Re: Attitudes toward tech writers (Was: Re[2]: secretary's day)

Subject: Re: Attitudes toward tech writers (Was: Re[2]: secretary's day)
From: George Mena <George -dot- Mena -at- ESSTECH -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 27 Apr 1998 16:23:55 -0700

At that time, David Sarnoff's research center (he fathered RCA and
pioneered the superheterodyne radio receiver, which we've now turned
into an entire industry or three) was about nine years old and America's
entry into World War II was three years away. I'm not really surprised
that it was listed. After all, at that time, aviation was also a
relatively new field.

Putting a radio transceiver into an airplane -- along with the
development of the airplane itself by the Wright brothers of Kitty Hawk,
NC, became possible because those technologies were properly seen as
having significant military uses. As you might expect, people later saw
the civilian applications for radio-equipped aircraft, radios and
airplanes as well (they were also brilliantly radical ideas), but we had
to go to war first to see how it all worked out.

And the reality is that very little has changed ever since 1938 on that
score, IMHO. =)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Walt Tucker [SMTP:walt_tucker -at- MENTORG -dot- COM]
> Sent: Monday, April 27, 1998 4:04 PM
> To: TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU
> Subject: Re: Attitudes toward tech writers (Was: Re[2]:
> secretary's day)
> I know the title of technical writer goes back to at least 1938.
> While
> doing some research at the local university about 10 years ago, I ran
> across a 1938 edition of the "Occupational Outlook" (published by the
> Federal Government). Just for grins I decided to look up "technical
> writer", not really expecting to find the job description. To my
> surprise,
> it was listed as a recognized occupation. The definition said
> something
> about creating instruction manuals for radio equipment. Good typing
> skills
> were listed as a basic job requirement.
> I should have photocopied that page. :-)
> -- Walt Tucker
> Mentor Graphics Corp.
> Wilsonville, OR
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> --
> "Writing is the hardest way of earning a living, with the
> possible exception of wrestling alligators."
> -- Olin Miller
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> --
> Elna Tymes (etymes -at- LTS -dot- COM) wrote:
> > Bruce-
> >
> > > --Some of the confusion about technical writers comes from the
> fact that
> > > it's a relatively new profession.
> >
> > Minor correction - it's not as new as you think. Programming had
> become
> > a recognized job title in the early 60's, though there still weren't
> > many of them, largely because there weren't many machines and they
> were
> > awfully expensive. Technical writing was a recognized profession,
> too,
> > but it was mostly hardware and military.
> (stuff deleted)
> &^~~~
> Send commands to listserv -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu (e.g., SIGNOFF
> Find TECHWR-L-related books at

Previous by Author: Re: Your Off-topic Post--Posting Rules Reminder (was Re: A Dictio nary for Women)
Next by Author: Re: Accreditation, registration, certification...
Previous by Thread: Re: Attitudes toward tech writers (Was: Re[2]: secretary's day)
Next by Thread: Re: Attitudes toward tech writers (Was: Re[2]: secretary's day)

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

Sponsored Ads