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Subject:Re: Techwriting after the boom From:Robert_Johnson -at- percussion -dot- com To:"TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com> Date:Mon, 9 Jun 2003 08:35:41 -0400
Andrew Plato wrote:
"Yet, sometime in the past decade or so, this concept of the SME started
floating around. And tech writers were suddenly one step away from the
Rather than learn the subject matter and then combine that with excellent
writing skills, SME-centric technical writing was free to focus on one-off
and relegate all subject matter issues to somebody else. This leads to bad
documentation and people who call themselves writers who don't really
Just for the record, I can tell you from personal experience that the
concept of SME predates the 90s. It was a common term when I worked as a
historian for a US Army operational testing organization in the late
1980s, and clearly was a well-worn concept by then. It would take some
research to determine exactly when the term was coined, and which way it
migrated (IT to the military or military to IT) My guess would be it
originated in the 1950's, when nifty acronyms and contractions were all
the rage in both business and the government, but that's only somewhat
educated guess. Further discussion would really be off topic, so I will
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