Amazon.com & Harry Potter – email notification done right


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Before the July 21 release of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” Amazon.com sent an email reminding me that I’d pre-ordered the book. The email recommended I upgrade my usual shipping option so the book would arrive on Saturday, July 21, the book’s international release date.

This was an excellent example of a company using e-mail notification based on my purchase data. If my daughter and wife had to wait several days for the book to arrive by the slower shipping option, they would have had to deal with the (continued)

the ABCs of clear communication just got a “D”


I hate reading something that is inaccurate, wordy, and confusing. Any one of those three writing flaws would make me squirm. Combine all three in one written piece, and I am ready to come out of my skin.
So, when I first began technical writing, a group of technical communicators and I brainstormed the ABCs of technical writing.

Recently I added the “D.”

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5 ways to reduce PowerPoint overload


Bored by 50-slide presentations that drone on, bullet by bullet, slide by slide? Having a hard time keeping audience interest in your point. Then start practicing these five research-based techniques for reducing PowerPoint overload: Continue reading

Mind your Maps (or is it: Map your Mind?)


What is the first application open on your PC? Mine is not one of the usual suspects (Infernal Exploder, MS Weird, LookOut, Exile, PowerPointless).

It’s MindManager by Mindjet. I mind map everything. My work demands that I brainstorm, analyze, organize, re-arrange, outline, categorize, or present information. MindManager does all of that.

With this tool I can: Continue reading

Beyond Crayons


To take mind mapping beyond personal use and integrate it into business, collaboration, and project productivity, see Beyond Crayons by Nick Duffill. Man, he’s taken mindmapping with MindManager to some interestingly advanced levels.

I have some success stories, but he’s really on the ball. Read his two part series “Putting an edge on your maps.”