June 21, 2017

5 best ways to provide writing samples

Producing technical writing sample during interview

During the interview, it is very common when the interviewer asks for the writing sample, this happens with all of us. So, what to do in that case?

No silver bullet but we can take few approach.

Why they want it and what is stopping you from doing that?

Why they want it?

  1. Want to see your writing style and skill
  2. Grammer proficiency
  3. Tool used by you
  4. Domain you worked
  5. Style guide knowledge
  6. Continue....

What is stopping you?

You may not have it- You never carry anything from office hardcopy or softcopy. Good job this is expected from you.

  1. If you are not violating confidentiality, the security or any legal issue you can carry and distribute all depend on nature of the document.So when you are producing anything from your past job make sure you are violating any legal issue. Your perspective employer will understand this.
  2. You can also create documents that look and speak exactly the same as the ones with sensitive information, but change the names and identities of the topics.
  3. A next approach could be to invest some time researching the company you are applying to and use any information you can to create something "for" them. Who knows, they may hire you on the spot!
  4. For 'public' profiles, take a screenshot of one page (UG) or one topic (help system) that illustrates your work. get permission from the client to do this, but, in general, use an older version of the documentation, not the most recent version.You can also, use a photo editor to remove any product-identifying, company-identifying, or proprietary information... like product names or feature names specific enough to a product to identify the company.
  5. If you can't use any of your previous work, you could create some sample documentation for FrameMaker, Word, or RoboHelp since you're already familiar with these tools.
Good Luck! Want to read your story, write in comment box.

June 4, 2017

Problem of open source- clear documentation

Importance of good document

Documentation is the key to success of any software programming, in the IT industry and most of the company understand the importance of the good document. Companies have their own internal documentation style guides but, at some point of time, they also have to look at the open source documentation for the different project needs. With the open source, documentation comes many challenges hand to hand that can hamper the sole purpose of software engineering. Those challenges need to be discussed so that the documentation can become error-free and in its right spirit.

Image courtesy: thenextweb

·        Incomplete and confusing documentation is the most common challenge to be faced when the input is open source. This is because of many reasons. To list a few are:

Documenting is not a general writing, it needs a set of skills and ability to understand and document accordingly as per the need of any project. In an open source documentation most of the time the skills are not up to the mark and hence the writer lacks the ability to document all the work properly.
Any documentation needs to be completed in a particular time frame and in order to meet the deadline often the perfection is not achieved.

Any software has a tendency to change and the documentation needs to be changed accordingly, which tempts a writer to wait until the software change is finalized and after that, they are left with minimal time to complete the documentation.

·        The second major challenge is unresponsiveness. This may be because of perceived focus on the developer. The user can be the right person to do the documentation but when the documentation revolves around the developer the writer is less interested to contribute from their side and the unresponsiveness from the user effects the quality of documentation.

·        It is also very necessary to take a contribution from the users who are not well informed because as an end user they value the documentation the most. They can contribute to have a clear and accessible language in the documentation as they are not preoccupied with the project and developers thought.

·        Some more small challenges to be faced are such as unwelcoming language and content, unexplained rejection etc.