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RE: [xml-dev] [ Revision #2 ] 15 elementary truths about XML

Len said:

"And the failure of American universities to grasp the importance of  
adequate XML training for technical writers is sustained and abysmal.   
They turn out editors who can memorize Word style sheets but they fail  
when it comes to providing enough knowledge to bridge the gap between  
writers and elementary computer science concepts.   Roger fills the  
gap.  Ken fills the gap.

And that is a good thing."

This is true; hence the presentation I originally gave back at XML 2001
on XML and Technical Writing, based on experience in the XML adoption at
the company I work for (SGML originally in 1993).

Most of our editors and authors came from a desktop publishing
background. Separating content from style was a brand new mindset that
was difficult to foster. I count myself in that group at the outset (I
started as an editor and morphed into a content analyst/programmer over
time). It wasn't until I was assigned to a project repurposing our data
that the "creative tagging" issues and lack of understanding became
apparent. Trial by fire, as it were, but a valuable learning experience.

It even came up later when I was teaching a night class in technical
writing at SIUE. One of my students had been briefly exposed to XML in
an authoring environment and was questioning its value. It led to a
lively and productive discussion. We went totally off-track for that
evening's writing topic, but it was worthwhile nonetheless. :)

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