Chapter 1 & 2 Response

14 Dec

Chapter 1: The most important part of this chapter, in my opinion, was the emphasis it placed on the differences between other types of communication. In particular, this chapter went into depth about why technical writing was user-oriented, and what that means. The proof reading tips were easily applicable to a workplace environment, because there it is very important to present clean documents. That seemed the most practical part of the chapter. Overall, I think that this chapter was very effective at fulfilling its intent; namely to introduce technical writing, and create a framework for the rest of the text book. Like the beginning of a professional piece of writing, it provided three possible main sections for the text book. These sections were the three purposes of technical writing. It also set out a host of types of technically written documents in which these purposes could be applied. These are the things that made it a successful introduction.

Chapter 2: I think that the most important part of this chapter was the part with suggestions for running an effective meeting. All though a lot of the tips seemed common sense in hindsight, having them all in one place provides an easy quick reference. I could copy this page, and glance over it before I have meetings in a workplace. That sort of fresh exposure before each meeting would probably help me turn these tips into permanent habits. I think that this was a good and effective chapter, primarily because it was so focused. It tried to deal only with teamwork and a little foreign collaboration. Therefore, it was able to delve into those topics deeply enough to be effective.

Chapter Response 20 – 21

9 Dec

Chapter 20 was a little short, but it had a valuable tidbit right at the beginning that I thought might be a great idea. I work for a company now that has about 10 employees, and since the company operates primarily online, everyone is off at the ends of the earth. The idea of an internal corporate blog is a fantastic idea, I am sure that there are people in my organization dying for this sort of camaraderie in the business. Because we are so far away from one another, sometime it feels like none of us really exist, and we are all phantoms, encouraging each other’s psychosis.  Over all, I felt the chapter didn’t go nearly enough in-depth on any of the topics it talked about to make any difference; but I am glad for this idea for my workplace.

Chapter 21: This chapter had some merit. It took the time to go into detail about its subject manner, and applied the principles from earlier sections of the book to web design, which I felt was a useful jump. Not every principle of design is applicable to a webpage in the way it is used in print. What I found most useful in the chapter was the section on scripting online videos. Up until now my videos have been relatively seat of the pants, so I haven’t had any real experience making them look professional. Now I have a resource from which to draw for that purpose.

Writing and Designing, One in the Same

14 Dec

Whenever I write, I am always thinking about how to design the document.  I think that design, and how a document flows is extremely important to its survival, and also to its ability to pull in readers.  When I write I pull the entire document together by designing things within the document.  The reason I do this, instead of having a designer, is that I know better how to illustrate my writing than someone else does.  I understand what the best type of design would be, and how the structure should flow.  Writing is not just about writing, it’s about designing everything that will be on the document.  Sometimes I wonder if this is why there is such a disconnect between writers and designers.  One is trying to show the other their deepest most thoughts, not many people can completely understand one person to another, so it would be easier if the designer and writer were one in the same.

The Evolution to Stupidity

14 Dec

Awhile back, I was in a communications class that studies the evolution of language.  It has been interesting, for me, to watch how language has started to evolve with use of technology.  Our cultures and social norms are all about instant gratification.  It’s no wonder that many people have started to shorten the language, take out punctuation, just to communicate faster.  Notice how i said faster and not more effectively or efficiently.  We have started to focus on speed rather than other important things.  For the sake of the English language, I think that the internet banter needs to be more literate. It is a problem everywhere, people need to understand what the proper etiquette is for certain situations, and there definitely needs to be some sort of golden rule of internet protocol within the work place.

Phishers of Information

14 Dec

While reading about web pages, a part of the chapter caught my eye.  The part that caught my eye was about fraudulent websites and characteristics that fraudulent websites use.  One thing that worries me greatly about websites and online use is something called phishing.  Phishing is when normally someone will send out emails asking for your information.  This worked well in 2000’s; however people are starting to become smarter and smarter regarding their emails and the information they send out on them.  However, now that people are starting to realize what phishing is for emails, these same “phisher-men” have started making phishing websites.  Where instead of the email going out to people, the people go to the website and enter their information.  Now, looking at the issues among the web, I have started using a program that MacAfee’s offers, this program tells you when a website it to be trusted.

Web Pages: Chunk and Streamline

10 Dec

Writing is writing, right?


It can be tempting, as writers, to write the same way for any medium. Reading about web pages, though, it becomes clear that a writer must adapt to this medium if his or her writing is to be communicated effectively.

It’s important to remember that people want and expect to read even more quickly when it’s on a computer, often skimming and skipping around. Because web pages are open documents, authors also cannot always control what order their material will be read.

With these things in mind, there are two significant things we can do to adapt our writing for web pages: chunk information into manageable, stand-alone segments and streamline for quicker reading.

The web page spiral of doom

8 Dec

While I was reading this chapter bumped into the ethics section where it described what a fraudulent website might look like. If you think about it though, generally it is not to difficult to spot a fake website. They are too insistent, waring with the rest of your browser. They rarely seem professionally done, and they tend to be either very inquisitive about you, or very demanding that you press the big red button. It will be a scary day when the cues that betray a rotten website begin to disappear.This should drive us to excellence as designers though, because we know that if we make a cheap looking website, it will be passed over as fast a person can click themselves away. Making our websites professionally will help people to distinguish our websites from fraudulent ones, and our professionalism helps keep the barrier nice and clear.