Technical writing is sometimes defined as simplifying the complex. It's a good definition.
Inherent in such a concise and simple definition are a whole range of skills and characteristics that address nearly every field of human endeavor at some level. A significant subset of the broader field of technical communication, technical writing involves communicating complex information to those who need it to accomplish some task or goal.
Oxford Dictionaries Online (ODO) provides four definitions for the word technical, all of which relate to the profession of technical writing: of or relating to a particular subject, art, or craft, or its techniques of, involving, or concerned with applied and industrial sciences resulting from mechanical failure according to a strict application or interpretation of the law or rules.
With these definitions in mind, it’s easy to see that technical writing has been around as long as there have been written languages. Modern references to technical writing and technical communications as a profession begin around the time of World War I as technical developments in warfare, industry and telecommunications began to evolve more rapidly. Although today many people think of technical writing as creating manuals for computers and software, the practice of technical writing takes place in any field or industry where complex ideas, concepts, processes or procedures need to be communicated.
In fact, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics defines technical writers as those who “put technical information into easily understandable language. They work primarily in information-technology-related industries, coordinating the development and dissemination of technical content for a variety of users; however, a growing number of technical communicators are using technical content to resolve business communications problems in a diversifying number of industries.”
Technical writers work collaboratively with editors, graphic designers and illustrators, document specialists, content managers, instructional designers, trainers, and analysts to produce an amazing variety of deliverables, including:
Contracts Online and embedded help specifications
Customer Service scripts - Policy documents - Simulations
Demonstrations - Process flows
Training course materials
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Websites + Content
Knowledge base articles
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A FEW WEBSITES SAMPLES
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