Today, we’re going to settle the question once and for all – which is superior? Documentation in a plain-text editor using Markdown, or creating content in a rich-text editor the WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) way? How will it be decided, you ask? A good, clean head-to-head fight!
Bringing people together in a collaboration platform like Atlassian Confluence also means transferring your legacy content from multiple information silos. These repositories often contain important information that you can’t afford to leave by the wayside when building a new corporate knowledge base. In many cases, legacy content is only available as HTML files, such as online help resources or intranet pages. Is there a way to bring these assets into Confluence efficiently? Yes – but there is no one-size-fits-all method. There are three main approaches to importing a collection of static HTML pages. Your individual needs will determine which is best for you.
What would you call the image on the right? A ‘drop-down list’? A ‘pull-down’ or ‘select list’? A ‘drop-box’? I recently discussed this very issue with one of our Atlassian Expert consultants. It seems everyone – from customers to consultants, developers and tech writers – has their own name for this UI element. We constantly refer to it in meetings, specs and technical documentation, but often do so in different ways. Consistent wording is key to delivering clear, readable documentation. But when larger groups of authors collaborate to write documentation, they tend to use different words for the same things – such as jargon, or incorrect or obsolete terms. This is where terminology management comes to the rescue. This blog post describes how you can build a glossary in Confluence to ensure terminology consistency. What’s more, I’ll show you a way to check your Confluence content for terminology and writing style.
A king would never walk to the library if he wanted to consult a book. Rather than climbing down from his throne, he’d tell one of his servants to find the desired volume and bring it to him, wherever it may be. Today, all users are treated like royalty in the sense that they have instant access to information of all kinds. Context-sensitive help does the job of the king’s servants – providing the required knowledge directly and conveniently, and sparing users the bother of interrupting their work to browse through the entire help library. Imagine that a user needs advice on which option in a dialog window to choose. Clicking the help button or pressing the F1 key pulls up the relevant help topic right away. To be truly useful, help content must be provided at the right time and in the right form. And when it comes to creating and distributing help resources, what could be better than Confluence, the collaborative, web-based knowledge platform? Here are four tips for providing context-sensitive online help fit for a king.
Confluence 5.7 is the first release to boast inline comment functionality. The entire Confluence user community – including ourselves here at K15t Software – instantly fell in love with this new way to close the content feedback loop. But can inline comments be used for questions and feedback on public documentation sites? Or are comment threads below pages still the best way to interact? This key issue was recently discussed on the Atlassian Confluence documentation site. Here’s a wrap-up of that discussion https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Supported+Platforms?focusedCommentId=712639181#comment-712639181 – plus some best practices for using inline comments or choosing (threaded) page comments in Confluence 5.7.
When we first released Scroll Viewport on the Atlassian Marketplace in 2013, we claimed it was the best way to publish from Confluence to the web. Since then, we’ve learned a great deal from numerous website projects – and as a result, we’ve reconsidered the whole concept and spent many hours working on developments. Now, we’re proud to present Scroll Viewport 2.0 – a Confluence add-on that's a framework for delivering Confluence content even simpler and faster to the web.
When creating and updating documentation, it is often necessary to search for and replace text fragments. If, for example, a product name changes, authors need to update every single occurrence within their documentation. What if there was a way to automate this process? Atlassian Confluence’s built-in editor features a handy search-and-replace tool. Unfortunately, it doesn’t offer a way to exchange strings on multiple pages, across spaces or throughout the entire collaboration platform – and it’s unlikely that such a feature will be added any time soon. Instead, Confluence’s product managers point us to the Atlassian Marketplace, where third-party developers can provide suitable add-ons. In this blog post, I’ll take a closer look at one solution – available for Confluence 5 and above – that will help you search and replace Confluence content like a pro.
In medieval times, merchants used an Exchequer table to perform calculations for taxes and goods – and tables have been considered the best way to compile and compare data ever since. Tables can display large volumes of structured information in a highly compact and logical way. And today, spreadsheets enable us to calculate and process data electronically. Technical communicators rely on tables and comparison matrices to provide their readers with value-added information. So when using Atlassian Confluence to manage and distribute documentation, they need to be able to create tabular data, too. But Confluence is a collaboration platform and wiki, and wasn’t specifically built to handle complex tables or manage spreadsheet calculations. So can it be used to build, manage, style and calculate tabular content with ease?
On December 16, James Turcotte, SVP, Business Unit Executive of CA Technologies, gave a presentation on how Computer Associates keeps product documentation updated and improves turn-over time. In this presentation, James coined the term DocOps, describing it as the sibling of DevOps. Support agents, developers and, of course, technical communicators cooperate to deliver value to the customer. They do this by continuously improving documentation and knowledge management, even after release. We are delighted that our very own Scroll Versions enabled them to manage their content in Confluence.
At our second ShipIt day, we didn't have a winner team, but we've got two. One of the winning projects was our 3D object viewer for Confluence. In this blogpost, let me introduce our ShipIt project that brings Confluence into the three-dimensional world. In addition, you'll find some impressions from our most recent coding contest.
In our recent survey, we asked technical writers at the tcworld Conference how they manage documentation content, and how they collaborate with other communicators, developers, and experts. Here are the results – and some of them might surprise you.
We’re delighted to introduce you to the latest member of the Scroll add-ons https://marketplace.atlassian.com/vendors/7016 family. Meet our all-new Scroll CHM Exporter for Confluence. Let’s get to know this helpful new add-on a little better.
The latest release of our content management add-on for Confluence enables you to publish content to remote Confluence systems. What’s more, it enhances workflow support when making content available to a new or existing Confluence space.
Here's K15t Software http://www.k15t.com/'s 30th weekly social web round-up for technical writers, information architects, and content strategists – sharing 150+ links. This week's top story from the Atlassian Developers blog: “A New Viewport in Confluence”
Here's 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 from the HipChat blog: “How to Use HipChat to Collaborate and Build Culture”
tcworld Conference 2014, the world's largest technical communication conference and fair, is over! Now it's time to say 'Thank you' to all who visited us at our booth, and to have a look back on three exciting days in Stuttgart, Germany – full of insightful discussions, new Scroll content management add-ons, live demos, our techcomm survey, and free t-shirts.
Here's 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 from Kelly McDaniel in the Pro Austin Writer blog: “Immigration to Confluence”.
Last week, we held a developer event here at the K15t Software office. It was a wonderful evening with our customers and friends enjoying pizza, drinks, and expert talks from Atlassian. Here are the presentation slides and video recordings.
Here's 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 from the Valiantys blog: "Spreadsheets for Confluence 1.0: Filtering, Sorting, and Excel Import"
Last friday, our office was closed for a special reason: We were out on this year's K15t Software team event, and we had a great time together at the beautiful Allgäu area near Oberstdorf, located in the German Alps. Get some impressions of this awesome two-day trip.