ClickHelp Software Documentation Glossary

Technical Writing - What Is It?

Technical Writing is a term that defines written form of technical communication used in a variety of technical fields - computer software and hardware, chemistry, aeronautics, engineering, robotics, finance, etc. Some people define this term as "writing complex things in a simple form".

Technical writing is done by technical writers or, how they are also called - technical communicators. This profession requires many skills such as critical thinking, writing skills, and many more.

Technical Writing

In the past, technical documentation was mostly written and viewed offline. It either shipped with the product as a file (for software products), or was delivered along with the product in its printed form.

Over the last decade, most of user guides started moving to online documentation portals. This turned out to be a convenient way of storing user documentation as it can be reached easily by both readers and authors with, basically, just the Internet connection and a browser.

This can be achieved with the help of online documentation tools like ClickHelp. With this online authoring tool, user guides can stay online, they can be printed out or downloaded in any popular offline documentation format.

Technical writing is a continuous process. One of the tasks of a documentation team is to keep all help topics updated. This requires constant revision of big amounts of data.

There are special techniques used by professional technical writers to make the writing process more efficient. Tools like ClickHelp feature special workflows designed to fit the needs of a documentation team. Also, Single-Sourcing Techniques are used there to simplify the help authoring and save time.

The technical writing community is pretty big. The Society for Technical Communication is a professional organization in this area.

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