A day in the lifeTom Johnson has an interesting post on Quick Reference cards that has double value. For one, it gives good advice on what to do and what to avoid. More importantly, though, it is a great snapshot of what a technical communicator's life is like. I highly recommend it to my academic friends to share with your students, especially those who have not yet started working in the profession. It's not a depressing snapshot, but it does provide a splash of reality in the face.
ShhhhhIn the never-ending cube versus office and office versus home discussions, I often hear the argument for the need for a quiet place in which to concentrate. For a lot of my career, the people who invented the stuff I documented have worked in the chaos of common work areas with couches and foosball tables. But to document their output seems to require quiet and to edit that documentation requires greater quiet.
I have no beef with any of that, but it reminds me of an observation I have made about sports, namely that we are wildly inconsistent with our expectations of crowd noise. For example, in baseball the pitcher throws the ball ninety miles an hour at the batter and puts all kinds of curves on it, but the crowd is hysterical "Batta, batta, batta, suhwiiiing batta." In tennis, the server throws the ball to himself and we are all "Quiet, quiet, quiet, everyone, he's SERVING."
In golf the ball isn't even moving and the player is trying to put it into a hole in the ground (not very likely to be dodging around) and again, "Quiet, quiet, quiet, everyone, he's PUTTING." But a quarterback has to hit a moving target while monster-size opponents try to give him a concussion and again, the crowd is screaming.
No point here, just a pithy, Friday morning observation. Life is good these days.