Content Musings

Musings about the discipline of content publishing.

Posts
  • Content Musings

    Why is content changing?

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    As far as I can see the main change in the development of new content is the continued expansion of video content. Why is this the case? Guesses - Bandwidth is cheaper and faster. Nobody wants to read anything anymore Video is cheaper to develop now and...
  • Content Musings

    New Title, New Challenge–same old me

    • 1 Comments
    For the longest time, I’ve self-identified as a “writer” or “technical writer.” These are the only terms that adequately expressed to the outside world what my job was. My title was always something like “programmer writer, ” “content publisher’ or “content...
  • Content Musings

    PocketBracket was fun

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    I want to plug the Windows Phone 7 app called PocketBracket . You’ll note that I use the past tense even though March Madness isn’t over. Well, it’s over for me. Thanks a lot Michigan State and Mizzou. PocketBracket was easy to use on the Windows Phone...
  • Content Musings

    Phone 7 a year later

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    A year ago, I wrote a post about my switch from Windows Mobile Phone to Windows Phone 7. Reminder: I work in Microsoft Office, where I am just a smart phone user. I have no insider information on any of the Windows phones. This weekend, hoping to step...
  • Content Musings

    Business to Business

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    When you are in business school, many discussions center on two well-known types of business model: consumer and business-to-business. In my work environment, these two models are not generally well understood. To some extent, that makes sense, as the...
  • Content Musings

    Problems with comments

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    I have heard from two readers that they tried to comment and were unable to, losing the comment upon trying to submit. That is a bummer. I certainly would love to hear what anyone says, and if you want to just test the comment feature, post a "Hello,...
  • Content Musings

    Future content publishing

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    There is a saying that if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. I don’t know what that means. So I’ve chosen to ignore that basic message wrapped in an aphorism and focus on my mentalist powers: What do I see as the future of...
  • Content Musings

    Thanks for the support, product support

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    To any avid readers of this blog, and you both know who you are, thanks for the heads up. I recently had a couple technical issues with my blog that were corrected by the hard work of a team in product support. In the olden days, we called this “technical...
  • Content Musings

    Moving GTD to Windows Phone 7

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      I have given my Windows Phone 7 a bit of time and I ready to blog on using it for doing GTD. I am a GTD fan boy, full disclosure. Also, despite working for Microsoft, I know next to nothing about Windows Mobile anything, save what I've learned...
  • Content Musings

    Email by the numbers

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    If email effectiveness were a stat, like a baseball batting average, what would your average be? Before I lose both baseball fans and email fans, hear me out. Batting average is a simple stat (too simple for hardcore baseball fans), but it highlights...
  • Content Musings

    It's called Share POINT

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    I used SharePoint when it was called OSS; it had so much promise. I'm guessing this was around 1999 or 2000. I was looking for a new way to review technical documentation. The discussions feature looked so cool. Unfortunately, it never really worked....
  • Content Musings

    GTD, don’t fail me now

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    That is an allusion to the James Brown quote, “Feet don’t fail me now.” If you are young enough not to see the parallelism, good for you. I’m what some people might call a hardcore GTDer. I’ve used the system for over 5 years by my reckoning. I’ve moved...
  • Content Musings

    Should I become a Programmer Writer?

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    Every once-in-a-while I get this question, "Hey, should I become a programmer writer?" There's a simple answer, "no." Here's why: it's not really a job anymore. Let's dispense with the title itself: programmer writer, for most, has...
  • Content Musings

    Consistency is the last refuge of weak

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    I have never heard a reader of technical documentation say, "You know what what I like about the Big Company's documentation? They consistently bold face programming elements and keywords but never parameters. It's like they read my mind about how...
  • Content Musings

    The Myth of the “smart guy”

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    Throughout my time in software this myth has been pervasive. Usually the "smart guy" is highly technical and no one can do what he can do. (It's always been a dude in my experience.) Often this guy is highly responsible for the initial demo...
  • Content Musings

    Attention span compromised

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    I admit it. My attention span has been compromised. How else can I explain that I won't read any blogs that look like MSDN content-- all words and, well, more words. I just won't do it. And, that cuts off a lot of content. I am, by no means, an early...
  • Content Musings

    Take this blog and repurpose it

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    It is about time I repurpose this blog. After working on a blog for almost two years, the facts speak for themselves. I can see that my blog will never be prolific. It won’t be a daily blog you have to check. I tend toward the more in depth treatment...
  • Content Musings

    GTD, Kanban, Scrum, gets all the credit

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    The funny thing about any new methodology you might try is that the method seems to get all the credit in the end. Here's a paraphrasing of  conversation with some co-workers. One of them is trying to convince his team to avoid a bumpy road traveled...
  • Content Musings

    Mr. Kanban meet Mr. Constraints

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    Our team has been using a kanban system for several months now. We switched from a modified scrum. One of my colleagues, David C, is a dedicated professional who finds project management fascinating. Please, do not hold that against him. David C is the...
  • Content Musings

    Passion

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    The subject of passion enters a lot of discussions at Microsoft. You hear this in the form of encouragement about your career. Do something you're passionate about and you'll never work a day in your life. To writers: Find what you're passionate about...
  • Content Musings

    Ambiguity

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    I've been having two thoughts lately about my blog. First, I need to change its focus so I write more; Second, I need to write more. Well this post will be the kick-off to the focus changing. I don't write on an SDK these days so the title is a bit of...
  • Content Musings

    Thinking like a user is hard

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    To develop effective documentation for users, the writing team should understand the experience of the user. This is harder than it sounds. Writers, like anyone who works in software, build up a tolerance for the vagaries of software was it moves through...
  • Content Musings

    Evolution of a job title

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    While the title of this blog is SDK writer, I do not write for an SDK team at this time. My job responsibilities have evolved. Presently, I write Help documentation for our product, Team Foundation Server. My job title at Microsoft is Programming Writer...
  • Content Musings

    Scenario Cards - Advance organizers

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    I recently attended a course on Minimalism, taught by Joann Hackos. It was a good and right in line with my thoughts on SDK docs, the normal subject of this blog. In a doc set, navigation and advance organizers are not always easy to reconcile. To that...
  • Content Musings

    Ham Sandwich

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    The subject of a ham sandwich came up at our daily meeting and it got me wondering. No, that's not the end of the blog post. Seriously, is there any sandwich funnier than a ham sandwich? Turkey sandwich isn't funny. A set up for joke is going to start...
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