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  Tuesday, June 8, 2004

OK, yes, that should have been "Venusian." Must have been thinking it worked like "Venetian." Which reminds me of the creative misspellings I've seen in years past, particularly at a certain small manufacturing company which shall remain nameless: "extention cord" and "spicket" (for spigot) come to mind.  But hey, I make mistakes too. Guy likes to catch me at them.

9:56:36 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

Thousands Watch Venus Pass Across Sun. BOLOGNA, Italy (AP) -- In this old center of stargazing, as in much of the world, thousands watched a rare heavenly show Tuesday: the black dot of Venus inching across the blazing face of the sun. By The Associated Press. [New York Times: NYT HomePage]

I watched part of the Venutian transit last night via the Exploratorium webcast, more out of historical than scientific interest. See, Captain James Cook travelled all the way to Tahiti to observe the transit in 1769, an event memorialized by the lighthouse at Point Venus, which I visited in 1978, after the L.A. to Tahiti race. Of course, I didn't understand the significance at that time, but it's interesting to make the connection today.
3:17:58 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

Gordon points to Seth Godin's vision of the future five years out, and asks questions for technical communicators:
Documentation, five years out. Seth Godin paints a picture of the future that give every tech writer pause to think. About the impact on their careers, and how their craft will thrive in such a world. [Usable Help]
So for starters I think there's no future for commodity tech writers -- those of us who see our jobs as typing perfectly-formatted doc. We'll have to pay much more attention to JIT doc: giving users what they need to know right now, in a format they can use on the fly. So we won't be writing books, we'll be writing modular help. OK, some of us get to do that now, and I don't understand why the book model is still in force where I work. We'll be delivering not just text, but voice and animation and photos and movies and demos. And embedding our help in the user interface, so we'll be more involved in designing and testing the UI so it doesn't require reams of documentation.

What do you think?

2:23:01 PM    Questions? Comments? Flames? []

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