RE: Request for comments on my Structured Writing series

Subject: RE: Request for comments on my Structured Writing series
From: <mbaker -at- analecta -dot- com>
To: "'Julie Stickler'" <jstickler -at- gmail -dot- com>, "'Robert Lauriston'" <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 18 May 2016 18:52:55 -0400

Thanks for the comment Julie. I should have stated the intended audience in
my initial request.

The intended audience is writers, information architects, content
strategists, and developers who are considering their overall content
development strategy. It is really not about how to do individual algorithms
like single sourcing in isolation. In isolation, they are solved problems.
It is about how to put together a system that does several algorithms at
once. For that, I think, you do need to know how each of them works, and
what kinds of structures drive them. And from that point you can figure out
if an off the shelf product does what you need or not.

Thanks,

Mark

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+mbaker=analecta -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+mbaker=analecta -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf
Of Julie Stickler
Sent: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 3:30 PM
To: Robert Lauriston
Cc: TECHWR-L Writing
Subject: Re: Request for comments on my Structured Writing series

Who is the audience for this book, developers? Because I agree with Robert,
I've been single sourcing via tools for over a decade now, so I'm not really
all that concerned with the algorithms used to transform my
source into different media. Your article feels way too technical to me
(and I'm the sort of nerd who likes getting into the code).

If I were a newbie technical writing picking up this book to learn about
single sourcing, you would have scared me off entirely with this approach.
Single sourcing really not all that hard to do (at least it hasn't been for
me). Especially if you never got too attached to the idea of writing linear
documents. I was trained to "chunk" right off the bat in school, which
makes assembly and re-use much easier concepts to adopt than if I'd spent
decades writing book format manuals.

On Wed, May 18, 2016 at 2:35 PM, Robert Lauriston <robert -at- lauriston -dot- com>
wrote:

> It feels very dated, like it was written in the 90s, when structured
> writing and single-sourcing were new concepts rather than standard
> practices embodied in off-the-shelf tools that have been evolving for
> 20 years.
>
> Thus the presentation seems backward to me. We're not starting from
> zero. People single-source using off-the-shelf tools, in some cases
> enhanced with custom code that has been in place for a while. Most of
> us write in a WYSIWYG editor in Flare / FrameMaker/ Oxygen /
> Confluence / whatever, then generate web help, PDF, static web site
> pages, etc. from templates. It's interesting to know what's going on
> under the hood (and essential if you're developing templates or custom
> code), but starting the piece with such a low-level explanation
> exaggerates its importance over more crucial considerations, such as
> total cost of ownership.
>
> On Wed, May 18, 2016 at 10:56 AM, <mbaker -at- analecta -dot- com> wrote:
> > TechWhirl magazine has just published the latest in my series on
> structured
> > writing (http://techwhirl.com/single-sourcing-algorithm/), which is
> > scheduled to become a book from XML Press. A big reason for
> > serializing
> the
> > book on TechWhirl first is to get feedback that will help me improve
> > the book. I'd be really grateful if anyone who is interested would
> > be
> willing to
> > read the latest article or any others in the series and give me some
> > feedback, either on the site or to me personally (mbaker at analecta
> > dot com).
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>



--
Julie Stickler
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Visit TechWhirl for the latest on content technology, content strategy and
content development | http://techwhirl.com

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as mbaker -at- analecta -dot- com -dot-

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info.

Looking for articles on Technical Communications? Head over to our online
magazine at http://techwhirl.com

Looking for the archived Techwr-l email discussions? Search our public
email archives @ http://techwr-l.com/archives

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Visit TechWhirl for the latest on content technology, content strategy and content development | http://techwhirl.com

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You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- web -dot- techwr-l -dot- com -dot-

To unsubscribe send a blank email to
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Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit
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Looking for articles on Technical Communications? Head over to our online magazine at http://techwhirl.com

Looking for the archived Techwr-l email discussions? Search our public email archives @ http://techwr-l.com/archives


References:
Request for comments on my Structured Writing series: From: mbaker
Re: Request for comments on my Structured Writing series: From: Robert Lauriston
Re: Request for comments on my Structured Writing series: From: Julie Stickler

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