Re: Gnaargh! Or, I Am Not Psychic

Subject: Re: Gnaargh! Or, I Am Not Psychic
From: David Farbey <dfarbey -at- yahoo -dot- co -dot- uk>
To: Sarah Bouchier <Sarah -dot- Bouchier -at- exony -dot- com>, techwr-l discussion list <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 13 Sep 2006 14:23:34 +0100

Hi Sarah,

It's scarily familiar.

I know this is going to sound flippant, but the easiest thing to do in the sort of "organisation-without-a-process" you describe is to have your desk moved so you sit right in the middle of where the programmers sit. Then you make friends with them all (this is an important step and may involve food). Then you get to hear what they are doing. Still no process, but better information exchange.

CMMI, anyone?

David Farbey

Sarah Bouchier wrote:

This will, I suspect, be a familiar rant to most of you.

I've just discovered that, shortly after both I and the client went
through and checked my company's user manual and online help against the
product, the development team made some major changes to the UI without
telling the doc team.

Normally I'd have picked this up through the paranoiac (though
justified, I feel!) checking I do anytime I have a few minutes spare,
but what with it being the last few days before the release deadline I
was working ten hour lunchless days as it was, and I +really+ didn't
have the spare time to go through the entire product to see if anything
had changed.

Unfortunately, there's scarcely a process here, never mind one that
includes the technical authors. The closest thing is the bug tracking
system, but apparently most of those changes didn't go through it (and
even if they had, I've yet to train the developers to assign bugs to
documentation after fixing).

What is the best process you've ever worked with (or dreamed of) that
enables technical authors to find out about changes/new projects etc
before the very last minute is past?

The prize for the best answer is me doing my damnedest to implement it
here :)



WebWorks ePublisher Pro for Word features support for every major Help format plus PDF, HTML and more. Flexible, precise, and efficient content delivery. Try it today!

Easily create HTML or Microsoft Word content and convert to any popular Help file format or printed documentation. Learn more at

You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- infoinfocus -dot- com -dot-
To unsubscribe send a blank email to techwr-l-unsubscribe -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
or visit

To subscribe, send a blank email to techwr-l-join -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com

Send administrative questions to lisa -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit for more resources and info.


Gnaargh! Or, I Am Not Psychic: From: Sarah Bouchier

Previous by Author: Re: Word text boundaries
Next by Author: Re: Too old?
Previous by Thread: RE: Gnaargh! Or, I Am Not Psychic
Next by Thread: Re: Gnaargh! Or, I Am Not Psychic

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads