A Few Conversations at Doc Train — User Personas, Data Conversion, and Simplified Technical English

Listen here: While I was at Doc Train, I recorded a few brief podcasts with several people. Unfortunately I had some microphone issues so the sound quality isn't good. But you can still hear them. I talked with experts on user personas, data conversion, and simplified technical English. I talked with Joan LaSalle of Lasselle-Ramsay about user personas, ethnographies, and user-centered design. I also talked with Don Brid...

My First Carcast: Driving Home from Vancouver After the Doc Train Conference

Listen here: While driving home from the Documentation and Training Conference in Vancouver, B.C., I recorded my first carcast. It was a really interesting experience. I hadn't planned to do a carcast, and then on the way home I was a little bored and thought hey, why not try a carcast? I first heard about carcasting from a carcast Tee Morris did (see episode 3: Podcasting on the Go). Carcasting is actually a lot of fun...

Free Conference Call Recording/Podcasting Service at FreeConferencing.LiveOffice.com

I've been experimenting with a free conference call recording/podcasting service called FreeConferencing from LiveOffice — free if you don't mind calling long-distance to Minnesota, U.S.A., that is. Most people have free long-distance with their cell phone plans. Or even if you don't have free long distance, you can use Skype and get long distance for nearly free. What's cool about this service is that it allows you to record the conversa...

Managing Virtual Teams: Getting the Most from Wikis, Blogs, and Other Collaborative Tools — Interview with the authors

Listen here: In this podcast, I talk with Katherine (Kit) Brown, Brenda Huettner, and Char James-Tanny about their latest book, Managing Virtual Teams: Getting the Most from Wikis, Blogs, and Other Collaborative Tools. Some of the topics from the podcast include the following: Challenges with virtual teams How to hold meetings virtually Selecting tools for virtual interactions Managing employees on a remote team Social ...

How Blogs Dominate Google — One Highly-Linked-To Blog Can Rule the World

"The See-Through CEO," an article by Clive Thompson in the March issue of Wired, provides one of the most compelling arguments for companies to start blogging that I think can be made: Google search rankings. Because Google's search results algorithm is heavily based on links (the more people who link to you, the higher you rise in the search results), getting hip-deep in the blogosphere can make you rise to the first page of Google. I'm...

Jott—a Free Voicemail to Transcribed Text Memo Service

I just discovered Jott today. Jott transcribes voicemail you leave on its service as text, and then sends that text to you via e-mail. So if you're driving along and you have a memo to note, instead of writing it down, you just call a special Jott toll-free number, speak your memo, and Jott transcribes it as text and e-mails it to you. You can also "jot" voicemail transcribed memos to others you've added to your Jott contact list. It's a ...

Podcast Downloads Report -- About 8,500 downloads so far

Tech Writer Voices episodes have been downloaded about 8,500 times so far. If I interviewed you at some point and you're curious about the downloads, see this Podtrac report. I have a special Podtrac redirect code on each file that allows me to measure downloads. We now have more than 500 subscribers. With each podcast, we gain about 20 new subscribers.

Interview with George Hayhoe, editor of Technical Communication Journal, on Technical Writing in China and Korea

Listen here: Keith Hoffman, president of the Madison Wisconsin Four Lakes Chapter, talks with George Hayhoe, editor of the Technical Communication Journal, about the emergence of technical communications in China and Korea, and the forces behind the push for technical communicators. The interview touches on some of the following questions: What is the technical writing profession like in China? Did anything surprise you...

Podcast Site Redesign -- I'm Now Using the Leia Theme

I redesigned the Tech Writer Voices site with the Leia theme. I like how it looks, even though I think the code in the Leia theme isn't the easiest to work with. Mark Ghosh, who recently mentioned my site on Weblog Tools Collection (thanks Mark), describes the Leia theme as follows: Well put together, two column, striking, well structured, featureful theme for Wordpress. Very goth (?) undertones and very cool and different look and feel....

If you missed my presentation, here it is online (delivered through WordPress)

If you missed my presentation today, here it is online: presentation home. Also relevant are some posts I published last week. Read my posts on themes and plugins. If you don't have time to read those posts, at least check out my theme viewer and plugins used page. And don't forget the post that increased my readership from 80 subscribers to 250: Twenty Usability Tips for your Blog: Condensed from Dozens of Blogger's Experiences. Where ar...

Where I'm Going, My Aspirations -- Everything Seems to Align with Web 2.0

While we were eating Thai food last night in Vancouver, one of my technical writing buddies asked where I'm going. He always seems to ask me this, like when you look at a menu and ask, what are you ordering? But more philosophical. It's an open-ended question that provokes thought. I'm young with an open road ahead of me. Since I finished my presentation today at the Doc Train conference, I returned to my hotel room (see my panoramic hote...

More Topics

Using Blogs as CMS Set up parent and child pages Call list subpages function in sidebar Use posts more than pages Define user roles Building Subscribers Write interesting posts Link to highly-read blogs Comment on other blogs Add blog to e-mail signature Generating Frequent Content Stay engaged Keep posts short Most Common Reservations Time What to say Fear of the unknown Confusion about setup Not convinced of returns

Basic Tutorial

WordPress.com vs. WordPress.org Installing WordPress Logging in Finding WordPress Tutorials Writing Posts and Pages Visual editor and code editor Editing Posts and Pages Creating Categories Enabling Permalinks Adding Users Allowing Comments Activating Plugins Writing Posts and Pages Switching Themes Folder Structure Finding Theme Files Changing Title and Tagline Searching WordPress Codex and Forum Recommended Resource: http://codex.word...

WordPress as a CMS

Is WordPress a Web Content Management System? Yes, WordPress is a content management system. It contains many of the features that common content management systems have (see this Wikipedia entry for a description of content management systems). Collaborative authoring. Multiple users can publish information to the same site. Users can own specific pages that they have editing rights to. Users can log into the site from any Internet brows...

Different Uses of WordPress

You can use WordPress for much more than just a personal blog. The following sites show the variety of WordPress implementations: Chapter site: Suncoast STC | STC Alaska Special Interest Site (SIG): Hyperviews Competition Information: FTCC News: NY Times Store: Moo [printing] Hypertext book: GAM3R 7H3ORY Travel Guide: 71miles Online Magazine: XXL Magazine and Cebu Living. Budget: Mo.neytrack.in Company site: http://www.obuweb.com/ | http...