When technical writers meet at conferences, one of the very first questions is usually: “Which help authoring tool do you use to produce help content?” And that question is swiftly followed by “And which tool would you like to use instead?” At this point, most people within the techcomm community expect an answer like “FrameMaker”, “Flare” or a CMS. But when they ask Nils Bier, technical writer at K15t Software, he baffles them with his response. “We use Confluence, the enterprise wiki, combined with our latest Scroll add-ons. And as for the second question – Confluence is also my favorite tool for managing help content.” Let's find out why.
Here's the K15t Software http://www.k15t.com's weekly social web round-up for technical writers, information architects, and content strategists. This week's top story: "What makes the best infographics so convincing".
https://www.atlassian.com/roadtrip Atlassian is on the road again! This year, the Atlassian RoadTrip https://www.atlassian.com/roadtrip will stop in eight cities across the globe. Meet the K15t Software team on Thursday, May 8 http://atlassianroadtrip14berlin.eventbrite.com/, when the Atlassian RoadTrippers come to Berlin, Germany.
Have you ever wondered whether you can display additional content (such as Atlassian's Confluence support docs) in the navigation sidebar and on each page? Well, I was wondering about this myself. And when I came upon the solution, I was quite surprised about where it was: in K15t Software’s support docs for the Scroll Versions http://www.k15t.com/display/VSN/Documentation theme. A prime example of RTFM (read the fantastic manuals)!
In my previous blogpost https://www.k15t.com/blog/2014/03/confluence-as-dms-editing-attachments-directly-with-goedit, I explained how GoEdit can be used to turn Atlassian Confluence from a premium collaboration tool into an easy-to-use document management system. But there was still one issue to resolve: How can you prevent users from editing attachments concurrently? In this blog post, we will look at another useful add-on that solves this dilemma and integrates seamlessly with GoEdit.
"JIRA? A bug-tracking tool? Why should I care?" That was my first reaction when I started working as a tech writer at K15t Software back in 2011. Now, over two years later, it is hard to imagine doing my job without it. Like me, increasing numbers of technical writers are happily using Atlassian Confluence to manage their technical documentation. That’s a very good thing – and it encourages us to keep improving our Scroll add-ons. In addition to Confluence, Atlassian has another product that’s highly popular among software developers: the issue-tracking tool JIRA that was its very first product. In this blog post, I'll show you how JIRA helps me in my day-to-day work as a technical writer.
Confluence is not a document management system (DMS). But many organizations use it for a huge range of purposes – even for sharing images, documents and other files. As Confluence is an extensible platform, let’s see how we can add missing DMS features to our favorite wiki. In this blog post, we will look at a nice attachment handling add-on for Confluence that allows us to edit attachments of any file type.
We are delighted to announce the release of Scroll Versions 2.3 https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/com.k15t.scroll.scroll-versions and Scroll Translations 1.2 https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/com.k15t.scroll.scroll-translations. This release enables you to delete pages and their children in just a few clicks. We are also introducing a new Content by Label macro https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Content+by+Label+Macro that's fully compatible with translated and versioned content. And we've made a raft of UI improvements to enhance usability. Let's check out what's included in the new release.
We at K15t Software use Confluence for everything: to share news and knowledge in-house, for external communications and our website, to collaborate with customers, to manage our documentation, to create quotations for our services, and even for employee contracts. All these different kinds of documents need to have their own individual appearance when exported to PDF and printed. With Scroll Exporters versions 2.x, entering the correct export settings used to take a great many clicks. And so we sat down and thought about how we could make this easier for users. The result: the Scroll Export Schemes. With these, you can export Confluence content just the way you want it: defined once and exported in about two clicks. See the screencast at the bottom to see how it works in detail, and how you benefit.
Software developers and technical writers have different roles and no doubt work in different ways. But they have one thing in common: they hate doing anything more than once. So both groups are naturally very interested in the concept of reusability, also known as the DRY principle ("don't repeat yourself").
As the influence of the internet continues to grow, Search Engine Optimization and Content Marketing have become two of the hottest buzzwords of the moment. Having a kick-ass website, an informative blog, and a presence on leading social media channels are essential for success.
If you're passionate about developing top-quality software, that passion could well take up most of your time. As a father of two, a basketball enthusiast and a hobby guitarist, I often found myself working on code when I would have liked to spend time on my other interests. Luckily, I discovered SonarQube, a tool that makes it easier for me to trust the code I’m developing or maintaining. SonarQube gives me insights that were previously hard to obtain. And that helps me to enjoy more leisure time. Maybe it can do the same for you.
Some bugs can be fixed in a matter of minutes. But correctly incorporating your fix into the VCS can take much longer – especially if you have multiple related projects and the bugfix requires minor changes to all of them. Here at K15t, this applies to our Scroll Exporters, for example. This blogpost will explain how you can speed up the process of merging your fixes with the master branch(es) of your projects.
"With Scroll Office and Scroll Versions, we can manage the whole documentation process within the Confluence infrastructure – and create our final documents from the repository. Norbert Bittner, CEO, up to data professional services
Some years ago, Canonical launched an initiative called One Hundred Papercuts to improve user experience with its Ubuntu operating system. A papercut is "a small, easily fixed bug or annoyance that a user will experience frequently". The name comes from the saying, "Death by a thousand papercuts". We at K15t Software were aware that there were some papercuts in our own software, so we concentrated on eliminating as many of them as possible in today's release of Scroll Versions 2.2.
I’m sure you’re familiar with the term dogfooding http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eating_your_own_dog_food – using your own products in-house. We at K15t really do eat our own dog food: We employ Scroll Versions to manage the documentation of our Scroll add-ons http://www.k15t.com/software in Confluence. As a technical writer, I use Scroll Versions in my everyday work because it's a great tool. But at the same time, I leverage the dual benefits of dogfooding: It provides an opportunity both to improve the software and to develop best practices based on my own experience with the tool. In this blog post, I would like to share my experience with you and describe our best practices.
The question sometimes comes up "why should we use the Scroll PDF Exporter, when Confluence already has a built-in PDF exporter? That's a perfectly fair question, and I've been asked it enough, that I thought it would be a good topic for a blog post. To be honest, it also made me think hard exactly what I wanted to say. So, here's what I came up with. The built-in export function in Confluence works fine - it's just basic. But... if you want some control over the look and feel of your exported documents if you want your documentation to reflect the effort you put into writing it if you prefer writing to spending your time looking for workarounds, then, that's why you need Scroll PDF Exporter.
The tekom annual conference is a must for all businesses that provide software and/or services for the technical communications sector. The latest releases of our Scroll add-ons https://marketplace.atlassian.com/vendors/7016 were greeted with enthusiam. Scroll Translations https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/com.k15t.scroll.scroll-translations and integration with the Across Language Server attracted particular interest.
Meet the K15t Software team at the tekom / tcworld annual conference 2013, get the latest news about the Scroll Add-ons for Confluence, and attend a talk of the K15t team and/or Susan Griffin of Atlassian.
We are proud to announce the next add-on in the Scroll product family: Introducing Scroll Viewport, our new theme add-on and framework for Confluence to create beautiful and simple themes - for websites, intranets, or to publish your documentation.