Otago Computing Inc.

We're a consultancy based in Calgary, Alberta, enhancing our client’s inter-team understanding through technical writing, diagramming and dashboarding, constructing knowledge architectures, and providing managed documentation frameworks. Our specialization is in enterprise-scale Information Technology, and we work to bind the diverse view of the developers, operations teams, and leadership together with a common language so they can focus on their goals with a clear vision of their environment.

Those who do not make time for documentation, must make time for disaster recovery.

Technical Writing Division

Technical / Procedural Guides

We can help you produce any form of technical documentation, whether it is procedural, visual, informative, high-level, or drawn directly from source code.

No matter if it is a single guide or a syllabus of material for a large department, whether it is targeted at the technical teams or the leadership looking to better understand what it is they currently run, this has been our bread and butter for twenty years.

Knowledge Transfer Packages

Rolling a large project out? We can help by working with the project teams to capture their working knowledge in defined collections, easily passed over to the operations teams.

Make your transition to operations smooth and hit the ground running with full documentation in place. Don't wait for a failure a year later to find that the documentation doesn't exist and the installers have all moved on.

Roadmaps and Strategy

If you're wondering how to get from here to there - how a large IT infrastructure needs to evolve to meet your forecasted challenges - how to turn the battleship, in other words, we can help.

We can conceptualize your current state in a graphical roadmap, and help you plot and schedule the changes to people, processes, and technology that need to occur.

These graphical charts are fully updateable to keep them rolling along with your plans as the milestones tick by.

Knowledge Architectures

If you need more than a stenographer, more than an artist or diagrammer, and more than an experience technical writer, then get the whole package: we can start from napkins and construct a full Knowledge Architecture that holds all your documentation, the records management rules around it, the manner in which planning and projects transition into operations, and more.

We use interactive dashboards to track progress on projects, wall-sized infographics to set department goals and strategies, and animated presentations to help staff understand the flow of data in complex environments.

Managed Documentation Environments

For large departments that are tired of rewriting their documentation every few years, and whom cannot find what they're looking for in an emergency, when on-boarding new staff, or when the auditors come calling - we have developed techniques to manage document environments and the tools to allow you to view the activity in glance and access anything with a click.

View your entire documentation taxonomy on a single page: what's falling out of date, what's not complete. Review a checklist of the documents that need attention. Keep your document framework clean and uncluttered. Manage the retirement of old documentation. View the trends of activity and spot areas that need to increase their focus on maintaining their knowledge.

The company's knowledge belongs to your company - don't let it walk out the door.
About Otago

Our Name

Otago is the name of the southernmost province of New Zealand. A Maori name meaning "place of red ochre".

We didn't know that. Instead, in a story by Joseph Conrad - A Smile of Fortune - a young captain on his first command rests at harbour in Mauritius, hoping for the best in trade, and praising his ship as the vessel to his dreams.

Not mentioned in the story is the ship's name. But Conrad was captain of only one ship in his career, and he sailed it to Mauritius. It was the Otago.

When incorporating, we shunned the Micro/Tech/Compu labels that seemed prevalent and instead, constructed a vessel to chase our dreams: our Otago.

Currently Servicing

We are currently working in, or have direct experince supporting these industries:
  • Heath Care
  • Oil & Gas
  • Technology
  • Arts & Education
  • Conferences & Festivals
  • Hospitality

Contact Us

For inquiries, contact Jerry Auld (jerry@otago.ca).

Alternately, you can contact Marcia Delves, our senior editor and site manager, at marcia@otago.ca.

If you are a resource who can contribute to our efforts, please email us at jobs@otago.ca and attach a resume.

Otago University

In the spirit of the famous University located in our namesake province, we'd like to pursue the goal of higher education.

We're offering to work with you, taking example material (not client work) and improving it with our process so you can learn real-world skills and methodologies that are not taught in the colleges.

We won't pay you for your time, but we won't charge tuition either. And when we get an opening, if you're good, we'll look to you, as a known quantity, first.

If you are a novice writer who could benefit from this tutorage, please contact Jerry Auld (jerry@otago.ca).

Consultant Login

If you are a current consultant with us, please login here to access Otago's library of guides and resources.


Other quick-linked stand-alone tools can be accessed here:
Documents - Raven - Plesk -
Ideas - Flashcards - KnowledgeBase (jerry{corp}/robbies{1})
Development Division

Information Visualization / Dashboards

Closely tied into our Technical Writing groups, is one of our specialties: information visualization.

Although we are a fan of Information is Beautiful or XPlane, we're not artists. Instead we specialize in drill-down interactive dashboards that work on live or scraped data to allow you to digest and act more readily.

In use by our Managed Documentation teams, is our Documentation Dashboard, which displays the state of a department's core documentation, allowing teams to see how recent and complete a document is, before clicking directly from the one-page dashboard to any crucial build guide or runbook. This has been very successful among developers and operational support teams, and also auditors and managers seeking to maintain a state of documentation readiness.

Event Scheduling

We host a custom-build resource scheduling application that we rent by monthly use. This allows groups from anywhere in the world to define their human resources, their saleable products, and their clients, and book them all graphically together on a calendar. Full billing and reporting is included. This currently being used by ski hills in Alberta, British Columbia, and Japan.

For current clients of the ProInventory application, please login here.

Event Management

We provide desktop-based or web-applications to manage your large festivals and tours, as used by the Banff Mountain Book and Film Festvals for the last 14 years.

Web Applications

Custom-build web-applications in all varieties of languages, platforms, and frameworks.

Web Hosting

We run our own dedicated web server, a dual-core Opteron with a full LAMP stack, to ensure our applications have full integrity and are fully supported.

Sitting right on the backbone of the internet, with a guaranteed 1 Terabyte of outgoing bandwidth, we can handle any small business load.

If you need hosting for your database-driven web apps, we offer 1 GB of space, 5 email addresses, web-based mail clients, and full support, for $15 per month. We guaranteed 99% uptime, and have access to 24/7 technical support.
Recruitment

Consultants, Not Employees

At Otago Computing, our aim is to do the job and make ourselves obsolete. We're not looking for employment, but projects to deliver upon.

Writers

We're interested in writers of all levels of ability.
Especially, we look for writers who can work on the ground with our clients, are intellectally curious, motivated, and confident enough to work with material that they are not experts within.
Please refer to our pay rates and skills expectations for a general understanding of ranking and pay grades.
Technical Writer Rates and Skills.
Technical Skills Lists.

Editors

Editors are that rare species - the writer who has enough experience to understand material on many subjects, and an inherent knowledge of the styles and guidelines used - to help the writer polish and clarify their documents and bring them to the highest level of quality.

Site Managers

As we grow, we're looking for individuals that have experience as technical writers in IT departments, live in Calgary, and can provide mature and professional guidance to a team of writers on a large project or spread among large departments, as well as interaction with the department leadership and liaising with the teams that we service.

Designers

We're improving our toolsets of interactive dashboards and tracking charts. With a focus on accessiblility and clarity, the information presented is laid out graphically and rendered direct from the databases and knowledge stores.

For Jerry Auld's website, please see www.jerryauld.com.