Git for Technical Writers

December 1, 2014

I was fairly slow to adopt Git (having been raised on other version control tools), but, needless to say and like most of us, it’s now a daily component of my work flow. And certainly using Git myself is a much different beast than using Git in a massive organization with hundreds of engineers all working from the same code base. Which is to say: there’s still plenty of room for my Git skills to grow.

Recently, though, I’ve come to appreciate another value of Git, which hadn’t previously crossed my mind or been written about elsewhere (such that I’ve seen):

Git is a valuable tool for technical writers.
One interpretation of that sentence is that you can use Git to manage revisions to a document. Sure. That’s completely logical and not surprising. But I’ve found something more nuanced in my Git usage as a technical writer.

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Chapters 22 and 23 of “The Yii Book” are example chapters, in which I don’t cover new material but rather put together previous material in a more complete context. These example chapters have been popular in my other books, so I thought I’d include two in this book. The specific examples I came up with are:

A blog/CMS example
An e-commerce site
The blog (Chapter 22) is a more complete version of what was commonly used as an example throughout the entire book. For the e-commerce example, I came up with the idea of selling books (imagine that!).

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Much Ado About Yii

October 21, 2014

Without much formality (aside from the Shakespeare), I’d like to share four bits of Yii-related news:

The Release Candidate of Yii 2
Progress on “The Yii Book”
Looking ahead to “The Yii 2 Book” (aka, the second edition)
An online Yii 2 presentation I’m doing this Thursday, October 23, 2014 for Nomad PHP

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On October 23, I’ll be doing an online presentation titled “Faster Web Development with Yii Framework 2”. In this presentation, I’ll be introducing the Yii framework in general, and version 2 in particular. Keep reading this post for an introduction to the presentation, or click the “Faster Web Development with Yii Framework 2″ link in the first sentence.

This is a paid event, put on by NomadPHP, but the cost is only $15, for either live attendance or a video afterwards.

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In this newsletter and the next two (it’s a three-part series), I’ll discuss the business of freelancing: what it means to be a freelance worker, important things to keep in mind, and how to survive. I freelanced for 14 years before stopping last year when I joined Stripe. I worked on great projects, I worked on duds; some paid well, some clients stiffed me; some I’m still proud of today, and others never made it online. But I learned a lot, and know that it is possible to make a career as a freelancer. Some of you already are freelancing, while others aspire towards that end. No matter your situation, I hope this newsletter provides ideas that are helpful to you in that pursuit.

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