Pune brings back fond memories. The last time I was in Pune was for the 10th STC annual conference, my first conference outside Bangalore. We were there as a family and it was here that my daughter (then a one year old) took her first few steps.
Technical writing is an interesting and modern career option. The growing IT, manufacturing service sectors have created a huge demand for technical writers. Here is all that you want to know to jump-start your career in technical writing.
What is Technical Writing?
Technical writing involves putting technical information into easily understandable language. Technical writers work primarily in information-technology-related industries, coordinating the development and dissemination of technical content for a variety of users.
Why Technical Writing as a career?
Technical Writing Resources
- By Gurpreet Singh (http://TechnicalWritingToolBox.com)
Download Technical Writing Resources in a PDF
You can download the Technical Writing Resources provided on this page as a pdf (designed for print) from http://technicalwritingtoolbox.com/technical-writing-resources.
A Day in the Life of a Technical Writer
Recommended Blogs on Technical Writing
What is the difference between the Oxford, Harvard, and the Serial comma?
The Oxford comma (also known as Harvard comma or Serial comma) is the comma inserted just before the coordinating conjunction (usually ‘and’ or ‘or’, and sometimes ‘nor’) in the last item of a list of three or more items. For example: Gurpreet's blog is dedicated to Jack, Jill, Red Riding Hood, Captain Kirk, and Spock.
When to use the Oxford Comma?
I use a serial comma ONLY when it satisfies all the following three conditions:
We have discussed this subject many times in this forum. But still I can't help writing this.
A job email I received says that potential candidates must send samples, ideally a help file like document, as part of the filtering process. I feel this is mainly because of lack of faith in the skills of potential candidates, or a flawed market study about the skills of technical writers in Bangalore as well as India in particular.
A tooltip is a feature in any application where some text appears when you move your mouse cursor over the elements in an application. This text is usually consists of the following:
• Label name, field name, button name
• A shortcut, to use the function
• Brief text on how to use the function/guideline of using the function or button or feature.
The purpose of a tooltip or a screen tip (a word predominantly used by Microsoft) is to inform, instruct the user about the feature and a quick guideline on using it.
"The IT sector should stop recruiting engineers from other branches, Infosys mentor N R Narayana Murthy said on Saturday." I read this in today's Deccan Herald. You can read the news report at this link:
Do you agree with Murthy's statement? I feel that this is a deeply conservative statement incongrous with what is happening elsewhere. This illustartes the bias "computer engineers' have towards "non-engineers" in IT cos.
Which is more important for a technical communicator? Writing skills or tool skills?
The 'intelligent' answer is both on an equal basis. You can tell this to interviewers; they will nod in agreement. But what exactly is the reality? In companies, it is the tool guys that rule the roost whether it is MS Word, FrameMaker, Robohelp, or Flare, and not the guy with excellent writing skills. If you have average writing skills, but excellent tool skills, you career can go places. You are one of the promising people in the company from a non-technical background.
Not many readers would believe that the essence of writing and living is nothing but the usage of 5Ws and 1H. Should you not compromise with this truth, here is the small scenario how these things can really create an impact as you grow and exercise yourself towards technical writing.
In a small survey that I conducted in the recent past, successful writers have always answered one fact – the litmus test in technical writing is not the fear of writing grammatically incorrect but the challenge of writing technically incorrect.
Technical writing is not everyone's forte it is a niche section that requires a very distinctive skill set which is a combination of good language skills and comprehensive technical acumen. An inclination towards writing and interest in the latest technologies in I.T. based environment are perfect ingredients that when churned out in a planned manner can bring out a good tech writer.