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Date-based archives

  1. Reader Question: "My Wish List for Technical Writing Tools"

  2. Moving Between the Agora and the Desert

  3. 7 Ways to Increase Flare's Search Engine Optimization in Google's Results

  4. Knowledge Has a New Shape, and It's Not the Book

  5. Podcast: Include It All, Filter It Afterwards -- Interview with Mark Baker

  6. The Rebirth of My Podcast

  7. My Upcoming Presentations at User Assistance Europe in Manchester, England

  8. A Few Notes from Too Big To Know

  9. What Does "Every Page Is Page One" and "Include It All, Filter It Afterward" Mean?

  10. Five Ways to Avoid the "Congratulations" Cliche as You Start a User's Guide

  11. Book Review: Your Brain at Work, by David Rock

  12. Incorporating Learning into Tech Comm Deliverables

  13. Implementing Highlighting in Madcap Flare's HTML5 Output

  14. Creating Video Tutorials for Android and iPhone Mobile Apps

  15. Exploring Flare's Mobile Webhelp Format in Depth

  16. Retina Display and Screen Capture Sizes in Online Help

  17. 10 Realizations While Writing Documentation for a Mobile App

  18. Staying Out of Maintenance Mode

  19. Writing in the Trenches Versus Writing on the Sidelines

  20. Upcoming STC Editing SIG Webinar: Writing and Editing Scripts for Video Tutorials

  21. Halloween Human Organ Donation Station

  22. Company Strategies for Blog Content That Avoids Controversy

  23. PowerPoint Slides from Lavacon Presentation on Producing Professional Sounding Audio in Video Tutorials

  24. The Double-Edged Sword of Hiding Controversial Information

  25. Podcast on Technical Writing

  26. Professional Technical Writing Careers -- Answers to Questions, by Cheryl Landes

  27. Book Review: No Easy Day

  28. Specializing in the Next Big Thing: A Few Lingering Thoughts from Lavacon

  29. Professional Technical Writing Careers -- Questions and Answers, by Steve Goldberg

  30. Exploring the Tech Comm Paradox

  31. How to Create Video Tutorials -- A Five Step Process

  32. How to Change the World

  33. Incorporating Elements of Speech into Writing

  34. Keeping Scripts Fluid When Recording Video Tutorials

  35. Why Isn't Spoken Language Easier for Writers?

  36. Bringing the Scientific Mind to Tech Comm

  37. Quick Reference Guide Gallery

  38. Comparing Zumba to Technical Writing

  39. First Day of School

  40. The Blame Game of RTFM

  41. Blending Tech Comm with Support

  42. Messages from Sponsors -- August 2012

  43. Summer Is Over, School Begins Again

  44. Guest Post: Core Skills for Technical Writers Often Overlooked

  45. Using the Proximity Principle to Design Online Help Navigation

  46. Why Glossaries Help Users Find Information

  47. This Theme Is Now Responsive

  48. Applying Progressive Information Disclosure to Online Help Navigation

  49. Misconceptions about Topic-Based Authoring

  50. The Importance of Contextual Navigation, or Cross References in Topics

  51. Unconscious Meaning Suggested from the Structure and Shape of Help

  52. Why Do We Need Navigation At All?

  53. Writing as a Holy Calling

  54. Taxonomy, Metadata, and Search: Notes from Seth Earley's Confab Workshop

  55. Returning to Findability

  56. How Can Newbies Learn Tech Comm Tools Given Their Cost?

  57. Writing User-Centered Documentation, or, My Best Days as a Technical Writer

  58. Turning Point (Wikis)

  59. Writing Is Harder Than Most Think (Wikis)

  60. A Guiding Metaphor (Wikis)

  61. Community and Collaboration (Wikis)

  62. Some Wiki Basics (Wikis)

  63. Is Collaborative Authoring Over-Hyped?

  64. The Need for Constant Updates (Wikis)

  65. My Journey To and From Wikis: Why I Adopted Wikis, Why I Veered Away, and a New Model

  66. Upcoming STC Webinar: Creating Help in a Wiki Environment

  67. An Ingenious Way to Solicit Community Contributions, or, How to Replace the Screen for an Asus Laptop UL50AG

  68. Content Strategy Workshops: Interview with Rahel Bailie

  69. When Wikis Succeed and Fail

  70. Confab 2012: Thoughts and Reactions

  71. 15 Tips for a Successful Conference Experience

  72. How Character Drives Story -- Book Review of Ann Patchett's State of Wonder

  73. Q&A: What should my major be for a career in technical writing?

  74. Trying New Things, Changing Interests

  75. Book Review: Mistborn, by Brandon Sanderson

  76. Stuck in a system

  77. Asking questions is more important than finding answers -- why?

  78. Differences between blogs and wikis, and why you might need both

  79. Leveraging the wisdom of the 80/20 rule: Focusing on content that matters

  80. A Love Affair with Grapefruit

  81. Guest Post: Why I Love Wikis

  82. Finally Biking to Work

  83. Subpage Titles on Wikis -- Challenges, Conventions, and Compromises

  84. Guest Post: Wikis Are the Future of Technical Documentation

  85. Guest Post: A Week in My Life as a Technical Writer (with some humor)

  86. Guest Post: Is Technical Writing Creative?

  87. Thinking About a Social Media Strategy: A Few Elements to Consider

  88. Technical Communication Metrics: What Should You Track?

  89. Conferences I'm Attending This Year

  90. Why don't technical writers use wikis — or do they?

  91. Incensed at "Laid-back" Categorization of Technical Writing Career

  92. Why I Love Audible

  93. My New Email Strategy: The Email Game and ActiveInbox

  94. Webinar Recording: Designing Quick Reference Guides

  95. Webinar Recording -- Organizing Help Content: Breaking Out of Topic-Based Hierarchies

  96. Looking at The Peter Principle, Dilbert Principle, and Parkinson's Law

  97. On Being an Individual Contributor

  98. A Life of Its Own: An Essay About an Article That Was Never Published

  99. A Reverse Approach to Help Authoring: Writing Documentation Post-Release

  100. Brainstorming Solutions to Volunteer Management/Engagement

  101. Messages from Sponsors -- January 2012

  102. STC Certification: An In-Depth Interview with Steve Jong

  103. Interview with Ugur Akinci about Technical Communication

  104. Upcoming Webinar: Designing Quick Reference Guides

  105. Graduate Research Findings about Technical Communication and Blogs in the Workplace

  106. Using JIRA to Track Writing Assignments

  107. A Lifetime of Reading Versus a Lifetime of Writing

  108. The "Home Depot Model" of Findability, or, Social Search

  109. Looking at Breadcrumbs in a New Way

About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm an API technical writer based in the Seattle area. On this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, AI, information architecture, content strategy, writing processes, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out my API documentation course if you're looking for more info about documenting APIs. Or see my posts on AI and AI course section for more on the latest in AI and tech comm.

If you're a technical writer and want to keep on top of the latest trends in the tech comm, be sure to subscribe to email updates below. You can also learn more about me or contact me. Finally, note that the opinions I express on my blog are my own points of view, not that of my employer.