Thursday Jan 28, 2010

Gotta Love the Impact of Information

Here is another great example of feedback from an engineer on the value of the information services provided and how they impact his work and collaboration with fellow engineers! This is specific to our eBook program:

"I must say that it's really nice to exchange information with fellow co-workers here at Sun and, if there happens to be a reference to something I'm trying to describe -- I just say -- See the book such-and-so, on page xxx (it's on Safari if you want to have a look online)."

I LOVE it! Information matters!


Monday Aug 31, 2009

New Sun Press Title: Read Me First! A Style Guide for the Computer Industry, Third Edition

Sun Technical Publications is pleased to announce the release of the third edition of the industry-leading style guide "Read Me First! A Style Guide for the Computer Industry". This guide to creating clear, consistent, and easy-to-understand documentation covers everything from writing style to creating lists and procedures to managing schedules and workflow.

The third edition features new chapters on:

  • Writing for wikis and encouraging wiki collaboration
  • Creating screencasts, using screencast terminology, and guidelines for creating narration
  • Creating alternative text for nontext elements such as screen captures, multimedia content, illustrations, and diagrams
It also includes new tables for symbol name conventions, for common anthropomorphisms, and for common idioms and colloquialisms. To quote STC Fellow Dr. JoAnn Hackos, "It brings together a wealth of knowledge that all technical communicators must have to succeed."

"Read Me First! A Style Guide for the Computer Industry, Third Edition" is available through Safari Books Online at The print edition will be available in mid-October. For Sun employees, access is funded via the Sun subscription to Safari Books Online - access this amazing book here: and learn today (note: this does not replace the Sun Editorial Style Guide, which is the in-house and Sun-specific version of this guide).

Friday Aug 28, 2009

New Video: Introduction to Virtual Worlds - Check out the Mixed Reality!

This new video, created by Robin Williams in the Information Services: Digital Libraries & Research group, has a great message about the value of virtual worlds for business and also uses various types of media to get the message across - including mixing real people and avatars - it's a must see!

Thursday Jul 16, 2009

Value of Safari Books Online to Sun

Sun has been a subscriber of Safari Books Online for many years! We started out small but quickly grew the access to employees as well as influenced the content and features based on Sun's business needs. The Safari Books Online service provides Sun employees access to over 8000 books, all online, all from tier 1 publishers. The ability to search, learn, download, discover, share are all key features of what makes Safari Books Online a critical information service for Sun employees.

Here are a few things employees have said about the information availale:

  • "Sun makes use of many different software technologies. Usually, a developer's primary focus spans just a few of these technologies but he/she will invariably need to use, interface, or reference several others during their career here at Sun. Although google has become an indispensable reference tool, it is not able to replace authoritative texts on technical subjects. Safari has saved me a great deal of time by allowing me to find the best book for the task at hand. The ability to instantly have an expert available in the form of a book to answer questions or provide training has made it easier and more enjoyable to be a software developer here at Sun."
  • "I was recently tasked to write some software in a language I had never used before. I was able to access excellent references within minutes using Safari instead of waiting for a book to be delivered or wasting time in the local bookstores. I consider Safari an essential tool in my work here at Sun."
  • "This service helped our team get a very good understanding of the capabilities of an open-source software tool by giving us access to several books on the topic. This saved us a lot of time and effort. It would have saved us even more time and effort if I had thought to use Safari first rather than trying to compose appropriate Google searches to answer our questions...."
Sun has also purchased access to the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) books online via Safari. ITIL is a widely-accepted approach to IT service management across the globe. ITIL provides a cohesive set of best practices, drawn from public and private sectors internationally. Here is one employee's response to have the ITIL information available at her fingertips:
  • "This is the best news.. Sun needs the gift of ITIL V3 Service Management Best Practices, and having them available for regular use is a win for all of us. May we as a community continue to use this to make the most of our service delivery and service management practices. This documentation and our organizations collaborating has competitive value for Sun and the IT Industry as a whole."
Safari recently wrote a case study on Sun's use of Safari Books Online and the value from Sun's perspective. Check out the case study!

Also, Safari created a customer video - a commercial - and interviewed several users of their service including Sun's Neeraj Mathur. Check out the video and hear what customers have to say about the impact to their business and what Neeraj says the impact is to his work at Sun.

For more information about Safari Books Online, Sun employees can see our SunSpace page at Information Services > eBooks > Safari Books Online.

Thanks everyone - enjoy, keep learning!


Thursday Feb 19, 2009

New SMI Press book - Citizen Engineer: A Handbook for Socially Responsible Engineering

Citizen Engineer: A Handbook for Socially Responsible Engineering

This new SMI Press book, authored by Sun's Dave Douglas, Greg Papadopoulos and John Boutelle, is titled Citizen Engineer and early Rough Cut access is available to Sun employees via Safari Books Online. (Sun employees here | Non Sun employees purchase here)

Here is a summary of the book:
Being an engineer today means being far more than an engineer. You need to consider not only the design requirements of your projects but the full impact of your work--from an ecological perspective, an intellectual property perspective, a business perspective, and a sociological perspective. And you must coordinate your efforts with many other engineers, sometimes hundreds of them. In short, we've entered an age that demands socially responsible engineering on a whole new scale. The era of the Citizen Engineer.

This engaging and thought-provoking book focuses on two topics that are becoming vitally important in the day-to-day work of engineers today: eco engineering and intellectual property (IP). The book also examines how and why the world of engineering has changed and provides practical advice to help engineers of all types master the new era of engineering and start thinking like Citizen Engineers.

This access is prior to the print version of the book coming out in June 2009. Sun employees will be able to purchase a print copy at a 40% discount towards the end of April but anyone can purchase at when it's published.

For Sun employees: you can download specific chapters for offline reading and even access those downloaded chapters via your iPhone or iPod Touch (see blog on Safari Bookbag application)

Since this is a Rough Cut (pre-published access to book content), you can choose to receive an email alert when the final version is available as well as make comments to the authors about the book before it's published! See snapshot of those features below.

We hope to have the authors do an author chat soon so will keep you posted on that opportunity to talk to Greg, Dave and John about the book.


Christy Confetti Higgins
Digital Library Program - Sun Learning Services


Sharing stories of information management, collaboration, integration, sharing, and social enterprise applications for corporate information services.


« June 2016