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helpstuff blog - Speaking Engagements

helpstuff blog

Helping end-users since 1981

Category: Speaking Engagements

02/20/08

Permalink 08:37:20 am, Categories: User Assistance, Conferences, Speaking Engagements, 324 words   English (US)

WritersUA starts soon...have you registered?

The 16th Annual WritersUA Conference takes place in Portland, Oregon, and starts on Sunday, March 16, with three supplemental seminars. Joe Welinske, president of WritersUA, has put together another awesome program that covers tools, concepts, Web 2.0, information architecture, and more.

I'm really excited about some of the sessions at this year's conference (of course, I usually am!).

  • Sarah O'Keefe is presenting Friend or Foe? The Role of Web 2.0 in User Assistance. Web 2.0 is everywhere (or if it's not there yet, it's coming). Are you ready?
  • Luke Wroblewski, Senior Principal of Product Ideation & Design at Yahoo! Inc. and founder of LukeW Interface Designs, is presenting Using Visual Hierarchy to Convey Information. I first met Luke last year when we both presented at the Yggdrasil Conference in Norway, and he has great ideas (and the ability to share them well, too). (And I really love the name of the group he works at..."product ideation".)
  • If I wasn't going to Luke's session, I'd go to Guiding Principles of Googley Design with Jon Wiley from Google. I mean, come on...it's Google!
  • The Wikibooks Paradigm for Collaborative Content Creation with Andrew Whitworth sounds interesting, too. Andrew will talk about the Wikibooks project, an offshoot of Wikipedia.
  • Dave Gash is presenting an Introduction to XSL Transforms. I've suddenly started getting more queries on XSLTs, and Dave has a great way of explaining concepts that make it easy for me to understand.

I'm co-presenting two sessions this year. The first is a panel on issues in Help authoring, which should result in an interesting discussion/debate (given that the panel agrees on some things and not on others). The second is a collaborative editing session with Geoff Hart, where I'll be demoing Geoff's techniques in conjunction with many of today's popular HATs.

The agenda also includes hands-on tutorials (usually double sessions), tools, DITA and XML, and more. Visit the conference website for more information.

Hope to see you there!

12/08/07

Permalink 12:42:09 pm, Categories: Announcements, User Assistance, Conferences, Speaking Engagements, 110 words   English (US)

Take advantage of WritersUA early discount now!

Registration is open for the Sixteenth Annual WritersUA Conference, held in Portland, Oregon, and you have one week to take advantage of the early discount. Joe Welinske has put together another top-notch program covering a variety of topics, including tool-specific tips and tricks, conceptual information, cutting edge techniques, and more.

I'll be co-presenting a session on collaborative editing of online Help with Geoff Hart, and I'll be moderating a panel of pundits as we discuss key issues in Help authoring tool selection.

Check out the agenda and then tell your boss that you need to attend this conference. And save money by registering by December 15, 2007.

Hope to see you there!

10/21/07

Permalink 09:26:05 am, Categories: Announcements, User Assistance, Speaking Engagements, 251 words   English (US)

Judge issued landmark decisions in Target accessibility case...

And the silence was deafening ;-)

On October 2, 2007, federal district Judge Marilyn Hall Patel granted class-action status to the National Federation of the Blind vs. Target lawsuit, filed in February 2006. This means that blind people throughout the country who have tried to access Target.com can become plaintiffs.

In addition, she ruled that websites like Target's are required by California law to be accessible. (The orginal lawsuit was brought by northern California resident Bruce Sexton.)

This news is HUGE, and could have long-reaching implications in website design for accessibility. So many sites are not W3C-compliant nor accessible, in part because these items are not official requirements. Some designers think it's too hard to make a compliant site. Others just don't know how and think that a second accessible site is required. (Ask anyone using a screen reader about trying to shop at Amazon.com, which runs a not-quite-parallel site.)

What amazes me is how much money Target is probably spending to defend their practices and their website, when in reality, all they needed to do was add alt attributes to images, properly label form controls, and make sure that a mouse wasn't required for navigation.

Next week, I'll be presenting "Accessibility: An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure!" at LavaCon. This session will demonstrate some accessibility issues, show some good and bad sites, discuss how you can make your websites more accessible, and provide a list of applications that can help you gauge the accessibility of your site.

06/09/07

Permalink 11:38:44 am, Categories: User Assistance, Speaking Engagements, STC, 328 words   English (US)

links from "Future of Communication" presentation in Tampa

On Thursday night, I presented a session on the Future of Communication to the Tampa STC chapter. (This was a more enhanced version of the session I gave to the Boston chapter in February, and will be changed and re-enhanced for my keynote at the Yggdrasil Conference in October.)

Someone asked if I would share my slides, because they wanted the links of the different sites I talked about. However, the slides don't actually contain the links, so here they are!

=> Read more!

04/11/07

Permalink 07:23:37 am, Categories: Speaking Engagements, 82 words   English (US)

Visiting STC-NNE tonight!

Tonight, I'm going to the STC Northern New England chapter (this, of course, assumes that the storms coming in bring reasonable amounts of snow!). Because of a couple of communication glitches, I'll be presenting two sessions: The Future of Communication (short and entertaining) and Choosing a HAT: Finding the Best Fit.

I like visiting the Northern New England chapter...it's a fairly quick trip, the people are always friendly, the food is good, and I get a bottle of real maple syrup :-)

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