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helpstuff blog - June 2008

helpstuff blog

Helping end-users since 1981

Archives for: June 2008

06/25/08

Permalink 12:35:08 am, Categories: User Assistance, 146 words   English (US)

An Event Apart Boston 2008 ended today...

An Event Apart returned to Boston this year with another exceptional program. Last time, I couldn't attend because I was on the other side of the country. This time, I was home, but had too many things scheduled on the calendar.

I'm really bummed that I couldn't go. Led by Jeffrey Zeldman and Eric Meyer, AEA conferences are *the* place to get the latest information on web design, and they had a terrific lineup of speakers this year (some that you will have even heard of!). Jared Spool and Luke Wroblewski were both there, along with some other top names from the web design world.

The good news is that someone live-blogged the sessions at ScribbleLive. (I first found out about ScribbleLive right before STC's Technical Communication Summit...great site and easy to use.) So visit ScribbleLive's An Event Apart Boston 2008 page and read the recaps!

06/16/08

Permalink 09:31:18 pm, Categories: User Assistance, 167 words   English (US)

"Captain Captivate" is here!

Among the many blogs I track is one by Silke Fleischer, who is currently responsible for product management and marketing for Adobe Captivate. (OK, I took that from her blog.) I first met Silke years ago when she was working for Blue Sky (which became eHelp, which was bought out by Macromedia, which was bought out by Adobe, but that was after the remaining eHelp/Macromedia employees who were left quit to form MadCap Software...whew!).

Anyway, Silke's really nice and she's smart and (best thing of all) she doesn't blog daily ;-) (Oh, sorry...her blog is called Silke Fleischer.) Anyway, she attended an Adobe Masters Class last week on Adobe Captivate (which she really liked) and Captain Captivate showed up.

It seems that Captain Captivate has also started blogging. His real first entry (as opposed to the "hi, I'm here!" first entry) is about Flex 3.0 and AIR 1.0.

It's too soon to form an definite opinion, but I think it's worth keeping an eye on Captain Captivate.

06/15/08

Permalink 11:12:02 am, Categories: Just Stuff :-), 360 words   English (US)

Happy Father's Day, Dad (a social media experiment)

[Mashable is doing a social media experiment on Father's Day. Join in!]

It's been about 11 and a half years since my father died. The timing is important...11 means that he would have gotten to see Jesse at least once. 12 means that he would never have known about him.

My dad would have loved my son. Not just because of duty...that results in words with no feeling and no joy. No, my dad and my son would have bonded. There would have been phone calls, visits, trips. In my mind, I can imagine my dad holding Jesse as an infant, helping him walk, taking him fishing. I don't picture Dad reading to Jesse, mostly because Dad didn't read a lot ;-)

Jesse felt the loss when he was little. Near as I can tell, one day at his pre-pre-pre-school (he was between 2 and 3), another kid's grandfather showed up at the end of the day, because Jesse wanted to know who a "grandfather" was. After that, "Grandpa" was always around. He gave Jesse his pet beaver, named Cheddar. (No, my dad never had a beaver. Jesse didn't either until we found a beautiful stuffed animal at Foxwoods the following year.) Grandpa built a pond for Cheddar under Jesse's bed...we were told to be careful when coming in to give Jesse a kiss goodnight so that we didn't get wet.

There were times when it got...well...interesting. At one swimming lesson when he was 5, Jesse refused to do the stroke the way the instructor said to. When she asked him about it, he told her that Grandpa taught him how to swim this way. Unsure of how to proceed, she came to talk to me and asked if I could talk to my dad about it, because she really wanted Jesse to learn the right way to swim.

At some point, Jesse let go of Grandpa. It's hard to remember exactly when because it just happened naturally. But every Father's Day (along with his birth and death days), we remembered my dad and wish he was here to see what his grandson has become.

I miss you, Dad. Happy Father's Day.

06/03/08

Permalink 06:32:56 am, Categories: STC, 224 words   English (US)

Technical Communication Summit (STC2008)

What a busy four days it's been! Some highlights:

  • At Leadership Day, I got to tell everyone about social networking :-) There's a ScribbleLive blog (thanks to the folks at ScribbleLive for featuring STC2008 on their home page!), which lets anyone with the code blog about the conference. Sarah O'Keefe started the #stc2008 tweme. And folks are twittering! (As Sarah said, it's perspective. Tom Johnson says it's low at 1%, Sarah's excited because there's any at all, and I'm thrilled that we've got so many!)
  • The Annual Meeting was held last night and was relatively calm when compared to some of the previous years. Of course, there also wasn't a quorum, which meant that no voting could take place. But David Farbey was able to present his motion and there was discussion.
  • The Trends Panel on Sunday night was great. I wonder if anyone grabbed the information? I loved when Andrea Ames said, "Think more, write less". (The problem now is that there's no way I can sufficiently recap it...I'd love to listen to it again.)

I haven't made it to any sessions yet...maybe later today, but I'm not sure because I still have a board meeting this morning and the panel that I'm moderating. Tomorrow is the Annual Forum and the closing session. And I still need to get by the exhibition again!

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