CodePlex, GE, and MSDN

One of the questions I get is how we build and publish our guides and what's the relationship of CodePlex, GE and MSDN.  At a high-level, we build reusable guidance nuggets for customer questions and tasks.  We then build a larger guide to bring the nuggets together into a story. Together, this gives us both a knowledge base of nuggets and a series of guides.  We can incrementally deliver value, refactor as appropriate, and respond to changing needs.

Bird's-Eye View of Agile Guidance Engineering
You can think of our approach as progressive rendering of solutions (incrementally sharing and stabilizing.)


From CodePlex to MSDN
As we build guidance modules, we publish them to GE and CodePlex.  GE lets you, the user, build more relevant views or tailor the nuggets to your own needs.  CodePlex gives us a place to experiment with views and get direct user feedback, while we vet the guidance. 

Once we're stable, we do a focused, batch effort to port to MSDN.  MSDN gives us a bunch more channels and hooks including integration in Visual Studio / Visual Studio Team System.

There's much more to the story, so if there's interest, I'll share a behind the scenes look at how we build books.

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Comments (9)
  1. PieterD says:

    How do you build books? 😉

    I would be interested to hear more. Thanks.

  2. J.D. Meier says:

    Glad you asked!  I’ll post on how we build our books this coming week.  It’s worth going into some of the details since we definitely don’t build books the traditional way.

  3. Raghu says:

    I am interested too.

  4. Book building is art and science. I’ve built a few books over the years at patterns & practices.

  5. I thought it might be helpful to walk through a deliverable so you can see my current approach for building

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