Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, Ph.D.

I study people, technology, and the worlds they make

Technical documentation weirdness

I’ve long thought that someone should write a history of technical documentation and technical writing. It’s one of those invisible technical skills (to crib a phrase from Steve Shapin) that we haven’t paid any attention to, but which can play a role in the shaping of new technologies. Documentation has also probably been more profoundly affected by hypertext and the Internet than any other genre of writing– and not always for the better.

Until that history is written, though, check out the Hall of Technical Documentation Weirdness.

1 Comment

  1. Montezumas_Revenge

    February 17, 2005 at 11:04 am

    What I see is more and more fraudulent “technical writers” posing as technical writers. The bad economy, and some techwriting books are urging folks to get out there and pretend to be what you want to be.
    The corporations are so worried about cutting costs, yet their hiring people are so ignorant or over-worked, they don’t care or know how to check on the pre-hire skills, references or the post-hire productivity and work quality. This puts a huge burden on the rest of the workers as they have to help or fix problems. The posers degrade the profession as well, being parasitic on the coworkers and employer, causes a backlash at other techwriters.

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