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Key Trends in Software   User Assistance          Joe        Welinske           Welinske.com       joewe@writersua.com    ...
Comprehensive Support Options   •   Context-sensitive      •   Wizards       topics                              •   Tip s...
Convergence with training http://bit.ly/aOGKP1
User communities
Tips via email
UI text / embedded assistance
Writing an In-house Blog
Printed manual: iPhone
Embracing Search Engines (Google)   •   Get all of your content on a public-facing       server.   •   Learn about Google ...
Ex. “print a calendar in outlook”      
Single Source with “Mirror” Output
An explosion of the device matrix•   "The mobile device will be the primary    connection tool to the internet for most   ...
Multi-screenContent Authoring
Help for mobile applications
New categories of apps: custom devices Vinci                                     Auto in-dash                       HP Pri...
o Contextualo Conformso Conditionalo Concise
NFC         PhoneTablet                 Desktop          Car         DashHome Ent.
Lexus NFC ad
Device-specific instructions                                Phone               Laptop                               TV
Windows 8
On the horizon   •   Personalization   •   More video presentation   •   More structured authoring   •   More server-side ...
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Key Trends in Software User Assistance

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User assistance is much more than "Help." It encompasses a wide range of skills and technologies that are combined to improve the software user's experience. We contribute through wizards, tutorials, and web-based training. We develop and populate knowledge bases and content management systems. Printed manuals and their PDF equivalents are still an important element of our documentation sets. Many of us are now embedding helpful content directly into the user interface. We are involved with usability testing, localization, testing, quality assurance, and branding. This presentation provides a cutting-edge overview of the latest trends in software user assistance, defines the key terminology, highlights the most important technologies, and offers predictions on future directions of our field.

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Key Trends in Software User Assistance

  1. 1. Key Trends in Software User Assistance Joe Welinske Welinske.com joewe@writersua.com Twitter: welinske
  2. 2. Comprehensive Support Options • Context-sensitive • Wizards topics • Tip sheets • FAQs • Printable User Guide • Community portal • RSS feeds / email • Twitter • UI Help text • Server-based content • Glossary and Index • "Cheat" sheets • Blogs • Release notes • Knowledge base • Training videos • You Tube • Wikis
  3. 3. Convergence with training http://bit.ly/aOGKP1
  4. 4. User communities
  5. 5. Tips via email
  6. 6. UI text / embedded assistance
  7. 7. Writing an In-house Blog
  8. 8. Printed manual: iPhone
  9. 9. Embracing Search Engines (Google) • Get all of your content on a public-facing server. • Learn about Google Search. • Learn about search engine optimization. • Exploit other search engines. • Create a custom Google Search.
  10. 10. Ex. “print a calendar in outlook”  
  11. 11. Single Source with “Mirror” Output
  12. 12. An explosion of the device matrix• "The mobile device will be the primary connection tool to the internet for most people in the world in 2020." – Pew Research • Associated applications along with their UA content are customized to the device.
  13. 13. Multi-screenContent Authoring
  14. 14. Help for mobile applications
  15. 15. New categories of apps: custom devices Vinci Auto in-dash HP Printers HCI Room mate
  16. 16. o Contextualo Conformso Conditionalo Concise
  17. 17. NFC PhoneTablet Desktop Car DashHome Ent.
  18. 18. Lexus NFC ad
  19. 19. Device-specific instructions Phone Laptop TV
  20. 20. Windows 8
  21. 21. On the horizon • Personalization • More video presentation • More structured authoring • More server-side deployments • Rolling release schedules • Live-to-site testing • Voice Help – Siri?

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