TC Camp – the techcomm unconference

TC Camp 2019
is over!

TC Camp 2019 was held Friday April 26 and Saturday, April 27, 2019 in a fabulous new location! Did you miss it?

In 2019, we had a dedicated track for API topics and something we called the Amphitheater (for lightning talks) and we had a great set of volunteers who did Ninja Talks at the end of the day.

And the Techcomm Bowl competition was FIERCE! Our Camp Scout Leaders really stepped it up this year.

Here’s what happened in 2019

  • The session matrix – Review which topics made it into the agenda this year. Read through the transcriptions.
  • See highlights – Find out who won the raffle prize and the TechComm Bowl. See the pictures. Get the slides.

What is TC Camp?

TC Camp is an Unconference focused on Technical Communications issues, skills, challenges, and the various applications used by technical communicators.

The purpose of TC Camp is to provide a local conference for technical communicators that is driven by the members of that community–writers, editors, designers, and the people who support them.

What is an unconference?

An unconference is an event where users suggest topics, get together and discuss them in detail.

Why use the term “Camp” to describe this unconference event?  Originally, in 2005, O’Reilly Media had a Friends Of O’Reilly (Foo Camp) unconference event, where some people actually camped out that weekend.

Who Comes to TC Camp?

Top-tier participants. The people who come to Camp, and thrive at this event, are the same people who thrive at every job they’ve ever had.  TC Camp  brings the best technical communicators in Silicon Valley–the people who are the true movers and shakers are the attendees at this elite event.

These are the people in techcomm who strive to be the ones who can handle anything–by themselves, through their networks, no matter what challenge they face. And they’re all here to work together to make everyone better!

What the participants have to say

TC Camp was great this year (2018). It’s one of my favorite tech comm events, Liz (@lizfraley), Scott (@saprentice), and their crew do a great job every year. The subject matter is always topical, but still applicable, and the agenda favors conversation over lecture.
~ Patrick Bosek, easyDITA blog (January 2018)


One of the greatest benefits of TC Summer Camp was the way the unconference format leveraged the range of experience and expertise of its attendees. Because the session topics were determined by the votes of attendees, all attendees were able to meaningfully participate in the hour-long sessions, often bringing unique insights from their varied experience and education backgrounds. Individual sessions had a mix of participants…Veterans in the field shared lessons gained from decades of facing old and new challenges, and novices taught us about cutting-edge tools and rising industry trends.”
~ Rachael Lussos, GMU STC Student Chapter Blog (July 2016)


“TC Camp’s popularity arises from its unconference format — it places more focus on the attendees instead of juried presentations. As long as you participate, vote, and interact in the discussions, you’re guaranteed to connect.”
~ Tom Johnson of the I’d Rather Be Writing Blog (Jan 2016)


“I attended the TC Camp and found it to be immensely valuable. I really liked the “unconference” format in which attendees choose what they want to talk about. The discussions I attended were timely, lively, and informative. With a dozen or more sessions to choose from, it was easy to find plenty to like. The event is also valuable for its camaraderie. I’ve long missed having a regional event where I could meet with other technical communication professionals and exchange ideas.”
~ Patrick Lufkin, SF STC Newsletter Dec 2013


Even for an “unconventional” tech writer like me, it’s a good way to meet other tech writers and discuss challenges and solutions. Even better, it’s an affordable way to learn.”
~ Neal Kaplan, in the Comments on I’d Rather Be Writing Blog


“As technical communicators, we’re all well aware of the critical importance of keeping our skills current and our networks active. Fortunately, TC Camp is incredibly affordable with no compromises on quality. Many of the best minds in Northern California technical communication will be participating this year. So if you’re looking for the perfect opportunity for skill-building, networking, and fun, grab your backpack and head for camp.”
~ Lori Meyer, Communication Rising Blog [2015]

TC Camp Inc is a 501(c)(3).  All donations are tax deductible.