A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.


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Making Sense of Information   (PowerPoint)

The process of organizing information and presenting it in whatever format makes it most meaningful to the user.

Deshpande, Shashank. STC India (2003). Presentations>Information Design


Management Stem Overview   (PDF)

Welcome to the Management Stem! What is Management? We define it as the “art” of getting things done -through and with other people. Through a variety of discussions, workshops and presentations, we’ll share case studies, tools, techniques, theory AND practical advice about managing projects and managing people.

Watt, Carolyn L. STC Proceedings (1995). Presentations>Management


Managing a Distributed Documentation Group   (PDF)

A distributed documentation group is one in which people work together from distant locations, The new problem in managing such a group is that casual, face-to-face communication is missing. Technological solutions include source control, email, groupware, telephone, and the World Wide Web. Human solutions may be even more important. Autonomy, explicit standards, various ways to meet, and deliberately working across locations build the necessary communications and trust.

Jackson, Ken. STC Proceedings (1996). Presentations>Management>Collaboration>Online


Managing a Documentation Project: A Guide

This a short video overview of managing a documentation project. It's something we put together as a test of some of the functionality of Techsmith's Camtasia software.

Pratt, Ellis. Cherryleaf (2009). Presentations>Documentation>Project Management


Managing Documentation Projects

A presentation to tcworld India offering advice about managing technical writing projects.

Dhanagopal, Kumar. (2011). Presentations>Project Management>Documentation>Planning


Managing Modular Documentation Using a Database   (PDF)

While implementing a Modular Documentation Method and the development of Responsive Hypermanuals (Lettvin, 1999), concerns were raised as to how to effectively manage the potential explosion of seemingly fractured document components (modules) while maintaining key infrastructure and quality assurance mechanism already in place. This paper examines one unique solution to this problem: building a web-based database application that manages and tracks modules, documents and resources for any documentation project. In addition, it has a built-in structure for handling a robust documentation process. Some advantages and obstacles in developing a modular documentation database solution for the web are discussed.

Earley, James M. STC Proceedings (2000). Presentations>Documentation>Online


Managing Project Expectations   (PDF)

For a writer at the beginning of a project, the process of identifying the assumptions and expectations of the team that he or she is working with is as critical as the writing effort itself. Through discussion and review, the writer can help the team focus, from a writing point of view, on the risks and dependencies that are inherent in any project. While this process may not aid in avoiding seen and unforeseen problems later in the project, it does establish a context from which the writer can communicate to the team in way they will understand. It also provides an opportunity to make clear to the team the needs of the writer. This paper provides an approach for the writer to take to establish a context by which to identify and manage the expectations of others.

Murphy, Stephen W. STC Proceedings (2001). Presentations>Management


Managing Quality: Systems and Metrics for Ensuring Quality in Products

There is, at present, no common definition of quality in technical communication--no common set of quality measurements for our profession.

Fisher, Lori H. STC Orange County (1998). Presentations>Management>Quality>Assessment


Managing Technology Transfer: Issues for Scientific Communicators   (PDF)

Technology transfer is arguably one of the greatest communication opportunities of our day. In this panel presentation, we will define technology transfer terms and issues, identify technology transfer issues in private industry as well as in government R & D labs, and discus how today’s technical communicators can play a key role in technology transfer.

Cuba, Laurence L., Rich McGillick, Suzanne S. Roberts, Donna G. Roper and David Schuelke. STC Proceedings (1995). Presentations>Scientific Communication>Technology>Technology Transfer


Managing the Knowledge Behind Business Decisions Through User-Centered Design: A Case Study

Jerome and Giovanni explain why efficient access to knowledge is essential for global business operations. Giovanni discusses how his company realized its systems needed improvement – and why user-centered design proved to be the appropriate solution. This empirical approach to interface design/architecture enables effective business decisions.

Nadel, Jerome and Giovanni Piazza. Human Factors International (2006). Presentations>User Centered Design>Streaming


Managing Three Mediation Effects that Influence PowerPoint Deck Authoring   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Reviews the extreme claims that have been made about PowerPoint. Sets forth practical design ideas that are especially applicable to technical presentations. Explains three ways in which PowerPoint can subtly influence the intended meaning of deck authors and shows how these problems can be addressed.

Farkas, David K. Technical Communication Online (2009). Articles>Presentations


Map Slide and Navigation Hyperlinks in PowerPoint/Keynote

In large presentations, a graphical map slide and invisible hyperlinks help the audience keep track of progress while letting the presenters follow either a preset or a spontaneous path through their slides. Map slide and hyperlinks allow presenters to keep to time and to respond immediately to perceived audience needs.

Lebrun, Jean-Luc. Scivee (2009). Presentations>Software>Hypertext>Microsoft PowerPoint


The Marathon of Chapter Presidency   (PDF)

This panel/discussion takes shape as the audience molds it. Each panelist is a past STC chapter president and has managed to successfully run the “Marathon of Chapter Presidency.” The past-presidents panel comprises a fellow, an associate fellow, a director sponsor, senior members, committee managers, and other leaders of the society. Issues are audience-dependent but may include topics such as handling volunteers, managing money recruiting members, and so forth. Join this informal discussion to share ideas, quandaries, and solutions for successfully leading a chapter.

Oestreich, Linda L., Mark Hanigan, Richard Julius, Patricia J. McClelland and Carolyn L. Watt. STC Proceedings (1996). Presentations>Management>Professionalism>STC


Markdown Slideshow Example: Pandoc

In my last two postings, I introduced a way to create slide presentations by writing them in a simple text file, with Markdown formatting, and add some of the “infinite canvas” features of Impress.js. The resulting presentation (simple example) can be viewed in modern browsers without any special software.

Lawson, Konrad. Prof Hacker (2013). Articles>Presentations>Software>Markdown


The Marriage of Rhetoric and Pragmatics

The current proliferation of hermeneutic resources with a linguistic base--pragmatics, speech act theory, classical rhetoric theory, Burkean analysis, conversational analysis, Habermasian communicative action--is an embarras de richesse. Surely, at this point, we need, not another theory, but rather an attempt at synthesis, an attempt to turn this hermeneutic plentitude into a single theory. In this paper, we propose to take an initial step in this direction, to attempt to marry pragmatics and rhetoric. But given the theoretical exfoliation that has marked these areas, such a marriage can be managed only by imposing very strict limitations on the scope of our enterprise. We believe, however, that we can take a step in our preferred direction by addressing the more specific problem of whether the theory of Paul Grice, the father of pragmatics, is compatible with the theory of Aristotle, the father of rhetoric. We intend to do so by reconstructing Aritotelian rhetoric as a pragmatics.

Gross, Alan G. EServer (1998). Presentations>Lectures>Streaming>Audio


Mastering Your Ph.D.: Giving a Great Presentation

The trick to giving a great presentation is to be prepared, know your stuff, and practice your talk until it feels completely natural to stand up in front of an audience. Perhaps your first presentation will be in an informal setting with other members of your lab during a weekly or monthly group meeting. Or you may be asked to give a talk to the entire department. At some point (and count yourself lucky if you're given the chance this early in your career), you may even be invited to present your research at a large regional or international conference.

Gosling, Patricia and Bart Noordam. Science (2006). Articles>Presentations>Research


Mavericks: The Ultra-Collaborative Composition Classroom

A case study of a course in which students used collaborative online tools such as Google Docs for major writing assignments, and the results the instructor discovered.

Meloni, Julie. SlideShare (2009). Presentations>Education>Writing>Collaboration


‘May I Have Your Attention?’: Exordial Techniques in Informative Oral Presentations   (PDF)   (members only)

An introduction, even a short one, makes audiences more willing to listen to a speech, think more highly of the speaker, and understand a speech better than when no introduction is given. Two experiments at Delft University of Technology support this conclusion. Subjects viewed videotapes of professional presentations on the topic of Sick Building Syndrome. In one experiment, subjects rated the effectiveness of three introductory or 'exordial' techniques in gaining audience attention: an anecdote, an ethical appeal, and a 'your problem' approach. Results indicate that audiences do respond to exordial techniques, and in a predictable manner. In the second experiment, two speeches with anecdotal openers were tested against one without any introduction. The anecdotes led to significantly higher ratings of the presentation's comprehensibility and interest, as well as the speaker's credibility. The presence of an anecdote also resulted in higher retention scores. Oddly enough, the relevance of the anecdote did not seem to make a difference in the ratings.

Andeweg, Bas A., Jaap C. de Jong and Hans Hoeken. Technical Communication Quarterly (1998). Presentations>Advice>Rhetoric


Measuring Quality

We need to know what quality is to develop a metric to measure it.

Fisher, Lori H. STC Proceedings (1999). Presentations>Quality


Meeting The Challenge Of Change, Sharing Ideas For The STC 42nd Annual Conference   (PDF)

In this panel discussion, the program manager and stem managers for the 42nd STC Annual Conference (scheduled for April 23 through 26,1995, in Washington, D. C.) will be available to share their ideas for the upcoming conference program and to hear your suggestions and ideas for meeting the challenge of change. Only issues related to the program will be discussed.

Armbruster, David L., Deborah L. Baxley Cynthia J. Brock, Steven M. Cascone, Constance L. Kiernan, Deirdre A. Murr, Linda L. Oestreich, Tom Wall and Carolyn L. Watt. STC Proceedings (1994). Articles>TC>Presentations>STC


Meeting the Demand for Usability Expertise: An Offshore Model

Discusses how you can create and utilize a 'Center of Excellence' dedicated to realizing your company's development and design projects. Learn how you can staff a sustained usability effort.

Schaffer, Eric M. Human Factors International (2006). Presentations>Usability


Mental Processing of Online Documentation: From Concepts to Applications   (PDF)

This panel will review the existing literature on how we mentally process online documentation and describe some implications for effective online document design. We invite the audience to define with us some critical areas for further research.

Knodel, Elinor L., Henrietta Nickels Shirk, Candace Sodetston and James Thibeau. STC Proceedings (1997). Presentations>Documentation>User Centered Design


Metadata and XML: Improving the Findability of Information    (PDF)

Information about objects on subjects - metadata describes objects. Purposes: Information management and discovery. Metadata enables content to be retreived, tracked, and assembled automatically.

Bogaards, Peter J. Tekom (2004). Presentations>Information Design>Metadata>XML


Metadata: The Art of Adding Signposts   (PowerPoint)

Why do we add metadata? To find information back. To investigate the source. To see what is related. To have an overview AND see what is relevant.

Dey Alexander (2004). Presentations>Information Design>Metadata



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