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Geekend coming Up!

Since I’m officially looking for work, it may seem a little curious to redouble my efforts to master more technical skills. But after reading this Oreilly article on an xml editor for documentation, I’m tempted to download XMLMind this weekend. Partially to learn the tool, but partially to produce some DITA and Docbook documents quickly as a way to familiarize myself with the xml dialects. What’s cool about XMLMind is that it has some docbook and dita toolbar customizations. It also has a basic wysiwig/word processor view capability which lets you view basic structure while editing. Up until now, I’ve been using Oxygen XML editor. It’s great for doing xslt and coding, less helpful for producing structured documents that are actually meant to be read.

The article by James Eliot and Marc Loy covers not only Docbook and the editor itself, but also certain aspects of the xml workflow itself. (BTW, a few weeks ago I linked to a nice book by John Shipman about using xslt). XMLMind XML Editor (or XXE for short) also includes a nice tutorial/manual.

Two other things related to information design and technical writing. First, I’m reading a great book, Information Architecture for the World Wide Web (3rd edition). I’ve read the previous edition (1st?), but this one contains a lot of new information.

Second, the plone group in a documentation group reorganized their excellent documentation. Here is the result. Here is a piece by about the card sorting method used to do this reorganization.

Reality Dose (written the following Monday): Boy, I accomplished next to nothing last weekend!

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