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Lavacon panel with Poppy Quintal, Berry Braster, and Sherri Sotnick. Discussed Simplified Technical English, Controlled Language, and provided a case study of Elekta's implementation using HyperSTE ...

Lavacon panel with Poppy Quintal, Berry Braster, and Sherri Sotnick. Discussed Simplified Technical English, Controlled Language, and provided a case study of Elekta's implementation using HyperSTE and changes to their content development processes.

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    Lava con 2011_controlled_lang_details Lava con 2011_controlled_lang_details Presentation Transcript

    • Controlled Language:Making It Work For You Kit Brown-Hoekstra Berry Braster Poppy Quintal Sherri Sotnick
    • Agenda Context (@kitcomgenesis) Specification (@tech_editor) Tools (@tedopres, @berrybraster) Implementation (sherri.sotnick@elekta.com) Note: We included more slides here than we presented, just in case you missed the discussion.
    • About English
    • About English Number of English words: 1,009,753* *As of May 24, 2011 according to the Global Language Monitor http://www.languagemonitor.com/no-of-words/
    • Number of Native Speakers*1. Chinese: 1.2 billion2. Spanish: 329 million3. English: 328 million4. Arabic: 221 million10. German: 90.3 million16. French: 67.8 million *As of 2009, from Ethnologue.com http://www.ethnologue.com/ethno_docs/distribution.asp?by=size
    • Ratio Non-Native to NativeEnglish Speakers
    • Top 10 Languages on the Web
    • Comprehension Basic Oral: 2,000 words Basic Written: 3,000 words Basic Technical: 4-5,000 words University-Level Text: 10,000 words Fluency: 20,000 words Native speaker (adult): 30-40,000 words From http://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/ETD/image/etd518.pdf
    • SIMPLIFIED TECHNICAL ENGLISH Specification ASD-STE100TM TM
    • Poppy Quintalquintal@info-internet.netquintal@info-internet.net
    • ASD Simplified Technical English ASD Simplified Technical English is a Controlled Language (a subset of conventional English). "I tell people whove never heard of CL (Controlled Language) that its PL (Plain Language) with marching boots on." Avi Arditti Features Editor Features Editor Special English Service Special English Service Voice of America Voice of America
    • ASD Simplified Technical English History of the Specification History of the Specification 1986 -- Feb 15 1986 Feb 15 First release First release Included Writing Rules (Part 1) and Included Writing Rules (Part 1) and the Dictionary (Part 2). the Dictionary (Part 2). 1986 Sep 15 1986 Sep 15 Change 1 Change 1 1987 Jun 01 1987 Jun 01 Change 2 Change 2 Addition of examples of function Addition of examples of function words and nouns (Part 3). words and nouns (Part 3). 1988 Jun 15 1988 Jun 15 Change 3 Change 3 Addition of examples of verbs (Part 3). Addition of examples of verbs (Part 3). 1988 Dec 30 1988 Dec 30 Change 4 Change 4 Addition of examples of adjectives and Addition of examples of adjectives and adverbs (Part 3). adverbs (Part 3). 1989 Dec 01 1989 Dec 01 Change 5 Change 5 Reformatted version of Change 4. Reformatted version of Change 4. 1995 Sep 15 1995 Sep 15 Issue 1 Issue 1 Guide completely revised and a new issue Guide completely revised and a new issue released. Original Part 2 deleted and Part 3 released. Original Part 2 deleted and Part 3 renumbered to Part 2. renumbered to Part 2. 1998 Jan 15 1998 Jan 15 Issue 1, Rev 1 Issue 1, Rev 1 Updates and amendments. Updates and amendments. 2001 Jan 15 2001 Jan 15 Issue 1, Rev 2 Issue 1, Rev 2 Updates and amendments. Updates and amendments. 2004 Jan 15 2004 Jan 15 Issue 2 Issue 2 Guide completely revised and new issue released. Guide completely revised and new issue released. 2005 Jan 15 2005 Jan 15 Issue 3 Issue 3 New issue as ASD-STE 100TM Pending New issue as ASD-STE 100TM Pending 2007 Jan 15 2007 Jan 15 Issue 4 Issue 4 Specification completely revised. Specification completely revised. 2010 Apr 15 2010 Apr 15 Issue 5 Issue 5 Specification completely revised. Specification completely revised.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English What is ASD Simplified Technical English?  ASD STE is an international standard.  ASD STE is an international standard.  It is a concise, precise, and limited use of the English language, which  It is a concise, precise, and limited use of the English language, which reduces ambiguity and increases readability and comprehension. reduces ambiguity and increases readability and comprehension.  It was originally created by the aerospace industry to produce technical  It was originally created by the aerospace industry to produce technical manuals and other documentation needed for aircraft support and manuals and other documentation needed for aircraft support and maintenance. maintenance.  But this specification has also been adopted and adapted by other technical  But this specification has also been adopted and adapted by other technical industries (including telecommunications, computer hardware, medical industries (including telecommunications, computer hardware, medical technology, transportation, and government). technology, transportation, and government).  It has a defined set of grammar, style and syntax rules, and a restricted  It has a defined set of grammar, style and syntax rules, and a restricted vocabulary that you must use when you write in ASD STE. vocabulary that you must use when you write in ASD STE.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English STE has:  A restricted base vocabulary (approximately 1,000 words)   A large set of Technical Names and Technical Verbs  (unlimited in number and user-defined)  Restrictions on grammar and style (approximately 65 rules) 
    • ASD Simplified Technical English Why do we need ASD Simplified Technical English? (Or any Controlled Language for that matter?)
    • ASD Simplified Technical English
    • ASD Simplified Technical English
    • The Increasing Number of Non-English (mother-tongue) Speaking Customers Non-English Speaking English SpeakingA/S AIRCONTACT GRUPPEN K.L.M. ROYAL DUTCH AIRLINES AIR CANADAAEROCONDOR KAR-AIR O/Y AIR JAMAICAAIR AFRIQUE KENYA AIRWAYS LTD AMERICAN AIRLINES INC.AIR ALGERIE KOREAN AIR LINES CO. LTD AMERICA WEST AIRLINESAIR FRANCE KUWAIT AIRWAYS ANSETT AIRLINES OF AUSTRALIAAIR INDIA LUXAIR (LUXAVIA) - SOC. LUEMBOURGEOISE BRITISH AIRWAYSAIR INTER, SOCIETE MALAYSIAN AIRLINES SYSTEM CONTINENTAL AIRLINES INC.AIR MALTA CO. LTD MARTINAIR HOLLAND N.V. GATX LEASING CORPORATIONAIR NIUGINI NIGERIA AIRWAYS - W.A.A.C. (NIGERIA) LTD GUINESS PEAT AVIATIONSAIR SEYCHELLES OLYMPIC AIRWAYS S.A. INTER LEASE FINANCE CORPORATIONAIR SIAM PAKISTAN INTERNATIONAL AIRLINE CORP. MONARCH AIRLINESALITALIA - LINEE AEREE ITALIANE S.p.A. PHILLIPINE AIR LINES INC. NORTHWEST AIRLINES INC.ALL NIPPON AIRWAYS CO. LTD ROYAL JORDANIAN PRIVATE FLIGHT DIRECTORATEAUSTRIAN AIRLINES SABENA-SOC. ANONYME BELGE D.EX. NAV. AERIEN SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYSBALAG AG SAUDIA ARABIAN AIRLINES UNITED AIRLINESCAAC - CIVIL AVIATION ADMINISTR. OF CHINA SCAN AIR LTDCHINA AIRLINES LTD SCANDINAVIAN AIRLINES SYSTEMCONAIR A/S SERVICOS AEROS CRUZEIRO DO SUL S.A.CONDOR FLUGDIENST GmbH SINGAPORE AIRLINES LTDCYPRUS AIRWAYS LTD SWISSAIR-SOC. ANONYME SWISS D.L.NAV.AERIANDEUTSCHE LUFTHANSA AG THAI AIRLWAYS CO. LTDEGYPT AIR THAI AIRLWAYS INTERNATIONAL LTDEMIRATES TRANS EUROPEAN AIRWAYS LTDFINNAIR O/Y TRANSAVIA HOLLAND B.V.GARUDA INDONESIAN AIRWAYS, P.T. TRANSPORTES AEROS PORTUGUESES E.P.HAPAG-LLOYD FLUGGESSELLSCHAFT GmbH TUNIS AIR-SOCIETE TUOSIENNE DE L’AIRIBERIA - LINEAS AEREAS DE ESPANA, S.A. TURKISH AIRLINES CO. (TURK HAVA YOLLARI)INDIAN AIRLINES CORPORATION VARIG-VIAC AO AEREA RIO-GRANDENSE S.A.INEX ADRIA AVIOPROMET VASP-VIAC AO AEREA SAO PAULO S.A.IRIAN AIR - IRAN NATIONAL AIRLINES CORP. VIASA-NENEZOLANA INT. L OF AVIACION, S.A.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English The “problem” with conventional English…
    • ASD Simplified Technical English  Too many words.  Too many meanings.  Too many synonyms, homonyms and homophones.  Too much grammatical/syntactical variety, which allows us to “say” the same thing in many different ways.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English  Why do we need Simplified Technical English? Put the same part back or substitute a new part? ASD STE Dictionary“Replace the part...” approved definition for REPLACE: To remove an item and to install a new or serviceable item in its place.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English ASD STE gets rid of “unclear” writing Ambiguous Complex Words Grammar Incomplete Slang/jargon Sentences
    • ASD Simplified Technical English  Simplified Technical English (STE), was originally developed to help the users of English-language documentation (more specifically, non-native English speakers working with English documentation) quickly and accurately understand what they read.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English  However, studies have shown that the benefits (speed of task completion, reduced error rates, etc.) are also statistically significant for native English speakers.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English What Are the Benefits of Using Simplified Technical English?  Increased safety and efficiency   Reduced legal liability   Fewer customer complaints/questions 
    • ASD Simplified Technical English Benefits of STE:  Encourages good writing practices and eliminates vague  Encourages good writing practices and eliminates vague and ambiguous statements by forcing the writer to use: and ambiguous statements by forcing the writer to use: • shorter text • shorter text • clearer writing habits • clearer writing habits • more precise narratives • more precise narratives  Limits the variety of words  Limits the variety of words • (ex: FOLLOW means "to come after in a • (ex: FOLLOW means "to come after in a sequence" and not "to do what the rules tell you” sequence" and not "to do what the rules tell you” i.e. OBEY) i.e. OBEY)  Gives a standard for grammatical construction (reduces  Gives a standard for grammatical construction (reduces personal styles) personal styles)  Eliminates "verbiage" (needless accumulation of words)  Eliminates "verbiage" (needless accumulation of words)
    • ASD Simplified Technical English Benefits of ASD STE – Translation  Manuals written in ASD STE are easier to translate.   The defined syntax and vocabulary of STE facilitates  computers-assisted translation as well as human translation.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English How does Simplified Technical English work?  Limits the variety of words  Uses common, everyday English words  Establishes one meaning per word  Emphasizes good writing practices  Standardizes grammatical constructions
    • ASD Simplified Technical English Example (non-STE) It is equally important that there should be no seasonal changes in the procedures, as, although aircraft fuel system icing due to water contamination is more often met with in winter, it can be equally dangerous during the summer months.
    • ASD Simplified Technical English Example (in ASD STE) Use the same procedures all the time because water in the fuel system can freeze during summer or winter.
    • While covering pouches, smear brightyellow on the shadow below the pouches,gently whap until dizzy.
    • Simplified Technical English The Road to Content Quality© 1974-2011 1
    • © 1974-2011 2
    • Questions to consider Content control: Do we communicate clearly and efficiently? Do we manage our terminology? Do we have a style guide? Do we measure our quality of content? Are we efficient and cost effective information developers?© 1974-2011 3
    • Small Quiz.. Turn off the engines not required means… Turn off the engines that are not required, or Turning off the engines is not required© 1974-2011 4
    • What do we manage and publish?STE: clear and consistent source Turn off the engines that are not required. CMS HTML Turn off the engines not required Turning off the engines may not be required. XM Multiple Outputs Ensure you turn off the engines. All engines should be turned off. XVL PDF Switch off the engines that may not be DITA L SVG required. Put the engines in the off position. Not all engines should be switched off. Paper The system should be turned off, but not all. Version management Check to make sure the engines are OFF. To make sure the engines are off, check them. Configuration Makes sure the systems are in the off position. management Translations Verify the engines are not in the ON position. Please check to make sure the engines are OFF. Translations Switching off the engines may not be allowed. TrainingUnclear, too many words,not consistent source© 1974-2011 5
    • HyperSTE - Sentence Database© 1974-2011 6
    • The result of not addressing the issue of ambiguity Confused and frustrated readers High translation costs Bad translations due to unclear source Safety risk to employees and partners In field equipment damage Potential for legal liabilities Higher support costs Ineffective customer service© 1974-2011 7
    • The larger costs of not getting it right  A power transformer company was sued for $5M after a transformer blew up due to badly worded and confusing documentation.  The largest single problem area for Google in internationalizing their service was language / translation issues - accounted for 35% of all reported issues.  EMC estimates it was spending $762,000 on internationalization errors in just one product set.  Failure to convert English measures to metric values caused the loss of the Mars Climate Orbiter, a spacecraft that smashed into the planet instead of reaching a safe orbit. Total project cost: $327.6M.  An FAA survey of aircraft technicians revealed that, although user evaluations of the accuracy and quality of technical manuals are generally good, the manuals themselves were noted as having poor usability.  Using the wrong word in an accounting system cost the New York City Department of Education $1.4M  A badly worded sentence in a contract cost a Canadian utility company $2.3M.  Major airline had to ground their fleet of aircraft due ambiguity in the documentation.  $11.9 MILLION JURY VERDICT against a manufacturer of an aerial lift device for failure to adequately warn of the electrocution hazards of the product and cover exposed metal on the boom tip of the lift truck.© 1974-2011 8
    • So…avoid miscommunication Consider your audience Write unambiguously Write consistently Provide your customer with quality© 1974-2011 9
    • So now what? 1. Use an established standard to base your controlled language efforts on 2. Define which writing rules apply to your content 3. Add corporate terminology (one word = one meaning) 4. Create your own controlled language standard!© 1974-2011 10
    • Steps for Implementation 3 steps: 1. Train writers on writing rules 2. Standardize corporate terminology 3. Check documentation with checker software:  Quality assurance / quality control / quality measurement  Faster time to market, reduced translation costs  Efficient Authoring© 1974-2011 11
    • HyperSTE© 1974-2011 12
    • Survey Results A survey amongst HyperSTE users showed that the use of HyperSTE resulted in the following benefits:  Up to 30% in cost savings on translation and localization  Up to 40% in reduced word count  Quality improvement in writing and translations  Up to 30% in reduced product cycle time  Up to 40% reduction in overall documentation cost  Efficient conversion of legacy documents© 1974-2011 13
    • Some HyperSTE Customers© 1974-2011 14
    • Simplified Technical English at Elekta Phase One in the successful implementation of a global content management system Sherri Sotnick Manager, Media Services/Documentation, BASS*Graphics and some information contributed by my Elekta colleague,Nick Rowlands, Information Systems Architect, SE&D, BAOS
    • About Elekta• World leader in clinical solutions for image-guided radiation therapy and stereotactic radiosurgery.• We have Documentation teams in the UK, US/Canada, DE, and SW.• Our Business Area develops software products that ensure an efficient clinical environment streamlining all activities related to patient care – from diagnosis and treatment to follow-up – giving clinicians more time to focus on patients.
    • About Elekta• Improve, prolong and save lives by providing clinical solutions for treating cancer and brain disorders• Founded in 1972 by the late Lars Leksell, Professor of Neurosurgery at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden• Today, Elekta’s clinical solutions and information systems are used in over 5,000 hospitals globally• Everyday more than 100,000 patients receive diagnosis, treatment or follow-up with the help of an Elekta product
    • Demanding times• Elekta was changing–organizationally and technologically• Growth, acquisition, and changing regulatory landscape• Elekta was investing heavily in technology in a competitive high-tech market• Internal issues were driving the need to take advantage of new technologies for information development
    • Major issues driving the need for change• The mountain of words continues to grow• Translation costs escalate proportionately• Information is difficult to maintain, reuse, and consume• Different versions of the same information across different documents• Foreign language users find content difficult to understand
    • Major issues driving the need for change Recent statistic (Jan 2010)Total words translated 5,459,906 (07 to 09); of which 1,855,959were translated in the last three months
    • Developing the documentation strategy• Research and benchmarking – How do we modernize of our documentation processes to provide users with the information they want in the format they require? – How do we respond to the increasing and changing responsibility of documentation departments?• Analyzing the results from leading analysts *The Aberdeen Group *The Gilbane reports *The Institute of Scientific and Technical Communicators
    • Analyzing the results• Key findings based on trends reported by industry analysts – Provide authoring assistance at content creation to promote localization-ready content – Provide centralized terminology management that defines repeatable words and phrases for monolingual and multilingual authoring – Distribute structured document and content management tools to technical authors – Provide 3D visualization and design-based illustration tools to technical illustrators – Deploy translation memory technology to localize product documentation – Utilize 3D publishing technology to increase graphical communication – Track information reuse to check for documentation readability
    • Documentation strategy starts to take shape• Simplified Technical English• Structured Authoring and XML• Component Content Management
    • Taking a Three-Phase Approach – Elekta Approved Simplified English (EASE)Develop – Reduce word count by approximately 30% – Improve readability and avoid confusion – Structured Authoring and XMLDeploy – Modularize information and share modules and topics between documents (knowledge bases) to maximize reuse – Apply XML to facilitate the sharing of structured data across different systems – Content ManagementDeliver – A single-source data repository to optimize information reuse and translation management – Multiple output for Print, PDF, Help, and Web
    • Making it a global strategy• Global Information Management (GIM) – A strategic approach to the management of information that ensures all aspects of our business follow a single consistent path for delivering information globally, through the intelligent combination of people, processes, and technologies.• Simply put… – GIM is a strategy to change the way we develop, deploy, and deliver information… globally
    • Our GIM solution• HyperSTE from Tedopres for Elekta Approved Simplified English• DITA for structured authoring and XML• DITA CMS from IXIASOFT for the component content management system – Integrated XMAX authoring tool – Output for PDF through FM server – Customization to incorporate metadata/taxonomy into UI – Integration of HyperSTE functionality into XMAX in development
    • Phase One: Elekta-Approved Simplified English• Adapting and implementing industry-standard Simplified English – Provide authoring assistance at content creation to promote localization-ready content – Provide centralized terminology management that defines repeatable words and phrases for monolingual and multilingual authoring• Strategic response – Elekta Approved Simplified English (EASE) – Reduce word count by approximately 30% – Improve readability and avoid confusion
    • Getting started: EASE Training and Planning• Assembled a Core Global Information Management Team• Completed Tedopres’ Train the Trainer course• Adapted the training for Elekta products and the medical device industry• Agreed on a staggered approach to implementation among BAs• Trained Doc teams globally on EASE and HyperSTE
    • Planning our EASE implementation• How to build and maintain a global dictionary• How to implement without disrupting productivity• How does this change our current doc processes
    • Overcoming challenges• Tech writers and SMEs were highly skeptical about adhering to a precise vocabularySome tech writers said that Simplified TechnicalEnglish would inhibit their creativity.Skeptical SMEs said that Simplified Technical Englishwould be too restrictive and affect technical accuracy.
    • Simplifying a language is not an easy task …• Tech writers and SMEs can be emotionally attached to specific words• Under deadline pressure, some tech writers tend to focus on replacing terms and not on re-writing per STE rules• SMEs in different regions use different industry-specific terms• Collaboration on terminology management is challenging among doc teams in different regions
    • Overcoming challenges• Effectively implementing STE while still meeting all software release deadlines for end-user documentation
    • Best Practice: Collaboration• Make building the terminology lists a collaborative effort – Adopt simple, effective methods for the Tech Writers to build the terminology lists and solicit input from SMEs – Have SMEs validate all lists• Continued development of STE skills for writing teams – Conduct monthly one-hour STE workshops (Webex for remote teams)• Provide learning aides – E.g. Create Quick Reference Cards for accepted verbs
    • Best Practice: Collaboration• Establish vehicles of communication for remote Tech Writing teams to resolve STE issues together: – We created an EASE wikki and #EASE email list, which work well.• Assemble a core team to review terms and determine which ones to add to the global dictionary – We also created guidelines to qualify terms.• Measure progress and share results
    • Example of Metric to reinforce the benefits • Real life examples; XVI A clinical team in the UK and a junior author accepted the challenge to restructure a User Manual while ensuring that all the new functionality was included and without compromising and indeed improving the overall quality and customer experience. This resulted in a clear reduction in size.“This is indeed a great achievement, well done and sincere thanks to the team,” direct quote from aSenior Vice President in Oncology Business Line Management
    • Best Practices: Company-Specific Dictionary• Reinforce the objective for consistent terminology company-wide One Word = One Meaning = One part of speech• Create and adhere to global guidelines for maintaining the dictionary• Update create your company style guide based on the STE writing rules.
    • Best Practices: Company-Specific Dictionary• Get started by building a solid Existing documentation base dictionary using: – Existing documentation – Glossaries – Translation terminology lists• Make sure Tech Writers and SMEs Terminology list collaborate on terminology lists• Distribute terminology lists to all SMEs for final validation before adding terms to the dictionary Company dictionary Approved and non-approved words
    • Best Practices: Company-Specific Dictionary• Reinforce the objective for consistent terminology company-wide One Word = One Meaning = One part of speech• Create and adhere to global guidelines for maintaining the dictionary• Update create your company style guide based on the STE writing rules.
    • Best Practices: Company-Specific Dictionary• Create STE task force that meets regularly – Review terminology lists in all BAs before adding terms to main dictionary – Establish company-wide awareness and understanding – Promote company-wide terminology management
    • Best Practices: Company-Specific Dictionary• Set the expectation that building the company-wide dictionary will be ongoing – Communicating progress regularly• Apply STE to legacy documentation based on business needs• Create work instructions and guidelines for the tech writers to ensure incremental progress – in building the dictionary – in updating legacy documentation
    • Benefits realized: already saving $$$• Total translation budget for FY2011 = $824K; with GIM we expect to achieve savings of up to 40%• As shown in the metric, a 66% COGs reduction in print cost per manual• Also shown in the metric, a 30% page count reduction and 20% word count reduction in a user manual
    • Additional benefits• Saves costs resulting from poor communication, which can lead to: – Confusion – Lost production time – Service calls• Easier to manage, access, integrate, and reuse content
    • Thank you…