Re: âWhat we need is a developer who can write.â

Subject: Re: âWhat we need is a developer who can write.â
From: Tony Chung <tonyc -at- tonychung -dot- ca>
To: "Cardimon, Craig" <ccardimon -at- m-s-g -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 11 Oct 2015 20:06:35 -0700


As usual, you struck a nerve and hit a hot button issue. This is starting
to turn into a one-upmanship contest, which isn't quite what you intended.
So I will instead post how I would respond to such a blatant
misunderstanding of our profession.

Hello. I am responding to your request: "What we need is a developer who
can write."

I know several developers, and all of them can write very well. They are
clear, but they aren't concise. They can accurately document their API
methods and properties, but they can't string together an end-to-end
product use case, or a line of sample code that can demonstrate to
newcomers how easy it can be to integrate your product with theirs.

This disconnect between developers has cost many software companies
millions of dollars in potential sales because they hired "developers who
can write" rather than "writers who can get into the minds of developers."
In an interview, I could explain to you why your current developer-level
documentation is preventing others from using your API to build useful
products to change the world, and outline a 5-point strategy for revising
your documentation to increase developer satisfaction and earn you more

However, if you would still prefer to speak to my developer-friends who can
write, call me and we'll chat about them instead.


Tony Chung
Information experience producer
with 'web Swiss-army knife skilz'

On Fri, Oct 9, 2015 at 8:13 AM, Cardimon, Craig <ccardimon -at- m-s-g -dot- com> wrote:

> Seen on the web: âWhat we need is a developer who can write.â
> Letâs take it as a given that as technical writers, we can write.
> To increase our value, we need to learn addition skills, such as a
> programming language.
> What other skills do you all have?
> Iâll go first. I know basic HTML. I have edited code. I can edit sound and
> image files. A few other things, too.
> Cordially,
> Craig Cardimon | Senior Technical Writer
> Marketing Systems Group
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“What we need is a developer who can write.”: From: Cardimon, Craig

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