Today MindTouch (news, site) announces their new Technical Communications Suite, designed to support the creation and deployment of technical documentation in a community environment, and in turn help improve revenues and customer support.
On MindTouch 2010
When MindTouch 2010 was announced in July, it was said to be designed "…to take product and service documentation and transform it into a contributor to revenue generation, as well as cost-reduction". What it offered was an authoring environment to support the creation of technical documentation, a way to publish that documentation via semantic navigation and adaptive search, and curation analytics that would provide information about customer behavior including usage patterns and ratings.
It was a nice tidy bundle of functionality that would support pretty much all the needs for the creation and disposition of technical communications. But could there be more?
Using MindTouch 2010 and More
The answer is yes and comes in the form of the MindTouch Technical Communications Suite. This is the latest in a lineup of packaged solutions from MindTouch that combine community/social capabilities with business systems (others have included Collaborative Intranet and Collaborative Knowledge), or "collaboration in context".
The Technical Communications Suite packages MindTouch 2010 and a number of other tools around community engagement, enabling organizations to take their technical documentation and leverage it as strategic content.
MindTouch Technical Communications Suite - Reports
We've seen very clearly this month that enterprise information is indeed a strategic asset that needs to be leveraged to help organizations be more competitive and responsive to their customers.
Technical documentation has, for the most part, often been relegated to the bottom of the stack when it comes to getting work done and is often just seen as a developer's tool or a nice book/help file that sits on the shelf/desktop. But it can be leveraged for much more.
As Aaron Fulkerson, CEO and Founder of MindTouch pointed out when we talked about MindTouch 2010, technical documentation is being used to increase SEO and drive prospects through the sales pipeline.
A Documentation Community
TCS provides organizations with the environment needed to quickly set up a documentation community that can support the following:
- Create documents via an XML, standards driven authoring environment
- Find relevant documentation via adaptive search and semantic navigation
- Refine documentation through the use of curation analytics
- Encourage community contributions supported by content moderation and workflow
- Integrate with third party social media tools like Twitter to spread the word
So basically it's a community where you provide both access to your technical documentation and enable (if you want to) community members to rate and comment on that information and even submit their own content (using moderation tools and workflow).
TCS can also completely replace your current authoring environment, or it can be layered over the top of the desktop authoring tools you love to use.
MindTouch Technical Communications Suite - CompleteGuides.net
The Evolution of Content Management Starts Now?
It is a single solution that can replace the WCM system (which includes the authoring and delivery environment) and community software put together. It's also a great example of community features implemented to support a specific business case — the creation and delivery of technical documentation.
I expect that TCS is only the beginning and that we will start to see more solutions on the market that integrate content management and social capabilities more tightly. MindTouch has already said this is only the beginning for them, so we'll be closely watching for what comes next.
MindTouch Technical Communications Suite is available now and is priced per author. Check out the website for more details.