New article in API doc course: Using Oxygen XML in docs-as-code workflows

I added a new article in my API doc course about how to use Oxygen XML in a docs-as-code workflow. Oxygen XML is a robust authoring and publishing tool for technical content that allows you to author in multiple formats (Markdown, HTML, or XML) as well as publish to multiple outputs (HTML-based webhelp, PDF, and more). Although traditionally used for XML authoring and publishing, Oxygen XML has expanded its support with Markdown files, especially with the DITA's recent support for Lightweight Markdown. In this new article, you'll learn more about Oxygen XML, different workflows you can use to publish in a docs-as-code model, Git integration with Oxygen XML, supported Markdown formats, how to get started, and more. (Note that this is a sponsored post.) Read more here: Using Oxygen XML with docs-as-code workflows. Read more »

Biking and public transportation in Renton and Seattle: Solving the first-mile and last-mile problems

Last month I wrote a post about returning to normal, and as part of that return, I wanted to commute to work. Part of why I like the commute is because for the past decade, I'd been biking to work. That biking window provided me with a built-in time for daily exercise, and I also liked the space to wind up and wind down for the day. When I lived in California, I was fortunate enough to live next to a paved trail (following a canal) that took me 75% of the way to work; the remaining 25% was along a road with a bike shoulder, and only 5% on a treacherous road (which has since been fixed for cyclists). But biking to work from Renton to Seattle is a different problem to solve. In this post, I'll talk about strategies for the first mile (getting to the transit hub) and the last mile (getting from the transit endpoint to your actual destination). Even though this post will have specifics about my area, the same struggle likely exists for anyone trying to bike to work in any city. Read more »

Upcoming webinar -- 'Best practices in API docs: Product overviews and getting started tutorials'

I'm giving an online webinar, sponsored by the STC Washington, D.C.-Baltimore Chapter, on October 28 about product overviews and getting started tutorials in API docs. This post provides details about the webinar and a link to sign up. Read more »

tcworld China 2021 keynote: 'Tech comm and marketing: How to make your tech comm group more visible to those within your company'

I recently gave a keynote presentation at tcworld China 2021 on the topic of tech comm and marketing. This post provides a recording of the presentation, slides, and detailed notes for the presentation. Read more »

New article in API doc course: 'Ensuring documentation coverage with each software release'

I added a new article in my API doc course called Ensuring documentation coverage with each software release. Getting a good handle on your release process -- such as understanding the cadence of releases, how features are tracked and tagged in different phases, and other checkpoints prior to the release signoff -- is central to thriving in any documentation role. Providing doc coverage for each release ensures you don't accrue documentation debt, and it boosts user satisfaction for the new features being released. This article adds to about a dozen other process-oriented articles in the processes and methodology section. Read more »