Write the Docs is a two-day conference focused on documentation systems, tech writing theory, and information delivery. It will be held on April 8-9 in Portland, Oregon.

Writing and maintaining documentation involves the talents of a multidisciplinary community of technical writers, designers, typesetters, developers, support teams, marketers, and many others.

This conference creates a time and a place for this community of documentarians to share information, discuss ideas, and work together to improve the art and science of documentation.

We invite all those who write the docs to spread the word:

Docs or it didn't happen!


Ticket sales for Write the Docs have ended.

Thanks for everyone who made this year a success


We looked long and hard to find a fitting venue for the inaugural Write the Docs conference. So, we are very excited to be holding it in the Mission Theater in Portland, Oregon. More information can be found on the venue page

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We will be having a hike on the Sunday before the conference. It leaves Portland proper at 1pm, so if you find yourself in town before the conference, please come out and let us show you Portland's beauty! All the details can be found on the hike page

Pre Registration

Waking up extra early to register is no fun. Come join us Sunday evening for a couple hours, and get pre-registered for the conference.

This will be happening at Urban Airship from 6-8 PM. The address is 334 NW 11th Ave, Portland, Or.


After talks end on Monday, we will be inviting everyone to join us for a party. We will be keeping it pretty calm, because there are talks the next day, too! However, expect to chill out and talk docs.

The party will be at Ground Kontrol from 8-10PM. Ground Kontrol is a retro bar and arcade, with lots of games from your childhood. We will also be having an alternate event at Bailey's Taproom for those intersted in good Northwest beer, also from 8-10PM.


Day 1

8:00-8:50 Registration
8:50-9:00 Intro
9:00-9:40 Kenneth Reitz - Documentation is King (video)
9:40-10:20 Michael Verdi - How Mozilla supports users all over the world (video)
10:20-10:40 Coffee
10:40-11:00 Erin Robbins O’Brien - Beautiful Documents - A Language Love Story (video)
11:00-11:40 Matthew Butterick - Typography for Docs (video)
11:40-12:00 Sarah Grant - Evolution of the English Language from Text to Texting (video)
12:00-12:20 Jennifer Hodgdon - Motivating developers to write API documentation (video)
12:30-1:00 Lightning Talks
1:00-2:00 Lunch
2:00-2:40 Leah Cutter - Generating a Culture of Doc (video)
2:40-3:20 Kevin Hale - Getting Developers and Engineers to Write the Docs (video)
3:20-3:40 Nisha George & Elaine Tsai - Translating Customer Interactions to Documentation (video)
3:40-4:00 Teresa Talbot - Technically Communicating Internationally (video)
4:00-4:20 Snack
4:20-4:40 Daniel Lindsley - The Unenviable Tutorial (video)
4:40-5:00 Brandon Philips - Single Page Docs: Stop the Click Insanity (video)
5:00-5:20 Andrew M Kuchling - Why Projects Should Have “What’s New” Documents (video)
5:20-6:00 Marcia Riefer Johnston - Write Tight(er) (video)
6:00- Announcements

Day 2

8:00-8:50 Registration
8:50-9:00 Announcements
9:00-9:40 Noirin Plunkett - Text Lacks Empathy (video)
9:40-10:20 Daniya Kamran - Translating Science into Poetry (video)
10:20-10:40 Coffee
10:40-11:00 James Tauber - Versioned Literate Programming for Tutorials (video)
11:00-11:40 Tim Daly - Literate Programming in the Large (video)
11:40-12:00 Jennifer Hartnett-Henderson - Sketchnotes: Communicate Complex Ideas Quickly (video)
12:00-12:20 Heidi Waterhouse - Search-first documentation: tags and keywords for frustrated users (video)
12:20-1:00 Lightning Talks
1:00-2:00 Lunch
2:00-2:40 James Socol - UX and IA at Mozilla Support, and Helping 7.2 Million More People (video)
2:40-3:20 Ashleigh Rentz - The technical challenges of serving docs at Google’s scale (video)
3:20-3:40 Ann Goliak - Helping the help pages (video)
3:40-4:00 Jim R. Wilson - Describe, Defend, Differentiate and Deliver (video)
4:00-4:20 Snack
4:20-4:40 Jonathan Mukai-Heidt - Play and Pragmatism: Recapturing the Beginner’s Mind
4:20-4:40 Lightning Talks
4:40-5:00 Adam DuVander - Docs as Marketing: Make Your API Irresistible (video)
5:00-5:20 Lauren Rother and Fred Lifton - Build a Bakery: Making cake, eating it and planning for future cake too (video)
5:20-6:00 Ana Nelson - Integrating Development, Documentation and Reporting (video)
6:00- Closing Statements


A full list of talks is also available.

Nóirín Plunkett

Kenneth Reitz

Jim Wilson

Ana Nelson

Andrew Kuchling

Ashleigh Rentz

Brandon Philips

Daniel Lindsley

Daniya Kamran

Elaine Tsai

Kevin Hale

James Socol

Jennifer Hodgdon

Marcia Riefer Johnston

Matthew Butterick

Nisha George

Sarah Grant

Tim Daly

Michael Verdi

Erin Robbins O’Brien

Leah Cutter

Teresa Talbot

James Tauber

Jennifer Hartnett-Henderson

Heidi Waterhouse

Ann Goliak

Jonathan Mukai-Heidt

Adam DuVander

Lauren Rother



First Draft



Eric Holscher Visionary

Troy Howard Super Genius

Eric Redmond Documentarian