TC Camp Gazette #2: Rebekka Andersen

TC Camp Gazette

TC Camp NewsAn interview with: Rebekka Andersen, UC Davis

I first met Rebekka in one of the most interesting coffee shops near the UC Davis campus. I find her passion for the world of technical communication to be very infectious. The area that interests her the most is collaboration. “What I find fascinating is that the success or failure of adoption of content management is far more than implementing a technology. The real barriers are social or cultural.” She went on to point out that “the inhibitors and facilitators are supported by the culture of the organization.”

“Positive collaboration is essential in the global workplace. And with the future of communications becoming more distributed and integrated, it is imperative that you understand what is going on in the organization”, she continued.

Why the TC Camp Un-Conference? “I love the idea of positive intense interaction all day. It’s refreshing compared to most conferences where people talk at you and show endless PowerPoint slides.”

What can attendees expect to gain from attending your class? “Concrete solutions to help overcome barriers. From a high level, we will take a look at barriers and solutions that apply to everyone, no matter what their company culture is. I plan on running a very energized session with a lot of interaction. We will be discussing and developing action plans and collaboration maps. I’m very excited about this session!”

Her enthusiasm and passion will catch a fire in you, I’m sure. She plans on keeping it fun and motivating attendees by giving away prizes and having some fun contests. What a perfect way to start your day at camp!! Sign up for Rebekka’s class, Collaboration Strategies and Tools for Success”, before it fills up!

Rebekka AndersenAbout Rebekka Andersen

Rebekka shares a home in Davis with her husband Ken and their 3 year old Daughter, Summer. A very vibrant child who recently announced she wants a pet. “Is a fish a pet? I’m thinking of starting out small.”

 

Improve your survival skillsSurvival Skills: Improve your skills through a workshop

#1 recommendation from the camp counselors? Bring a short description of your project to your workshop.

The Un-Conference workshops are a learning opportunity unlike any other. The workshops run for 2-hours, which makes them more than a presentation and not quite a training class. This extra time gives the students a chance to get the instructors’ expert advice on how best to apply what you just learned to your specific business goals. Classes are small and intimate. Together, you can all collaborate to apply your learning and decide on a plan of attack. If you want to maximize your benefit, sign up today for one of the morning sessions before they are all filled up!

“The best classes I have ever taught are learned by the tribe – when others collaborate”–Michael Hahn


Bring your gearPrep Steps: What are you bringing with you?

This week’s #1 recommendation from the camp counselors is to bring an idea.

At an Unconference, the agenda and topics for discussion are decided by the attendees. This means that you need to bring your ideas with you.  Although you’ll see suggestions for sessions, the agenda gets created at the event itself. There are lots of kinds of sessions:

  • Short formal presentaiton to kick off an interactive discussion
  • Group Discussion
  • “My Big (or Little) Question” – something you think others can help you answer
  • Show and tell – a project, demo, or idea to let people play with and serve as a springboard for conversation
  • Learn how to do… (these are the monring workshops)

If there are topics you are really interested in that don’t appear on the agenda at first, you need to put them on there!

Mystery SpotMystery Spot

I think I see something…

Sign up for camp newsTick Tock! This month’s camp special

If you want the Tick Tock Deal, you’ve got to subscribe to the camp news.

From the Cat HoleFrom the cat hole: Brain teasers, oddities, and fun stuff

This week’s question:

A farmer has five haystacks in one field and four haystacks in another. How many haystacks would he have if he combined them all in one field?

Last week’s answer: “Incorrectly”, of course.

Email your guess to counselor@tccamp.org for a chance to win a special merit badge! Each correct answer from eligilble entrants will result in one entry in the drawing. Drawing will be held at TC Camp during the general session. Winners must be present during the drawing at the camp to win. Eligible contestants must be fans of the TC Camp Facebook page, TC Camp LinkedIn page, and be subscribers to this newsletter at time of submission. Entries for today’s question close at midnight 12/2/2012.

TC Camp Gazette #1: Michael Hahn

TC Camp Gazette

TC Camp NewsAn interview with: Michael Hahn, Alphabetical by Author

Recently I had the chance to catch up with Michael Hahn at his home in Kansas that he shares with his wife Debbie, their two cats Snowy and Tort, and a dog named Steve. He will be teaching a class at the TC Camp in January, “XML at 15: WTF?”?

Michael is a second generation SGML expert, having learned what he knows from those who created SGML. He was there when XML was born, almost 15 years ago. “The founding principle behind XML was to simplify. We took the lessons we learned from SGML and said ‘We can do this better’.” Over the years, he has taught a hundred courses to a hundred different companies across all vertical markets. He was teaching XML even before it was adopted as a standard. So you could say his teaching XML predates XML.

Why the TC Camp Un-Conference? “I like hearing the sound of my own voice! Seriously, the timing was perfect for this. XML is around the corner from its 15th birthday. I have watched it grow up. It is time to dispel continuing myths and misconceptions. To take a look back. The venue of the Un-Conference was very appealing to me. As a learning venue, it is far more casual “roll up your sleeves” and really learn. I can teach a class dressed in a Tuxedo and Bunny Slippers. The emphasis is on learning and not on trying to sell the attendees something.”

What can attendees expect to gain from attending your class? “Learn to ask the right questions. It’s not about getting all the answers handed to you, it’s about learning how to ask the right questions. Before you can solve a problem, you need to fully understand it and the only way to get to the heart of the matter is to ask the right questions. If I can teach you to hunt at TC Camp, you’ll never go hungry.”

I’ve always enjoyed my conversations with Michael. They are informative while maintaining a high level of enjoyment. Perhaps it is because of how he came to the world of Content creation. His college major was Theater Arts and his minor was in English. He has performed and directed theater plays. He brings this same ease, comfort, and engagement in his interactions with others. As a result, he has very unique and captivating style. Find out by joining his class in January, XML at Fifteen – WTF? Trust me you won’t regret it!

Michael HahnAbout Michael Hahn. Back when dinosaurs ruled the earth and he was in junior high, Michael Hahn recited “The Duck”, by Ogden Nash, for an English assignment. Many years later this skill came in handy to explain SGML and XML to his mother.

 

Improve your survival skillsSurvival Skills: Improve your skills through a workshop

#1 recommendation from the camp counselors? Enroll in one of the morning workshops! The Un-Conference is a learning conference unlike any other. This one is directed by the learners (that would be you!). The TC Camp gives you the opportunity to learn something by offering richly designed morning classes and afternoon free form sessions.

“The best classes I have ever taught are learned by the tribe – when others collaborate”–Michael Hahn

So if you want to maximize your benefit, sign up today for one of the morning sessions before they are all filled up!

 

Bring your gearPrep Steps: What are you bringing with you?

#1 recommendation from the camp counselors is to bring a portable. Whether it’s a laptop, tablet, or just your internet-enabled phone, twittering or live-blogging the event helps us all learn together. We can read what other attendees in other sessions are learning and they can read about our discussions.

 

Mystery SpotMystery Spot

Check back later…

 

Sign up for camp newsTick Tock! This month’s camp special

If you want the Tick Tock Deal, you’ve got to subscribe to the camp news.

 

From the Cat HoleFrom the cat hole: Brain teasers, oddities, and fun stuff

This week’s question:

What word in the English language is always spelled incorrectly?

Email your guess to counselor@tccamp.org for a chance to win a special merit badge! Each correct answer from eligilble entrants will result in one entry in the drawing. Drawing will be held at TC Camp during the general session. Winners must be present during the drawing at the camp to win. Eligible contestants must be fans of the TC Camp Facebook page, TC Camp LinkedIn page, and be subscribers to this newsletter at time of submission. Entries for today’s question close at midnight 12/2/2012.