High-Quality, Print-Ready DITA book in less than a day

My first book went live this morning: Arbortext 101. It is also the first book about Arbortext that was not published by PTC.* Arbortext is an extremely simple XML authoring and publishing suite of programs. It’s got an editor, a styling tool, a server-based publishing application, and a content management system. It’s 20 years old this year.

In my career, I’ve used nearly all of the XML/SGML tools out there. I like different tools for different purposes. I’m a big fan of the “right tool for the job” as it were. When I approached the project, I decided that I’d distill the 5000+ pages of technical documentation that gets published with the product into a short book that documents the best practices that we’ve developed over the 15 years as users and customers of Arbortext.

A couple of things happened close together…

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Liz Asks: Are you coming to camp?

Are you coming to TC Summer Camp? (Have you been to TC Camp?)

TC Camp, the non-profit we launched last year is expanding! The board at TC Camp is taking it to the East Coast next month: It’s TC Summer Camp!

TC Summer Camp is an unconference – the only one focused on content creators and the people who support them. It’s been going for four years in Silicon Valley, and now they’re coming East. If you’ve never been, it’s an amazingly intense and stimulating event. Get together with your peers and wrap your arms around the topics you care most about. You’re guaranteed to be interested in the unconference sessions because you’ll be deciding the topics on the day of the event!

Read more over at the TC Camp website — read about how an unconference event works or what past attendees have to say (and why then don’t miss it!)

We’ll be there, so if you’re within driving distance of Fairfax, VA, on Saturday, the 30th of July, come say hi!

Liz Asks: How Good are Political Campaigns at Data Science?

Summary: Direct Mail campaigns by politicians could really benefit from the services of ‪#‎datascience‬ and ‪#‎contentstrategy‬ folks. In 2016, we have evolved from simple, generic, stereotypical messaging with our audience.

How good are Political Campaigns at Data Science? Not Very Good At All.

As the election season gets closer here in California, I’ve become fascinated by the direct mail campaigns of the political candidates.  I don’t have cable, you see, so I rarely see television advertising. And my radio listening is primarily NPR those rare times I’m in the car.  Every day I get one or more pieces of direct mail from the current crop of political hopefuls. Some days I will get up to three from a single candidate in the same day.
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