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Should I Stay or Should I Go Now? (NOT a tribute to The Clash)

Should I Stay or Should I Go Now? (NOT a tribute to The Clash) | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
During this past week, Yahoo has made headlines with its new ban on work-at-home scenarios for employees. It raised a lot of hullabaloo, especially for working parents. According to an article on M...
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M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications
A collection of all the tech comm topics I find most timely or helpful, with a special emphasis on e-learning and m-learning
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New English Calligraphy

New English Calligraphy | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Reblogged on WordPress.com
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:
I saw this curated on Wordsummit's blog, and found it fascinating. Had to share it myself! This is not about typography or design, nor is it about linguistics and language. It's about both--and then some. We talk about localization and translation often in content strategy. Reading this added a new dimension to my method of thinking about it. Read this for an interesting perspective. --techcommgeekmom
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5 Sources of Ideas for My Blog Posts : @ProBlogger

5 Sources of Ideas for My Blog Posts : @ProBlogger | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
On a recent webinar over at ProBlogger.com I was asked by John: Where do you get your ideas for blog ...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Darin Hammond reposted this on Google +. I know I haven't been as attentive to my own blog in the last few months as the work at my job has been mentally exhausting me. Since the last big push for the work project is ending this week, I'm hoping that I can make a little more effort to provide some new original content in addition to the curated content (like this) with commentary that I have been able to squeeze in now and then. 

 

So, this article is certainly inspiration for me! I also have about a dozen draft posts hiding in the annals of TechCommGeekMom that I could try to revisit and work on, or add some more ideas. I'll definitely be referring to this article quite a bit in the next month or two! Take a look for yourself. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Technical Writing Is Boring, and 5 Other Misconceptions About This $100K Career | The Freelancer, by Contently

Technical Writing Is Boring, and 5 Other Misconceptions About This $100K Career | The Freelancer, by Contently | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Just saying the words "technical writer" is enough to make aspiring scribes shudder. Once upon a time, I certainly did. But now that I've been a veteran in the technical writing field for almost a decade, I felt it was time to dispel the top six myths about the career I've chosen.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Friend and fellow technical writer Craig Cardimon had posted this earlier on social media. It's an interesting article. And those salaries listed---I could make...that much? I think I need to ask for a raise...

Read this.

--techcommgeekmom 

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Will We Use Commas in the Future?

Will We Use Commas in the Future? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
There’s no denying that commas are helpful little flecks of punctuation. They allow us to separate written clauses and do good work when especially numerous or complicated groups of things exist in a single sentence. But do we really need them? That’s a trickier question. In some ways commas are...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is an intriguing article brought to my attention by Scott Abel on his Facebook page. The article sparked an interesting discussion on his feed. I will agree with one comment made on his feed (by my friend, Barry S.) which stated that the debate about commas will probably rage on, but what will start to become more obsolete is printed dictionaries, since language is always changing and the Internet can keep up with those changes much more quickly now. (The same probably applies to the thesaurus, too, I suppose.) 

 

I will admit that I'm very much an "old school" grammarian, in that I cherish my Oxford commas. While there might be general understanding without the commas, there is better understanding WITH the commas and other punctuation. Social media, especially Twitter, is not made for being grammatically correct. You only have 140 characters to work with, after all! (Although I try my best to use proper grammar in tweets as much as I can.)  But social media is not a report, a book, an informational pamplet, or an instructional manual. In these types of publications, whether in print or digital, proper grammar is highly necessary to ensure that the message or instruction is understood completely. If certain commas were left out of instructions for a medical procedure, that could have dire consequences! Seriously! Think about it.  While it might seem "ancient practices" to use commas and some other grammatical marks, for more formalized writing, they really need to stay. They've lasted a few hundred years already successfully. Don't fix what isn't broken! 

 

What do you think? Put your comments below.

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10 Responsive Design Problems and Fixes | UX Magazine

Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This article was brought to my attention by Rick Sapir on Google+. As I am part of a global team putting together a responsive design website right now, the timing of this article is impeccable. I knew some of these issues (some from learning about it, some by trial and error), but there were some other that I don't know were taken into consideration until after the fact. It happens. A good guide to review. 

--techcommgeekmom

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The Infosnacker’s Guide to the 2014 LavaCon Tweet Stream

The Infosnacker’s Guide to the 2014 LavaCon Tweet Stream | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Marcia Johnston demonstrates how much data can be gleaned and experience shared from a conference Tweet stream like those for LavaCon 2014.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Hashtags are not flawless, but they are a great way to track a trend. I've often recommended to people to use hashtag searches when trying to find people with common interests, like #techomm or #elearning or #mlearning or #contentstrategy (you get the idea).  You can use hashtags to participate in a conversation, Twitter, the ones that predominantly lead the way with hashtags, is a great resource this way. (I don't know if they started the hashtag movement, but they sure made it their own!) 

 

My friend Marcia Riefer Johnston wrote this interesting article about how Twitter hashtags came into play during the 2014 LavaCon conference (I was among some of those Twitter posts counted).  Doing analytics on this kind of social media stream is not perfect, as Marcia points out, but her study shows the impact of the hashtag for this event. 

 

Take a look. Really. Right now. Put your comments on what you think about the impact of hashtags below. 

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Shattered Glass: The Thrill Is Gone | LinkedIn

Shattered Glass: The Thrill Is Gone | LinkedIn | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Interesting article. As wearable tech evolves, it's interesting to read the perspective of this author, and listing the ups and downs of being a Google Glass tester. It makes me glad that I ended up returning mine. I still think that Glass could've had potential, but even after a year of development, I had expected more when I had temporarily received mine. Perhaps one day it will explode with many uses. Perhaps the world isn't ready for something like this device or something like it, but with each new wrist wearable and other personalized wearable devices, we get closer to the ideal that Glass was aiming for, and that's what counts. 

--techcommgeekmom

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10 Words and Phrases That Cause Confusion Between Brits and Americans

10 Words and Phrases That Cause Confusion Between Brits and Americans | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
There are many opportunities for linguistic confusion between Brits and Americans—slang, Southern slang and pronunciations can all cause blank looks, […]
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Ah, the little nuances of the English language between those on either side of the "pond".  Read this one--it's great. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Push or Pull? Content Creators Stop the Terminology Management Tug of War

Push or Pull? Content Creators Stop the Terminology Management Tug of War | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
There's a huge divide in the thought processes around terminology management and a large difference between how translators use tools and how content creators use tools. I'll explain here.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Val Swisher of Content Rules, Inc. wrote a fantastic article here about terminology management and the opposing approaches to it. Even though I don't work directly with localization and translation issues, it's something that interests me, and I agree that even with presentations I've heard, these different approaches confuse me. I think Val does a great job to help parse out the different elements involved and sort out this confusion. Read this! 

--techcommgeekmom

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Am I missing the TechComm party?

Am I missing the TechComm party? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
I'll come out and say it--I like going to conferences. It's a great opportunity to learn new information that can hopefully be applied upon my return from the conference. It's also fantastic opport...
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5 "Ahas" on Content Strategy from Scott Abel | LinkedIn

5 "Ahas" on Content Strategy from Scott Abel | LinkedIn | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

My friend Scott Abel has some good information here that is so basic, but highly important and gets down to the bottom line. I'm looking forward to seeing his new book in the near future! He's always a engaging presenter at the conference sessions I've attended. Read now!

--techcommgeekmom

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Why These Neuroscientists Are Prescribing Video Games

Why These Neuroscientists Are Prescribing Video Games | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Video games as therapy? While most virtual reality falls under the category of mindless entertainment, a group of researchers believe the gaming world may offer some benefit to those on the autism spectrum.

A team comprised of cognitive neurosci...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a great article about how gamification works especially well with autistic people. I couldn't agree more from experience! Read the details here--gamification isn't a waste of time when done right! 

--techcommgeekmom

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Lorraine Elvire Wagenaar's curator insight, October 30, 6:20 AM

voeg uw inzicht ...

Frédéric STOJICEVIC's curator insight, October 30, 9:47 AM

Le Serious Game au service de la pharma et de la neuroscience. Interactions sociales personnalisées en fonction des réactions du patient grâce à la reconnaissance faciale.

Critical Thinking at BHCC's curator insight, October 30, 11:16 AM

            This topic shows the benefits of video games today. They help kids with brain injuries or a disorder. They can also help the brain to repair itself after surgery has been done on the brain. Personally, I think that it's great that we have video games. I also think that video games should be at hospitals to help children develop a technological brain, in this sense it means they will learn how to operate technology in their older years

-Clay

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A Learning Secret: Don’t Take Notes with a Laptop

A Learning Secret: Don’t Take Notes with a Laptop | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Students who used longhand remembered more and had a deeper understanding of the material
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This article came by way of Adriane Hunt on LinkedIn. While I understand the article and its findings, I don't think it's a complete report, because the study is only taking into account typical students, and not including special needs students with learning disabilities. I understand the point they make that handwriting versus typing using different parts of the cognitive brain, and typing tends to be more writing what a professor says verbatim for later retention (although this study says it isn't so), for people like me, even handwriting was still me trying to get as much written verbatim as possible. My cognitive brain, like many who are ADHD or have Aspeger's or similar issues, listening then condensing the thought into something smaller but tangible, then writing it down is a more complicated process than for a typical student. By the time that is all done, the instructor has moved on to the next point, or is even three or four points ahead. Typing on laptops or tablets makes it much easier to facilitate this process. 

 

Even today, I was following some keynote speeches at the IDW conference via video, and trying to tweet the information. This is something I've been working on for years, but it's the same concept, and it's not easy to do at all, especially if the slides aren't up for long to grasp what was said quickly! 

 

Perhaps a reevaluation of this study is in order, to look at the full benefit. The researchers should look at both students--abled and learning disabled, and professionals who have to take notes during meetings. 

 

I still take handwritten notes during meetings, don't get me wrong. But it's not that easy to do, and retain all the key points from the banter happening at breakneck speed. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Trisha Poole's curator insight, October 23, 9:52 PM

Take all advice with a hint of caution: It is possible to take effective notes using a laptop, *if* you have the digital literacy skills to understand how to do it effectively. A common problem that arises when using laptops (or other digital devices) to take notes is that people forget to summarise what they hear and try to write things verbatim. When writing notes by hand, people are more likely to summarise and collate ideas rather than write verbatim. Digital literacy skills are important in this context, and it's also important to know that some articles might not be fully informed.

Miguel Herrera E.'s curator insight, October 24, 11:09 AM

Importante sugerencia

 

Gordon Gunn's curator insight, October 24, 5:36 PM

This is very true - particularly with Year 7 and 8 students.

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Digital Strategy and Architecture

Digital Strategy and Architecture | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
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Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Tristan Bishop shared this on Google+. It's an interesting look at how digital strategy works. Take a look. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Why Our Future Depends On Women In Technology

Why Our Future Depends On Women In Technology | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Today, men dominate technology companies and college computer science programs. But history shows us that women have made some of the biggest breakthroughs in computer technology....
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This article was brought to my attention by Tina Rowe on Facebook. 

 

This article couldn't be more true. Much about the computer field has been geared towards males, although work is being done to change that. We've seen that lately in the headlines especially in reference to women in the video gaming tech field. Even so, I can say as the only woman "tech" on teams that I'm on, one thought presented in this article was that gender doesn't matter when all that matters is getting the job done--it's an equal opportunity. Many female tech writers are highly computer savvy because we have to be to do our jobs. 

 

All of us--men and women alike--need to help balance the contributions of all genders in the IT field. It can be an exciting and lucrative field, and one that's constantly changing and growing with technology. 

--techcommgeekmom

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A Confession: I am a Fraud

A Confession: I am a Fraud | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

My friend, Nick Kellet, co-founder of List.ly, has this on his LinkedIn feed.

 

I confess...I am a fraud, too. You hadn't figured that out yet? Really. It's so obvious. Heck, I'm a fraud for posting this article about being a fraud, for heaven's sake. 

 

A big part of content strategy is learning how to reuse information in order to reshape it into something different and new. There are some great examples of this sort of thing in the article, and I'm sure you can think of many more. 

 

Based on this article, are you fraudulent, too?  Confess your sins below, and let's commiserate. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Scuba Happy's curator insight, November 23, 3:40 PM

I agree, an true expert is always teaching and learning from  others.

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I told you so...The Time for Global Content Strategy has Arrived | Content Rules, Inc.

I told you so...The Time for Global Content Strategy has Arrived | Content Rules, Inc. | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Two short years ago, I left a conference feeling demoralized. How could people care more about metrics than about their global content? This year was different.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

I think almost everyone knows how much I love Val Swisher. I think I've learned a lot over the last 2-3 years from her that I've been able to apply towards my current job. I have to say that as I was coming into the content strategy scene, I wondered about the emphasis on metrics, too. It wasn't something that I knew a lot about, and in my work I usually didn't have to get too deeply involved in that part of it. This isn't to say that metrics aren't important, but rather I didn't understand how that would supercede how one would have to look at the big picture, much like Val describes (and she's in deep with this stuff much more than I am, so she would know). So, I can understand her joy in seeing this switch over time. It makes more sense to me, too. Read this! 

--techcommgeekmom

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Natural Born Auditors | TechWhirl

Natural Born Auditors | TechWhirl | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Are technical writers born to be auditors? Dan Goldstein makes an interesting case on the instincts and skills both have.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Interesting article by Dan Goldstein on TechWhirl. I don't think I'd ever thought as myself as a potential auditor, but then again, I never thought that I'd become a tech writer either. Read this, and see if you think you'd make the cut...

--techcommgeekmom

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Men as the public face in a female dominated field

Men as the public face in a female dominated field | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
In the world of technical communication tools, the public faces of the companies are men, yet the field is predominately female. is this a bad marketing strategy?
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Sharon Burton reposted this September 2012 blog post today, and it's interesting to see that even two years later, the points that she makes are still valid. I always noticed that gender imbalance as well. Do you agree with her assessment? Put your comments below. 

--techcommgeekmom

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The Hidden Benefits of Learning History

The Hidden Benefits of Learning History | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
When you think about history, you probably think about dates, events, and other boring information you were forced to memorize in school. Instead, you should think of history as medicine that can be prescribed to your modern problems.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a great video and article brought to my attention by Craig Cardimon. As someone with a Bachelor's degree in History, and raised by a historian father, I concur with this video. History, above all else, provides perspective and understanding of how we got to be where we are now, why our culture is the way it is wherever we are, why language has developed the way it has, etc.  Understanding history of anything--even something like the development of a product in tech writing--has its merits. Check out the video on this page, and think about it. What do you think? Do you think history has its place?

--techcommgeekmom

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Mick Tierney's curator insight, November 14, 6:55 PM

Real history, that is - not the manipulated, agenda driven tripe that characterizes today's efforts. Example: in December at Berkeley, some of those who successfully initiated the "Free Speech Movement" will celebrate its 50th anniversary. Unfortunately, those who currently populate the Berkeley campus no longer believe in it or tolerate it. Sic transit gloria.

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Job Search Simplified: Employma Disrupts the Industry

Job Search Simplified: Employma Disrupts the Industry | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
Have you been on a job hunt lately? The pain is like getting one root canal after another. I searched for a job 2 years ago after deciding on a career change. I enjoyed my time teaching English at...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Oh, Darin Hammond has articulated what I've experienced more than once in the last 5 years, Since 2009, I was unemployed for about half of that time (a little less, but not much) due to this crazy process that he describes here, so I truly know the pain he describes only too well. While I haven't gone freelance yet, and my contract job seems fairly secure for now, the PTSD from the experience still lingers a bit. Ironically, I work with the HR department where I work, and when I can, I try to advise them from a user perspective that they shouldn't spend a lot of time on certain sections of their career site because frankly, a true job seekers isn't going to be spending much time on particular pages, and will spend a lot of time on others--based on my own experiences.  This "Employma" does sound intriguing, and I hope it succeeds and delivers the way it says it will. Time will tell.  Read this is you are curious about job seekings and its prospects. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Mylène BOUSQUET's curator insight, November 13, 3:25 AM

Because we all have been on a job hunt at least once ! ....

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Justine Bateman On Pulling Off A Major Midlife Career Pivot

Justine Bateman On Pulling Off A Major Midlife Career Pivot | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
The former Family Ties stara 48-year-old UCLA junior and computer science majorshares her advice on making your second act count.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Justine is just a hair older than me, and started at an older age than me, but her story is similar to mine going to grad school in the last few years. I don't regret going to grad school, and hope I can get to do my PhD eventually (time and money are preventing it right now). But it's so fantastic to read about someone who is part of my generation who rediscovered a way to get involved with a STEM-related career at a later age. Just proves you are never too old to learn! I love this story because I can relate to it so well. Read it! It's really good. 

--techcommgeekmom

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Terri Rice's curator insight, November 7, 12:35 PM

Danielle is right. This story by Justine Bateman is similar to many of us older women trying to get degrees and find our way back into the workforce. Im in my mid-fifties and Im working on my Master's. It is very tiring and frustrating to ask a question and have a blank look stare back at you. Honestly, finding a way to communicate with other generations is very challenging. I would love to develop a forum for women of all ages and pursuits to come together and share their stories, encouragements, and failures so the rest of us could know we are not alone. But Im still learning how to find my way around this technical stuff. Bless you, Danielle for sharing this story.

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Any technology you use should be "Googlable"

Any technology you use should be "Googlable" | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
'Any technology you use should be "Googlable"'. These are the words of Bill Scott,  VP Engineering, Merchant | Retail | Online Payments at PayPal, as reported by the amazing Sarah Maddox. (I say am...
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

Another great article by Mark Baker. It doesn't seem like enough to make it searchable, as explained here. How is your content "Googlable"? 

--techcommgeekmom

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Securitron.ca's curator insight, November 18, 9:32 AM

Look out Google is the next Apple but this time it's much bigger

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Are technical communicators the "fall guys"?

Are technical communicators the "fall guys"? | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
While plugging away at the big project I'm doing for work, a problem arose from how some features worked, and developers cluttered up the CMS architecture of the site I'm working on. When I tried t...
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How the US Government is Avoiding Gobbledygook with Plain Language

How the US Government is Avoiding Gobbledygook with Plain Language | M-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications | Scoop.it
The purpose of the Plain Writing Act of 2010 is to mandate the use of clear and simple English writing for all federal agencies. Here's how it's being used.
Danielle M. Villegas's insight:

This is a fantastic article by Val Swisher of Content Rules. I'm so glad to see that plain language is slowly but surely starting to take over! I never understood the need for writing in a way other than in plain language, especially when it came to legal terms. Perhaps ancient lawyers wanted a way to show off their higher education to sound more important, but it made law more complicated for the common person. This is a step in the right direction. 

--techcommgeekmom

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