Success Is More Than Not-Failing (Write the Docs, 2015)

We talk a lot about minimum viable products, and building our products up from small features. We talk a lot about failure, and how to learn from it and not replicate failures over and over again. But what I haven’t heard a lot of discussion about is how we know we’ve succeeded. Is it market…

Cassandra at the Keyboard: Whistleblowing at All Scales (Open Source Bridge, 2015)

Cassandra was a prophetess doomed to be accurate, but never believed. In my role as a technical writer, I often have the information needed to make useful observations about development processes, communication problems, and other organizational troubles. The problem is getting people in power to agree with and act on the information I present. This…

Digital Sandwich Generation: Women’s Roles In Identity Management For Others (Alterconf Chicago, 2015)

I don’t know of any parenting books that tell you how to choose baby’s first handle. I don’t know of any self-help books that tell you how to help your parents create a digital estate plan. Both of these scenarios and many more are falling to the people who have always been responsible for maintaining…

How to Teach Your Kids Infosec

I have an article published at Recompiler Magazine! How to Teach Your Kids about InfoSec It’s a summary of best practices for keeping your kids actually safe, instead of sheltered, as they venture online. For a counterpoint, you can come to Alterconf Minneapolis to hear my kid speak on a similar topic on April 9.  …

The Death of Data (Surge 2016)

Search-First Writing for Developers (Pycon AU, 2016)

The Seven Righteous Fights (The Lead Developer, 2016)

The Seven Righteous Fights (SpringOne Platform, 2016) (long version)

A chapel constructed entirely of twisted vines and saplings.

What is a documentation architect?

When I was at Write the Docs 2015, several people asked me about the title I have in my LinkedIn heading: Documentation Architect. What did I mean by that? How is it different than content management or development architecture? What a documentation architect isn’t A documentation architect isn’t psychic. They can’t figure out your business…

The Seven Righteous Fights (Rubyconf, 2015)

Usually we think of compound interest as what adds magically to our retirement or makes our student loans last forever. But there is also a compound interest of technical debt, where a project is made harder and more expensive because of early “cost-saving” choices. I think it’s empowering for developers and other people involved in…

Upcoming appearances

Velocity Berlin
Minneapolis DevOps Meetup