The Proactive Technical Communicator: Multiple Disciplines, Multiple Perspectives

Overview summary by Sharon Mink

The STC convention was quite an event. I, a novice in the field, was duly impressed by the number of people attending, the energy, the networking, and the whole atmosphere of so many people working in diverse aspects of technical communication. The Daniel Hotel was a lovely venue. As usual, Israel seems to end at about Netanya, so it meant a bit of a commute for many of the “northerners” who made it there from places such as Nahariya, Karmiel, Maalot, and Haifa. But there were some ‘Elephants’ there to represent us.

Opening remarks included short speeches from the President Zev Frutkoff, STC Israel president, Linda Oestreich, Society President, and a farewell from Debbie Shapiro Hemstreet, the former president. All these speeches only seemed to increase the energy of the group. Linda even commented that we had over 300 attendees at the convention which was more people that will come to a convention in the states.

The keynote speaker was Patrick Hoffman, whose specialty is visual design. Patrick was an outstanding speaker, yet showed us how the visual is so important. He communicated his passion for the subject with humor and insight. The closing speaker was Donald DePalma. De Palma, the author of the book “Business without Borders” (no plug intended, just information), gave an extremely fast-paced overview of technical communication in a global market. The bottom line was that we need to think globally: local is just not good enough any more. Both were excellent.

I attended the sessions on Information Design and will hopefully write installment summaries about all of these sessions in the coming days.

A convention of this sort is nothing without the networking and the sponsors selling their wares. I came home with many pens and some other goodies. Being a novice, I did not pass around my card as much as I would have liked. I think more went into the raffle bags than anything else. Who would not have liked to go home with a box containing an Adobe or MadCap software package? And congratulations are in order for the competition winners. Kudos are well deserved for all the STC convention planners, sponsors, and speakers.