Reading Usable Help
@UsableHelp on Twitter
Gordon R. Meyer
The vanishing technical writer
William Birn writes about The Death of the Technical Author. As more users turn to the Web for information, and the economy puts pressure on specialized and little-understood professions, will the role of the technical author disappear?
One suggested avenue of growth is to increase proficiency in scripting and information design. However, the mainstream help authoring tools that many technical writers use impose their own organization, and provide boilerplate scripting, so it seems that there is little opportunity for most writers to innovate and grow in these areas. Ultimately, technical writers may need to retreat to the core of their business -- providing solid content -- in order to save themselves.