8th International Conference on Technical Communication: Designing Experiences

Design d'expérience

Digital services transform our everyday experience, first through screens (websites, e-learning, online help, videos and social networks), and now through the physical world (voice assistants, augmented reality, blended learning). Technical communication has always had very strong ties with experience design. Now communication and design practices need to evolve to better support hybrid experiences across the digital and physical worlds.

Les projets de recherche en M2 Communication Technique Multilingue [PDF]

Marie Girard et les étudiants du M2 CTM

Assistants vocaux, comment puis-je vous aider? [PDF]

Maaike Coppens, Head UX design, M Creation, Paris

La réalité virtuelle au service de l’apprentissage [PDF]

Pierre Marole, Responsable partenariats, Digital and Human, Paris

Métadonnées : au service des expériences utilisateurs [PDF]

François Violette, Information Architect, ReachFive

Design responsable : concevoir pour l’avenir [PDF]

Aurélie Baton, UX Designer, IBM France

Que se passe-t-il lorsque vous mettez 50 rédacteurs techniques au sein d’une équipe de Design [PDF]

Sarah Baillot, SAP France

Quand les mots influencent le design et les interfaces [PDF]

Amandine Agic, Content Strategist, ACCOR

Camille Promérat, UX Writer, Freelance

Building UX As A Strategy for Growth [PDF]


Greta Goetz,PhD, Faculty of Philology, University of Belgrade

 

The added value of videos in technical writing

Claudia ANTHONYPILLAI, Laura BARIBAUD, Louise CLAUSTRAT

Paris Diderot University, July 15, 2019

Abstract

Videos play an important role in our lives, as well as in the daily lives of technical writers. Technical documentation has evolved throughout time and beyond written text, with multiple tools to choose from. This makes us wonder, to what extent is the introduction of videos in technical writing necessary?

Our research article seeks to answer this question, presenting the results of different tests and questionnaires. We will be able to determine how a user reacts to different sources of information, as well as how user experience affects the way a technical writer produces documentation.

Users have different learning styles, one can be verbal and the other visual, and a technical writer should keep that in mind when producing documents. Since everyone is different, having a video as a source helps and includes more people. However videos can be restricting depending on the situations.

Just like user needs, technical writing evolves, and so does technology. With the introduction of various forms of videos and the ability to integrate them in multiple platforms, a technical document can become more than just a traditional user guide. GIFs, chatbots and AI-powered applications are bringing new life to technical writing. Nevertheless, is video still really worth it?

Read the full article

The added value of videos in technical writing (PDF)

What are the challenges of implementing accessibility standards for technical writers?

Selly BAL – Adel Yann BENZENATI – Heritiana RATSIMBAZAFY

Paris Diderot University, 2018/2019

Abstract

Living with a disability in our society doesn’t necessarily mean needing constant care. However, it means having to adapt everyday: because the world we live in has not adapted to disabilities yet. This is a comment we can apply to technical communication, an activity in which the purpose is to make information accessible to an audience, but where accessibility guidelines are still rare to be found. We attempted with this paper to inquire about the current situation of accessibility to people with disabilities, focusing on visual and hearing impairment. We conducted a survey on technical communication professionals with different experiences and contacted various technical writers with the objective of presenting the norms that already exist in terms of accessibility and showing what’s still missing – with that, we tried to present an analysis of the reasons for the scarcity of norms in technical writing.

Read the full article

What are the challenges of implementing accessibility standards for technical writers? (PDF)

Determining whether DITA is good for you

C. Canart, M. Garnier, H. Morceau

Paris Diderot University, August 30th 2019

Abstract

Since it was released to the public in 2005, DITA has been adopted by an increasing   number of firms, and it has become one of the most popular standards for technical    documentation. The DITA standard was designed with the intent to meet the needs of   any firm and is sometimes thought of as a universal solution, but is this truly the case?   When considering a DITA implementation, one should make sure that DITA is really suited   to their particular situation and needs, and that it can be implemented successfully within   the company. In this paper, we tried to understand how one can determine whether DITA   is the right solution for their company before taking the leap and undertaking a content   migration. For the purpose of this paper, we gathered data through a survey aimed at both   DITA and non-DITA users, a review of existing resources, and several interviews of DITA   experts and representatives of technical writing solution firms. Whether DITA is right for a   company doesn’t seem to be wholly dependant on the size of the company, as one might   think at first, but has more to do with the technical know-how of the personnel and the   budget allocated to the documentation team.

Read the full article

Determining whether DITA is good for you (PDF)

Knowledge management in business strategy

NOTH Rosalie, RENARD Marion, THIBEAUD Hugo

Paris Diderot University, 09/15/2019

Abstract

In recent years, knowledge has become a factor of production in the same way as traditional land, labor and capital. For some, it is even the main factor of production of today’s companies, which tend to create a knowledge management service or to outsource it. The purpose of this research is to understand the importance of Knowledge Management (KM) in companies nowadays, and how it can serve the business strategy. Thus, this article will explain the definition and evolution of KM, then depict the challenges associated with KM and business strategies, and finally explore the way a management system is implemented. Thanks to all these elements, we will be able to understand how the KM system becomes essential in business strategy, and when.

To stick close to reality, we conducted interviews in two companies: one that has implemented a KM system a few years ago, and another without, which allowed us to show two opposite ways of dealing with knowledge in companies, and therefore show the link between KM and business strategies.

Read the full article

Knowledge management in business strategy (PDF)

 

The impact of global language on technical writing

Typhaine BERTEZ, Céleste WICKER

Paris Diderot University, September 2019

Abstract

Technical writing is a profession which evolves and spreads very quickly. From its beginning to today, it has increasingly been recognized as a necessary profession, and as it continues to spread around the world, new questions about its evolution appear every day. One of these questions is related to the language used for technical communication. Now that globalization is at the heart of many companies, English is increasingly used as an international language, to the point that some companies publish technical documentation in English, even though they are not English or based in an English-speaking country. This evolution obviously has consequences for the writers and the companies, who either adapt or do not. When you start writing in a language that is not your mother tongue, you have to adapt your vocabulary and use a language that everybody can understand. Also, the way you write your documentation must change, as formatting rules differ from one country to another. These changes may not be that complicated if the writer is very familiar with the target language and if the company works mainly in an English-speaker market. But what if a French company, for example, which operates in France and in foreign countries writes all of its documentation in English? Would the budget for translation change? Would training for future writers change too? But, in the case of a national company that cannot adapt very quickly to a world that speaks and trades in English, how is it possible to evolve? And what are the consequences? Are there that many differences between an English-based company and a national company?

Read the full article

The impact of global language on technical writing (PDF)

The use of colors in technical writing

Cristiane FREITAS, Viviana MACALUSO

Paris University, July 2019

Abstract

We come from different cultural and educational backgrounds and decided to analyze and focus on how colors may influence readability and, therefore, comprehension on technical documentation.
This matter came after we browsed a website from a marketplace corporation and we noticed that there was a lack of harmony and synchronicity between its marketing and documentation website. We noticed it mainly because the visual identity, particularly the use of colors and icons, was absolutely discordant. It was remarkable that the two websites were developed by different teams, what could eventually reveal an internal noise in communication, or even some problem in the enterprise architecture.
A simple misuse of colors can reveal much more than aesthetics, design or layout. And this seemed quite impressive to us. The color approach however can be very large, with multi-disciplinary, underestimated, usually treated randomly and not too scientific under the gaze of the academic community. We want to show that it can be theory-based and, by means of a user test, we intend to prove – practically – that colors should be treated with the importance they deserve, far beyond aesthetics and layout.
After applying a user test, we noticed that users react differently face to face with a colored and a black and white document.

Read the full article

The use of colors in technical writing (PDF)

Augmented and Virtual Reality: Towards the Enhancement of User Experience

Marie Fabre, Samia Rhaliès, Florian Peeter

Université de Paris, July 2019

Abstract

Our world is increasingly virtual. Digitalization has been taking over every industry during the last few decades, and user experience and assistance is no exception. Reality and the virtual world were divided by a gap that seemed unbridgeable until recently. Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) allow users to go beyond previous limitations. Users can learn and practice without being held back by the limitations of the real world.

AR and VR are not brand-new inventions. The praise they received the last few years is related to recent technical innovations such as advances in computational power, storage, graphics, and high-definition displays. These progresses opened the way to immersive technologies that were previously burdened with wires, heavy headsets, and poor graphics. Today, light, wireless hardware, and beautiful graphics immerse the user in a virtual world better than before. But innovation won’t stop there, as it is expected that $20,4 billion will be invested in AR and VR, an 68% increase 68% compared to the $12,1 billion spent in 2018. This growing interest for AR and VR is shared by a wide range of industries such as engineering, medicine, and even softwares.

Each finds its own in immersive reality. How do companies use AR and VR? To what extent do they enhance the User Experience? Are they the future of the user assistance, or just trendy gadgets?

After considering what are AR and VR and their usages, we will discuss their influence on User Experience (UX), their values, and what their future may be in the technical communication industry.

Read the full article

Augmented and virtual reality: Towards the enhancement of user experience (PDF)

7th International Conference on Technical Communication: Transforming Knowledge (2019)

7th International Conference on Technical Communication

Technical communication aims at transforming tacit knowledge into useful and usable content. During this year’s International Conference on Technical Communication, we explored the tools, methodologies and processes that make it possible to transform internal, individual knowledge into external, standardized content.

Les projets de recherche en M2 CDMM [PDF]

Marie Girard et les étudiants du M2 CDMM

Travailler avec les experts pour construire des formations digitales (e-learning) [PDF]

Agnès Mfayokurera, Consultante – fondatrice Triptik

Capitalisation des connaissances et ingénierie pédagogique [PDF]

Nicolas Sengmany (EXT IGDOC)

What Does The Future Hold For The Technical Communication Market? [PDF]

C.J. Walker, Firehead

Knowledge Management : au secours de la transformation [PDF]

Boris Durupt Zhou Knowledge Manager et coach outils collaboratifs – Société Générale Corporate and Investment Banking (SGCIB)

Les communautés de pratiques – Maillon essentiel de la stratégie KM de l’entreprise [PDF]

Louis-Pierre Guillaume, Consultant – fondateur Amallte

Intelligence artificielle et rédaction scientifique : quels nouveaux enjeux pour la R&D des entreprises ? [PDF]

Charlie Grosman, Team Leader, Pierre Holat, Data Scientist, Richard Moutoucarpin,alternant L3 Pro redaction technique – F. Iniciativas

Transformer la connaissance ? [PDF]
Pascal Negros, Enseignant en ingénierie des connaissances, Ecole de Management, Sorbonne-Paris 1

Listen to the recordings on YouTube.

How many words make a technical writer?

Alice BRODBECK – Boris DURUPT – Marie PINQUIER

M2 CDMM 2017/2018 – Université Paris 7 Paris Diderot

Abstract

Technical writing has undergone drastic changes from its early beginnings to the advent of the Internet, adapting to all the technological innovations that punctuated the century since its conception. One of the most important changes being that technical writers do not spend as much time writing as was formerly expected of their profession. Instead, companies ask them to broaden their working scope from writing to taking care of whole documentation systems. Technical writers have gradually become technical communicators, mastering various skills – including but not limited
to writing.
However, the job title has not evolved as quickly as the profession: there seems to be a discrepancy between label and reality, which could be the explanation to a lack of recognition for technical communicators in Europe.
In light of this observation, we conducted a survey on 40 French technical communication experts and analyzed the existing literature on the topic. Our objective: find out why “technical writer” has become a catch-all term of technical communication.
Our journey starts at the origins of technical writing, continues with an overview of the profession’s representation in Europe and provides an analysis of the gaps between technical writers and technical communicators.

Read the full article (PDF):

Technical communication for migrant illiterates

Soraya BEKKOUCHE, Léa BUTEL, Lucie PETIT

Paris Diderot University, July 20th 2018

Abstract

International migration has existed throughout human history, but has
taken a new weight in today’s world with the impact of globalisation and
what is often referred to as the “refugee crisis”. The aim of this paper is
not to discuss the motives or the impact of migration but to observe how
language and literacy barriers compound the difficulties met by vulnerable
populations in modern information-oriented societies, and how these
issues are addressed by the many organizations that fight to improve the
situation of migrants.
Here, we address how barriers to information access worsen refugees’
situations and identify technical-communication-related issues in how
information is delivered as of today. Is there a case for technical
communication in ensuring the respect of human rights?

Read the full article (PDF):

Chatbots and technical communication: a blooming future?

Salomé FOEHN, Sulaxana RAMACHCHANDRAN, William MOHAMMED

Paris Diderot University, July 2018

Abstract

Machine-learning is gaining momentum as an artificial intelligence (AI) technology. There has been a recent upsurge in text-based conversational interfaces such as Facebook Messenger, IBM’s Watson and SAP’s Recast.AI. This type of computer programme is called a chatbot, which is the focus of this study. In this paper, the non-customer-oriented applications of chatbots and the evolution of professional practices of technical writers were investigated. The main research question is “will chatbots impact the technical communication industry in the middle term, and in what ways?”. We mainly used a SNCF case and a comprehensive comparison of job offers to illustrate our claim. As the authors expected, chatbots will not replace technical writers but will, instead, oversee the birth of a broad range of thought-after, more specialized jobs at the interface between computer science and technical communication.

Read the full article (PDF):

How shifting to a more modern documentation process helps meet user needs

ANDRIAMANANTSOA Ornella, BENZAAMA Loubna, LEONARD Lucie, RESPLENDINO Emmanuelle

Université Paris Diderot – Paris 7, July 2018

Abstract

Digitalization and technological innovations are exerting considerable impact today on technical documentation. In addition, we are seeing more and more collaboration between technical writers and software developers, which naturally is leading to a synchronous code and documentation production evolution.
The research offered herein is based on literature, key articles, survey reports, interviews with documentation and product managers from medium to large French software companies, and analysis of various documentation production process. The results highlight the importance given to documentation and its scope towards users.
To meet the needs of the industry, historical formats such as wikis and PDFs are changing to web-based and embedded formats, which are more accessible, visual, and user-centric. This change not only affects outputs, but also production processes through the merging the product code and documentation delivery. Nonetheless, such innovation is costly and bears limits. Are such technological exploits as smart assistants and virtual reality going to perform well enough to meet users’ demands and needs in terms of documentation?

Read the full article (PDF):

Find out the subjects that CDMM students are exploring this year

We are very excited with the research subjects that the CDMM students are exploring this year! From artificial intelligence to social responsibility, students are looking at how the technical communication discipline is evolving and innovating.

The four research projects this year are about:

  • Artificial intelligence (chatbots and natural language processing)
  • Innovation in user assistance
  • Technical communication for social good
  • Evolution of the technical communication profession

Students are looking for professionals who can help them with their research. If you want to contribute to this work, let us know!