An interesting article by Raymond Chen about specialist technical authors in software development teams:
"The problem with The Month Where Everyone Focuses on Improving Documentation is that most people are terrible technical writers"
I have recently been writing a series of articles for a website. This has involved spending hours every day typing.
Read on for some useful tips if you are going to be spending a long time at the keyboard.
Gardeners do not grow plants, they tend gardens. They change the environment in such a way that the natural thing for the wanted plants to do is grow, but nothing the gardener does contributes directly to the physical growth of the plant.
So it is with management and marketing. You are not doing all the work single-handedly, not are you buying your own products. It's all about maintaining an environment in which the easiest and most likely outcome is the one you desire, despite the unpredictability of the specifics.
We're thinking about producing a book of "IT checklists", containing best practices for common procedures in IT. For example, here are some potential topics:
This would be aimed at intermediate/advanced IT admins as a memory-jogger. For each task there would be a numbered list of steps that people could run through to ensure they hadn't forgotten anything (e.g. enabling robust security for the wireless router and attempting to restore a file after performing a backup).
A new year is nearly upon us. Every pundit seems to be making predictions for 2009. In the spirit of lazy journalism, here are mine...
The Internet is still in its infancy. It remains a frontier town where the laws are difficult to enforce and the beleaguered Sheriff and his deputies bounce from bar-room brawl to bar-room brawl, trying to impose order as best they can.
In order to be a good citizen in this kind of town, you have to understand the game. Help your neighbour out in his hour of need and he may well return the favour when you need something from him. It's all about bartering. By putting a little something back, you will make life a little easier for everyone. [Read on to find out more]
I usually hibernate my Windows development PC at the end of the day rather than shutting it down. Although I've saved my work, I've typically got lots of windows open with everything set up the way I want it for the task at hand. It can be days or even weeks between reboots.
But when Windows does an automatic update, it forces me to reboot. It puts up a dialog box saying it will reboot in five minutes unless I click the equivalent of a "snooze" button. This happened the other day, and I missed it because I was looking something up in a book at the time – end result, the computer reboots and I have to spend time getting back to where I was... [Read on to see how I fixed it]
I thought it would be fun to put together a little list of URLs that technical, geeky people like me would find useful. It's going to change over time, but there will always be ten of them: one in, one out...
Email is notorious for eating up time. Here are some tactics you can use to manage your business email efficiently...
Here is the simple text-based version of Euchre I mentioned in my recent blog post.