Re: Techno-fuddyduddy getting anxious

Subject: Re: Techno-fuddyduddy getting anxious
From: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>
To: "Nancy Allison" <maker -at- verizon -dot- net>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2012 10:44:18 -0800

I would say I'm a 3 or 4 as well, to a great extent because I concentrate most of my techno-absorption efforts at ramping up to 8 or so on what I'm actually documenting

Luxuriously funded, tell-us-what-we-need-and-we'll-spring-for-it startups went away with the dotcoms. Today's startups are back to pre-dotcom SOP, spending as little as possible to conserve limited capital so they don't crash and burn before their IPO. I haven't seen any places like the first startup I ever worked at, where the office was furnished with old lawn chairs and folding tables they got at Goodwill, so I guess there's still a good supply of affordable used office fittings from defunct mortgage and realtor offices.

Most likely you will be asked to write the first set of docs in either Word (if they don't know about OpenOffice and LibreOffice, tell them and watch them react as if you just pulled something sharp out of their backsides), or if you're not their first attempt at getting docs done, whatever tool their last contractor convinced them to buy that nobody in-house knows how to use. The flip side is, being able to walk in the door 1099 with your own computer loaded with genuine tech writer tools that you know sideways, slantways, longways, backways, frontways and squareways can be a big plus with a lot of them and you won't find yourself locked out of very many startups because you don't know some exotic authoring tool.

BTW, I'm still using a flip phone I got in 2005, and I haven't ever used text messaging, the camera or any of the multimedia functions.

Gene Kim-Eng

----- Original Message ----- From: "Nancy Allison" <maker -at- verizon -dot- net>

I'm getting concerned about my out-of-touchness with tools and technologies.

When I was freelancing, for a while I tried to land contracts with startups because I figured they were likely to be the most open-minded places, with no prior expectations as to what user documentation should be like.

I was totally wrong! Every startup I worked at wanted to use the cheapest possible tools, which meant MS Office because everybody had it, and the simplest possible output: PDF and online help spun out from the .doc files with no alteration.


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Techno-fuddyduddy getting anxious: From: Nancy Allison

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