Tech Comm trends to follow or forget

Keynote Speaker: Tom Johnson


Senior Technical Writer for Google

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Session information

When we focus on trends, we often look at the present and how current trends might affect our tech comm work. But we can also look in the opposite direction: at trends that faded or fizzled and ask why. Looking at trends that faded, especially the reasons why, might help us better evaluate current trends. In this presentation, I’ll look at a number of tech comm trends that I’ve either followed or abandoned over the years, and why they failed for me.

Sometimes the trends were superseded by better technologies, but other times they fizzled due to other reasons. Note that my tour through these trends focuses on personal reasons for following or forgetting trends rather than making objective assertions about mass-scale adoption or rejection across the industry.

About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson is a senior technical writer for Google in Seattle, Washington.

He is best known for his blog, where he posts regularly on technical communication topics. Additionally, he created an extensive web API documentation course ( that has helped hundreds of technical writers transition into API documentation. Lately, he has been working on a series of essays titled  “A hypothesis about influence on the web and the workplace.” He has given more than 100 presentations during his career and always enjoys exploring and discussing new things, especially trends.