A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.

DuBay, William H.

7 found.

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Get on Board the XML Train

The next century will be an XML century, make no mistake about it. All our documents, even checks, credit card slips, personal letters, recipes, technical documents, everything, will benefit from XML technologies. Students are already learning XML in schools, and big businesses are using it to publish their databases on the web. The appearance of the electronic spreadsheet ten years ago changed the way we do business. XML will change the way we write documents.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (1999). Articles>Information Design>Standards>XML


It's a People Thing: The Switch to Reader-Centered Documents

One of the central causes of poor writing is a lack of a thorough understanding of the audience. What are the problems that readers have to solve, and how can we help them? Too many writers believe that people will understand what they have written just because the writers themselves understand it. Good writing always begins with a study of the readers' reading skills, their actual physical situation, the problems they face, the motivation they need, and the actions they need to take.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (2003). Articles>Writing>Rhetoric>User Centered Design


The Literacy Alarm: It's Everyone's Problem

Between 21 and 23 percent of Americans (40 million) are functioning at Level 1 literacy rating, defined simply as "not having adequate reading skills for daily life." The rate for California is 24 %, for Orange County, 20%. These are people who cannot read, must struggle to read, or cannot cope with unfamiliar or complex information.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (2004). Articles>Writing>Literacy


Overcoming Word Inflation: The Benefits of Minimalist Design

Writers are great inflators. We can take a simple half page describing a computer interface and in a few hours transform it into a 35-page document complete with glossaries, type conventions, overviews, introductions, mission statements, charts, clip art, and copyright pages full of disclaimers, trademark acknowledgements, and credits. The results will make the people in marketing and sales simply glow.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (2004). Articles>Writing>Minimalism


The Plain Language Process: Steps for Effective Writing

Effective writing does not come by chance. The creation of all documents, including forms, labels, websites, business letters, legal notices, manuals, procedures, reports, and proposals, usually involves the following key steps.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (2005). Articles>Writing>Minimalism


Training: The Path to Certification   (PDF)

We can avoid much of the controversy surrounding certification when we consider it as part of a qualification process. Certification has two primary results. It provides candidates with the most effective way to achieve the required skills. It also provides us with a way to define the skills and skill levels that make us a profession. The Appraisal Institute and the American Medical Writers Association are examples of groups that offer training as part of their certification process. We can promote certification and standards within the Society and in cooperation with academic programs and industry.

DuBay, William H. STC Proceedings (2001). Careers>Certification>TC


XML Arrives in Word 2003

The XML train is finally pulling into the station. It brings an ocean change in the way we create, store, and manage information. In October of last year, Microsoft released Office 2003, which brings the promise of XML to the desktop. Previously, Word 2000 saved only the Properties of documents in an XML module in files converted to HTML. In this new edition, you can save or export all Office documents as XML documents. Using XML tags, we can now identify various elements of our documents for manipulation, storage, and retrieval as you would data in a data bank. It also enables us to more easily share information in those documents across other applications (including Web applications), networks, and operating systems.

DuBay, William H. Impact Information (2005). Articles>Document Design>XML>Microsoft Word

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