Structured authoring and the web aren't mutually exclusive

Tom Johnson's post Structured Authoring Versus the Web triggered a wave of responses across the tech comm community. Not shy about sharing our opinions, we jumped right into the fray with our own response post.

Our take? Structured authoring and the web are not mutually exclusive. You can combine both into a useful, dynamic approach to content. Also, it's essential to let business requirements drive decisions about structured authoring, the formats in which you provides content, the selection of open source or proprietary tools, and so on.

logo for IXIASOFT DITA CMS User Conference

Upcoming events

Full events listing 

Are you interested in the IXIASOFT content management system? What about French pastries? Then join us June 12-14 during the IXIASOFT DITA CMS User Conference in Montreal. Scriptorium is sending Alan Pringle, who promises to attend the event between bakery runs.

To schedule a meeting (preferably patisserie-based) during the conference, contact us.
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Upcoming Scriptorium webcasts:
  • Is there a possibility of détente? Find out in Ending the Cold War between techcomm and marcom on June 11 at 1 p.m. Eastern, presented by Sarah O'Keefe.  Register
  • Today's technical writers must do a lot more than just write: they need a content strategy to decide what information is needed, who will create it, and how to deliver it. Learn more during Sarah's presentation on Content strategy for technical communication at 1 p.m. Eastern on July 25. Register

Our webcast events are free, but you do need to register for them.

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It's not too early to start making plans for LavaCon in Portland this October. We're already thinking about the great content strategy sessions, the food trucks, and Voodoo Doughnuts! We'll have a booth at the trade show.

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Last week, easyDITA hosted Sarah's session on DITA and content strategy as part of the DITA Rockstar Summer Camp series. If you missed that session, check out the recording.


Lazy river (flickr: archer10)

New on our web site

Visit the blog (news, opinion, and fun)
Visit the resources page (webcast recordings and white papers)

Replacing an old toilet nicknamed the Lazy River provided a great reminder of why you must evaluate the risks of choosing tools, including those for producing technical content.

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It's always been hard for computer book writers to keep up with software releases. The rise of cloud-based software with incremental releases makes keeping up even more difficult.

What are computer book publishers to do? We offer some ideas, including membership-based web sites and ebooks with incremental updates.
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We deliver our recorded webcasts via Slideshare, but that service doesn't offer captioning for the voice content. Our quest to make webcast recordings more accessible prompted us to ask: Are you making a commitment to accessibility?

We routinely tailor content to our audiences without any prompting from management, and we must do the same for accessibility.

Our State of the Tech Comm Industry webcast is available with captions on YouTube. The first few minutes of captions have been edited, but the rest is raw. We welcome your feedback on their usability.
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You should play nicely with your IT department when developing and implementing your content strategy, but that doesn't mean you can't ask tough questions, including What amount of time will you commit to the project?

Without solid answers and commitments from IT, your content strategy will crumble.
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