Academic Publishing and Research Grants

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This Fall for the Book, save the date for a panel on Academic Publishing and Research Grants
Thursday, October 1 6:30pm – 7:45pm
Johnson Center Meeting Room C
Mason Fairfax Campus

The George Mason University chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (GMU STC) invites you to learn how to navigate the competitive world of academic publishing and grant writing from three successful scholars in the field of professional writing and communication:

Dr. Cheryl Ball is an associate professor of digital publishing studies at West Virginia University and editor of the online peer-reviewed journal Kairos: Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy. She recently won a $1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to develop an open source editorial management system, EditMe.

Dr. Huiling Ding is an associate professor of technical communication at North Carolina State University and researcher in intercultural communication, risk communication, and medical rhetoric. She has published more than 20 articles in peer-reviewed journals and won 7 grants, worth over $125,000, to fund her research.

Dr. Jeff Grabill is a professor of rhetoric and professional writing at Michigan State University. He is a senior researcher with WIDE Research (Writing in Digital Environments) and co-founder of Drawbridge Incorporated, an educational technology company. His publications include two books on community literacy.

Download the FFTB Save-the-Date flyer as a pdf.

Read about the event and see the complete schedule on the Fall For The Book website.

About GMU STC

GMU STC is the newest chapter of the STC, the world’s oldest and largest professional association for technical communicators. As a student organization, GMU STC is dedicated to helping current and future professional technical communicators—writers, editors, designers, and more—achieve their career, education, and service goals. Visit GMU STC on Facebook to learn more.

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Fall For The Book with GMU STC

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What began as a two-day literary event in 1999, organized by George Mason University and the City of Fairfax, has expanded into a week-long, multiple-venue, regional festival that brings together people of all ages and interests, thanks to growing community interest and generous supporting partners.

Read about the event and see the complete schedule on the Fall For The Book website.

About GMU STC

GMU STC is the newest chapter of the STC, the world’s oldest and largest professional association for technical communicators. As a student organization, GMU STC is dedicated to helping current and future professional technical communicators—writers, editors, designers, and more—achieve their career, education, and service goals. Visit GMU STC on Facebook to learn more.

Building Your Professional Identity in Technical Communication Workshop

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We are delighted to announce a collaboration with the students and staff of the Writing and Rhetoric program at George Mason University. The event will have something for those entering the profession, as well as job seekers and professionals.
eventbriteRegister on Eventbrite or scroll down to use the Eventbrite widget below.

Would you like to learn more about technical communication as a career? Are you currently seeking a job in technical communication? Or, are you a technical or professional communicator who would like to boost some of your career and communications skills?


The Building your Professional Identity in Technical Communication workshop will give you the opportunity to learn more about careers in technical communication, gain valuable feedback on resumes or your writing portfolio, and connect you to area students and professionals in technical communication.


The Workshop will feature three breakout sessions: Resumes, Portfolios, and Social Media/Online Presence. Each breakout session will combine presentations by experts in technical communication with one-on-one time for feedback on your materials and Q&A.


Current students, alumni, local professionals, and members of STC are welcome to join. This event is free to all participants. Refreshments will be provided.


Sponsored by the George Mason University Student Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (GMU STC), with support from the Professional Writing and Rhetoric (PWR) Program at GMU and the STC Washington DC-Baltimore Chapter (WDCB).


We will be meeting at George Mason University’s Fairfax campus in The Hub, Meeting Rooms 1 and 2. From the main entrance, Meeting Rooms 1 and 2 are down the corridor to the left. The Hub is building 56 on the GMU map, in red.

There is usually ample parking in George Mason’s parking garages. The closest garage is the Shenandoah Parking Deck. The Shenandoah Parking Deck is building 43 on the GMU map, in purple. The Mason Pond deck is often a good back-up, and it isn’t quite as full. Parking can be challenging at Mason, so please be sure to leave yourself extra time (and patience!) to grapple with traffic.

For a map of the event location and parking areas, see the map at http://info.gmu.edu/Maps/FairfaxMap14_Parking.pdf

eventbriteRegister on Eventbrite or scroll down to use the Eventbrite widget below.

API Documentation Workshop with Sarah Maddox

Workshop: API Technical Writing


Sponsors: Google, Group Wellesley, Inc., STC WBDC Chapter, InfoDevDC Meetup Group.
Date: Friday, March 20th, 2015
Time: 9 am to 4 pm
Instructor: Sarah Maddox
Cost: None. The workshop is given free of charge.
Location: Room: “The White Space”, 9th Floor, 25 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001 (Google Maps: http://goo.gl/A4FqJ8). A parking garage is connected to the building. To see parking rates and hours, search for the address on the parking locator.

The venue is within a 10-minute walk from Washington DC Union Station and the Red Line Union Station stop on the Washington Metrorail.

Workshop Description


This is a practical course on API technical writing, consisting of lectures interspersed with hands-on sessions where participants will apply what they have learned. The focus will be on APIs themselves as well as on documentation, since technical writers need to be able to understand and use a product before they can document it.

The workshop will include the following sessions:

  • Lecture: Introduction to APIs, including a demo of some REST and JavaScript APIs.
  • Hands-on: Play with a REST API.
  • Lecture: JavaScript essentials.
  • Hands-on: Play with a JavaScript API.
  • Lecture: The components of API documentation and other developer aids.
  • Hands-on: Generate reference documentation using Javadoc.
  • Lecture: Beyond Javadoc – other doc generation tools.

Catering


Google will provide lunch, and morning and afternoon refreshments, free of charge. Please inform us of any dietary restrictions you may have.

Prerequisites


This workshop assumes that you have some experience as a technical writer in the software industry, and are interested in moving into API documentation.

You’ll need a working knowledge of web pages and HTML, and an acquaintance with CSS. It will be useful if you have a basic understanding of programming. Recommended reading before the workshop:


What to bring and what to install


Bring your own laptop with a WiFi connection and power cable. Please install the following software before the workshop.

Install the Java JDK


You’ll need a current version of the Java SE JDK. Make sure you have the JDK (development kit), not just the JRE (runtime environment).

To check whether you have Java, run the following in a command window:

  • On Mac OS X, run:
    /usr/libexec/java_home
    You should see something like this, assuming your JDK is version 7 (also known as 1.7):
    /Library/Java/JavaVirtualMachines/jdk1.7.0_67.jdk/Contents/Home

  • On Windows, run:
    echo %JAVA_HOME%
    You should see a directory path that includes the letters ‘JDK’, something like this:
    C:Program FilesJavaJDK7

If you don’t have the JDK, download and install it. If the above commands don’t work, your setup is incorrect – follow the installation and setup instructions again.

To install and set up the JDK:

  • Follow Oracle’s JDK installation instructions:

  • If you’re on Windows:
    • Where the instructions say “Updating the PATH Environment Variable (Optional)”, treat it as mandatory, not optional. This will make your life much easier.
    • Setting JAVA_HOME on Windows, from Kaan Mutlu’s Blog.

Here are some other useful guides:


Install a text editor of your choice


If you don’t have a preference, try Komodo Edit. (Komodo Edit is a free, open source edition of the full Komodo IDE.)

Install Eclipse (optional)


It will be handy to have Eclipse, a free and open source IDE (integrated development environment). The “Eclipse IDE for Java Developers” is a good one to have.

Install Chrome


Chrome browser has some useful development tools and add-ons. In particular, we’ll be using a Chrome add-on for sending requests to a REST API. A different browser is fine too, if you’re more comfortable with its web development tools.

Questions?


For questions about the workshop content, contact Sarah Maddox (the instructor) at
email hidden; JavaScript is required.

For questions about the registration process, contact Alan Houser, email hidden; JavaScript is required.

About the instructor


Sarah Maddox is a technical writer in Google’s Developer Platforms team, writing the documentation for the Google Maps APIs and Google Places API. She’s also worked at Atlassian and many other organisations around the world. With fifteen years’ experience as a technical writer and ten as a software developer, Sarah specializes in making words and code play nicely together. She also has a strong belief that chocolate solves many a tech comm problem.

Blog: ffeathers.wordpress.com
Twitter: @sarahmaddox
Google+: +sarahmaddox