Jamie Sinclair's Learn to Curl series explains all the basics and then some.
Sweeping Saturdays has balance and conditioning exercises off the ice.
Rules and Strategy
Basics of Curling Strategy "covers everything a first-time skip needs to know to call a game, and gives insight into the general strategies used."
Andy Matuschak's Evergreen notes made me curious about starting my own digital garden. Matuschak's distills and connects his research, building an accumulation of insight. I'd like to capture and link more of what I take in and see what patterns it makes.
Maggie Appleton's tools and resources for digital gardeners lists tools for creating public or private digital gardens.
Dan Slimmon: An Incident Command Training Handbook
How to structure and lead an incident response. The five questions of a status update. How to manage information flow effectively.
Slimmon's writing style is direct and simple. It's a mid-length article with some detail, but you could follow it in a high-stress situation (like mid-incident) and benefit immediately.
Best case scenario is to have the whole team read it ahead of time to understand the structure. When it's showtime everyone can slide into their roles and know their responsibilities.
An Incident Commander’s job is to keep the incident moving toward resolution. But an Incident Commander’s job is not to fix the problem. As Incident Commander, you shouldn’t touch a terminal or search for a graph or kick off a deploy unless you’re absolutely the only person available to do it. This may feel uncomfortable, especially if your background is in engineering. It will probably feel like you’re not doing enough to help. What you need to remember is this: whatever your usual job, when you’re the Incident Commander, your job is to be the Incident Commander.
Managing information flow is the single most important responsibility of the Incident Commander.
Sometimes the most effective thing you can do is coordinate the experts.
Graham walks through creating his first engineering roadmap. Goals, format, ranking criteria.
Author: Josh Branchaud
Notes from a consulting company on more effective communication with clients.
Screenshots and moving gifs are great tools for asynchronous communication.
Author: Matthew Bischoff
Design and present a slide deck to get your ideas adopted.
Author: Michael Lopp
Tips on delivering a compelling presentation from Rands in Repose. Editorial choices, practicing out loud, consolidation, and timing.
Summary: A Khan Academy course. Pixar walks us through building stories, with an emphasis on movies. Character development, plot, reinforcing the story with visual choices, pacing, and making a pitch.
This recommendation was in an article on more compelling technical presentations. Not really a fit for the format and time limits of a tech talk, but still interesting.
Author: Tanya Snook
Excerpt: "This presentation explores storytelling at work. Not milk-and-cookies-time-around-the-campfire storytelling, but using storytelling methods to build and deliver messages in a compelling way. Using empathy to draw your audience in and help them to hear your message, and hopefully create a memorable experience in the process."
Author: Jared Bhatti, David Nunez, Jen Lambourne, Zachary Sarah Corleissen, Heidi Waterhouse
How to write maintainable docs that help your customers use your software.
"Docs for Developers demystifies the process of creating great developer documentation, following a team of software developers as they work to launch a new product. At each step along the way, you learn through examples, templates, and principles how to create, measure, and maintain documentation, which you can adapt to the needs of your own organization."
This struck me as the devops of documentation - turn these high level ideas into something we can live in. On my To Read pile.
Written to help contributors write and edit GitLab documentation. The first three parts are grammar and style guidance. Session 4 covers how to approach four topic types: concepts, tasks, references, and troubleshooting.
The page links to the recorded versions on YouTube.
Google's Technical writing courses and resources for engineers and engineer-adjacent folks.
"This collection of courses and learning resources aims to improve your technical documentation. Learn how to plan and author technical documents."
Author: Cederic Chin
How do you distill expertise into teachable lessons? Chin explains Applied Cognitive Task Analysis framework (ACTA) in part 5 of his series on tacit knowledge.
ACTA was created by Laura Militello and Robert Hutton. They lead experts through four processes:
a task diagram to create the big picture of the process
a knowledge audit to identify how expertise is used in the process
a simulation interview, describing how they used their expertise in an incident
a cognitive demands table, that synthesises the prior steps
The cognitive demands table becomes the basis for training materials.
The simuation interviews remind me of post-incident retrospectives.
This would be handy for creating troubleshooting docs, to help flush out the knowledge we don't realize we have.
Author: Michael Lopp
Practice endlessly and improvise. Practice beforehand until the content moves from the planning side of your brain to the other side.
During the presentation, adapt your manner to the the moment. Who's in the room? What's the energy level? Make room for them to participate.
"This article is about presentations, not content. Both are equally important, but I’m not here to help you write your content, I’m here to transform that content into a presentation that doesn’t suck."
"Confidence is going to come not when you memorize your slides, but when you move the content from one side of your brain to the other. Right now, your slides are sitting in the linear left side of your brain, the practical side. This is a fine place for the slides to be while you’re creating them, but before you get up on stage, you need to move them to the right side of your brain, the creative side. You need to be able to feel your slides."
Author: Anjuan Simmons
Excerpt: Simmons' rule of thumb for writing substantive, accessible, and enjoyable conference talks.
Summary: - Write/Speak/Code promotes visibility for women and underrepresented groups through blogging, presenting, and contributing to open source.
Use the topic generation worksheet to brainstorm what to write or present about.
“The secret to career growth is having increasing impact over larger groups of people over time.”
”This isn’t being manipulative. This is doing your job.”
It's not enough to be right. "The most important part of our job as we level up in our careers is dealing with people." Begbie describes three techniques to get your ideas adopted: ask questions, share strategy, and circulate ideas. Or, as he puts it, three superpowers - how to read minds, how to control reality, and how to predict the future. These help scale up your impact and set direction.
How to Read Minds
Ask questions, especially when your first reaction is to push back and convince. You can only influence people if you understand what they believe. As you ask && listen they begin to understand you. Listening builds relationships. Three techniques: * The playback: repeat what you understood them to say. “What I heard you say is…” Makes sure you're on the same page. * Look for blur words, like ‘on time’ or ‘done’ - “What does mean to you?” These are places where misunderstandings creep in. * Elicit the next step. "On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you with the current state of our _?" Ask how to get from the current step to the next one. Start with the incremental thing.
How to Control Reality
Strategy done at the right level is the best tool for driving change. Make it explicit and share it.
Strategy techniques: The “Even Over” maneuver : “We will value Good Thing A even over Good Thing B”. We will value security even over shipping new features. Write it down and share it. That will surface disagreements early. This will help people make decisions the way you want - gives guidance so people can make their own decisions. you don't have to micro-manage.
How to Predict The Future
Circulate your ideas.
When you have an idea, get feedback on it at an early stage. Get people used to it. Don't wait until it's perfect.
Share it casually, it doesn't have to be a big formal presentation.
Ask questions to surface concerns and objections. “How would you react if I said…” , ”What would worry you if we…” Use that to refine your idea.
Build up your audience gradually and broadly: your team, peers, stakeholders, implementors, up, down, sideways.
Give ideas names. It’ll become true. Acknowledge objections. Write things down: what decisions were made, why they were made. It's shareable and reminds people about past discussions. Before a decision-making meeting, have a team huddle. Make sure you know what’ll happen before a meeting. You're more likely to achieve your goal.
Begbie is a good speaker. Humorous, engaging, and Scottish accent. Blur words