Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Update from Philadelphia (2)

Many more good things today at the STC Summit in Philadelphia. Ginny Redish gave a presentation on "Writing as an Asynchronous Conversation", in which she related Grice's maxims of conversation to the sort of technical writing many of us are involved in. In a conversation that is asynchronous - as opposed to a synchronous one - we need to anticipate the questions our unknown interlocutor may have, and prepare answers that are not merely accurate, but also appropriate in tone and context. No wonder good tech writing is so difficult to achieve! Ginny gave many examples (some from her book Letting Go of the Words) to show how approaching tech writing as a conversation produced engaging and effective results.

More to come from this great conference tomorrow.

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