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Celebrating our 50th anniversarySOCIETY FOR TECHNICAL COMMUNICATION
Eastern Ontario Chapter

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* Current year's programs

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* 2006/2007
* 2005/2006
* 2004/2005
* 2003/2004
* 2002/2003
* 2001/2002

2005/2006 Programs

Annual General Meeting

The current executive will provide a summary of the 2005/2006 year.

Come meet the new executive and hear their plans for the coming year.

When: Wednesday, May 17, 2006, 6:30 pm

Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

Where: Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore, Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood)

April Program Meeting

"Using FrameMaker in a Single Sourcing and Content Management Environment: Case Study"
Presenters: Craig Piercey and Jennifer Rhyno

FrameMaker is the de facto standard for creating large documents in our industry. Its extensive feature set enables writers to develop documentation efficiently and effectively. Depending on the situation, however, FrameMaker may not be enough to meet the needs of a writing group. In this case, the writers may need to complement the software with a single sourcing workflow and/or a content management system.

This seminar will discuss a scenario at Tundra Semiconductor where a new documentation solution was required. Specifically, a workflow that maximized the re-use of information across multiple products and departments, introduced secure control over content, and maintained automatic file version control.

About the Presenters

Craig and Jennifer have been developing technical documentation for over seven years at Tundra Semiconductor. They have written numerous user manuals and marketing collaterals in support of the company's system interconnect devices. Their primary toolset includes FrameMaker, Acrobat, and MKS Source Integrity.

When: Monday, April 24, 2006, 6:30 pm

Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

Where: Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore, Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood)

Cost: Free for members, $5 for students, $10 for others.

STCEO 2005/2006 Awards Banquet

The Awards Banquet is a great opportunity to meet some of the most talented technical communications professionals in our region. 23 entries have been submitted in a variety of formats and cover a wide range of subject matter. 15 judges have donated their time and expertise to assess the entries and decide which are to win awards of Merit, Excellence, and the esteemed Best of Show.

Before the awards are presented, attendees will be treated to a keynote address by Saul Carliner. Saul is an internationally known expert on elearning, information design, and technical communication.

About Saul Carliner

Saul is Assistant Professor of Educational Technology at Concordia University in Montreal and serves on the executive of the Centre for the Study of Learning and Performance. His research focuses on emerging genres of online communication and the management of workplace learning and communication groups.

Saul is a Certified Training and Development Professional (CTDP) through the Canadian Society for Training and Development, Research Fellow of the American Society for Training and Development, and Fellow and past international president of the Society for Technical Communication. He received back-to-back Best of Show awards in 2000 and 2001 for his articles in Technical Communication.

Saul's topic is "Recent research in information design and document design--what we know and what's left to learn". All are welcome to attend what promises to be a great evening. Here are the details:

When: Tuesday, March 28th - Doors open at 6:00 P.M.
Where: Centurion Center, 170 Colonnade Road South Google map OCTranspo trip planner
Admission: Free for STCEO members and competition participants, $10 for students, and $20 for all others, payable at the door. All are welcome.
6:00 P.M. - Mix, mingle, and browse our winning competition entries
6:45 P.M. - Dinner
- Keynote Address by Saul Carliner
- Presentation of Awards
Dinner Menu *UPDATED March 24*

A buffet dinner featuring:

  • Tossed Garden Salad With Assorted Dressings
  • Marinated Cole Slaw
  • Sliced Tip Sirloin of Beef
  • Chicken Pieces with a Teriyaki Glaze
  • Chef's Selection of Potatoes
  • Seasonal Vegetables
  • Fresh Rolls with Butter
  • Chef's Selection of Squares
  • Coffee and Tea

See the list of winners as well as photos from the event.

February Program Meeting

"Resolved: Search replaces indexing!"
Presenter: Fred Brown.

"Face it, people love that little search box. With automated search tools, do labour-intensive indexes now belong in the Smithsonian? But in reality, does search really work as well as our tried and true indexes? Come participate in the great debate!"

About Fred Brown

Fred specializes in indexes and other navigation aids for web sites, intranets and content management systems: site indexes, taxonomies, metadata and topic maps. He continues to create embedded indexes for technical documentation in Adobe FrameMaker, Microsoft Word, DocBook and XML (see Fred has recently coauthored a book entitled, "Index It Right: Advice from the Experts (volume 1)."

When: Tuesday, February 28, 2006, 6:30 pm

Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

Where: Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore,
           190 Richmond Road, Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood) Google map OCTranspo trip planner

Cost: Free for members, $5 for students, $10 for others.

January Program Meeting

Combining Generated and Authored Content using XML
Mark Baker and Leona Gray

Applications that generate information such as API documentation from source code are common enough. Generating API information is a huge time saver, but sometimes the generated information is not complete enough or polished enough to meet documentation needs or standards. This presentation will show how it is possible to combine extracted content with authored content, achieving the best of both worlds.

Based on an actual documentation project at a local company, this presentation will show how we were able, using only free open-source tools, to:

  • Extract useful information from an API description (in this case, an XML
  • Write supplementary information in XML.
  • Combine the extracted and supplementary information to create user-friendly documentation.
  • Use the extracted information to validate the authored content.
  • Automatically generated hundreds of links among different elements.
  • Output the result to HTML and FrameMaker.
  • Quickly extend the system to incorporate a different class of API

The presentation will include a brief overview of the relevant XML standards.

About Mark Baker

Mark Baker has been studying methods for improving the efficiency of content creation for 15 years. His former positions include Manager, Information Engineering Methods at Nortel and Director, Communications, for SGML pioneer, OmniMark Technologies. He has spoken frequently and written many articles on content development, markup, single sourcing, and content management. He was named one of 20 leaders to watch in the content management industry for 2004 by CMS watch. He is currently president of Analecta Communications, a writing and consulting company in Ottawa. He is also an associate of the Center for Information Development Management.

When: Thursday, January 19, 2006, 6:30 pm

Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

Where: Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore, Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood)

Cost: Free for members, $5 for students, $10 for others.

December Program Meeting
STCEO Christmas Party

When: Thursday, December 8, 6pm
Where: Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore, Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood)
Cost: STC Members & Students $15; Others $30

I have to admit that I wondered about the chapter's choice of venue for the Christmas party last year, but after attending anyway, I wouldn't want to miss this year's event of the same venue.

The cooking lesson / dinner party "upstairs" at Loblaws was not only entertaining, but delicious! We mingled around the kitchen, just like at any good party, glass of wine in hand, and watched our professional chef at work preparing a great meal for us. Some great culinary tips were shared that night, and ofcourse, some of us compulsive tech writers, just had to take a few notes! There was a very sociable dinner atmosphere and great anticipation as the chef served up our plates. It was easy to discern the consensus in the room as we took our first bites, everyone really enjoyed that meal.

So come on out for our dinner party! We hope you'll extend the invitation to a current or former colleague, your boss, your client, your friends, the more the merrier! It's an informal, merry mingle and a great meal that you won't have to cook, although you may just want to another time!

Hope to see you there,

Christel Kurz


Multigrain Salmon with bearnaise sauce and wilted greens and scallions
Napoleon of chicken and wild mushroom fricasse with vermouth, roasted shallots and beet reduction
Chocolate truffle cake with raspberry merlot sauce

November Program Meeting

Tuesday, November 15, 6:30 pm

Going Head to Head with Communication

Barry will talk about a project he ran in a public utility's IT department, to promote the importance of communication and to boost non-writers' writing skills. He will cover the challenges of getting project approval, getting suitable content, and getting people to listen.

A Professional Engineer with a BA from Cambridge and an MSc in Solid Mechanics from Aston University (don't ask!), Barry spent 30 years in IT development and management. He now works as a freelance communicator..

Barry has written articles (serious and less than serious) for in-house & external publication in user manuals, technical documentation, reports, newsletters, websites, conference papers, speeches, skits, poetry, & a coffee-table book..

"Upstairs at the Real Canadian Superstore", Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood)
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Free for members, $5 for students, $10 for others.
Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

October Program Meeting

Wednesday, October 12, 6:30 pm

Leveraging Technical Content as a Corporate Asset

Organizations that spend money developing technical information may be surprised to learn that many benefits associated with having this information often go unrealized. Ron Stone will talk about strategies to leverage this technical content as the valuable corporate asset that it is.

With over 15 years of experience as a technical and business communicator, Ron consults on best practices in content creation and management. He has successfully leveraged his expertise in projects ranging from major documentation system design and deployment for clients in a range of industries to training kits, commercial and not-for-profit web sites, proposals, white papers, case studies and more.

"Upstairs at Loblaws", Westboro (Richmond Road at Kirkwood) Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Free for members, $5 for students, $10 for others.
Food at 6:30pm
Presentation at 7pm

Wine & Cheese

2005 Wine and Cheese - click for a larger picture

Thursday, September 29, 6:30 pm
Wine & Cheese
Dow's Lake Pavillion (near the corner of Carling and Preston/Prince of Wales)

Free for STC members and students, $10 for others


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October 12, 2006