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Schedule: Three Full Days, Evening Networking Events and More

Tuesday, June 5 – Main Conference, Day 2

7:00-9:00 AM

Breakfast

8:00-9:30 AM

Hospitality Lounge

9:30-10:30 AM

Presented By:

Chad Kreiger

Photo of Chad Kreiger

Laying the Foundation for MadCap Flare Implementation

Track 1 MadCap Flare Case Study

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was our MadCap Flare project. Chad Kreiger, Publications Specialist, will share the daunting journey of wrangling more than a decade’s worth of archaic Microsoft® Word documents into Flare. Learn how we prepared for Flare implementation and how the foundation was laid for migrating more than 10,000 documents from our vast collection of lab books and user manuals. We will discuss pre-Flare implementation steps, key milestones in the implementation, time-saving decisions we made regarding conditions and multi-channel publishing, and how the power of Flare empowers users to manage diverse content.

9:30-10:30 AM

Presented By:

Kearsty Dunlap Schneider

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Where Do I Start? Part 2: The KISS – Keep It Simple System for Creating New Projects

Track 2 MadCap Flare New Users

Are you in a situation where you’ve found yourself with projects beyond your experience and are struggle with where to start? In this follow-up to the session “Where Do I Start? The KISS - Keep It Simple System for Creating New Projects“, Kearsty Dunlap Schneider will provide more organizational help and best practices, such as tips on keeping your project simple and documenting your process decisions. This session is designed specifically for users who need a basic roadmap of where to start.

9:30-10:30 AM

Presented By:

Jayna Locke

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Looking Back: What I Wish I Knew From the Beginning

Track 3 MadCap Flare

In this presentation, Jayna Locke, Content Strategist, will share some looking-in-the-rearview-mirror insights from her three years of using MadCap Flare, and how to make the best choices when starting out. The insights and tips will include: project setup for individuals and teams, the pros and cons of one project versus multiple projects, and the best use of conditions versus variables. In addition, she’ll also discuss time-saving tips for writers, all designed to help new writers and documentation teams start out on the right foot.

9:30-10:30 AM

Presented By:

Neil Perlin

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Information 4.0 and MadCap Flare

Track 4 MadCap Flare

If you’re from Europe, you may be hearing about a concept called Information 4.0. This is an “umbrella” term that includes today’s content creation methods and technologies but emphasizes that of tomorrow. Its main characteristics, defined by proponents Andy McDonald and Ray Gallon, are molecular, dynamic, offered, ubiquitous, spontaneous, and profiled automatically. Information 4.0 is new and conceptual, but it suggests where technical communication may be heading and offers a philosophy for that direction both in and outside Europe. This presentation reviews what Information 4.0 is and its derivation from the Industry 4.0 concept. We’ll then focus on MadCap Flare’s fit with Information 4.0. In addition, we’ll examine the characteristics in detail, examine those that Flare supports and those it does not, and how to handle the latter in a Flare environment. Finally, we’ll end with thoughts about how authors can prepare for Information 4.0 or whatever philosophy evolves from it to drive the profession.

10:30-11:00 AM

Break, Networking & Hospitality Lounge

11:00 AM-12:00 PM

Presented By:

Paul Stoecklein

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The Unicorn Project: Magical Checklists to Make Your Wildest Dreams Come True

Track 1 MadCap Central Project Management

Full session description to be announced at a later date.

11:00 AM-12:00 PM

Presented By:

Matthew Ellison

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MadCap Capture: Beyond the Basics

Track 2 MadCap Capture

This session explores many of the more advanced and less obvious features of MadCap Capture, the screen-capture and image-editing application that is bundled with Flare. Matthew Ellison explains the significance and role of the .props file, and demonstrates a range of techniques including repeating previous captures, adding callouts and other useful objects, replacing the captured image while retaining callouts and objects, and customizing the palettes.

11:00 AM-12:00 PM

Presented By:

Alan Williamson

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Conditions to the Extreme: Robust Conditional Single Sourcing

Track 3 MadCap Flare Single Sourcing

All too often the real value of MadCap Flare conditions are overlooked and the challenge of creating robust condition expressions can deter even the most seasoned of authors. This session discusses the creation of single sourced documents that provide selective branding, content, versioning and more. It initially discusses advanced conditions and then provides the implementation details of a scheme that allows any author to create ‘low maintenance’ single sourced documentation. A Flare-based project that uses over 100 conditions to create hundreds of documents is used to demonstrate the simplicity and flexibility of the process. In short, conditions are a powerful Flare feature which when used properly can simplify your work life!

11:00 AM-12:00 PM

Presented By:

Rosa Davis

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Working with Dual-Bound Projects

Track 4 MadCap Central Source Control GitHub

Learn the best practices of working with projects bound to MadCap Central and GitHub. Rosa Davis, Documentation Manager, will show you the steps on binding a new project, how to bind and perform an initial commit of a legacy project, and her tips to commit and push to both repositories.

12:00-1:30 PM

Lunch, Networking & Hospitality Lounge

1:30-2:30 PM

Presented By:

Denise Kadilak

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Intelligent Content and MadCap Flare

Track 1 MadCap Flare

We all strive to deliver the right content to the right customers in the right way, but accomplishing this task is no small order. Enter the Intelligent Content strategy. This strategy addresses traditional content limitations, such as output, purpose, and technology; however, creating a strategy to deliver intelligent content is also a challenge, but a challenge that pays off nicely if overcome. In this presentation we’ll learn what is meant by intelligent content, the challenges to creating an intelligent content strategy, and how MadCap Flare can make these challenges manageable. On the Flare side, we’ll focus specifically on how Flare allows you to create semantically-aware and structurally-rich content, which in turn makes the content discoverable, reusable, reconfigurable, and adaptable, all tenants of the Intelligent Content paradigm.

1:30-2:30 PM

Presented By:

Jessica Matosky

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Order Takers to Offer Makers: How MadCap Flare Helped Change the Way We Do Business

Track 2 MadCap Flare Migration Adobe® RoboHelp®

Sometimes you just need to change one thing to make all the difference. For my team, that one thing was replacing Adobe® RoboHelp® with MadCap Flare. We are a team of technical writers who have been doing the same thing for nearly a decade. Requests come in, we make updates or write a new topic. We never challenged the status quo, despite knowing that our online repository needed a lot of work. No one was asking us to change it, so why bother? A few years ago, we decided the status quo wasn’t good enough anymore. We wanted to begin to challenge our business partners to want a better product, and to convince them that we could deliver just that. As such, we became a leaner team with more demand. The only way to survive was to change the way we’d always done business. Learn how Flare’s automated publishing capability and source control features have allowed us to do more with less.

1:30-2:30 PM

Presented By:

Kala Gorbett

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Let MadCap Flare Be the Boss: Tips and Tools to Help You Manage an Army of Writers

Track 3 MadCap Flare Team Management

It is easy enough to set and enforce standards when there are only a couple of writers. But when you work in a department with ten or more writers, consistency is especially key to having successful documentation. This session will go over the tools MadCap Flare provides that can help with getting a large department to create documentation that looks and sounds like it was written by one person. Kala Gorbett will explore the strategies she discovered to easily ensure that writers in her team follow the same standards, including global project linking, templates, global dictionaries, variables, snippets, and more.

1:30-2:30 PM

Presented By:

Scott DeLoach

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Extreme CSS Techniques

Track 4 MadCap Flare CSS

In this session, Scott DeLoach will demonstrate expert-level CSS techniques, including how to use future CSS features today. We will discuss what’s being developed in the latest CSS recommendations, what works now, and tricks that can be used to make next-level CSS work in MadCap Flare and in today’s browsers. All attendees will receive a sample project that includes the demonstrated techniques. Note: This is an advanced session. Attendees should be familiar with creating HTML5 Top Nav targets and have intermediate/advanced knowledge of CSS.

2:30-2:50 PM

Break, Networking & Hospitality Lounge

2:50-3:50 PM

Presented By:

Swapnil Ogale

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What’s the Deal with Release Notes?

Track 1 Release Notes

Product managers swear by them, development managers are keen on producing them and quite so often your developers or engineers will help (grudgingly) craft them. Customers (or users), on the other hand, love to get a sneak peek of what has been fixed, improved or added in the newer version. Release notes are everywhere, be it a product or a process. They are quite often your first point of communication with customers eager to know what’s new or fixed in your product or process. In some instances, they also become the most frequently or commonly accessed content on your documentation site. In this presentation, we look at what makes for good release notes, how they help customers/users understand product or process changes, and how technical writers can help bring clarity and structure to release notes.

2:50-3:50 PM

Presented By:

Laura Dent

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How to Get Started with Agile Localization

Track 2 Localization Agile

Staying in sync with the rapid cycles of Agile software development can be a challenge for any technical communicator, and even more so when localization is involved. Localization includes both the technical and linguistic aspects of translating software and documentation into other languages. In this session, learn how to be a hero in your organization by creating a smooth process to build a bridge between the seemingly incompatible processes of agile development and localization.

2:50-3:50 PM

Presented By:

Louis Lento

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Tech Pubs Teamwork: Divvying Up MadCap Flare Project Tasks

Track 3 MadCap Flare MadCap Central CSS Team Management

Everyone’s got their particular gifts and skills, and it’s no different in a Technical Publications department. For example, you may have a graphics and callouts expert, who keeps track of the use of conditions, variables, and topic names. Or maybe there’s a writer in your team that’s skilled at handling page layouts and CSS. This reality lends itself well to spreading the knowledge and work around the different components of a MadCap Flare project. Louis Lento offers tips and suggestions for “teaming up” on a Flare project, and how to effectively utilize the unique skills of your writers.

2:50-3:50 PM

Presented By:

Paul Pehrson

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Troubleshooting Common Problems in MadCap Flare

Track 4 MadCap Flare

What do you do when things go wrong? Things inevitably go wrong, and you are going to need to figure out how to fix them. Instead of calling Support, what can you do first to figure out where the problem is so you can fix it? In this session, join professional MadCap Flare consultant Paul Pehrson to talk through tools you can use and strategies you can follow to figure out where your problems are, which should help you figure out how to fix them. We’ll discuss troubleshooting style issues, project build failures, and other problems based on real-world scenarios Paul has encountered when working with his own projects and the projects of his clients.

3:50-4:20 PM

Break, Networking & Hospitality Lounge

4:20-5:20 PM

Presented By:

Daniel Ferguson

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List This! What You Need to Know About Lists in MadCap Flare

Track 1 MadCap Flare

Many authors get mixed up when creating lists in MadCap Flare, especially with the more complex lists that involve nesting content within list items. But understanding some very simple concepts and methods can make this task quick and easy. In this session, Daniel Ferguson will walk through how to create both simple and complex lists in Flare. We’ll discuss some important shortcut keys, introduce some custom macros you may want to create, and walk through how to set up your stylesheet to manage the look-and-feel of your lists. After this session, you’ll breeze through even the most complex lists.

4:20-5:20 PM

Presented By:

Barb Einarsen

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MadCap Flare in an Agile Environment

Track 2 MadCap Flare Agile Team Management Team Foundation Server

In this presentation, Barb Einarsen shares her experiences of moving to an Agile Scrum environment, and the process of upgrading their source control, authoring, and publishing tools to MadCap Flare and Team Foundation Server. The challenges of a long and involved publishing process was exacerbated by the limitations of their existing tools, and results were often inconsistent. But with the switch, they were able to simplify publishing to PDF and HTML5 help as well as rebranding for multiple partners. Within a single release, the team had migrated all content to Flare, and had every writer authoring and publishing using the new tools.

4:20-5:20 PM

Presented By:

Jennifer Morse

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Lightning Talks

Track 3 Lightning Talks Panel

In this high–energy lightning talk session, speakers will share a brief presentation on a particular topic of their choosing. Each speaker will present for 5–10 minutes, sharing tips, tricks and more in a fun, fast–paced format designed to give the audience a rich variety of information. The session will wrap up with questions from the audience.

4:20-5:20 PM

Presented By:

Patrick Calnan

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Generation Zero: How MadCap Flare Automation Can Make Your Life Easier

Track 4 MadCap Flare Automation

Publishing is an important part of the documentation process, but what if you never had to perform any building or publishing tasks ever again? What if you could automate the process so that as soon as you make changes to your MadCap Flare source files, the generation and distribution of online help and other formats is done for you without having to lift a finger? With source control integration and scripts, you can focus the bulk of your efforts on content creation and revision without ever having to publish your work again. Sounds like science fiction? It’s happening right now… and you can do it too. Join Patrick Calnan, Senior Technical Writer for the Canadian Internet Registration Authority, as he demonstrates just how process automation can make your work faster and easier.

6:30-9:00 PM

Main Conference Closing Event

Note: Conference schedule is subject to change.