RE: Learning quickly

Subject: RE: Learning quickly
From: "Pete Sanborn" <psanborn2 -at- earthlink -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 28 Nov 2001 12:47:11 -0500

"Learning Quickly" tends to be somewhat ambiguous. As I have observed by
the various responses, some posters interpret that to mean a new application
and others interpret it to mean a new technology.

I fit into the latter group. I "learn quickly" by grasping the fundamentals
of a technology and paralleling it to something else in my background that I
am familiar with. This allows me to "cut to the chase" and come up to speed
more quickly on a given technology. After I am able to parallel the new
technology to previous similar information, it simply becomes a process of
determining where the new technology deviates from the previous one.
Typically, there is less to learn from detecting the deviations than from
trying to learn each new thing from A-Z without paralleling it to something
else I already know. It also allows me to make more intuitive decisions
about the documentation and what needs to be covered in how much detail
without pestering the SMEs.

Pete Sanborn

-----Original Message-----
From: bounce-techwr-l-81537 -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
[mailto:bounce-techwr-l-81537 -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com]On Behalf Of Stephen
Sent: Wednesday, November 28, 2001 12:26 PM
Subject: FW: Learning quickly


I'd say it's a combination. I regard myself as brilliant in certain areas
so some things are just "logical" or "simple".

I, like you, learn new subjects by drafting as we get information. In
addition to what you had stated in your first missal, this method commits us
to think about what we've heard/read/coerced from SMEs and forces us (and
the SMEs) to look at the data flow. By doing this, we see where the "gaps"
are and act appropriately. This method has a great side benefit of
displaying your knowledge by asking $64K question using the "key words and
tricky phrases" in a very short time.

Memory skills, whether short or long term, are a boon. I have a short term
memory, so I can't sit and learn the entire subject before "'twas a dark and
stormy...". I've seen others not accomplish anything until they understand
the entire process and implications of change, but once they do, they are

The only exception to either method (learn everything or write from week
one) would be if you had little knowledge what you were writing about. In
that sort of case, I'd start with learning the terms and building a
glossary. That way you are still writing (which seems to be the only way we
can justify our existence at times).

Steve McDermott
Sr. Tech Writer
Premera Blue Cross

-----Original Message-----
From: John Posada [mailto:jposada01 -at- yahoo -dot- com]
Sent: Wednesday, November 28, 2001 8:20 AM


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FW: Learning quickly: From: Stephen McDermott

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