Corrupting the Internet through ICANN


Americanism vs. Globalism! I think it’s safe to say that many Americans don’t care about global trade politics like the controversial TPP deal, even if it hits their jobs. But what about global Internet politics that could disrupt free speech across the web? What if global trade politics and web politics are so corruptibly intertwined? What if China could influence or suppress Internet traffic as far as the US?

In just another month, on 30 September 2016, the United States will give up its direct oversight of ICANN. Now, because TPP was designed to “pull” the Pacific Rim economies further away from China, it’s no longer so remote to imagine a scenario where China is tempted in retaliation to “push” its own authoritarian policy across the Internet through a more-corruptible “multi-stakeholder” ICANN model.

ICANN

ICANN

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. Last time, I admitted that I “never expected to write a political post”. I guess one time wasn’t enough! This time, extending the logic that TPP favors multinational corporations over sovereign nations, couldn’t Chinese corporations exert the same backroom political control over ICANN, despite “multi-stakeholder” cooperation?
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Delighting users by killing XML robots


The Force Awakens! Or in this case, my ongoing battle with DITA-XML awakens! In the 1st and 2nd episodes of my controversial “Killing XML” trilogy, I explored the rising external forces of social media and mobile apps. But in this 3rd episode, with the rise of socio-mobile, I’ll explore the rising internal forces of human voice and user delight, which are often choked by content cost and maintenance.

Recently, while catching up on old PDF issues of Intercom, the monthly magazine by STC, I found a February 2015 article that advocates this “delightful” approach for technical docs. In his article, Barry Grenon observes that technical writers “default to a formal style” that sounds robotic and encourages “remaining invisible”. By focusing on cost and maintenance, writers fail to engage or delight users.

STC Intercom: February 2015

STC Intercom: February 2015

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. Let me ask you this. If you’re anything like me, a seasoned technical writer with years of DITA-XML experience, how do you know if you’ve forgotten to “delight users”? Well, it’s easier to see it if you’re also a blogger. But if you’re not, do you notice yourself stripping away your unique voice or personality from your content?
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Rewriting the rules for TRIRIGA docs


Veni, vidi, vici! TRIRIGA, TRIRIGAFEEDIA, and TRIRIGA UX! But to start off, happy anniversary! Believe it or not, November 2015 not only witnessed the 2nd anniversary of my quiet “bright blue” tech blog at jay.manaloto.ibm, but also the 10th anniversary of my tech career at TRIRIGA. From the old TRIRIGA days of co-locating at the office to the global IBM days of telecommuting from home. Not a bad deal.

So why have I returned? To be honest, I was always going to return. But this year has been especially consuming, fascinating, and satisfying with my exploration of new TRIRIGA territories, namely TRIRIGAFEEDIA and TRIRIGA UX. With the former, if you remember, I created “an experimental WordPress hub that collects feeds”. With the latter, I recently dove into the world of Google Polymer.

TRIRIGA UX Article 1

TRIRIGA UX Article 1

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. I’ve always been pretty transparent about the origin of my TRIRIGAFEEDIA blog. But now that IBM has announced the releases of IBM TRIRIGA 10.5.0 and IBM TRIRIGA Application Platform 3.5.0 with its UX Framework, I can finally reveal the origin, design, and development of my TRIRIGA UX Articles. Wanna find out?
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Sharpening senses with social media


“I share, therefore I am.” In a previous post about enforcing our reality, I explored the concept of our evolving social-media presence, its possible dangers, and its perceived influence on “our total social reality”. Despite our social technophobia, social media “poses no more and no less of a social threat than any other technological breakthrough like the automobile, television, and Internet”.

But can social media be something more than simply “sharing your thoughts, feelings, photos, and lives with the online world”? More than simply “an effort to declare or enforce your perceived reality or existence”? Why not? If we look up beyond our impulsive two-second retweets, sharing thoughts can lead to exploring new ideas, uncovering new interpretations, and discovering new insights.

Watch Dogs: Skills Tree

Watch Dogs: Skills Tree

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. When I launched my blog in November 2013, I knew next to nothing about cloud computing. But I didn’t let that stop me from learning the cloud basics. Now, 10 months later, I’ve sharpened my senses to a point where I’m finding flawed statements about IBM BlueMix PaaS and IBM Service Engage SaaS on other blogs!
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Smashing schedules in the mobile age


Truth? Myth? The 8-hour sleep cycle. The 8-hour work day. The 40-hour work week. Most of us have probably seen the recurring tweets, blogs, and articles about the truths and myths behind these industrial traditions. In fact, when I first decided to write about this topic, I was planning to focus on the 8-hour sleep cycle. Until I realized that the 8-hour work day was strongly connected.

So I decided to perform another one of my experiments. In my previous post about spicy rotations, I argued that to keep my projects fresh and to avoid burning out, the key is to “rotate my product-specific Agile teams, just like I rotate my favorite restaurants”. Why not extend that idea beyond my work hours? Why not apply it to my sleep cycle or my entire day? What is my natural work cycle?

Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag

Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. For two full weeks in April, I relaxed my working, playing, eating, and sleeping schedules to their most “natural” cycles. Even if I felt like playing the Assassin’s Creed IV video game or watching Japanese touge racing videos at night until 3am in the morning, when did I experience my most productive work hours?
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Killing clunky PDF with mobile EPUB


A couple of weeks ago, a former colleague asked me for advice about embedding a video into a PDF file. She had tried MOV and MP4 video formats, so I suggested FLV format. But in each case, only the audio played, not the video. I’m not sure if she eventually resolved the issue, but I suspect it was related to her Adobe product versions. This episode led me to wonder about PDF files.

Specifically, why are we still stuck using the clunky PDF? First, in terms of being “trapped by this traditional paper-based expectation”, the PDF is looking more like a locked cage. Second, in terms of the “rapid evolution of social-media and socio-mobile technology”, the PDF is behaving more like an aging dinosaur. Not even a video-embedding PDF feature can slow the mobile EPUB momentum.

EPUB document on Moon+ Reader 2.4.1 mobile app

EPUB document on Moon+ Reader 2.4.1 mobile app

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. While there are probably countless comparisons between PDF and EPUB documents on the web, I’d like to highlight several articles that caught my eye. From there, I’ll toss my own two-cent thoughts on the troubling PDF-related issues that IBM might be facing, if not now, then soon, or sooner than we think.
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Killing XML and IA with social media


Back in October 2013, the IBM editor for my writing team forwarded her enlightening observation about the meteoric rise of mobile media and the potential fall of topic-based authoring. I hadn’t created this blog yet, but I knew that her thoughts might be the seed for an intriguing post someday. Over a month after creating my blog, I still didn’t know how to frame the subject. This is, until now.

With over 20 years of IBM experience, my editor wrote: “Highly technical information that’s delivered on YouTube is widely accepted by technical users… More and more, users will be accessing our products from mobile devices. To learn something new, would you rather watch a YouTube video on your mobile phone or read several topics in an information center?”

TRIRIGAPEDIA: Hosted by the MediaWiki-powered Wikia.com

TRIRIGAPEDIA: Hosted by the MediaWiki-powered Wikia.com

Hi, my name is Jay, and I’m an IBM TRIRIGA information developer at IBM. After publishing a dozen entries, I realized that my editor’s compact yet powerful observation overlaps my blog posts about dissecting DITA, breathing Oxygen XML, plugging into WordPress, searching Big Blue, and probably a few more. Do they collectively predict the downfall of topic-based XML authoring and topic-based information architecture? Let’s find out.
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