Ronald Bourret

Senior Technical Writer

18 Woodwardia Ave., Felton, CA 95018 | rpbourret@rpbourret.com | +1 831-335-4182 | http://www.rpbourret.com

Summary

  • 10+ years writing experience. Writing includes API references, programmer's and user's guides, tutorials, book chapters, online magazine articles, product specifications, training courses, conference presentations, product descriptions, and academic papers.

  • 10+ years programming experience. Designed, wrote, and tested software in Java, C/C++, and other languages. Work includes MRP and accounting software, middleware to transfer data between XML and databases, a DTD parser, and an image metadata inspector.

  • Excellent communication skills. Long history of working with multiple stakeholders — programmers, testers, product support, program managers, marketing, end users — to gather information, design products, and resolve issues. Enjoy deciphering differences among various stakeholders' mindsets.

  • Initiative and teamwork. Accustomed to defining own tasks, working with minimal supervision, and coordinating efforts with other team members. Constantly thinking of ways to improve products and documentation. Curious.

Technology

Tools:Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Access), Oxygen, Scribus, vi, WordPerfect, JavaDoc, Qt Creator, Eclipse, NSIS, CVS, SVN
Markup:XML, HTML/CSS, DocBook, XMP, DTDs, XML Schemas
Languages:Java, C/C++, Visual Basic, Basic, Pascal, Fortran
Libraries:DOM, SAX, JDBC, ODBC, OLE/DB, Qt, Swing, XMP Toolkit SDK
Query:SQL, SQL/XML, XQuery, XPath, XSLT
Systems:Windows, Unix (HP-UX, SunOS), VAX/VMS, MS-DOS

Experience

  • Independent consultant, Felton, CA, 2000 to present

    Writing

    Researched and wrote articles on XML and databases and XML namespaces for XML.com and the XML community. Several of these articles rank high in Google searches and are often referenced by academic papers, articles, books, mailing lists, and patents.

    Cowrote an IBM Redbook, XML for DB2 Information Integration, and wrote the XQuery chapter in Advanced XML Applications. Built website with descriptions of 180+ products that use XML with databases and 50+ XML data binding products.

    Reviewed books and proposals for Pearson and Prentice Hall. Reviewed academic papers.

    Programming

    Designed and wrote the DLN:Inspector for Cultural Heritage Imaging (CHI). The software uses a simple rules engine to check the consistency of image metadata across sets of DNG and JPEG files and reports results in HTML and RDF. Written in C++ with Qt and the Adobe XMP Toolkit SDK. Currently in beta.

    Implemented XMP-based bookmarks in CHI's RTIViewer. Updated the user interface and added the ability to visualize surface normals. Written in C++ with Qt and OpenGL.

    Created and maintained XML-DBMS, open source middleware for transferring data between XML documents and relational databases. The software was used in a variety of settings, from academia to Fortune 500 companies, and shipped with Borland JBuilder. Written in Java. Wrote JavaDoc API documentation and preliminary user's guide.

    Developed an open source XML DTD parser.

    Designed and wrote Silent Auctioneer, which tracks auction data and generates auction paperwork. Written in Java with Eclipse, Swing, and JDBC. Wrote user's guide.

    Contributed code to PDFJet, an open source Java library for creating PDF documents.

    Presentations/Training

    Presented individual sessions and half- and full-day tutorials at conferences. Panelist in discussions about XML and databases.

    Provided one-hour to two-day training sessions for corporations, government agencies, and users groups on XML basics, XML and databases, XML query languages, and using XML in technical writing. Taught class in XML and databases at the UC Berkeley School of Information.

    Consulting

    Consulted with corporations, universities, and government agencies about XML and databases. Work included architectural reviews, software design, and XQuery programming.

    Researched prior art for a software patent.

  • Technical University of Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany

    Research Assistant, 1997 to 1999

    Researched strategies for integrating XML with relational databases and published a peer-reviewed paper on the subject. Wrote open source software for transferring data between XML documents and relational databases. Wrote XML and Databases, often considered the standard introduction to the topic. Co-edited Data Definition Markup Language (DDML), an early XML schema language.

  • Microsoft Corporation, S&T OnSite, Redmond, WA

    Senior Technical Writer (Contract), OLE DB and ODBC, 1992 to 1997

    Cowrote ODBC Programmer's Reference and SDK Guide (versions 1.0–3.0) and OLE DB Programmer's Reference and Software Development Kit (versions 1.0–1.1). Both manuals contain conceptual and reference material, programming techniques, and code examples. Written in Word with styles designed to mark up content.

    Responsible for low-level design work, such as determining error conditions, clarifying function behavior, and specifying data type conversions. Helped specify new features, including the state transition model and parameter binding in ODBC, and properties, error objects, and access to BLOBs and OLE objects in OLE DB. Participated in design meetings.

    Acting Manager (Contract), ODBC User Education, 1993 to 1994

    Hired and managed a writer, an editor, and an indexer. Met weekly with MS Press and MSDN to coordinate publication of the ODBC Programmer's Reference. Scheduled documentation work and coordinated efforts with program management and development.

  • Graphicus, Kirkland, WA

    Software Engineer, 1986 to 1991

    Helped design and write charting, vector-based drawing, and statistics software in Pascal, Fortran, C, and a proprietary statistics language on HP-UX and SunOS. Designed test suites and tested software and installation procedures. Wrote programmer reference manuals.

  • NCA, Sunnyvale, CA

    Software Engineer, 1981 to 1985

    Wrote material requirements planning (MRP) and accounting software in Basic on VAX/VMS and PDP-11. Designed and wrote a simple query processor in two days when release candidate was found to be too buggy. Skunk worked a data editor that was later integrated into the product. Untangled complex control flow in report programs, reducing code and simplifying later modifications. Cowrote device-independent graphics system.

Selected Writing

XML and Databases
Going Native: Making the Case for XML Databases
Mapping DTDs to Databases
Namespace Myths Exploded
XML Namespaces FAQ
Animatron Tutorial

Volunteer Work

  • San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District, Felton, CA

    Guest Instructor, 2014 to 2016

    Taught programming and computer animation to middle school students.

    Co-chair, Silent Auction, 2010 to 2014

    Tracked auction data and helped plan and run auction. Researched auction software and helped migrate data to new software. Raised ~$18,000/year for science and art programs.

  • Mount Hermon Playschool, Mount Hermon, CA

    Chair, Silent Auction, 2006 to 2008

    Planned auction, coordinated volunteers, wrote auction software, tracked auction data, publicized auction, and helped run actual auction. Raised ~$7,000/year for scholarships.

Education

Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics, with Minors in Biology and Chemistry
University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA

Course work in Technical Writing
University of Washington, Seattle, WA

Languages

German (conversational)

Hobbies

Rock climbing, kayaking, caving, bird watching, travel