TechComm Today
Mar. 12, 2014

Top 10 mobile skills IT pros must master
In a recent blog post, Gartner distinguished analyst Nick Jones outlined 10 mobile technologies and skills that organizations need to master over the next two to three years. Here's a quick run-down of the top 10 mobile technologies and related capabilities that Gartner and Jones say will be critical to master by the end of 2016.More

Attention developers: UX and UI guidelines for Windows Phone app development
For those of you starting out as brand new Windows Phone app developers or if you are a seasoned Windows Phone developer, Microsoft has put up a new blog post showcasing all the UX and UI guidelines for the Windows Phone platform. This blog post details all the bells and whistles when it comes to proper and authentic app.More

Unveiling the key elements of PSD to HTML5 conversion
Today, responsive website design has become a necessity more than just a trend in the Web development industry. The reason for such need of responsive design can be attributed to the fact that W3C has officially recommended the latest version of HTML. Along with the introduction of HTML5, a new version of CSS3 also emerged at the same time. But for novice or an intermediate level developer, designing websites in HTML5 and CSS3 is a challenge that they need to overcome. Here is an easy to follow step-by-step guide that will help you understand the key elements of PSD to HTML5 conversion.More

Not an STC member or haven't renewed? Do you feel lucky?

If you're not an STC member or haven't renewed your membership for 2014 yet, now is the time! Join or renew at the Classic or Gold level by 11:59 PM EDT (GMT-4) on St. Patrick's Day (that's 17 March) and if you have the luck of the Irish you could win an iPad mini! STC will randomly select the winner from all new and renewing members and contact the winner. Is today your lucky day?More

Preconference education kicks off the 2014 Summit

If you need more than even the Summit offers, STC has you covered with optional preconference courses available for an added fee. Take a two-day certificate course or a half-day workshop and get a head start on all the learning available in Phoenix. There are even special "certificate course plus conference" packages available at a discount. And of course you can still register for just the Summit and join us from 18-21 May in the Valley of the Sun.More

On-demand education available from STC

STC has a growing library of on-demand education available for free or at a low price. Recordings of our recent live Web seminars are available for just $19 for members and $59 for nonmembers. These recordings provide the full hour-long presentation, including a look into the chatroom where attendees discussed and networked. And STC members can access our library of 140-plus free, archived seminars as well. These archived seminars of live presentations combine the audio of the presenter plus the PowerPoint presentation synched together. Both libraries are available 24/7: education you need, whenever you need it, wherever you need it.More

Live education also available from STC

STC also offers a selection of live education in the coming weeks. Starting next week is the multi-week online course Topic-Based Authoring, presented by Sharon Burton and taking place every Wednesday from 19 March through 23 April. And our calendar of one-hour live Web seminars includes sessions on video/animation, information design, the "new world" of technical communication, and collaborative single-source development.More

STC Student Poster Competition deadline extended

The deadline for the STC student poster submissions has been extended to Monday, 31 March 2014. The STC Academic SIG invites individual submissions to a student poster competition at the STC Summit. Selected posters will be presented at the Summit in Phoenix on Tuesday, 20 May 2014. Awards will be presented that evening at the Honors Banquet. The topic is Current Research Topics in Technical Communication; submit innovative work in communicating technical content, managing a technical communication group, producing and publishing content, researching content, or promoting the profession.More

The world's largest photo service just made its pictures free to use
The Verge
If you go to the Getty Images website, you'll see millions of images, all watermarked. There are more than a hundred years of photography there, all stamped with the same transparent square placard reminding you that you don't own the rights. If you want Getty to take off the watermark, you'll have to pay for it. Starting now, that's going to change. Getty Images is dropping the watermark for the bulk of its collection, in exchange for an open-embed program that will let users drop in any image they want, as long as the service gets to append a footer at the bottom of the picture with a credit and link to the licensing page.More

Flex the power of cURL for Web dev testing and data transfers
Testing Web services and even Web applications at a granular level is cumbersome process, especially when you need to examine the nitty-gritty details of the data going back and forth. There are a number of great tools available with the cURL command-line (and programmable) option being an elder statesman. cURL provides a simple way to transfer data via various protocols. More

Stop wasting your time: Lean UX methods to help test before you build
The Next Web
Lean methods have been famous amongst young and agile companies for years, but they haven't necessarily penetrated larger businesses yet. Its main principle is that scientific data and tests should be the basis for decisions — not opinions or assumptions. The creation of an engaging and successful website requires a strong commitment to design and user experience. The most important link between your product and its design is to get people to do what you want them to do right from the very first visit. More

Building engaging Web apps with game mechanics
"Gamification" is the use and application of game design techniques and game mechanics, in nongame contexts, to engage a target audience to change behaviors, learn new skills, or enable innovation. Game design can be applied to practically all facets of business. Gartner predicts that by 2015, more than 50 percent of organizations that manage innovation processes will gamify those processes.More

5 great Google analytics alternatives
If you manage a website, there's a good chance you are using Google Analytics to keeping track of your visitors, or you are considering using it. GA is an excellent product, and given the fact it's free makes it a very viable and attractive solution to many website owners. But it has its flaws and imperfection. With these concerns in mind, let's have a look of some of the best Google Analytics alternatives and see how they measure up.More

Infographic: The past, present, and the future of Web design
Business 2 Community
When it comes to Web-design, we have come a long way. Today there are so many things to take into consideration, and our options are as wide as they can be. This infographic takes a look at the past, present, and the future of Web design.More

Rich presentations using CreateJS
From its inception as Macromedia Flash 1.0 in 1996, Flash has been the de facto method of incorporating sound, video, and image assets into new media. However, with the proliferation of various digital devices, Flash has slowly lost ground in favor of HTML5 and its increasing ability to handle complex animations. While there are a number of frameworks that are beginning to boast adequate tool belts for handling various media assets, CreateJS currently looks like the most comprehensive.More

Delusions about responsive design
Business 2 Community
Every day thousands (if not millions) of users use the Internet from different devices. So it’s natural that modern site should correspond to different requirements by different devices. Otherwise, an irritated user will go away. This is why most webmasters and designers have positive attitude towards responsive design. But as any new idea, the introduction of responsive design has caused some delusions about its development. More

The future of the Web is audible
Like it or not the Web has mostly been designed for those who can see it. The very nature of HTML and CSS is focused on how a Web page looks, mostly disregarding our other senses. With the increasing popularity of wearable technology combined with advancements in machine learning, a newfound emphasis is being placed on not only how a website looks, but also how it can be more naturally interacted with. As it turns out, sound — or the ability to speak and hear commands — might be the key to the next generation of Web development.More