Technical balance

Two technical editors worked with me on Going Offline.

Jake was one of the tech editors. He literally (co-)wrote the spec on service workers. There ain’t nuthin’ he don’t know about the code involved. His job was to catch any technical inaccuracies in my writing.

The other tech editor was Amber. She’s relatively new to web development. While I was writing the book, she had a solid grounding in HTML and CSS, but not much experience in JavaScript. That made her the perfect archetypal reader. Her job was to point out whenever I wasn’t explaining something clearly enough.

My job was to satisfy both of them. I needed to explain service workers and all its associated APIs. I also needed to make it approachable and understandable to people who haven’t dived deeply into JavaScript.

I deliberately didn’t wait until I was an expert in this topic before writing Going Offline. I knew that the more familiar I became with the ins-and-outs of getting a service worker up and running, the harder it would be for me to remember what it was like not to know that stuff. I figured the best way to avoid the curse of knowledge would be not to accrue too much of it. But then once I started researching and writing, I inevitably became more au fait with the topic. I had to try to battle against that, trying to keep a beginner’s mind.

My watchword was this great piece of advice from Codebar:

Assume that anyone you’re teaching has no knowledge but infinite intelligence.

It was tricky. I’m still not sure if I managed to pull off the balancing act, although early reports are very, very encouraging. You’ll be able to judge for yourself soon enough. The book is shipping at the start of next week. Get your order in now.

Have you published a response to this? :

Responses

A Book Apart

“I needed to explain service workers and all its associated APIs. I also needed to make it approachable and understandable to people who haven’t dived deeply into JavaScript.” @adactio on working with tech editors while writing Going Offline: bit.ly/2vvsDOq

Andrew Sims

“Why I had two technical editors working with me on Going Offline, with opposite levels of experience.” How Jeremy Keith avoided the “curse of knowledge” while writing his latest book. adactio.com/journal/13747

# Posted by Andrew Sims on Thursday, April 19th, 2018 at 7:47pm

2 Likes

# Liked by Chris Burnell on Tuesday, April 17th, 2018 at 5:29pm

# Liked by Jon Tan on Tuesday, April 17th, 2018 at 5:33pm

Previously on this day

5 years ago I wrote 100 words 026

Day twenty six.

6 years ago I wrote Fragmentions

Deeper linking for deeper thinking.

7 years ago I wrote A dao revisited

Musing on a thirteen year old piece of writing on the web.

7 years ago I wrote Responsive workshopping

A half-day workshop I did at this year’s UX London.

11 years ago I wrote Blast from the past

When rabbit holes become memory holes.

12 years ago I wrote Iteration and You

Liveblogging a presentation by Daniel Burka at The Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote From Design to Deployment

Liveblogging a presentation by Jon Hicks at The Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote Print is the New Web

Liveblogging a talk by Elliot Jay Stocks at The Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote Photoshop Battle

Liveblogging a Photoshop tennis match at the Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote Getting Your Designs Approved

Liveblogging a presentation from Larissa Meek at the Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote Demo hell

The air gets sucked out of the room at The Future of Web Design.

12 years ago I wrote The User Experience Curve

Liveblogging a talk from Andy Budd at The Future of Web Design in London.

12 years ago I wrote User Experience vs. Brand Experience

Liveblogging a session from Steven Pearce and Andy Clarke at the Future of Web Design.

14 years ago I wrote Bedroll

Not a blogroll.

18 years ago I wrote A thousand words

Jeb has posted some pictures of his trip to Europe.