Friday, December 12, 2014

Technical writers wearing multiple hats

Technical writers should have the blended knowledge of writing and tools. While tools do not only mean software used for documentation, it also includes the application software about which writers need to work around. Manager need to decide whom to involve based on technology of a project. Content update related project would prefer a content enthusiasts, whereas a technical resource for technology centric project.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Steps-by-step procedure to submit IT Return

July month is the time to file you IT return. Income Tax Department has come up with an easy way to file IT return.
Step 1: Log in to the Income Tax Department site. (
  • For registration, PAN card is mandatory, and this number will be your user ID.
  • Keep your Form 16 handy, that is provided by your company.
Step 2:
a. In the Quick Link section, click Quick e-File ITR.
b. Provide the IT returns detail as illustrated in Figure 1.
Note: If you have income from any other source other than interest (such as, shares, property deals, and other), which attracts tax under different clauses; select correct ITR form.
Figure 1. Prepare and Submit Online
Prepare and Submit Online
Step 3:
a. In the Personal Information tab, provide your personal details.
b. Click the Save Draft icon.

Monday, May 05, 2014

Deleting unused images in RoboHelp

You can view the list of unused image files in the RoboHelp project from: Tools>Reports>Unused Files. However, you cannot delete those files from the RoboHelp project. You can delete the file names from the Windows Explorer, which is a tedious work and prone to error. It becomes more challenging when the size of your project is big and files got filled up during several updates.

RoboHelp support java script to automate the task in the project. Don’t worry if you are not expert in java script. You can download the imagecleanup.jsx that is freely available at:
  1. Open the RoboHelp project for which you want to delete unused images.
  2. To open the Script Explorer pod, click View>Pods>Script Explorer.
    Script Explorer pod opens.

  3. Image: Add caption

Monday, August 19, 2013

Technical Writers vs Instructional Designers

The objective of a technical writer is to help the users in using the product. When a user is struck in understanding a feature or task, they consults the document as a reference. While an instructional designer make the user learn. The learner needs to go through the complete instructional design deliverable. If we talk about WBTs or CBTs, each and every activity of learner is tracked. The learner uses the instructional design deliverable as a textbook and not as a reference guide.
To conclude, technical writers write documents for potential users while instructional designers for potential learners.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Scenario-based Learning

Scenario based learning is the becoming popular to showcase a feature of an application. Scenarios are based around actions, where you need to create a story and the characters who will perform the task in the application. 
If you tell your story effectively and create good characters, your learners become invested in that character's story, regardless of whether they're rooting for their success or their downfall. Once you have your training plan outlined and sequenced with your lessons, you are ready to begin. Introduce the character and then present her/him with a problem that they (and the learner) cannot overcome. Develop the story so that it steps the learner on a journey through the learning objectives, getting the knowledge and skill along the way to meet the challenges presented at the outset of each learning objective. 
Creative writing courses will help immensely with storytelling as well as scenario based learning, but you may also think about technical writing for complex procedures.

To learn more about scenario-based learning, view the demonstration to buy books from on Youtube.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Lucidchart Quick Start Guide


Lucidchart is an HTML5-based diagramming tool to create flowcharts, wireframes, UML diagrams, mind maps, and more. You can open this tool on a Google chrome browser and work with the team members in real time.

Installing Lucidchart

To install and configure Lucidchart with Google Drive:
  1. Go to 
    The Chrome Web Store page appears.
  2. In the Search Apps text box, type Lucidchart and press EnterIn the Apps tab, the result page displays the Lucidchart: Diagramming app. 
  3. Click Install
    A confirmation message asks whether you want to install Lucidchart on Chrome. 

    : Before installing Lucidchart, sign in with your Google account.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Do you like to read a user guide or view a video tutorial?

People prefer instant help, sometime they don’t like to read the content to find the answer of their queries. It is helpful if someone shows you the steps to solve the problem, rather than navigating the user guide and troubleshoot the problem. People sometime prefer a video tutorial to view the how-to-do task.

Nowadays we get everything on mobile, prefer a video or online help for a product.  For software products, printed document will soon be past.  The internet and mobile has reduced the distance between the user and the vendor.
The product simulations and demonstrations can attract the attention of people. A technical writer can create video tutorial by using the Captivate and Articulate, these e-learning tools can also create course and quiz for the learners.

The sales personnel prefer a product demonstration for the clients and seminars. These demonstrations give a better walk through the product in a nut shell, instead of running the product. The beta version of the product might not be ready on time or create run-time error.

People can grasp the features of a product by watching the tutorial at their own time. Watching a video is always fun than reading a document.