Let's Tech Communicate

December 2017 Grant Mackenzie

Are you constrained in your writing? Would you prefer to write like Albert Einstein? Then relax. In this Let’s Tech Communicate, both those issues are sorted for you. Plus, the good news from the USA is that idiotic Wacky Warning labels now have their own competition. The bad news is that if you thought you knew your alphabet, you’re wrong and if you thought Arial and Helvetica were the same, you’re wrong again. But fear not. As a special treat there is yet more on double spaces and you can watch ASTC’s recruitment video featuring Dr Tony Self, Dave Gash, Rhonda Bracey and more.

Wacky Warning Labels

It had to happen. The warning labels in the USA have become so idiotic there is now a competition to highlight the most ridiculous. Dr Marita Tjarks-Sobhani is professor for technical editing at the University of Applied Languages in Munich, Germany. Despite this, she has a true sense of the ridiculous and, after giving a backgrounder on US liability law, she introduces us to the Wacky Warning Labels Contest.

Albert Einstein – The Font of Human Knowledge

Everyone who has seen Albert Einstein’s longhand prose has admired his script. Now you can pledge US$15 on Kickstarter to secure a single, personal use copy of the Albert Einstein font when it is finished. Erica Gamet explains all on Creative Pro .

Oh, and as a bonus: if you’ve ever wondered if there was any difference at all between Arial and Helvetica, check out what Ilene Strizver, founder of The Type Studio has to say. She also waxes lyrical on the one space or two debate for good measure.

Constrained Writing

Is your writing constrained by a constrictive style manual? Are you oppressed by a limited vocabulary list for documentation? Then, frankly, you don’t know you’re alive. Once you’ve read Paul Anthony Jones from Mental Floss and his 8 Extraordinary Examples of Constrained Writing you’ll realise that, comparatively, you are as unconstrained as a bird. Thanks to Melissa Kearney for pointing this out.

Alphabet Gloop

It has been proven by Americans that the ampersand is an invention of the devil used only by writers lacking taste. It used to be the 27 th item in our alphabet . Blessed relief that it is gone. Luckily, the letter J and the letter W remain. They are so useful and have such interesting back stories.

ASTC Recruitment Video

After yours truly created the I Joined TCANZ Because… video in 2012, our membership numbers nearly doubled. At the most recent ASTC conference, I was asked to do the same for our Australian brothers and sisters. Here you can watch Rhonda Bracey, Naomi Brammer, Dave Gash, Dave Newdick, and Dr Tony Self, opening their hearts to say I Joined ASTC Because…

Grant Mackenzie

Are you a keen follower of Let's Tech Communicate? Maybe you'd like to be a contributor! Luke Pivac, our main contributor since he established the column in 2014, is stepping down for a well-earned break. We're looking for someone to join the LTC team, to contribute about 6 columns per year. Email comms@techcomm.nz if you're interested in getting involved.