James Bailie, Technical Writer

Quality Documentation

James Bailie

I am a one-man documentation team specializing in instructional documents such as user’s guides and reference manuals. I also enjoy polishing technical reports and scientific papers for publication. My work achieves the levels of detail, clarity, accuracy, and attractiveness demanded by persnickety clients. I produce high-quality PDF, ebook, and web output. For books, I prefer to do whole jobs, including design and composition, working under the supervision of an editor.

Contact

Please direct your queries to me via email. I will respond within 24 hours. I do not use email or social networking sites for business communication beyond initial queries because of those sites' poor track records respecting privacy.

Mission

I strive for clarity in my writing and clarity in my designs.

Both ugly documents and pretty documents distract users. Good writing is concise. Good design is transparent.

I strive to create documents that are useful.

Users in general skip the manual and only consult documentation when they encounter problems. To lower the volume of your customer support queries, I will consult your support department to determine the most common problems that need addressing.

Experience

Precision and attention to detail are second nature to me.

In my former career in Quality Assurance, I discovered and documented variation in material, process, and specification on products with up to multimillion dollar values. I know first hand how poorly executed internal documents increase non-conformances. I know first-hand how poorly executed manuals influence purchasing decisions.

Technical Knowledge

I have written a variety of FreeBSD system programs including the web server hosting this site. If your product is software, and if you give me read-only access to your source archive (I will sign NDAs), I may be able to answer many questions for myself without bothering your developers.

In the ports system: www/drood, devel/libdombey, devel/libserver, lang/munger, editors/dickens.

Security

Your intellectual property is safe in my hands.

To avoid having to use third party services to communicate with clients, I wrote my own simple and secure communication system. All hosted content is encrypted before it reaches storage, and when accounts expire, all associated data is immediately deleted. Private Words is a complete custom implementation from the ground up including custom web, application, and chat servers.