Weatherall Technical Applications


Technical Writing
(selected works)
Kate Weatherall

AIPS++ Newsletter
Provided general information of the Astronomical Information Processing System, including ongoing software updates, progression and changes. Produced under the direction of the AIPS++ Consortium. The AIPS++ Newsletter was published quarterly in both HTML and postscript format.

Structuring a Web Site: Mapping, Modularity, Metaphors, Hierarchy, and Non-Linearity
The technical communicator's role to re-form text into a structure containing the richness of the theory, yet allowing the user to absorb information in his or her own way. My thesis discusses the importance of interpreting, translating and providing a path which enables understanding.

Structural elements must be put into place to reach the widest possible audience. These elements are mapping, the outline structure of the website; modularity, the visual structure of the website adapted from graphical programming; metaphors, icons or other elements; hierarchy, the different levels which comprise the links and nodes; and non-linearity, the way users traverse the entire website.

Technical communication skills are essential to successfully advancing ideas and concepts. Effectively presenting information creates a vital link to the world and a more productive work environment. (Technical Communication thesis)

Uranium in Socorro County
For almost half a century New Mexico was the principal producer of uranium in the United States. The sources of uranium in Socorro are from both the extensive natural occurrences as well as from the testing of artillery shells, which contain depleted uranium, at the Energetic Materials Research Center (EMRTC).

My research thesis discusses the geological sources and chemical properties of uranium and the possibility of its byproducts leaching into the groundwater of Socorro County, New Mexico. Of concern is whether these byproducts are adversely affecting the environment.

(Geology research thesis under the guidance of Dr. David Norman,
Geology Department, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology)

Exchanging Files with Other Computers
Wrote a fifty page chapter within the book, A Busy Student's Guide to UNIX, presenting a tutorial approach to learning FTP using UNIX.

Paydirt
Wrote and conducted several in-depth interviews for New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology's student newspaper, including interviews with the college's president regarding imminent and controversial budget cuts, president of a software corporation, and most notably an interview with the thirtieth annual Jansky Lecture award recipient Jocelyn Bell-Burnell.

In my interview, entitled The Woman who Discovered Pulsars: An Interview with Jocelyn Bell-Burnell, Jocelyn Bell describes life as a graduate student mapping twinkling quasars under the direction of Tony Hewish when in 1967 she came upon unusually regular radio waves. The precision of the waves being so perfect, she thought that it must be interference of some sort, or perhaps extraterrestrial life signalling from a far off planet. At first, she jokingly labelled them LGM's (Little Green Men). Then a few months later she discovered another, LGM 2, and knew that, indeed, it couldn't be extraterrestrial life nor interference -- both were too unique in their identities. In February 1968 Hewish and Bell published an article in Nature magazine that discussed these findings; they had discovered the first pulsar. In 1974 Tony Hewish received the Nobel Prize in Physics for this discovery.

Tech Notes
Wrote, designed, and published monthly newsletters as president of the Society for Technical Communication Student Chapter.

In addition to the above publications, Kate has written software reference guides, feasibility studies, proposals, and recommendation reports.

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