a technical writer
  • Why changing the name from "writer" to some other title isn't enough
  • Why writing skills are a declining value
  • What happens when writers do more

Bogo is a senior member of the STC and a regular presenter at conferences worldwide. For example, at the last STC Summit, Bogo participated in a panel on career trends.

For more information on Bogo Vatovec, see his site at

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About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm a technical writer based in the California San Francisco Bay area. Topics I write about on this blog include technical writing, authoring and publishing tools, API documentation, tech comm trends, visual communication, technical writing career advice, information architecture and findability, developer documentation, and more. If you're a professional or aspiring technical writer, be sure to subscribe to email updates using the form above. You can learn more about me here.