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Saturday, May 14
 

8:30am

CPTC Foundation Certification Preparatory Course, Day 1

This two-day course will familiarize individuals with the requirements for CPTC Foundation Certification, including the nine core skill areas of technical communication, topics included in the certification exam, the certification test format, and sample questions.

Students may take the CPTC Foundation Certification exam Sunday afternoon, at the conclusion of the course. The exam fee is included in the course registration cost. Students also have the option of attempting the exam online at a later date, up to 15 May 2017. 

STC recommends that students purchase and study the certification body of knowledge textbook, Technical Communication Today, 5th edition, by Richard Johnson-Sheehan, before attending the course.

Schedule

Saturday, 14 May: 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, 15 May: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Exam: 4:00 – 5:00
There will be an hour each day for lunch on your own.

The course includes:
  • Two full days of live classroom instruction in CPTC Foundation technical communication concepts.
  • One sitting of the CPTC Foundation-level Certification exam. You may take the exam in person Sunday afternoon, 15 May, or up to a year later online.
  • Coffee, tea, and light refreshments.


Additional rates apply for this session.


Speakers
avatar for Alan Houser

Alan Houser

Consultant/Trainer, Group Wellesley, Inc.
Technical publishing consultant and trainer; XML/DITA architect; Machine Translation guy; Former President of the Society for Technical Communication


Saturday May 14, 2016 8:30am - 4:30pm
San Diego
 
Sunday, May 15
 

8:00am

Leadership Program
This event is for anyone currently in a leadership position in an STC chapter or special interest group (SIG), or if you want to be more involved in the leadership of your chapter or SIG. At the Leadership Program, you’ll be able to talk with your counterparts about what they do, meet the award-winning communities’ leadership, and get details about the successes they’ve had. 


Agenda:

8:00-8:30

Welcome from Leadership, Society officers, and the Community Affairs Committee

8:30-9:00

The Basics of Running a Community                                      
What is a community and how on earth do you run one? In this session we will discuss how to run a successful community, and educate our leaders on the many resources that are available from the STC & CAC.

9:00-9:30

Fill Your Toolbox
In this sessions we will talk about free software tools that are available to help you run your community efficiently.  Current leaders will share best practices and pitfalls to avoid when using tools such as Google Apps for Nonprofits, OneDrive, Dropbox, Hootsuite, EventBrite, to name a few.

9:45-10:15

Do Not Fear the Finances
The treasurer role in a community is often the hardest to fill; many people fear the responsibility of managing the community finances. We are going to break down the basic requirements of the financial responsibilities of communities and help you understand what needs to be done, and how to do it.

10:15-11:00

Internet Security
In the previous session we talked about many online tools to use, in this session we will talk about how to safely use collaborative, online tools to protect your own identity and community information.

11:00-12:00

Breakout Discussions
The breakout sessions are an opportunity to dive deeper into a specific topic and talk to an expert in that area. We will cover topics such as social media, recruitment, and the Community Achievement Awards.

12: 00-12:30

Awards Presentation of the Community Achievement Awards for Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze communities.

 


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:00am - 12:30pm
Platinum 3/4

8:30am

Creating an Online Course
Attendees will leave with a working Moodle course!

This course will have three parts:
-Scoping the course and creating a course outline
-Creating course structure using Moodle
-Creating course content and populating

Additional rates apply for this session. 

Speakers
avatar for Matt Sullivan

Matt Sullivan

Founder, Tech Comm Tools
I help folks deliver content to their audience, ranging from PDF to mobile, and from text/graphics to interactive/video. | | I love to talk about courseware, video, and mobile delivery. If you love that stuff as well, introduce yourself & let's chat! | | Talk to me about anything! One of the best things about conferences is access to the presenters, so don't miss your chance. Ask me about my conversations in 2015 with Mari... Read More →



Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 12:00pm
Ranchos Las Palmas

8:30am

Documenting REST APIs
At its core, REST API documentation focuses on requests and responses. Surrounding this core, there are a host of details to cover, such as authentication, endpoints, parameters, methods, response formats, rate limits, error codes, and more. In publishing REST API documentation, you can create interactive documentation using specifications such as Swagger, RAML, or API Blueprint. In this half-day workshop, you will learn how to document REST APIs in depth.

Additional rates apply for this session. 

Speakers
avatar for Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

Technical Writer, Amazon Lab126
I currently work as a technical writer for developer documentation products at Amazon in Sunnyvale, California. I write regularly at http://idratherbewriting.com. Here are a few things I'm interested in related to #techcomm: API documentation, visual communication, findability, Jekyll, web design, general technical writing methods, writing.


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 12:00pm
Newport Beach

8:30am

Writing in English for the Global Market
This workshop will help you tailor your writing in English for non-English-speaking readers. It will help you apply principles of good technical communication in a global context.
We will use interactive exercises to get at topics that can include:
• Structuring ideas
• Short is beautiful
• Minimalism and global English in technical communications
• Differences between native English and global English
• The role of culture
• Know your audience
• Terminology
• Common traps
• Writing collectively, topic based authoring, etc.
Near the beginning of the workshop, we'll find out participants' specific questions and needs, and adjust the content to answer as many as possible.

Additional rates apply for this session. 

Speakers
avatar for Ray Gallon

Ray Gallon

Owner, Culturecom
Consultant in Business Process Improvement through communication - of all sorts. Heavily involved in the connections between technical communication, business analysis, content strategy, and customer experience (includes product ergonomics).


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 12:00pm
Los Angeles

8:30am

Creating Mobile Apps Without Coding
As technical content becomes mobile, your next step may be “true” apps. Apps may seem like an unlikely area for tech comm but so did online help once; app tools today make it possible for STC’ers to create apps with no coding. Try it in this workshop.

You’ll use a tool called ViziApps to build a simple app that can send an email, open a web page, send information to and from a database, and more. You’ll do this with no coding. You’ll:

• Get an overview of app concepts and types.
• Get an overview of app design.
• Create a simple but functioning app. It won’t be in the app stores but you’ll be able to run it on your phone.

You’ll leave with a feel for app development and an example to take home to show what’s possible in one day.

Additional rates apply for this session.

Speakers
avatar for Neil Perlin

Neil Perlin

President, Hyper/Word Services
Training, consulting, development, and troubleshooting for MadCap Flare and Adobe RoboHelp projects. Rapid, inexpensive mobile app development using ViziApps Studio. Training in ViziApps Studio. General strategic consulting regarding online content, technical trends in tech comm and general mobile. Author of "Advanced Features in MadCap Flare 10", "Essentials of MadCap Mimic 6", "Creating Mobile Apps Without Coding"


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 4:30pm
La Jolla

8:30am

Information Visualization: Seeing Through the Numbers
This workshop will explore data visualization and literacy, focusing on various techniques to conceptualize narratives and create visualizations. Along with gaining a more comprehensive understanding of data visualization, participants will be introduced to new ways of managing, analyzing, and visualizing data sets, as well as textually expressing underlying relational content.

Additional rates apply for this session. 

Speakers
avatar for Phylise Banner

Phylise Banner

Director of Online Teaching and Learning, Clarkson University


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 4:30pm
Desert Springs

8:30am

CPTC Foundation Certification Preparatory Course, Day 2

This two-day course will familiarize individuals with the requirements for CPTC Foundation Certification, including the nine core skill areas of technical communication, topics included in the certification exam, the certification test format, and sample questions.

Students may take the CPTC Foundation Certification exam Sunday afternoon, at the conclusion of the course. The exam fee is included in the course registration cost. Students also have the option of attempting the exam online at a later date, up to 15 May 2017. 

STC recommends that students purchase and study the certification body of knowledge textbook, Technical Communication Today, 5th edition, by Richard Johnson-Sheehan, before attending the course.

Schedule

Saturday, 14 May: 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sunday, 15 May: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Exam: 4:00 – 5:00
There will be an hour each day for lunch on your own.

The course includes:
  • Two full days of live classroom instruction in CPTC Foundation technical communication concepts.
  • One sitting of the CPTC Foundation-level Certification exam. You may take the exam in person Sunday afternoon, 15 May, or up to a year later online.
  • Coffee, tea, and light refreshments.

Additional rates apply for this session.

Speakers
avatar for Alan Houser

Alan Houser

Consultant/Trainer, Group Wellesley, Inc.
Technical publishing consultant and trainer; XML/DITA architect; Machine Translation guy; Former President of the Society for Technical Communication


Sunday May 15, 2016 8:30am - 5:00pm
San Diego

9:00am

Registration
Pick up your badge information at the registration desk! Registration will be open from 9:00 AM-8:00 PM on Sunday, 15 May.

Sunday May 15, 2016 9:00am - 8:00pm
Marquis Foyer

12:00pm

Adobe Tech Comm Tools Certificate Workshop
The Adobe Tech Comm marketing team and the STC are excited to announce a first of its kind pre-conference event at the STC Summit 2016 – the Adobe Tech Comm Tools Certificate Workshop!

Get live training, pick up tips and tricks, do hands-on exercises and learn from industry experts like Bernard Aschwanden, John Daigle and Stefan Gentz. Not just this, on successful completion of the workshop you get to walk away with an official certificate from Adobe and the STC Summit!

So what are you waiting for? Make the most of this exciting opportunity to learn from the most sought-after trainers, connect with peers, grow your professional network, and also acquire a professional certificate – while you enjoy the exclusive Adobe hospitality!

The event is 'open to all'. There is no registration fee. Lunch and refreshments would be served. Seats are limited, so register yourself today! Register: http://adobetechcommworkshopatstcsummit2016.campaignsandevents.com/

Speakers
avatar for Bernard Aschwanden

Bernard Aschwanden

President, Publishing Smarter
avatar for John Daigle

John Daigle

President, Evergreen Online Learning, LLC
John Daigle is president of Evergreen Online Learning, LLC, based in Evergreen, Colorado. A frequent speaker at national online help conferences, John is an Adobe RoboHelp, Adobe Captivate Instructor. He has taught RoboHelp since 1992 and Adobe Captivate since it was introduced. His speaking engagements include the STC Summits in Minneapolis, Atlanta, Philadelphia, WritersUA in Seattle, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Austin, Texas... Read More →
avatar for Stefan Gentz

Stefan Gentz

Global Evangelist, Technical Communication, Adobe Systems GmbH
As the Global Evangelist for Technical Communication at Adobe, Stefan’s mission is to inspire enterprises and technical writers around the world and show how to create compelling technical communication content with the Adobe TCS tools. | Stefan is also a certified Quality Management Professional, ISO 9001 / EN 15038 auditor, Change Management Assessor, ISO 31000 Risk Management expert and Six Sigma Champion. | Stefan is a popular... Read More →
avatar for Rick Stone

Rick Stone

Owner, ShowMe Solutions
Rick Stone is co-owner of ShowMe Solutions, based in Kansas City, Missouri. Rick is an Adobe RoboHelp and Adobe Captivate Instructor. He began his career in 1991 with RoboHelp in a customer contact center as a technical support technician where he quickly discovered a strong need for on-line documentation and support procedures. Boldly charging forward into totally uncharted waters, he discovered and taught himself RoboHelp and single-handedly... Read More →


Sunday May 15, 2016 12:00pm - 5:00pm
Anaheim Marriott 700 W. Convention Way, Anaheim, California 92802

1:00pm

Adobe Captivate vs. Articulate Storyline vs. TechSmith Camtasia Studio: Which eLearning Tool is Right For You?
Welcome to the eLearning tool slug-fest. In this corner ... Adobe Captivate. Over there? It's Articulate Storyline? And because this isn't a two-tool fight, look over there and you'll see TechSmith Camtasia Studio.

Bring your own laptop loaded with trial versions of Adobe Captivate, Articulate Storyline, and TechSmith Camtasia Studio. Sound the bell and create and publish an eLearning project in each of the tools.

Let the tools pound on each other and find out, first-hand, which tool is right for you!

Additional rates apply for this session. 

Speakers
avatar for Kevin Siegel

Kevin Siegel

Learning and Development Specialist, IconLogic, Inc.
Kevin is a certified technical trainer, a veteran classroom instructor (online and onsite), and a frequent speaker at trade shows and conventions. He has three decades of experience as a print publisher, technical communicator, instructional designer, and eLearning developer. | | Kevin has written hundreds of step-by-step computer training books on applications such as Adobe Captivate, Articulate Storyline, Adobe RoboHelp, Adobe... Read More →


Sunday May 15, 2016 1:00pm - 4:30pm
Ranchos Las Palmas

1:00pm

Developing User Assistance for Mobile Apps
Smartphones have sparked a huge, new software segment--the mobile app. They have also changed how traditional desktop software is being designed and developed. This creates an important pair of questions for user assistance professionals: What is our role going forward in mobile and how can we prepare to take that on? User assistance does have a role in supporting mobile apps.
This workshop is designed to provide an introduction to key topics and also to foster discussion on the best ways to design our content for this new paradigm. As the mobile market continues to expand, this is becoming the next frontier for user assistance professionals.

Speakers
avatar for Joe Welinske

Joe Welinske

Producer of WritersUA, WritersUA
Joe Welinske specializes in helping your software development effort through crafted communication. The best user experience features quality words and images in the user interface. The UX of a robust product is also enhanced through comprehensive user assistance. This includes Help, wizards, FAQs, videos and much more. For over twenty-five years, Joe has been providing training, contracting, and consulting services for the software industry... Read More →


Sunday May 15, 2016 1:00pm - 4:30pm
Newport Beach

1:00pm

Gamifying Writing Skills
Do you manage a team of technical authors and editors? Are you looking for ideas to help improve writing and editing skills, establish better consistency, and create fun challenges for your team?
This session introduces the idea of gamification, which is turning a generic activity into a game. Gamification offers great advantages for a tech pubs manager, including:
• Solving some of the most common writing problems, such as inconsistency, sloppy editing, and fluffy writing.
• Fostering creativity and helping teams explore alternate solutions to content problems.
• Making the work environment more fun and more intellectually rewarding.

Additional rates apply for this session.

Speakers
avatar for Leah Guren

Leah Guren

Owner, Cow TC
Let's talk about writing, editing, UX, L10N, and more. I've been in TC since 1980 so I'm ready to swap stories from the trenches!


Sunday May 15, 2016 1:00pm - 4:30pm
Los Angeles

5:30pm

Opening Keynote: The New Vanguard for Business: Connectivity, Design, and the Internet of Things
Limited Capacity seats available

The Internet of Things is the hottest topic of the moment—a shift predicted to be as momentous as the impact of the internet itself. The internet has allowed us to share ideas and data largely input by humans. What about a world where data from objects as diverse as umbrellas, fridges, and gas tanks all flows through the internet? We are truly at the frontier of a new, hyper-connected future: and MIT Media Lab’s David Rose is our guide.

Author of the first major book on the subject, David Rose is bringing the inevitable takeover of the Internet of Things to the forefront of public consciousness. If you own a business, if your company makes a product, if you are involved in manufacturing, supply chain management, environmental monitoring, transport, retail, healthcare, urban planning, architecture, design—literally any industry—your sector will be affected. In this mind-opening talk, Rose explains how to get in on the ground floor of the Internet of Things or, as it’s known in the manufacturing sector, Industry 4.0 (the fourth industrial revolution). He describes how products are poised to become services, and how we will be creating new user experiences, not new technology. Instead of staring at our iPhone screens, we will be surrounded by simple and user-friendly objects that respond to our needs, come to know us, and learn to think on our behalf. How can you embed connectivity and productivity into your product? It’s time to revolutionize the way your company thinks about technology, design, and making money. 

Speakers
avatar for David Rose

David Rose

Author and Speaker
Rose is an instructor and researcher at the MIT Media Lab, and the author of the preeminent book on the Internet of Things, Enchanted Objects: Design, Human Desire, and the Internet of Things. “The history of computers has mostly been about efficiency,” Rose told The New York Times in a major three-page feature. “I think one of the things that's changing is that enchanted objects can be about adding emotion and magic to the... Read More →


Sunday May 15, 2016 5:30pm - 6:45pm
Platinum Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

7:00pm

Welcome Reception and Expo Hall Grand Opening
Immediately following the Opening Keynote, there will be a reception in the exhibit hall. The reception will include light snacks and soft drinks, and cash bars will be available to purchase other beverages. This energetic event kicks off  your Summit experience and offers a chance to talk with exhibitors, catch up with friends, and discover like-minded colleagues at the Communiteis/SIG tables. This event is included with your registration fee.

Sunday May 15, 2016 7:00pm - 8:30pm
Marquis Ballroom Anaheim Marriott
 
Monday, May 16
 

7:30am

Expo Hall
Get inspired by like-minded individuals, network with colleagues, or take a break with friends and refreshments, all in the Expo Hall. Between education sessions come discover exciting products, services, and technology; enter into raffle drawings; make new connections during Speed Networking; and walk away with new ideas to take back to your team.

Monday May 16, 2016 7:30am - 3:30pm
Marquis Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

7:30am

Registration
Pick up your badge information at registration! The registration desk will be open from 7:30 AM-5:00 PM on Monday, 16 May.

Monday May 16, 2016 7:30am - 5:00pm
Marquis Foyer

8:30am

An Introvert's Journey to Leadership
Many of us might agree that Western society lauds extroverted leaders and their accomplishments. However, introverts make great contributions and can be effective leaders, too. Many of us are introverts who may feel unsuited or unequipped for leadership, but are not sure how to take that next step to increase influence and improve visibility. Have you wondered how to empower yourself and leverage your innate skills to become a leader? Join Ben as he shares his personal insights and the path to leadership with you. He will describe his journey from shy team member to recognized leader, and share key steps he took and experiences that have helped him become a successful leader.

Speakers
avatar for Ben Woelk

Ben Woelk

ISO Program Manager, Rochester Institute of Technology
Leadership, policies and procedures, internet safety, mentoring, information security, CISSP, career development



Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 1

8:30am

Bar Napkins and XML: Eliminate the Hidden Costs of Content Conversion
Hidden costs are often associated with major purchases like vehicles and homes, and they can result in an “actual” price that is dramatically higher than what is initially quoted. In the same way, an XML workflow includes a major cost that often goes unnoticed: the ongoing cost of converting content provided by an SME. In this session, we will discuss how to dramatically reduce this cost and how it positively impacts the SME, the technical writer, and the organization.

Speakers
avatar for Dustin Vaughn

Dustin Vaughn

Solutions Consulting Manager, Adobe


Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand A/B

8:30am

Metrics that Matter: Making the Business Case that Documentation has Value
We agree there is value in documentation but have been challenged at times to "prove it." Come to this session and learn to present to groups including sales, support, service, IT, engineering, QA/testing, manufacturing, HR, training, finance, marketing, and every other business unit in your organization. Once managers and executives understand how important documentation is to them internally, we'll help you show how documentation drives sales and generates corporate revenue. Does documentation have business value? You bet. We'll help you tell the story with solid metrics, compelling logic, and the ability to clearly "prove it" to anyone.

Speakers
avatar for Bernard Aschwanden

Bernard Aschwanden

President, Publishing Smarter


Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand C/D

8:30am

Influence the User Experience Beyond Creating Content
You have created a content strategy targeted at specific users and their unique needs. You have helped improve your products through usability testing. How else can you make a difference? Influence the overall user experience of your product. As a content developer, you are uniquely situated to see the whole picture and individual improvements and features. In this session, learn how to use your position and understanding of user needs to ensure the success of new features or changes to existing ones. Become a user advocate with your knowledge, confidence, and simple tools (such user profiles and journey maps).

Speakers
avatar for Michelle Gardner

Michelle Gardner

Information Developer, Micro Focus
I'm passionate about improving user experience and providing excellent user-focused content. I have been a technical writer, promotional writer, marketing manager, product manager, sales representative, and customer advocate. As an Information Developer at Micro Focus, I combine my varied experience to develop a targeted content strategy that aligns with the product's user profiles. I also mentor my colleagues for DIY usability testing. I run a... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 2

8:30am

Doc is Dead! How Walkthroughs Changed Salesforce's Content Strategy
Customers no longer have the patience to read online help or user guides. To help customers better understand why they should use a variety of features, and renew their subscription-based apps, Salesforce conducted research to determine the content types that engaged customers most. The result—Salesforce changed its content strategy. In this session, you’ll learn: what types of interactive content we’re creating at Salesforce, why Salesforce moved to interactive content over documentation, and how a large company changed its content strategy and how customers responded.

Speakers
avatar for Gavin Austin

Gavin Austin

Principal Technical Writer, Salesforce
At Salesforce, Gavin Austin writes everything from UI text to API developer guides. Since 2008, he has delivered a number of highly-rated presentations at Writers UA, STC Summits, Agile2013, Intelligent Content Conference, Blue Shield of California, and San Francisco State University.



Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 3

8:30am

Meet the Editors

Editor-in-chief of Technical Communication, Dr. Sam Dragga, and the editor of Intercom magazine, Liz Pohland, will host a session with conference participants and STC’s contributing editors. They will explain the publication missions, editorial processes, recent submission trends, and other topics of interest for scholars and practitioners looking to publish their work. The aim of the session is to help prospective authors understand how to be published in STC venues and what content is needed. Participants will have an opportunity to comment and pose questions to the editorial teams.


Speakers
avatar for Sam Dragga

Sam Dragga

Editor, Technical Communication, STC
Dr. Sam Dragga is professor of technical communication at Texas Tech University and Editor of STC's quarterly research journal, Technical Communication.  He is also co-author of The Essentials of Technical Communication (3rd ed., Oxford University Press, 2015) as well as author or co-author of a score of articles in journals and collections on topics related to professional ethics and intercultural communication.  He is a Fellow of the... Read More →
avatar for Liz Pohland

Liz Pohland

Director of Communications and Intercom Editor, Society for Technical Communication
Liz Pohland is STC’s Director of Communications and the editor of Intercom, with over 25 years of experience in publishing as a content and production manager, writer, editor, and designer. During her tenure with STC, she has worked closely on the certification program and the body of knowledge. Liz is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech University; she earned a BA in English and French... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand E

8:30am

Your Secret Weapon: The Documentation Handbook
Whether you work with a team of writers or on your own, it’s a good idea to keep track of your documentation procedures and style guides. Keeping everything in a centralized repository lets you organize internal processes and rules, and introduce new writers to the team. Enter the Documentation Handbook: a one-stop shop for procedures and style guides. Because it is written using your current authoring tool, it acts as a sandbox for new writers to learn procedures while editing topics. However, it isn’t just for training writers; it is a useful reference for the entire team. Join this session and let Kate show you how to create and maintain a very useful tool and resource for everyone on your team.

Speakers
avatar for Kate Schneider

Kate Schneider

Senior Technical Writer, MadCap Software
Kate Schneider is a Senior Technical Writer at MadCap Software. She has nine years of experience in the software industry, where she has background building online help systems from the ground up, single-sourcing and restructuring complex documentation suites, and proposal writing. Kate enjoys spending time at the dog park with her husband and two West Highland White Terriers, playing video games, and watching Seinfeld. She holds an MS in... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 4

9:45am

How to Write Contracts and Statements of Work
If you are an independent contractor, you are paid for your services by either an hourly rate or a fixed amount of money. Companies often ask you to sign their contracting agreements, but do you ask them to sign yours? Attend this session to learn what is a letter of agreement (LOA), statement of work (SOW), and other contracting terms. We'll also cover documenting what you are going to do and not going to do, managing change requests, and setting payment terms that favor you. Find out from Jack the hard-won lessons learned from over 20 years of buying and selling corporate services.

Speakers
avatar for Jack Molisani

Jack Molisani

President, ProSpring Staffing
Jack Molisani is the president of ProSpring Technical Staffing, an employment agency specializing in technical writers and other content professionals: http://ProspringStaffing.com | | He's the author of Be The Captain of Your Career: A New Approach to Career Planning and Advancement, which hit #5 on Amazon's Career and Resume Best Seller list. | | Jack also produces the LavaCon Conference on Content Strategy and Tech Comm Management... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 3

9:45am

Responsive Content: Beyond the Basics, Using CSS
Building responsive content has traditionally been a rather technical process. While modern authoring tools can make the process easier by leveraging modern frameworks, sometimes you need to dig deeper. In this session, Mike will demo how CSS style properties can be used in conjunction with modern responsive frameworks to give you total content control. We will start with some of the fundamentals of responsive design such as an overview of media queries and an introduction to just how frameworks make building responsive content easier. After this introduction, we will then focus on controlling specific content behaviors using CSS when this content is in a responsive framework.

Speakers
MH

Mike Hamilton

VP Product Management, MadCap Software


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand A/B

9:45am

Technical Communication Revolutionized
The world’s landscape is changing with a millennial workforce, mobile devices, and technology bringing information everywhere, and the digital revolution’s impact to society on the horizon. Technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT), content automation, and augmented reality (AR) will provide new ways to deliver precise information with less need for human interaction. The new technologies save us time, effort, and money. However, with these changes come changes to our jobs. How will the digital revolution impact the role of technical communicators? Where will our existing skills fit? What new skills do we need to hone? Join this session to get answers to these questions and learn about the largest generation in the workforces (millennials) and how to adjust our deliverables to meet their requirements.

Speakers

Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 4

9:45am

Cash in on your Financial Editing Skills
Your technical editing skills can be an asset in the finance industry. Find out how to cash in and apply your skills in this profitable field. Join us to learn the basics of a technical editor's job in the industry and review general editing guidelines, plus specific writing examples that are acceptable from a regulatory standpoint. We'll cover the roles of U.S. regulatory agencies, writing for an international audience, and resources for maturing your financial industry knowledge. You'll add to your knowledge of this high-interest topic by summing up the wealth of opportunities this field affords.

Speakers
avatar for Jessica Kreger

Jessica Kreger

Senior Manager, Client Training and Education, TradeStation
Jessica Kreger leads the technical documentation team at TradeStation to publish information that empowers active traders around the world. With over fifteen years of experience in communications, she has worked at Dell, the University of Miami, Carnegie Mellon University, and Alcoa. Jessica is passionate about creating optimal user experiences. She earned a M.A. in Professional Writing from Carnegie Mellon and a B.A. in English from Penn... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand E

9:45am

Editors and SMEs: Building Productive Working Relationships
Your success as a technical editor depends on the quality of your working relationship with SMEs. Creating and maintaining a productive relationship takes effort and some planning, but it is worth it. Ann Marie will share practical, proven techniques and tips she has used as a procedures editor in the medical device industry. Topics include how to recognize and adapt to a SME’s preferred working style, prioritizing editing remarks (which battles to fight), identifying the signals of SME fatigue, and expanding your usefulness to the project or team.

Speakers
avatar for Ann Marie Queeney

Ann Marie Queeney

Owner, A.M. Queeney LLC
With over 18 years of senior document specialist experience in the medical device industry, I have had the honor of working on projects that have improved the quality of people’s lives. I work with subject matter experts in the health care industry to strengthen the writing and management of their procedures and other controlled documentation. | I am currently the co-manager of the Technical Editing SIG, past quarterly program TE SIG... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand E

9:45am

Improving the Review Cycle: Concurrent Editing
Sending drafts out for review is relatively easy, but managing the overlapping (and sometimes conflicting) feedback of multiple files is a challenge. Making reviews concurrent makes them truly collaborative. This pratical session covers workflow and best practices for concurrent editing, and specifically using Acrobat tools (online and local server-based), Word (using track changes and sharing), Google Docs, SharePoint, and a Web app. You will also learn how to consolidate feedback from separately marked-up files.

Speakers
avatar for Mike Sawyer

Mike Sawyer

Documentation Manager, Control4
Background: Over 20 years in technical communication, working and freelancing for companies big and small. BS in Communications (BYU), English minor, with some Japanese thrown in. Masters studies (USD) in Human Factors Engineering, emphasis in ergonomics. Trivia: Due to a computer error, I was once a multimillionaire (>$23 million) for a day. Years later, I sold a monster Triscuit on eBay for $20. The two events were unrelated. Interests... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand E

9:45am

The Editor as Collaborator: Communication Makes the Difference
Editing skills play an important role in quality technical communication. However, even the most skilled editors need to communicate professionally and effectively with writers. This session explores how effective communication with colleagues and clients helps editors enhance team communication, improve documentation, and provide writers with valuable insights to enhance their writing.

Speakers


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand E

9:45am

Using Checklists for More Efficient Editing
Editors and reviewers fear missing something such as a typo, wrong formatting, factual errors, or awkward language. Learn how a checklist for common editing tasks can help you speed up your editing, catch common errors, and stop second-guessing yourself! Checklists are helpful for those who get interrupted or have changing requirements. They can also ensure consistency across editors and allow a more consistent experience for authors. Whether you use an editing checklist or not, this session will offer the knowledge and motivation you need to improve or get started.

Speakers
avatar for Kelly Schrank

Kelly Schrank

Senior Medical Editor, Med Communications
Editing, writing, project management, communications, leadership...



Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand E

9:45am

44 Tips for Making Better Videos!
If you're just starting or a seasoned video creator, making better video doesn't have to be overwhelming. This session is all about tips to become better in your video creation process--44 of them! Each tip is practical, actionable, and focused toward user assistance video creators. They are highly applicable tips that cross the spectrum of planning, including recording, editing, and production. No way anyone can get through that many in one session? Challenge accepted! We will proceed at a lightning pace that will keep you on the edge of your seat, but participants will receive reminder materials to help recall all the great tips.

Speakers
avatar for Matthew Pierce

Matthew Pierce

Customer Support Manager, Instruction designer, Speaker, TechSmith Corporation
My background is instructional design and video. I lead the training and user assistance teams at TechSmith, and I have the privledge of speaking and writing a lot about video for groups like ATD, Training Magazine, eLearning Guild, and STC. Let's talk about video, engagement, YouTube, audio, podcasting (I know, it's not video), and media in general. I am also the program manager for CAMPtasia. 



Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 1

9:45am

Generating API Documentation Automatically from the Source Code
Many developers who produce application programming interfaces (APIs) prefer to generate the documentation directly from the source code. This session explores and demonstrates three commonly-used tools used for this: Doxygen for C-like APIs, Javadoc for Java APIs, and Swagger for Web Service APIs. We will cover how these tools work conceptually and describe the standard outline for API reference information, which is expected by software developers. We will also review the coding used for each tool to produce the organization of API reference information, and show examples of “pushing the limits” of these tools to include content that is more than the standard programming reference information.

Speakers
avatar for Ed Marshall

Ed Marshall

Marshall Documentation Consulting
Ed is an independent consultant technical writer and the sole proprietor of Marshall Documentation Consulting, with over 28 years in technical writing. He specializes in technical documentation for developers including APIs (application programming interfaces), SDKs (software developer’s kits), Web Services products, etc. Over his career, he has developed expertise in using tools to “let the computer do the work,” such as advanced tools for... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2

9:45am

Frenemies: Tech Comm and Tech Support Working Together
Technical communicators and tech support teams work toward the same goal: improving the customer experience. Their methods, however, are very different and sometimes they may feel more like competitors than cooperators. Tech Comm may be frustrated that they aren’t alerted to known documentation problems or frequently asked questions. Tech Support may feel frustrated when documentation does not address errors or when it changes without notification. Failures to communicate, a lack of coordination, organizational structure, and a concern that helping one group could lead to job losses in the other are all reasons that lead to problems between the groups This session addresses the problems, and suggests possible ways to overcome them.

Speakers
avatar for Rick Lippincott

Rick Lippincott

Senior Technical Writer, Blacktree Technology/Analogic
Hardware technical writer from the mid '80s, STC member since the early '90s. STC Associate Fellow, former President of Boston and New England chapters, current member of the Community Affairs Committee and Nominating Committee, guest editor of the April 2016 "Intercom" issue.


Monday May 16, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand C/D

11:00am

Speed Networking
Looking to add value to your Summit experience by making new connections? Then plan on participating in one of the two Speed Networking events in the Expo Hall! Back by popular demand, this fast-paced networking experience puts you in touch with industry veterans, fellow colleagues, and product experts. During this hour long event, you’ll participate in several rounds of networking at multiple tables with fellow attendees and industry movers and shakers. This fast-paced event will allow you to make initial connections early and leave you with plenty of time to follow up throughout the remainder of the Summit. Space is very limited and reservations are on a first come, first served basis. Please only sign up for ONE SESSION DATE and if you are certain you will be able to participate as this event requires pre-scheduling each attendee’s networking schedule. You must be a full Summit registrant to attend this event.

Monday May 16, 2016 11:00am - 12:00pm
Marquis Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

1:00pm

The Ping Identity Story: Enhancing Customer Experience through Dynamic Content Publishing
Today’s customer accesses product content through an average of seven different touchpoints to find information, share knowledge, submit questions, and get answers. Studies show that 90% of consumers expect the customer experience to be consistent across these touchpoints. In the quest to provide a truly personal and interactive customer experience, organizations, such as Ping Identity, are revolutionizing the delivery and access of product documentation and shifting away from the old paradigm of cumbersome PDF books or insulated online help. In this session, Saltzman explores how companies can deliver personalized and consistent product documentation across all customer touchpoints to include web search, documentation portals, support knowledge bases, contact centers, and social customer communities while providing a cohesive and consistent user experience.

Speakers
avatar for Megan Gilhooly

Megan Gilhooly

Director Information Experience at Ping Identity, Ping Identity
As Director of Information Experience, Megan Gilhooly oversees the technical documentation and training teams at Ping Identity, a Denver-based company that develops identity and authentication platforms for enterprises. Prior to Ping, Megan was Director of Technical Communications at INVIDI Technologies. Throughout her career, Megan has served as employee and consultant to various software companies, building technical communications products and... Read More →
avatar for Hannan Saltzman

Hannan Saltzman

VP Product Management, Zoomin Software
Hannan has served in various executive R&D and Product positions, focused on defining and building market leading enterprise products. In his last role, Hannan served as a Senior Product Manager at NICE Systems, helping large financial institutions identify compliance risks in mass amounts of unstructured customer communications by applying speech, text and transactional analytics. Prior to that, Hannan led NICE’s Situation... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand A/B

1:00pm

An Extreme User-Centric Approach to Kiosk Writing
Kiosk users have needs that are more demanding than other channels. Many businesses use self-service kiosks to reduce costs, but unfortunatley many kiosk applications were designed without understanding these users, which is crucial to successful writing. This presentation proposes an extreme writing approach that aims to raise the awareness of kiosk users’ characteristics, but also demands highly disciplined writing in this environment. Even if you don't design applications for kiosks, you can adapt these writing styles to enhance communication with users and become a better information architect.

Speakers
avatar for Yu-kwong Chiu, PhD

Yu-kwong Chiu, PhD

Senior UX Designer, Sabre
Have you ever used a self-service kiosk, but somehow you ended up in frustration? I would like to invite you to attend my session on designing self-service kiosks. I know you’re most likely not a kiosk writer. But you are definitely a kiosk user - more so than you know. Come learn about the characteristics of kiosk users and a writing style (and some UI design along the way) that demands extreme conciseness and clarity. You can easily apply... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand C/D

1:00pm

From Fred Flintstone to George Jetson: Creating Tension in Training Increases Adoption
The objective of a good training program is adoption and excellent field execution. Whether we create video, user assistance, classroom training, or documentation, what we really want is users to do an excellent job with minimal effort and no mistakes. This presentation is about how to use a combination of traditional training deliverables and old school psychology to gain user buy-in and achieve a successful launch. We’ll talk about how to use cartoons and countdowns to ensure that users seek out training and have a stake in adoption and field execution excellence. Good training is about building the right relationship and less about the deliverable.

Speakers
avatar for Viqui Dill

Viqui Dill

TechComm Leader, American Woodmark
An engineering graduate from Virginia Tech, Viqui is happiest as a small group worship leader or surrounded by singing kids at Vacation Bible School. She works as a Technical Writer for American Woodmark in Winchester. | | Viqui describes herself as “Technical writer, wife and mom, bass player, worship leader, I’m happiest when folks sing along with me.”



Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 1

1:00pm

Big Data for Beginners: Tools and Methods
This workshop will introduce you to big data analysis basics. The presentation portion includes an overview of the definition and uses of big textual data in technical communication, tips for finding big data repositories, concepts for big data project design, basic text mining methodologies, and the ethical and legal issues that emerge from conducting text mining and big data research. Attendees will examine and discuss case studies to reflect on key concepts in the presentation. The hands-on component includes a brief introduction to simple procedures, such as creating word clouds and frequency tables R using R-Studio, and concludes with a tour of text mining using RapidMiner.

Speakers

Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 4

1:00pm

Look Out! Here Comes Augmented Reality AGAIN!
Augmented reality (AR) and wearable technology show promise for maintenance tasks, especially for field jobs that require technicians to use their hands. It can result in big cost savings. This progression will discuss advancement in AR standards and guidelines for technical communicators through the OASIS AR in Information Products. We will also demonstrate progress on actual AR documentation prototypes. We presented an AR in Technical Communications Proof of Concept last year. The discussion this year is about the journey from a POC to prototypes, including a short demo to show our work.

Speakers

Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand E

1:00pm

Providing a Great Search Experience
Customers use search technology to find the information they need in your documentation, so it's important to keep search in mind as you develop content. Does your authoring tool mandate a certain search tool, or do you have other choices? How do you create writing standards geared toward search optimization? Is your content publicly available and thus searchable on Google? In this session, we will discuss these and other search-related issues.

Speakers


Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand E

1:00pm

Rethinking Help in a Mobile World
Users consume and utilize mobile help content very differently than they do on a computer. As content spreads to mobile, the help we provide has to cater to the special needs of mobile users. What are the current issues and challenges facing technical communicators trying to reach this audience? What are effective strategies for reaching a mobile user without getting in the way? In this progression, we’ll discuss the challenges of current mobile help methods, strategies to deliver mobile help, plus some fresh ideas to explore.

Speakers
avatar for Sharon Sherry

Sharon Sherry

Technical writer


Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand E

1:00pm

Saving Institutional Knowledge Before Baby Boomers Retire
Today, baby boomers account for 31% of jobs in the United States. However, roughly 10,000 people a day reach full retirement age. And many of them are leaving the workplace, taking decades of experience, expertise, and history with them. The same trend is happening in many countries. What issues are going to arise from this departure? And how can we identify and capture the information before the baby boomers depart to finish that novel, plant that garden, or travel to remote parts of the world? Join this progression to see the potential issues from different points of view (retiree, manager, and coworker) and hear ideas and best practices on addressing the problem.

Speakers
avatar for Betsy Kent

Betsy Kent

Principal Technical Writer, Progress Software Corporation
I've been working on API documentation for the past 19 years, using DITA for the past 3 years. I tell newcomers to the field that being a technical writer is a lot like being a detective. Just like on the TV, you gather masses of information, sort out what's relevant and important, and arrange that so the meaning is clear. Those of us who have been in the field for a while need to help those coming after us to take up the torch, for the... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand E

1:00pm

REST API Documentation Best Practices
If you work in software and haven’t documented a REST API, you may be asked to do so soon. REST APIs are growing quickly, with enterprise and finance as fast-growing categories. The job market for writers who know REST API is growing, and technical communicators can increase their marketability and value to their company by learning more about them. Come to this session to get a head start and be better prepared for what you need to know!

Speakers
avatar for Marta Rauch

Marta Rauch

Sr. Principal Information Developer, Oracle
Excited to present at #stc16 on REST API doc best practices: http://bit.ly/1qEBFBB



Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 3

1:00pm

Single-Sourcing and Localization: Maximizing Content across Languages
Translating your content into other languages is one of the greatest challenges in the technical communication process. We can meet these challenges by combining single-sourcing and localization to publish variations of our content in multiple formats. When we do this, the benefits multiply. However, localizing a single-sourcing system has challenges and requires proactive planning for features like variables, conditionals, snippets, formatting, and responsive design. Come to this session and learn how to prepare content to use these features. We'll also explore tools, best practices, plus tips and tricks for managing your localization projects.

Speakers
avatar for Laura Dent

Laura Dent

I'm a freelance technical writer specializing in single-sourcing and localization. I also teach a course in technical communication for computer science majors at James Madison University. Talk to me about freelancing, technical communication, and languages!



Monday May 16, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 2

2:15pm

Turning Offshore Partnership Challenges into Success
Our company signed an exclusive contract with an offshore partner to provide services, including technical writing. After a multi-year struggle, we abandoned the effort and brought everything back onshore. When new management insisted that we try again (and said that we would be evaluated based on the success of these efforts), my team and I were motivated to make it work. This session is the story of how we created a successful offshore partnership that delivers quality, timely technical documents that meet the organization's needs. We will discuss the changes we made and how we deal with ongoing challenges with our partner team.

Speakers
avatar for Barbara Giammona

Barbara Giammona

Sr Mgr Technical Publications, Schneider Electric
Barbara A. Giammona has been a technical communicator for more than 30 years and a manager of technical communicators for more than 25. She is currently manager of technical publications and communications for the Process Automation division of Schneider Electric, a global energy management company. Prior to that, she was the manager of corporate IT communications for McKesson Corporation in San Francisco. She spent 10 years leading documentation... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 1

2:15pm

Help Begins with the GUI: TC Meets R&D
Do you ever feel that you are stuck “perfuming the pig” (or writing user assistance for a terrible interface)? Are you embarrassed by poor usability or sloppy mistakes in your company’s products? The truth is that text in the interface is content! And who are the content experts if not us? In this session, learn how to map your linguistic and usability skills to early prototypes, help developers map functionality to user personas, plus edit text strings for correctness, accuracy, consistency, and usefulness. Join us to build on your linguistic and UX (usability) skills and help developers create better software in order to create an interface that requires less Help and fewer awkward explanations.

Speakers
avatar for Leah Guren

Leah Guren

Owner, Cow TC
Let's talk about writing, editing, UX, L10N, and more. I've been in TC since 1980 so I'm ready to swap stories from the trenches!



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand C/D

2:15pm

Rise of the Planet of the Apps
As content consumption is shifting from desktops and laptops to tablets and smartphones, a number of organizations are publishing their technical content for mobile devices to deliver content anywhere, anytime for their customers. Most organizations have adopted responsive design that enables technical authors to port technical help to mobile devices. Though it is a good first step in the right direction, it is not enough to cater to the fastest growing trend in the tech comm industry.                                                            
With close to 60% of organizations publishing content for mobile devices, technical authors need better means to engage users. A content centric mobile app is the next step that will foster more user engagement and increased content readership. In this presentation, Abhishek Jain, Product Manager at Adobe Systems, will share some real world use cases where mobile apps added immense value. In addition, he will cover some interesting ways to create apps with almost no technical knowhow.

Speakers
avatar for Abhishek Jain

Abhishek Jain

Product Manager, Adobe
Abhishek Jain is Product Manager at Adobe Systems, India, where he manages the Technical Communication line of products (FrameMaker, RoboHelp and Technical Communication Suite). He is responsible for product strategy and roadmap, partner ecosystem management, and customer relationship. Prior to Adobe, he worked as a Product Manager at Winshuttle, where he managed the Enterprise suite of products.



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand A/B

2:15pm

Collaborating and Contributing in GitHub
GitHub is a popular Web-based repository for software projects (both code and documentation) and a large open source community that makes both collaboration and source control more efficient. In this session, we will learn how to set up a GitHub repository and write documentation in Markdown, plus learn about Git basics such as merges, forks, branches, and commits. We’ll also explore the social aspects of GitHub and other features (like wikis), and discuss how you can collaborate with developers to improve projects. With a live demo we will cover three ways to document projects stored in GitHub and discuss GitHub benefits.

Speakers
avatar for Nicky Bleiel

Nicky Bleiel

Watson Information Developer, IBM Watson
Nicky Bleiel is a Watson Information Developer at IBM. She is a Past President and Associate Fellow of STC and has over 20 years of experience writing and designing content for software products in a variety of industries. She is a popular speaker at many conferences, including the STC Summit, WritersUA, tcworld, CIDM (Content Management Strategies/DITA North America), and LavaCon; and has been published in STC’s Intercom, tcworld magazine... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 3

2:15pm

Training Videos Demystified: What the Process Looks Like
Training videos are all the rage, so it's possible you may be asked to help or create them yourself. Like anything new or unknown, video production seems scary. Attend this session to see what it’s all about and how easy it really is! Through an example from the early stages of the process to its very end, we’ll discuss the video-creation process and the various roles you might play along the way. We'll also explore the various roles that technical communicators might take on for this process and review tips and advice from the presenter.

Speakers
avatar for Li-At Rathbun

Li-At Rathbun

Technical Editor, Yardi Systems
Li-At has over 20 years of technical communication experience (yes, since kindergarten). Although her main role at Yardi Systems is as technical editor, she also creates training videos. | | Li-At has continuously served in various STC leadership positions since her very first meeting. She’s currently the Santa Barbara chapter president, Technical Editing SIG co-manager, and Surveys Lead for the CAC (Community Affairs Committee... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 4

2:15pm

Using Word to Automate and Create Your Own Tools
Writers seldom get the tools they really need. Flare or Framemaker are indispensable project tools, but ones helping individuals on a daily basis with unique requirements are less common. As a result, writers are sometimes responsible for making their own tools to reduce manual effort. Microsoft Word provides this through automation, which is not programming and requires no coding. This session introduces you to multiple automation types and techniques (including copy and paste, fields, building blocks, macros), how to select which is right for you, and how to start creating custom tools.

Speakers
avatar for Robert Delwood

Robert Delwood

Lead API Writer, kCura
Robert Delwood is a programmer, writer, and programmer-writer currently in the Chicago law community but formerly with NASA's Johnson Space Center and Microsoft. With more than 18 years experience, he's written and documented topics from Windows kernel-level device drivers and speech recognition APIs/SDKs for Microsoft, to help desk procedures and application manuals for the military. | | He specializes in Microsoft Office automation with... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 2

2:15pm

Applying Minimalist Writing Principles to Improve User's Guides: Readers and Writers Win
In this progression, Michael will show how he applied minimalist writing principles to User's Guides to reduce page count and improve clarity. As a result, readers can perform relevant tasks right away. Applying these principles not only enables readers to get the information they need more readily, but produces topics that are better suited for reading on mobile devices. He worked with a team dedicated to promulgating these principles throughout our organization and they produced a strategy for following these principles when writing new material, which resulted in a more efficient writer workflow.

Speakers
avatar for Michael Harvey

Michael Harvey

Principal Technical Writer, SAS
At SAS, I am documentation project leader for risk management solutions. I also teach Information Architecture for the Duke Continuing Studies Technical Communication certificate program. Previously, I worked as a manager and a writer for EMC. I have a BA in English and Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an MA in Experimental Psychology from Duke University. I have served in various leadership positions for the... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand E

2:15pm

FAQs Killed the Documentation Star
Many organizations use Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) as a replacement for thorough documentation. In this progression, Stephanie will explain the pitfalls of relying on a list of questions rather than delivering solid help resources. She will then explain that FAQs—when done well—can serve as useful additions to stellar documentation. Finally, we will discuss best practices for organizing FAQ questions and capitalizing on their metrics. Just like video taught radio stars how to adjust, attendees who participate in this session will learn how to adapt and write the kind of FAQs users need.

Speakers
avatar for Stephanie Saylor

Stephanie Saylor

Technical Writer, Next Century Corporation
Stephanie started her career as a technology and transportation reporter. Her work has been nationally syndicated by the American City Business Journals. Since 2007, she has worked as a technical writer for the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Defense.



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand E

2:15pm

Getting Creative with Technical Communications
Whether it’s a contract, report, or documentation, technical communication pieces aren’t always fun to read. Sometimes they’re a last resort that people reference only because they have problems or questions. This begs the question: How do you make your audience want to use your communications? In this session, we’ll introduce audience analysis and information design strategies to help you make communications enticing and easy to digest.

Speakers
avatar for Liz Roscovius

Liz Roscovius

Director of Global Communications, D2 (Documents & Design)
I started my career in visual design. Over the years, education and experience have allowed me the opportunity to expand into journalism, copywriting, marketing, advertising and, finally, project and team management. I don't have all the answers but do love helping and inspiring others, particularly those I mentor. At the same time, I love the fact that they continually teach me new things too!



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand E

2:15pm

Risk Communication and Miscommunication with Electronic Media
Emails and text messages possess characteristics of letters, memoranda, and the telephone. They have also acquired new ones, including the integration of personal and business styles/formats, insertion of personal with business content, single issue responses, unreflective content, and minimalistic data. As a result, electronic messages tend to be "information poor," writer rather than reader oriented, and asynchronous. This session discusses these findings and applies them to new cases, including the 2015 Chicago landslide and General Motors switch incident. We will also discuss the major problems inherent in communicating electronically and provide suggestions for overcoming them.

Speakers
avatar for Carolyn Boiarsky

Carolyn Boiarsky

Professor, Purdue University Northwest


Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand E

2:15pm

Simultaneous Product and Information Development
During any development cycle, technical communicators are challenged to have the information piece of the product ready to go when the code is completed. Using an iterative, incremental process significantly reduces lag time, simplifies the review process, resulting in a more polished product. This progression outlines the workflow process Janice used over the last several years to design and develop content. With this workflow, you can more easily keep up with new development, manage a relatively large amount of content, and provide resources for other functions such as QA and training.

Speakers
avatar for Janice Manwiller

Janice Manwiller

Principal Technical Writer, Sqrrl
After a couple of years of using my English degree to eke out a living in legal publishing and television listings, I quit and got my MS in Technical Communication from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. | | Since then, I've worked as a technical writer at mostly smaller software companies, including a couple of interactive television startups. | | Over the years, I've come to focus on: | | - Technical communication as a visual... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand E

3:45pm

Communicate More Effectively in Your Global Virtual Teams
Global virtual teams connect professionals worldwide. These teams act as essential links to the global marketplace but are vulnerable to miscommunication, and few organizations prepare their employees to work successfully in online teams. Dr. Brewer used a survey to gather data on the use of virtual teams by engineering professionals worldwide and more than 70% of the responses came from professionals outside the United States. In this presentation, Dr. Brewer will share the survey results and core teaming concepts to help managers improve their use of virtual teams.

Speakers
avatar for Pam Brewer

Pam Brewer

Associate Professor, Director Master of Science in Technical Communication, Mercer University
Pam researches, presents, and publishes about virtual teaming, international teaming, and online communication strategy. Her first book, Virtual Teams: Engineering Global Success, was published by Wiley in 2015.



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 3

3:45pm

How Professional Communicators Add Value
I'm preaching to the choir when I say professional communicators are a critical part of any company or project team. We offer valuable skills, so why is it hard for us to quantify our value? It comes back to a mindset where people believe writing or communicating don't require any special skills. In this progression, we'll discuss often overlooked areas where professional communicators shine and share ideas of how to combat the "everyone's a writer" mindset.

Speakers
avatar for Eric Koup

Eric Koup

Senior writer, Vanguard
I'm a 19-year veteran of Vanguard, one of the world’s largest financial services companies, spending my entire career in writing and communications roles. I’d love to talk about overcoming challenges unique to professional communicators. I’d also talk your ear off about the dreadful state of professional sports in Philadelphia.



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand E

3:45pm

In the Deep End with Policies and Procedures
In this progression, attendees new to policies and procedures communication will learn the basics of policies and procedures. Definitions, lifecycle, and approvals of policies often raise questions. What many people must realize is that the policy and procedure lifecycle also extends beyond the document to include communication and enforcement.

Speakers


Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand E

3:45pm

Lessons My Cat Taught Me About Instructional Design
Sometimes, technical communicators may be required to design training materials and programs for their subject matter--even if they have never formally studied instructional design. In this progression topic, the speaker will share photos and anecdotes of her beloved cat Gimli while discussing five lessons she has learned over the years about developing training courses and related materials.

Speakers
avatar for Jamye Sagan

Jamye Sagan

Pharmacy Communication Advisor, H-E-B Grocery Company
Jamye manages communications between the corporate office and the store pharmacies. She also helps design training programs and reference materials for various pharmacy projects. | | When not “making sense out of the senseless” in the tech comm. world, Jamye enjoys transforming yarn into pretty and useful objects and keeping her cats away from her yarn.



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand E

3:45pm

Preparing Legacy Help Projects for Responsive Design
Do you have legacy help projects that are still valid and that you want to make responsive? The problem is that old projects were often created in ways that break responsive design. How do you fix those problems? In this practical session, we’ll look at the technical concepts of responsive design and a “mobile first” design philosophy and its effect on content. Topics include eliminating local formatting with styles and a CSS, relative image sizing, CSS float to position images, and changing wording for different screen sizes. At the end of this session, you’ll know how to deal with the most common responsive design problems in legacy help projects.

Speakers
avatar for Neil Perlin

Neil Perlin

President, Hyper/Word Services
Training, consulting, development, and troubleshooting for MadCap Flare and Adobe RoboHelp projects. Rapid, inexpensive mobile app development using ViziApps Studio. Training in ViziApps Studio. General strategic consulting regarding online content, technical trends in tech comm and general mobile. Author of "Advanced Features in MadCap Flare 10", "Essentials of MadCap Mimic 6", "Creating Mobile Apps Without Coding"



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 1

3:45pm

The Client Said Yes: Now What?
Contract work is a growing workforce trend and a great way to work in an atmosphere of flexibility and variety, and you’re well-positioned to be part of this trend. It’s a challenge to find the work and get the contract signed, but it’s a bigger challenge to have clients give you repeat business over time. This progression takes you from establishing a good contract with your new client to starting the project on the right foot, working it professionally, and closing it out with grace. See how you can ensure that they always call you back for more and refer you to others as one of the best in the business.

Speakers
avatar for Teresa Stover

Teresa Stover

Owner, Technical Writing Consultant, Stover Writing Services
Teresa Stover, owner of Stover Writing Services, has worked more than 20 years providing excellent technical writing and project management services for software, manufacturing, education, and nonprofit organizations. She is the author of 15 books, the most recent being “Your Project Management Coach” and “Microsoft Project Inside Out.” She has conducted many seminars on business, project management, technical writing, and software.



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand E

3:45pm

Understanding and Answering a Request for Proposal
Government contractors seeking support for proposal development look for proficiency in English and grammar. While these are critical skills to have, understanding all the nuances of Government Requests for Proposal (RFPs) transcend basic writing skills and require an attentiveness to detail that can make the difference between a great writer and a great proposal developer.

Speakers
avatar for Brian Lindgren

Brian Lindgren

Program Manager, IT Portfolio, Engility Corporation
Brian currently works for Engility Corporation, a Government contractor, in the dual role of program manager and director of business development. Over the course of his career Brian has been a technical illustrator, technical writer, editor, and web developer. At times Brian's career reinvention has been out of necessity, at times by choice. Although his current position is in a completely different place from where his career started, there... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand E

3:45pm

That Due Diligence You Do: Selecting a Content Management System
You've jumped on the DITA bandwagon, and now you have a collection of structured, modular content. But you quickly realize that with modular content and potential for reuse, things can get out of hand. Maybe you think you need a Component Content Management System. Vendors agree and tell you why you need the features of their particular toolsets, but do you? How do you select a system that meets your particular needs? This presentation reviews the extensive research and decision-making process that our writing group used. The focus is how to establish your requirements and then evaluate solutions, rather than on any specific CCMS tools.

Speakers
avatar for Toni Mantych

Toni Mantych

Information Architect / Content Strategist, ADP



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand C/D

3:45pm

The Future of M-Learning and Mobile Help
Join this workshop and learn how early efforts to create and promote literacy are tied to how technology helped the evolution of that process. Danielle will explain the basic concepts behind m-learning and provide evidence of how it is conducted on smart devices through current thought. A group discussion follows about writing for mobile, both in m-learning and other instances of help documentation. The audience for this workshop includes instructional designers, anyone writing help documentation, or those wanting to write for mobile.

Speakers
avatar for Danielle M. Villegas

Danielle M. Villegas

Technical Communications Specialist, TechCommGeekMom.com
Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who has most recently worked at MetLife, Novo Nordisk, and BASF North America, with a background in content strategy, client services, project management, e-learning, social media, and web content management. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog, TechCommGeekMom.com, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in... Read More →



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 4

3:45pm

Advancing DITA Authoring and Publishing Using FrameMaker
Authoring in DITA is one thing. Delivering appealing, tailored, dynamic documentation in the right formats and to the right channels to end users is another. Combine both successfully, and you not only get outstanding documentation, but also gain a great marketing instrument. In this presentation, Stefan will explore the possibilities to create and deliver modern documentation that matches today's customer expectation without breaking the budget.

Speakers
avatar for Stefan Gentz

Stefan Gentz

Global Evangelist, Technical Communication, Adobe Systems GmbH
As the Global Evangelist for Technical Communication at Adobe, Stefan’s mission is to inspire enterprises and technical writers around the world and show how to create compelling technical communication content with the Adobe TCS tools. | Stefan is also a certified Quality Management Professional, ISO 9001 / EN 15038 auditor, Change Management Assessor, ISO 31000 Risk Management expert and Six Sigma Champion. | Stefan is a popular... Read More →


Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand A/B

3:45pm

Improve Voiceovers with the Sound of Help
Audio can make or break a video. Most screencast videos lack body language, so your only human connection to viewers is your voice. In this session, learn simple techniques to get more out of your voice (even if you hate how it sounds on recordings). We'll share which audio issues can be easily cleaned up with editing software, offer practical tips to reduce editing time, and learn what to look for in audio hardware. For instance, the type of microphone to consider depends on more than price and how it sounds--where and how you plan to use it is important, too.

Speakers
avatar for Bryna Gleich

Bryna Gleich

Sr. Technical Writer, Blackbaud
I work at Blackbaud where we create software for nonprofit organizations. Specifically, I create user assistance for software for K-12 private schools. I create help files, videos, visual walkthroughs, web pages, UI text, user guides, and other content that is delivered via help systems, YouTube, pdfs, and other channels.



Monday May 16, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 2

5:00pm

Annual Business Meeting
Make time for the annual business meeting where a variety of association-related topics will be discussed and the 2016–2017 Board of Directors will be installed. This meeting is open to everyone, however, only members in good standing may vote. The rules have been posted to the STC website, and the minutes of last year’s annual meeting are also posted on the STC website. You may wish to familiarize yourself with the rules and minutes in advance.

Monday May 16, 2016 5:00pm - 6:00pm
Grand Ballroom Anaheim Marriott
 
Tuesday, May 17
 

7:30am

Expo Hall
Get inspired by like-minded individuals, network with colleagues, or take a break with friends and refreshments, all in the Expo Hall. Between education sessions come discover exciting products, services, and technology; enter into raffle drawings; make new connections during Speed Networking; and walk away with new ideas to take back to your team.

Tuesday May 17, 2016 7:30am - 3:30pm
Marquis Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

7:30am

Registration
Pick up your badge information at registration! The registration desk will be open from 7:30 AM-5:00 PM on Tuesday, 17 May.

Tuesday May 17, 2016 7:30am - 5:00pm
Marquis Foyer

8:30am

Reinvent Yourself Through Career Change
Listen to the stories of four well-established professionals who have experienced changing positions, titles, and responsibilities during their technical communication careers. In some cases, they've had to accept, choose, or take risks on different paths than what they originally intended or expected. Come to this session to be inspired and hear how they've faced their situations and overcome obstacles to come out ahead. They will then open it up to the audience for questions.

Speakers
avatar for Jackie Damrau

Jackie Damrau

Sr. Business Systems Analyst
My career today is business process management/modeling, requirements gathering, and functional testing. I love talking about business process modeling. For STC, my passion is being the STC Book Review Editor and finding people who want to sign on to do book reviews or help with the administrative needs of this role.
avatar for Rachel Houghton

Rachel Houghton

Information Developer, Rockwell Automation
Rachel Houghton is an information developer with more than 18 years of technical communication experience. She is an STC Associate Fellow, past program chair of the STC Technical Communication Summit, actively involved in the STC Phoenix community, and reviews books for the STC journal, Technical Communication. She loves photography, Photoshop, and fonts - you can find her on Twitter at @rjhoughton.
avatar for Brian Lindgren

Brian Lindgren

Program Manager, IT Portfolio, Engility Corporation
Brian currently works for Engility Corporation, a Government contractor, in the dual role of program manager and director of business development. Over the course of his career Brian has been a technical illustrator, technical writer, editor, and web developer. At times Brian's career reinvention has been out of necessity, at times by choice. Although his current position is in a completely different place from where his career started, there... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 4

8:30am

Use Usability Testing and Enhance your Documentation with Feedback
Usability testing for your documentation offering is more than asking people if they can get through a procedure successfully. This presentation discusses how to implement usability testing standards in-house, how to write different tests, and how to use the results to enhance your documentation offering. You’ll also learn how to gain buy-in for conducting usability tests and how to gather a pool of usability test candidates. We'll present the concepts in terms of a case study to further show how to implement feedback into your documentation.

Speakers
DB

Dave Bachmann

Senior Technical Writer, kCura
I've been a technical writer for the litigation support software kCura in Chicago for over six years. In that time, I've documented a number of different products and features that range in complexity from those requiring a simple click of a Go button to those requiring diagrams to depict communications between servers, schemas, and APIs.
avatar for Mandy Morgan

Mandy Morgan

Technical Writer, kCura
Mandy works as a technical writer for an ediscovery software company in Chicago, Illinois. She's received both a bachelor's and master's degree in technical writing from Missouri State University. Her master's thesis focused on document usability particularly for patients diagnosed with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). She is also a member of STC Chicago and is currently working on conducting a global audit in-house at kCura.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 1

8:30am

Interactive Documents and the IoT
The focus on product and service information to date has typically been about enabling your customer and service technicians to find the right content, quickly. As we move into the age of the Internet of Things (IoT), documentation teams are now exploring ways in which machines can now proactively push the correct information to your customers, and how documents can interactively guide readers to the information they need. Imagine if a machine could help populate the installation guide, generate compliance forms, or curate its own service information based on fault codes and other envrionmental readings. This new world of interactive documents increases information accuracy, service and use efficiencies, and improves overall customer satisfaction. In this session you will learn:
  • Why is intelligent content critical to the IoT?
  • What is interactive content?
  • How can your organization benefit from adopting an interactive content strategy?

Speakers

Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Expo Theater

8:30am

The Internet of [Other Language] Things: Supporting the Inevitable
As new markets come online with their connected devices and older international markets increase their spend on new products and services, “things” that aren’t multilingual, or don’t function in a user’s (aka “customer’s”) language, or break when translated - will become a critical problem for your organization.                                                                
This session will be a facilitated audience discussion about the trends and issues surrounding the development and support of connected products and their documentation used by customers who speak other languages. What are the most common translation mistakes and their impact? When is machine translation “good enough” and for which use-case is it appropriate? How to best manage the ripple-effect when source content changes? How do you  balance a global voice with a local feel? The session will be made up of open questions, open answers, and live polls. Using your phone’s browser, you will be able to both share your insights and learn from the wisdom of the STC crowd. Space is limited, so register early. 

This will be an interactive discussion where you'll be participating by going to www.sli.do on your phone and then entering the event code #stc2016 in the JOIN EVENT box. Alternatively you can just go to this permalink on any browser https://www.sli.do/xakx5bos

TO VIEW THE PRESENTATION CLICK HERE: https://prezi.com/embed/wgt7zosxflf4/ 


Speakers
avatar for Greg Rosner

Greg Rosner

VP Customer Solutions, LingPerfect
"There is no such thing as a digital strategy anymore. Just strategy in a digital world." - Alia Kemet, IKEA | I’ve spent the last 20 years helping global businesses like GE, FedEx, HomeAway, and Kayak, create and maintain their global content strategy with a focus on setting up efficient translation processes. I believe there is only one language - the language of your customer, and all translation efforts should be designed around great... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand E

8:30am

Translation Management: "Common Sense" for Setting Up a Process
What are the questions and insights needed to set up a translation process for your team? This session will cover current trends in the translation industry and help you understand key translation questions a global enterprise should be asking. You’ll learn newfound translation “common sense” for a process, plus the time and cost savings in the file prep stage-- internationalization (i18n). Finally, you’ll know how to take an assessment (info translators don’t want to share) and capture metrics to optimize the translation process.

Speakers
SC

Scott Carothers

Senior Globalization Executive, Kinetic



Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand C/D

8:30am

Blurring the Lines Between ECM and CCMS
Traditionally, MarComm and TechComm scuffled over the word “content,” approaching it with different personalities, tools, budgets, departments, and sometimes perceived goals. Today, they can no longer afford this standoff. On a corporate website, any discrepancy between marketing content and technical content can undermine both organizations’ efforts to achieve their goals. In order to serve customers’ best interests, a high level of consistency is required between marketing and technical content.                                      
A content management system should allow seamless access of assets, templates, and other corporate standards across MarComm and TechComm teams. The process of creating technical content should use limited resources wisely. 

Speakers
avatar for Vivek Kumar

Vivek Kumar

Product and Engineering Manager, Adobe
Vivek Kumar heads the Product Management and Engineering for Adobe Technical Communication products. He is responsible for roadmap, strategy, partner and customer relationship and development of these products. He has been with Adobe for over 13 years and has managed several releases of the TechComm products. Before Adobe he has worked with couple of startups in eLearning and digital security domains. Vivek has a Master’s degree in Computer... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand A/B

8:30am

DevOps Docs: Fast, Great Content for the Cloud
Writing for cloud products? Great! But what does that mean for writers? Companies adopt Agile and specifically DevOps to be fast, and doc teams are expected to follow suit. Based on years of Agile experience, this session covers how doc teams can adapt and thrive in a DevOps world by writing fast, writing well, and showcasing business value. In the end, your companies will see content that drives revenue, lowers costs, and even engages customers.

Speakers
avatar for Vanessa Wilburn

Vanessa Wilburn

Senior Content Strategist, IBM
As an Information Architect and Content Strategist for IBM Cloud, I deliver the content experience in the form of user interfaces, web-based information, product manuals, and other self-service information. I design and run usability tests to assess how users experience "content on the glass."​ The design work includes user flows, personas, prototypes, and taxonomies. Moreover, I've performed duties as a Project Lead, Technical Lead, and... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 2

8:30am

Self-Publishing for Print and eBook Distribution
Self-publishing has revolutionized traditional publishing, making it possible for anyone to publish a book or eBook. The same technology that will let you publish a memoir of your kindergarten years will also let you publish more down-to-earth content, including your technical documentation. Join this session to learn how to distribute and sell content in print and eBook form through retailers such as Amazon. We will include a survey of the most common print-on-demand and eBook distributors, incuding the pros and cons of each. This talk is relevant for anyone who is interested in self-publishing non-work-related content.

Speakers
avatar for Richard Hamilton

Richard Hamilton

Publisher, XML Press
Richard Hamilton is Founder and CEO of XML Press. He began his career at Bell Laboratories developing computer software and has worked at AT&T, Unix System Laboratories, Novell, and Hewlett-Packard in jobs ranging from software development to product management to documentation management. | | In 2008 he founded XML Press, which is dedicated to producing high quality, practical publications for technical communicators, managers, marketers... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 3

9:45am

On the Primrose Path to Successful Leadership
This presentation and interactive discussion will help you stand out from the crowd as a great leader in a world where many people think of themselves as great leaders. Using research, current publications, history, audience participation, and personal experience, Linda presents leadership tips and thoughts to help you differentiate yourself from those who try but don't do.

Speakers
avatar for Linda Oestreich

Linda Oestreich

Program Mgr, Leadership & Talent Development, Space & Naval Warfare Sys Command
STC Fellow since 1996, technical communicator, instructor, training specialist, and program manager. Serving the communication and leadership needs of people in technology for more than 30 years.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2

9:45am

Do More with Less and Increase your Return on Content (ROC)
Documentation teams are constantly asked to increase efficiency in content development, translation, and maintenance. We all know that budgets are not increasing. In fact, more than 70% of our survey respondents said that they are not. Many of us have to face a reduction in headcount as well. At the same time, the demands on today's technical communicator are ever increasing. On an average, a tech comm professional is working with more than four languages and cater to a plethora of devices and formats. So there is extreme pressure on us to our jobs more efficiently. This session emphasizes three basic levers of technical communication, which if exercised in tandem can bring huge benefits to the business:                
* *Lean content creation: Data-driven prioritization can help content authors to do more with less.
* Closing the feedback loop: Follow the Create - Measure - Learn cycle and fix the burning issues to enjoy higher ratings.
* Engaging the end users: Showing some empathy toward the most important participant in the value chain works wonders.

Speakers
avatar for Abhishek Jain

Abhishek Jain

Product Manager, Adobe
Abhishek Jain is Product Manager at Adobe Systems, India, where he manages the Technical Communication line of products (FrameMaker, RoboHelp and Technical Communication Suite). He is responsible for product strategy and roadmap, partner ecosystem management, and customer relationship. Prior to Adobe, he worked as a Product Manager at Winshuttle, where he managed the Enterprise suite of products.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand A/B

9:45am

SmartDocs: Transforms Word into a Complete Content Management Solution
36Software is pleased to present SmartDocs 2016.1, the only completely collaborative content reuse and management solution for your MS Word content. SmartDocs makes it possible to do what you never thought possible with your Word content. Author, approve, centralize, find, reuse, and track everything your writing team needs, no matter where they are working. SmartDocs is just a fraction of the cost, training, and set-up time to XML-or DITA-based CMS solutions. Proven. And, unlike other solutions, SmartDocs is scalable and affordable for teams of 2 to 2000. Join Bryan Lynn, Executive Director of Technology, to experience everything that SmartDocs can do, without ever leave your Word envrionment. Bring your questions and Word content challenges, and we'll solve them!

Speakers

Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Expo Theater

9:45am

Use Your Content to Create Killer Courseware
What is effective content delivery? Standard print, help systems, and online classes can provide answers to specific questions, but fall short when compared to the depth and ROI that online courses provide for specific training needs. In this session, Matt will discuss why he is moving away from traditional authoring and training formats and toward online courses. He'll review two online courses he developed and compare the relative depth of online classes and online courses. To show their effectiveness, he will compare the online courses against similar content available in book, help, and live training courses. Matt will then share his method for successfully modeling course content, including the details of his migration to a courseware provider.

Speakers
avatar for Matt Sullivan

Matt Sullivan

Founder, Tech Comm Tools
I help folks deliver content to their audience, ranging from PDF to mobile, and from text/graphics to interactive/video. | | I love to talk about courseware, video, and mobile delivery. If you love that stuff as well, introduce yourself & let's chat! | | Talk to me about anything! One of the best things about conferences is access to the presenters, so don't miss your chance. Ask me about my conversations in 2015 with Mari... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 3

9:45am

Effectively Using PDF as Source
What do you do when you receive only a PDF as “source” for your project? Run with it! PDFs are more usable than many of us realize, and the PDF provider can offer better quality than they may think. Come to this session to learn about methods of extracting usable text and graphics from what’s usually considered a read-only format. We'll cover how to determine the typefaces used, how to export or extract text, how to isolate bitmap and vector artwork, and even how to determine what tool was used to create the actual source file. PDF may not be the ideal source format, but it’s definitely doable.

Speakers
avatar for Liz Roscovius

Liz Roscovius

Director of Global Communications, D2 (Documents & Design)
I started my career in visual design. Over the years, education and experience have allowed me the opportunity to expand into journalism, copywriting, marketing, advertising and, finally, project and team management. I don't have all the answers but do love helping and inspiring others, particularly those I mentor. At the same time, I love the fact that they continually teach me new things too!
avatar for Mike Sawyer

Mike Sawyer

Documentation Manager, Control4
Background: Over 20 years in technical communication, working and freelancing for companies big and small. BS in Communications (BYU), English minor, with some Japanese thrown in. Masters studies (USD) in Human Factors Engineering, emphasis in ergonomics. Trivia: Due to a computer error, I was once a multimillionaire (>$23 million) for a day. Years later, I sold a monster Triscuit on eBay for $20. The two events were unrelated. Interests... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand C/D

9:45am

Getting to the Core of Web Content Development
Websites can be confusing tangles of links, images, and text. Come learn how a Web strategy team used an innovative method for developing Web content while collaborating with subject matter experts. This case study shows how we used technical know-how, marketing, and a simple worksheet to design and develop effective Web content for promoting programs of study at a community college. We will also see how to design a content outline with a simple worksheet and learn how to gain traction with stakeholder engagement and a commercial mindset. Join us to understand our core model and see the benefits of scaling up Web content development.

Speakers
avatar for Roger Renteria

Roger Renteria

Web Content Administrator, Central New Mexico Community College



Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 1

9:45am

Cut to the Core with Simplified Technical English
English is not the native language of a significant percentage of your end users! Join this workshop to learn how to address this challenge by implementing Simplified Technical English. Although some businesses use English as their lingua franca, many users of documentation have various levels of English proficiency. This workshop introduces the ASD-STE100 (Aerospace and Defense Simplified Technical English Specification) as an example, explains the effort required to transition to a controlled authoring environment, and emphasizes the importance of critical thinking in complying with the standard. There will also be guided editing practice, and a summary of initial results from the presenter's Saab air-traffic management (ATM) experience.

Speakers
avatar for R. Douglas Eaton

R. Douglas Eaton

Senior Technical Writer, Saab
Doug Eaton develops online Help and user manuals that support the Saab air-traffic management business. He has over 20 years of experience in technical writing and training and has won six awards for online and print communications, including an STC International Award for Excellence in Online Communications. He has served STC as a chapter president and publications-competition manager and has received membership awards in the Rochester and the... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 4

11:00am

Speed Networking
Looking to add value to your Summit experience by making new connections? Then plan on participating in one of the two Speed Networking events in the Expo Hall! Back by popular demand, this fast-paced networking experience puts you in touch with industry veterans, fellow colleagues, and product experts. During this hour long event, you’ll participate in several rounds of networking at multiple tables with fellow attendees and industry movers and shakers. This fast-paced event will allow you to make initial connections early and leave you with plenty of time to follow up throughout the remainder of the Summit. Space is very limited and reservations are on a first come, first served basis. Please only sign up for ONE SESSION DATE and if you are certain you will be able to participate as this event requires pre-scheduling each attendee’s networking schedule. You must be a full Summit registrant to attend this event.

Tuesday May 17, 2016 11:00am - 12:00pm
Marquis Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

1:00pm

Three Hats of Independence
Freelancers and independents wear three hats: one for their expertise, one for marketing, and one for business sense. Most focus on their expertise hat, thinking that knowledge, experience, and professionalism will carry the day, and neglect the other two hats. This session discusses all three: how the marketing hat is needed to get work and position yourself; how the business hat actually keeps you going financially and affords you the opportunity to charge properly; and that the expertise hat can only be used when the other two are used properly.

Speakers
avatar for Rich Maggiani

Rich Maggiani

Communication Consultant, Solari Communication



Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 4

1:00pm

Customer Experience (CX)--Come Join the Party
Customer Experience (CX) is more than a buzz word. It's key to remaining relevant and adding value to your employer or business. Come and see how you start the CX discussion (as it relates to technical communication), put together and deploy a strategy, and then measure results. If you're doing CX already, come and challenge others, share your secrets, and disclose your stories. This session promises food for thought, a party hat of laughs, and a hope that you can get your CX party started when you leave the room.

Speakers
avatar for Pamela Noreault

Pamela Noreault

Solutions Architect, SDL, Inc.
Pam has over 20 years of experience in technical communications, education, and management. She specializes in content strategy, customer engagement, content conversions, and social networking strategies. She has an undergraduate degree in education from The Ohio State University and a master’s degree in English and Professional Writing from Wright State University. When not trying out new gadgets or trying to innovate in the business world... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 1

1:00pm

The Attention-Comprehension Gap: An Integrated Approach to Usability Testing and Design
Join us to explore the idea of the attention-comprehension gap, which is an approach to information design that focuses on creating a balance between drawing user attention to specific content and their comprehension of that content. The objective is to present a new approach to usability testing and design that allows technical communicators to create materials that draw and hold the user's attention while conveying information effectively and easily understood. We will introduce how to create methods of assessing usability based on balancing these aspects of gaining user attention and assuring comprehension of information in a way that facilitates the effective design of different materials.

Speakers
avatar for Kirk St. Amant

Kirk St. Amant

Professor, East Carolina University and University of Limerick
Kirk St.Amant is a Professor of Technical and Professional Communication and of International Studies at East Carolina University and an Adjunct Professor of International Health and Medical Communication at the University of Limerick, Ireland. He researches international and intercultural communication as it relates to online media (particularly the globalization of online education) and medical communication in international contexts. He has... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand C/D

1:00pm

15 Ways to Animate Your Content with GIFs
Animated GIFs are helping you quickly react to your friend's social media post or making your coworker laugh. But they're not just fun and games. See real-world examples of how animated GIFs are being used in documentation, support, and beyond. Get practical tips for when, how, and why to create them.

Speakers
avatar for Daniel Foster

Daniel Foster

Strategy Lead for Snagit, TechSmith Corporation
Content, marketing, product, research, sailing (hard and soft water), disc golf, and international travel.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Expo Theater

1:00pm

TC Body of Knowledge, Certification, and Content Contribution

Are you interested in contributing your practitioner expertise to the body of knowledge used for certification? Come to this session to learn how the TC BOK is supporting CPTC Foundation certification as a supplemental resource and CPTC Practitioner certification as a primary resource. BOK editors are soliciting content for specific content areas and will cover the license that governs the content of the site. SIG volunteers and others interested in contributing content to the BOK are highly encouraged to attend.


Speakers
avatar for Deanne Levander

Deanne Levander

Talk with me about the TCBOK! Have you published an article in Intercom? Do you give presentations to technical communicators? Do you regularly present at the Summit? Are you passionate about what you do? You are only a few steps from becoming a contribution! :-)
avatar for Liz Pohland

Liz Pohland

Director of Communications and Intercom Editor, Society for Technical Communication
Liz Pohland is STC’s Director of Communications and the editor of Intercom, with over 25 years of experience in publishing as a content and production manager, writer, editor, and designer. During her tenure with STC, she has worked closely on the certification program and the body of knowledge. Liz is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech University; she earned a BA in English and French... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand E

1:00pm

Responsive Content in MadCap Flare: Create in Minutes, Not Hours
Every time someone walks into a glass door, we are reminded how important small screens are in today’s world. Creating a responsive skin is no big deal because Flare does that for you. But responsive content is another thing. How can you make sure your content is structured in a way that looks good on screens of all sizes? Enter Flare’s new Responsive Layout window pane. In this session, Jennifer will demo this new window pane, showing concrete examples of how and where it can be used to quickly create responsive content. You will also see other new Flare 12 features to help create responsive content grids, including the Stylesheet Editor.

Speakers
JM

Jennifer Morse

Product Evangelist, MadCap Software


Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Grand A/B

1:00pm

Writing Technical Docs like a Hacker with Jekyll
Jekyll is a popular open source tool that can be used for documentation that includes conditional filtering, single sourcing, PDF and HTML output, a robust TOC, search, context-sensitive help, collaboration, SME review, and more. With it you write primarily in Markdown, but can also use HTML or JavaScript in your content. Jekyll's architecture is flexible and customizable, utilizing your web development skills. If you work in a developer-centric shop, enjoy the freedom to code, and would like to replace proprietary help authoring tools, join us in this session to learn how Jekyll might be the solution for you.

Speakers
avatar for Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

Technical Writer, Amazon Lab126
I currently work as a technical writer for developer documentation products at Amazon in Sunnyvale, California. I write regularly at http://idratherbewriting.com. Here are a few things I'm interested in related to #techcomm: API documentation, visual communication, findability, Jekyll, web design, general technical writing methods, writing.


slides html

Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 3

1:00pm

Internationalized Texts: Writing for Translation and Globalization
In a global world, having documentation in multiple languages is key to many companies' success. Technical writers are often tasked with coordinating the translation of a given text and there are steps that technical writers should take to ensure an accurate and successful translation of the text. In this session we will review the terms internationalization, translation, and globalization as well as the standard processes involved. We will cover machine translation and computer assisted translation tools and also learn how to avoid English writing conventions that make translation more difficult, using examples that the group can adjust together.

Speakers
avatar for David Rumsey

David Rumsey

President, American Translators Association
A long-time veteran of the language industry since 1990, David has been a project manager, localization engineer and a freelance translator and editor focusing on Scandinavian and German technical documentation. | | David is the current President of the American Translators Association, which represents over 10,000 translators and interpreters in all 50 states and 93 countries. You can learn more here: www.atanet.org



Tuesday May 17, 2016 1:00pm - 1:45pm
Platinum 2

2:15pm

Don't Edit--Teach: Strategies for Mentoring Writers
Editing and commenting on others’ writing can feel like an exercise in futility. We make similar edits and suggestions time and time again. The writers make our changes, but often don’t seem to learn from the efforts we put into providing this feedback. This workshop provides practical techniques, supported by proven pedagogy, for helping your employees develop as writers through a refined feedback process focused on what you and the organization truly value in writing. Attendees will leave with techniques for commenting on and discussing drafts that allow writers to develop as communicators, rather than simply get a finished writing product out the door.

Speakers
avatar for Jessica McCaughey

Jessica McCaughey

Assistant Professor, George Washington University


Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 4

2:15pm

Where Does User Documentation Fit into Content Marketing?
Content marketing is an approach to marketing--especially business-to-business marketing--which provides “relevant” content to a potential customer instead of traditional promotion materials. It is an approach that has seen remarkable growth over the past decade. This presentation discusses where technical content, such as user documentation, fits into this approach. Understanding and using this approach provides another avenue for technical writers to establish their importance in organizations, and allows organizations to better utilize the valuable information that technical writers create.

Speakers
avatar for Clinton Lanier

Clinton Lanier

Assistant Professor, New Mexico State University
Web Design and Development, Social Media and Content Marketing, and User Assistance



Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand C/D

2:15pm

Seek and You Will Find: Taxonomy & Delivery
What can we do to help our customers sort through the sea of information available to them? How can they find that focused nugget of content that will help them complete their task at hand, solve a nagging problem, or make a purchasing decision? How do we ensure that an optimized customer journey and reduced customer effort are attained throughout customers’ content experience? Taxonomy drives faceted search, making search simple and effective, and increases chances to find answers on the first try. Fortunately, the standards and tools supporting semantic faceted search is now within reach. In this session, Joe Gelb will discuss the importance of a corporate taxonomy, outline the process for defining and testing it, and demonstrate its crucial role within dynamic publishing platforms, delivering focused content across all customer touchpoints.

Speakers
avatar for Joe Gelb

Joe Gelb

President and Head of Business Development, Zoomin Software
Joe Gelb has over twenty years of experience helping enterprises implement, maintain and capitalize on structured content. At Zoomin, he has spearheaded the development of advanced technology solutions for dynamic content delivery. Prior to founding Zoomin and Suite Solutions, Joe was the CTO at Live Linx, a leading provider of software and system integration services for technical product information, where he designed and... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Grand A/B

2:15pm

Certified Professional Technical Communicator (CPTC): What You Need to Know
The Society for Technical Communication (STC) and its partner APMG International are pelased to announce the re-opening of the Certified Professional Technical Communicator (CPTC) program. CPTC is designed to validate the skills, knowledge, and competence of technical communicators as they advance in their professional careers. Currently the first level of a three-tier professional certification program is open: Foundation. Attend this session to learn more about how the program is structured and what you need to do to become certified.

Speakers
avatar for Liz Pohland

Liz Pohland

Director of Communications and Intercom Editor, Society for Technical Communication
Liz Pohland is STC’s Director of Communications and the editor of Intercom, with over 25 years of experience in publishing as a content and production manager, writer, editor, and designer. During her tenure with STC, she has worked closely on the certification program and the body of knowledge. Liz is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech University; she earned a BA in English and French... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Expo Theater

2:15pm

Let the Force of APIs Be with You: Building the Developer Experience Right
Today we live in an API economy and everything is moving into a service paradigm. Product companies are slowly gearing up to this change. With the rapid adoption of cloud computing, it’s an open war and APIs are your Lightsaber weapon. When you create an API, you invite developers to become your customers. So just as you spend the time, money and effort to provide the best user experience through user interface design, you should expend a similar effort to provide the best possible developer experience through API design.

Speakers
avatar for Nabayan Roy

Nabayan Roy

Principal Learning Experience Designer, Autodesk
Nabayan Roy is a Product Owner and Principal Learning Experience Designer at Autodesk, Singapore. Nabayan works on AutoCAD product family. | | His interests include Agile and Lean product development, User and Developer Experience (UX/DX), Human-Centered Design, Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR/VR), Information Architecture, and project management. He is also a Certified Scrum Master (CSM).



Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 2

2:15pm

Up with Markdown!
Technical writers are often asked to quickly produce small sections of content for various media. Instead of using large and complex authoring tools for quick authoring tasks, you can harness the power of simplified-notation markdown to quickly and easily produce content chunks that can be exported as HTML and integrated into virtually any parent document. It's fast, easy, and even kind of fun! Join us to learn what markdown is, how simplified syntax works, the available tools, and how markdown can help you be more productive.

Speakers

Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 3

2:15pm

Building Quality Experiences for Users in any Language
Companies are striving for a friendly tone with their content and also taking it to other cultures. Those two content goals seem to be at odds, but they don’t have to be. How do you reconcile more casual writing for content that will be translated into other languages? In this talk, we’ll use a metaphor to look at how to build quality content experiences for all users so they have the best possible experience, regardless of their language. We’ll also cover some pitfalls to watch for and tactics for creating friendly English for good translations.

Speakers
avatar for John Collins

John Collins

Sr Writer • Design, Atlassian
I'm passionate about the intersection of UX, content strategy, and localization. I'd love to talk about any of those topics, plus I have experience in journalism if anyone wants to commiserate. I also enjoy emergency management and firefighting topics, if you really want to shock me.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 2:15pm - 3:00pm
Platinum 1

3:45pm

A Practitioner's Guide to Teaching Tech Comm
This presentation explores the variety of academic positions that are available to the well-suited practitioner and explains a variety of methods for breaking into teaching technical communication. We'll examine how a practitioner’s skill set relates to teaching, explain the variety of educational settings and academic positions, and offer advice on how to apply and prepare for a teaching position.

Speakers
avatar for Michael Opsteegh

Michael Opsteegh

Sr. Technical Writer, Eyefinity



Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand C/D

3:45pm

Closing the Deal: Getting that Freelance Project
Do you have lots of prospects but not enough work? You’re not alone. Many of us went independent because of our strong communication skills, and realized in hindsight that we weren’t as strong in business skills. We’ve all struggled with the frustration of the prospective client that drops off the face of the earth after seemingly positive negotiations. What went wrong? In this session, Alisa will discuss different ways to identify solid prospects, ask for what you need, and close the deal with prospective clients without feeling like a used car salesman. She will also cover converting prospects into paying clients and how to identify the clients to avoid.

Speakers
avatar for Alisa Bonsignore

Alisa Bonsignore

Writer & Strategist, Clarifying Complex Ideas
I'd love to talk to you about your freelancing challenges, how to self-promote without feeling like a used car salesman, and the glimmering hope of a Cubs postseason.


Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 3

3:45pm

The Future is Now--How Technical Documentation is Changing to Technical Communication
In this presentation Stefan Gentz will talk about the change from technical documentation to technical communication, intelligent information, Industrie 4.0, and what this means for technical writers. Today, customers interact with technical content in new ways and customer expectations have changed dramatically. The industry is moving away from board manuals to heads-up displays, technical content is delivered with text to speech, and technical content consumption is no longer limited to humans. The quality and delivery of technical communication has a strong impact on brand recognition; it can have positive and negative effects. We need to rethink how and where we deliver technical content to customers, and how this affects business.

Speakers
avatar for Stefan Gentz

Stefan Gentz

Global Evangelist, Technical Communication, Adobe Systems GmbH
As the Global Evangelist for Technical Communication at Adobe, Stefan’s mission is to inspire enterprises and technical writers around the world and show how to create compelling technical communication content with the Adobe TCS tools. | Stefan is also a certified Quality Management Professional, ISO 9001 / EN 15038 auditor, Change Management Assessor, ISO 31000 Risk Management expert and Six Sigma Champion. | Stefan is a popular... Read More →


Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Grand A/B

3:45pm

Editing Tons of Text? RegEx to the Rescue!
Do you face a daunting editing task, possibly editing a few lines in hundreds or thousands of files? Do you want to update the value for a property in multiple files? Regular expressions (RegEx) can help. Regular expressions are powerful search patterns that exceed what is possible with a basic search. In this session, you will learn common patterns that dramatically decrease the time spent on tedious text maintenance tasks. If you wished for a smarter find and replace or do repetitive text editing for days or weeks, then this presentation is for you.

Speakers
avatar for Eric Cressey

Eric Cressey

Senior UX Content Writer, Symantec
If you're working on a project with a lot of repetitive, manual tasks, let's talk about tools and techniques you can leverage to efficiently get the job done. I love talking about about regular expressions, SOAP and REST APIs, code samples, modifying text outputs, and web analytics.



Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 1

3:45pm

How Do I Pick the Right Tool for Me?
So many tools and messages from so many vendors. One size does not fit all and one solution is not right for everyone! How do you find the right one for you? No one answer is the right answer for everyone. It depends on staff, resources, skills, and even company culture. In this session, Liz will share strategies, benchmarks, and questions that she has used (and seen used) over the years, so you will have something to help you choose the tool that’s best for you, your company, and your situation.

Speakers
avatar for Elizabeth Fraley

Elizabeth Fraley

CEO, Single-Sourcing Solutions
Liz Fraley is a serial entrepreneur. She founded two companies, sits on the boards of three non-profits, and is constantly coming up with new ways to share knowledge in the technical communications and content industries. She has worked in high-tech and government sectors at startups to huge enterprises. She advocates approaches that directly improve organizational efficiency, productivity, and interoperability. If you ask her, she’ll say... Read More →



Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 2

3:45pm

Producing Professional Emails to Get Answers!
Do you ever email a subject matter expert, manager, or client and get an ambiguous response? Do your emails generate discussions that lead to delays while you wait for information needed to meet deadlines? Perhaps you struggle with who to CC in an email or who to leave off? Do you need to increase the visibility and priority of your communication? If so, come to this workshop to learn the questions that get definitive answers and explore how to deal with conflict via email. We will also examine emails that work and those that don't, and we will use real case scenarios to rewrite emails that get results.

Speakers


Tuesday May 17, 2016 3:45pm - 4:30pm
Platinum 4

5:00pm

Honors Reception
We’re making the awards celebration a party for everyone! This reception will honor all of our award winners, but focus on the new Fellows, Associate Fellows, and a few of the more specific awards. There will be snacks, small plates, and soft drinks. There will be cash bars available for anyone who wants a cocktail or other “hard” drink. Come celebrate the best of our industry before continuing the good times with friends after. This event is included with your registration fee.

Tuesday May 17, 2016 5:00pm - 6:30pm
Grand Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

8:00pm

OCSTC Chapter Bowling Event

OCSTC Chapter Hosts Event at the Garden Walk’s Bowlmor

The Dude abides … at Bowlmor on Tuesday night May 17th.  Come to bowl or come to watch, but don’t miss the Big Lebowlski Tournament of Tech Writers, hosted by the Orange County STC chapter.  Sign–ups are at the Summit 2016 welcome table.  A limited number of slots are available, so make sure you register early.  Have a player name in mind too, like Crouching Bowler, HIdden Typo.

Less alley and more lounge, Bowlmor is located at the Anaheim Garden Walk.  Check out the cushy digs at http://www.bowlmor.com/anaheim/ .  Enjoy dinner before the tournament at one of the many restaurants, including Roy’s (Hawaiian fusion), Bubba Gump (get your Cajun fix), Fire+Ice (Mongolian BBQ), Cheesecake Factory (naughty desserts), and McFadden’s (Irish pub grub).  For an overview of dining choices and menus, go to http://www.anaheimgardenwalk.com/dining/ .

This event is intended to be part friendly competition and mostly friendly conversation.  Pre-gaming starts at 8:00 PM in Bowlmor’s lounge with the lane event starting at 9:00 PM.  The tournament winner earns bragging rights and an interesting trophy.

So Summitteers, make this event your lucky strike!


Moderators
avatar for Art Hoffmann

Art Hoffmann

Technical Writer, FMC Technologies
I am the current Programs Chair for the OCSTC chapter and the organizer of the Big Lebowlski Tournament of Tech Writers event for Tuesday May 17th at Bowlmor in the Anheim Garden Walk mall.

Tuesday May 17, 2016 8:00pm - 11:00pm
Garden Walk's Bowlmor 400 W. Disney Way, Anaheim, CA 92802
 
Wednesday, May 18
 

8:00am

Registration
Last day to pickup your badge information at registration! The registration desk will be open from 8:00 AM-11:00 AM on Wednesday, 18 May.

Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:00am - 11:00am
TBA

8:30am

How to Become a Strategic Communicator and Advance Your Career
Ask yourself, “Are you strategic?” Strategic thinking is the combination of innovation, strategy planning, and operational planning. This session will explore the value of strategic thinking and why it is so valuable to an organization. Communication professionals are ideal candidates who think strategically within their organizations because they have that rare combination knowledge about both their audience/customer (external) and their organization (internal). We will examine both the research and strategy phases of strategic thinking, which further illustrate why communicators make good strategic thinkers.

Speakers
avatar for David L. Caruso

David L. Caruso

Health Communication, NIOSH
Strategic Communication | Occupational Safety and Health | Federal Government Communication


Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand A/B

8:30am

Have a Tech Comm Question? Ask the Experts!

Join our expert panel for a lively and fun Q&A session. The panel has over 125 years of combined experience, and their expertise areas include (but are not limited to): management, Agile, interviewing SMEs, soft skills, embedded help, minimalism, responsive design, Git/GitHub, wikis, Tech Comm Suite, Video, Mobile Content Delivery, Mobile Apps, Audio Recording, eLearning Development, content strategy, DITA, machine translation, and more. Come prepared with your questions!


Speakers
avatar for Nicky Bleiel

Nicky Bleiel

Watson Information Developer, IBM Watson
Nicky Bleiel is a Watson Information Developer at IBM. She is a Past President and Associate Fellow of STC and has over 20 years of experience writing and designing content for software products in a variety of industries. She is a popular speaker at many conferences, including the STC Summit, WritersUA, tcworld, CIDM (Content Management Strategies/DITA North America), and LavaCon; and has been published in STC’s Intercom, tcworld magazine... Read More →
avatar for Alyssa Fox

Alyssa Fox

Director of Information Development & Program Management, Micro Focus
Alyssa Fox is Director of Information Development and Program Management at Micro Focus in Houston, Texas. Her interests and skills include technical communication, user experience, process improvement, project management, and agile development practices. Alyssa is a member of Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA), User Experience Professionals Association (UXPA), a senior member of Society for Technical Communication (STC), and is... Read More →
avatar for Alan Houser

Alan Houser

Consultant/Trainer, Group Wellesley, Inc.
Technical publishing consultant and trainer; XML/DITA architect; Machine Translation guy; Former President of the Society for Technical Communication
avatar for Kevin Siegel

Kevin Siegel

Learning and Development Specialist, IconLogic, Inc.
Kevin is a certified technical trainer, a veteran classroom instructor (online and onsite), and a frequent speaker at trade shows and conventions. He has three decades of experience as a print publisher, technical communicator, instructional designer, and eLearning developer. | | Kevin has written hundreds of step-by-step computer training books on applications such as Adobe Captivate, Articulate Storyline, Adobe RoboHelp, Adobe... Read More →
avatar for Matt Sullivan

Matt Sullivan

Founder, Tech Comm Tools
I help folks deliver content to their audience, ranging from PDF to mobile, and from text/graphics to interactive/video. | | I love to talk about courseware, video, and mobile delivery. If you love that stuff as well, introduce yourself & let's chat! | | Talk to me about anything! One of the best things about conferences is access to the presenters, so don't miss your chance. Ask me about my conversations in 2015 with Mari... Read More →



Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 4

8:30am

Tech Comm Throwdown: 2 Experts Enter, 1 Winner Leaves
Mixing fact and fun, two experts debate topics which may include "video tutorials are better than illustrated HTML or PDF/print content," or "the Table of Contents is better than the Index," or "junk food and caffeine is better for tech comm success than green tea and yoga." An unbiased, highly professional, and stone-cold serious moderator keeps them in line, guides the debate, and awards meaningless points. Love debates? Love comedic timing? Love tech comm? Don't choose just one, get all three! Debaters include winners (and losers) from last year's session as well as a few new faces. You can look forward to hearing from Jack Molisani, Leah Guren, Christopher Ward, Viqui Dill, and Greta Boller. Bonus points awarded to those who figure out the alphabetization scheme of the debater names.

Speakers
avatar for Bernard Aschwanden

Bernard Aschwanden

President, Publishing Smarter


Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 2/3

8:30am

Automate Release Notes for Quick and Accurate Results
Time to market is a key differentiator for a company’s success. With Agile methodology and continuous delivery approach in software development, there is less time to write release documentation. To keep up, we must look for opportunities to automate wherever we can, including Release Notes. In this session, we will discuss a solution developed by our technical publications team that allows writers to capture feature and defect information from a defect tracking system and then quickly publish online, wiki-based Release Notes while ensuring technical accuracy and style compliance. This system allows users to access complete, quality content with short notice on the release date.

Speakers
avatar for Tanya Ivanova

Tanya Ivanova

Senior Manager, Technical Publications, Genesys
With over 15 years of experience in technical writing for software companies, I am currently a Senior Manager with the Technical Publications department at Genesys. I have lead the initiative for automating production of Release Notes at Genesys, from creating the solution architecture, to directing the platform developer, to working with JIRA administrators on dependencies, to creating training on the new tool and processes, to promoting the... Read More →



Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Platinum 1

8:30am

Power to the People: Targeted Content through Dynamic Filters
In this always on, always connected world, consumers expect content that is not only optimized for their device, but also optimized for their needs. These expectations add to the ever-present need for technical communicators to deliver more: the right content, on the right device, at the right time. In this session, you will discover how to impress and empower your customers by providing content that can be filtered down to fit their specific needs.

Speakers
avatar for Dustin Vaughn

Dustin Vaughn

Solutions Consulting Manager, Adobe


Wednesday May 18, 2016 8:30am - 9:15am
Grand C/D

9:45am

Summit Unsession
Open to everyone! Bring your own speaking topic to the Summit (presentation, demo, or discussion) and post it for attendees to vote for onsite. Drum up support during the event and encourage people to select and vote for your proposal. If your topic is one of the top 5 vote getters after the second day, you will present and share it during a progression-style session on the final day of Summit (twice as a 20-minute roundtable topic).

Speakers
avatar for Elizabeth Fraley

Elizabeth Fraley

CEO, Single-Sourcing Solutions
Liz Fraley is a serial entrepreneur. She founded two companies, sits on the boards of three non-profits, and is constantly coming up with new ways to share knowledge in the technical communications and content industries. She has worked in high-tech and government sectors at startups to huge enterprises. She advocates approaches that directly improve organizational efficiency, productivity, and interoperability. If you ask her, she’ll say... Read More →



Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 4

9:45am

Technical Communication in Health Information and Education
Ninety million Americans lack health literacy skills to productively participate and engage in their own health care.Technical communicators are adept at producing and designing information to be understood by specific, targeted audiences like this. So the question becomes, how do we participate to meet the growing need for health communication specialists? We can apply our knowledge of user experience to patient education in patient experience design (PXD), which is explained in this presentation. Join us to learn how PXD developed, what it is, and strategies for how technical communicators can use this approach to move into health communication and patient education careers.

Speakers


Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand C/D

9:45am

A Loopy Yarn: Knitting and Technical Communication
Although knitting and technical communication seem like two disparate disciplines, they share several things in common--from knowing one’s audience to paying attention to finishing details. This presentation will highlight these commonalities, from project conception to the finished deliverable, and help you think about how your own favorite hobbies relate to technical communication.

Speakers
avatar for Jamye Sagan

Jamye Sagan

Pharmacy Communication Advisor, H-E-B Grocery Company
Jamye manages communications between the corporate office and the store pharmacies. She also helps design training programs and reference materials for various pharmacy projects. | | When not “making sense out of the senseless” in the tech comm. world, Jamye enjoys transforming yarn into pretty and useful objects and keeping her cats away from her yarn.



Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

Be Your Own Best Self ... Editor
We all want to have an editor on call, but the reality is that most of us aren't that lucky. And all of us will run into situations where time or resources don't allow us the luxury of a good edit. This talk will highlight strategies for making the most of a self-edit and avoiding pitfalls.

Speakers
avatar for Richard Hamilton

Richard Hamilton

Publisher, XML Press
Richard Hamilton is Founder and CEO of XML Press. He began his career at Bell Laboratories developing computer software and has worked at AT&T, Unix System Laboratories, Novell, and Hewlett-Packard in jobs ranging from software development to product management to documentation management. | | In 2008 he founded XML Press, which is dedicated to producing high quality, practical publications for technical communicators, managers, marketers... Read More →


Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

Everything I Needed to Know about Leadership, I Learned from Star Trek
A light-hearted look at what makes a good leader. From Kirk to Janeway, the Star Trek captains explored new worlds, developed their teams, and survived life-threatening situations, sometimes with sheer luck, sometimes with wit and charm, and sometimes with a clear head. Even their flaws teach us.

Speakers
avatar for Katherine Brown-Hoekstra

Katherine Brown-Hoekstra

Principal, Comgenesis, LLC
Katherine (Kit) Brown-Hoekstra is an STC Fellow and STC 2015-16 Society Immediate Past President, an experienced consultant with over 25 years of experience in technical communication, much of it working with localization teams. As Principal of Comgenesis, LLC, Kit provides consulting and training to her clients on a variety of topics, including localization, content strategy, and content management. She speaks at conferences worldwide and... Read More →


Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly in Video Technical Documentation
Using video and interactive in technical documentation is all about keeping the audience's attention while delivering important content. Just like a Lightning Talk!

Speakers
avatar for Matt Sullivan

Matt Sullivan

Founder, Tech Comm Tools
I help folks deliver content to their audience, ranging from PDF to mobile, and from text/graphics to interactive/video. | | I love to talk about courseware, video, and mobile delivery. If you love that stuff as well, introduce yourself & let's chat! | | Talk to me about anything! One of the best things about conferences is access to the presenters, so don't miss your chance. Ask me about my conversations in 2015 with Mari... Read More →



Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

Where’s the Comma People?
Commas are important. Did you hear the one about the $750,000,000 missing comma? Or that Rachel Ray “finds inspiration in cooking her family and her dog?” When we forget a comma, hilarity (and confusion) ensues. Let’s reinforce this important message by laughing at other people’s mistakes! We’ll focus on the comma plus expand to other punctuation errors, and even look at a misspelled word or two.

Speakers
avatar for Li-At Rathbun

Li-At Rathbun

Technical Editor, Yardi Systems
Li-At has over 20 years of technical communication experience (yes, since kindergarten). Although her main role at Yardi Systems is as technical editor, she also creates training videos. | | Li-At has continuously served in various STC leadership positions since her very first meeting. She’s currently the Santa Barbara chapter president, Technical Editing SIG co-manager, and Surveys Lead for the CAC (Community Affairs Committee... Read More →


Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

You Stink at Email: Why Write? Nobody Reads
Your emails are getting ignored for a reason: you stink at it. Most of us get hundreds of messages a day. Why would anybody ever want to read that wall of text under your boring subject line?

Speakers
avatar for Viqui Dill

Viqui Dill

TechComm Leader, American Woodmark
An engineering graduate from Virginia Tech, Viqui is happiest as a small group worship leader or surrounded by singing kids at Vacation Bible School. She works as a Technical Writer for American Woodmark in Winchester. | | Viqui describes herself as “Technical writer, wife and mom, bass player, worship leader, I’m happiest when folks sing along with me.”



Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 2/3

9:45am

Programming Language Storytime
You don't need to write code to be able to read it! "Digging into" the code is often the best way to extract information when we write software documentation, but the idea of reading all that code can be daunting. A few simple tricks and an understanding of the patterns involved can get you started reading code to answer your questions. This session will examine open-source applications in some of the most common programming languages: Java, JavaScript, C, C#, PHP, Python, Ruby, and Perl. It is particularly helpful for writers who work with API documentation.

Speakers
avatar for Sarah Kiniry

Sarah Kiniry

Technical Writer II, cPanel, Inc.
Sarah Kiniry is a Technical Writer for cPanel, Inc., a web hosting software company. In this role, she provides full documentation support for an Agile development team, as well as participating in content strategy and other initiatives for the company as a whole. | In a past life, Sarah was a stage manager and audience development manager at several of Houston’s professional theaters and performing arts venues. She believes that technical... Read More →



Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Platinum 1

9:45am

The Making of a Learning Platform: Designing Addictive, User-Centric Content

Take a behind-the-scenes look at the development of a new learning platform. Trailhead, created by Salesforce, has become popular due to its innovative approach to learning. Its features include learning paths, modular content, interactive challenges, gamification, social rewards, and integration of content with learning objectives and assessment. Trailhead draws on fundamental principles of learning theory and user-centric design, to make learning easy and enjoyable. Attendees will learn concepts and best practices for enhancing the effectiveness of any instructional content, regardless of its audience and format.


Speakers

Wednesday May 18, 2016 9:45am - 10:30am
Grand A/B

11:00am

Closing Keynote: Publish or Perish: How to Win the Hearts, Minds, and Wallets of Next Generation Consumers with Content Marketing

Today’s consumers have gotten really good at two things: avoiding advertising and making better-informed purchase decisions. And because everyone is a publisher, media company, and content creator today, the smartest CMOs are now shifting their core strategy away from advertising as we know it—and towards content marketing. Increasingly, technical communicators are being asked to repurpose their information-rich content for the unified customer experience. 

In this presentation, David will examine the changing media landscape, look at the intersection of technology and storytelling, and share insights on how the most effective brands and marketers use a combination of the two to reinvent the way they are engaging with their audiences through the next generation of content. David will also discuss his unique three Cs strategy focused on content, community, and commerce. You’ll hear how to develop a content strategy and creative, the value of working with influencers, examples of distribution strategies, how to get started, how to sell the ideas internally, and how to measure ROI. 

 


Speakers
avatar for David Beebe

David Beebe

Vice President, Global Creative + Content Marketing, Marriott International
David Beebe is a digital media executive, content marketing leader, and producer whose innovative work has received two Emmy awards. Known as a change agent, Beebe has a proven track record of winning the hearts, minds, and wallets of consumers with industry disrupting content studios. | | Currently VP, Global Creative + Content Marketing at Marriott International, Beebe leads the Marriott Creative Agency, Marriott Content Studio, and real time... Read More →


Wednesday May 18, 2016 11:00am - 12:15pm
Grand Ballroom Anaheim Marriott

7:00pm

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Baseball Game

Take me out to the ball game! The Orange County STC host chapter has reserved a block of game tickets for the matchup between Major League Baseball cross-town rivals the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Since this game is close for fans of both teams, it usually draws a sellout crowd. You don’t need to be a fan of either team to enjoy the sights, sounds, and excitement of America’s favorite pastime.

Tickets are $39 each. The game is Wednesday, 18 May, the final day of Summit 2016, with a start time of 7:05 PM. Angel Stadium is only 2.4 miles from the Anaheim Marriot and is served by the ART transit system.

Reserve your game tickets when registering for the 2016 Summit. Then, get ready to hear the crack of a bat hitting a home run while feasting on hot dogs, peanuts, and Cracker Jacks. The stadium has excellent food choices, from BBQ to vegan. Tickets are limited, so don’t strike out by waiting too long!


Wednesday May 18, 2016 7:00pm - 10:00pm
TBA