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Enhancing tech writing with AI: a look at TypingMind

Updated: Mar 5

Hello! I'm Yaroslava, a Technical Writer based in Ukraine and currently working at MacPaw on the Setapp product. My introduction to AI tools has significantly simplified my work, making me wish I had incorporated them much earlier. AI goes through your texts precisely, rectifying grammatical mistakes and improving word choices, resulting in refined work that reflects quality.


Let's walk through my journey with AI, focusing on TypingMind, a tool that has become a mainstay in my workflow.


Appreciating TypingMind


As I prepared for this article, it struck me that I couldn't separate the tool from its practical application. Hence, let’s kick off with an overview of TypingMind, and then jump into its utility in real writing scenarios.


TypingMind is an efficient tool that facilitates the use of ChatGPT. While feature-rich, I often find myself sticking to just three functions. The main reason for my preference for TypingMind is its inclusion in the Setapp suite. Working for Setapp, I have complete faith in the quality and security of the 240+ apps that it offers.


I've customized my TypingMind interface to highlight these three frequent tasks:

  • Writing the instructions,

  • Improving the blog articles,

  • Enhancing Setapp's user documentation.


You can see them as featured chats in this screenshot. And this is the first feature I use in TypingMind.

The second feature I find valuable for my work is writing instructions by using AI. All I did in the first featured chat was simply click on the Pen icon and adjust the filters accordingly.

And the third feature is pinned messages. I pinned requests that I use again and again in the second and third featured chats.









Then I easily access and copy a request with a single mouse click when I need it. But, the AI chat retains the conversation history, so in most situations, I don't even have to copy the request unless the conversation has strayed away from the original request.

Of course, the TypingMind contains a wider range of features, but these have been serving me well in my work. Now, let's take a look at some of my use cases.


1. Upgrade your text


AI's capability to fine-tune your text is remarkable. Providing TypingMind with a complete article gives it ample context to overhaul the work. As a result, your work exudes a level of professionalism and talent that stands out.

For instance, AI had a hand in refining this very article! ...but I had to apply minor refining to AI's version, too.


2. Magic of Markdown: Creating tables, embedding code, and more


Scenario 1


If you've ever had to manage complicated tasks using a markup language, you'll know it can be a hassle, particularly if you're not a fan of Markdown, like me. TypingMind can relieve this stress. You just need to ask for what you require.

You'll find that AI isn't bothered by typos. And there's no need to ask for a 'Copy Code' button — it's readily available, at least in TypingMind. When I pasted the generated table into my document, it worked perfectly.


Scenario 2


You might also stumble upon a random code snippet, unsure of its programming language or how to incorporate it into a Markdown document. You could ask a developer and wait for their response, or even browse Google for an instructional article. But a simpler option is to ask the AI:

I simply copied the code and admired the results when I inserted it into my documentation:


3. Standardizing terminology


Shaping precise responses to terminology-related queries is where TypingMind shines, often providing a more focused result than typical search engines.


4. Draft instruction-manuals


Sometimes, you need to provide instructions for commonly used products — such as how to create a new filter in Gmail, or how to invite friends to a Facebook group. You could direct your users to an external resource for documentation, craft the instructions yourself, or you could have AI generate the guidance.


To get the most out of AI-generated instructions, I recommend switching the output format using the filters that TypingMind provides:

In my case, I needed an instruction for guest writers who use Wix:

Note: The final sentence will automatically appear when you've predefined the fields above.


The response was a bit lengthy, so I had to ask again to get a shorter answer.

And there you have it.


5. Utilizing advanced features


I've heard that as tech writers, we can create screenshots for both dark and light computer themes. Then, a specific script determines the user's theme and displays the appropriate screenshot to the user.


Sadly, ChatGPT couldn't assist me with implementing this feature in Zendesk, but it did prepare some impressive code snippets for users of MadCap Flare:

A few years ago, I worked with MadCap Flare and remember how much effort it took to find the right "formula" to adjust CSS, topics, targets, and so on. I've actually created a complete Udemy course on that topic. Now, with ChatGPT, all it takes is just a couple of questions to get the same job done.


6. Discover hidden functionality


The most thrilling part is uncovering useful features you weren't aware of. Chatting with GPT is like brainstorming with a seasoned tech writer — it opens doors to unexpected insights!





I looked for this feature and found that it genuinely does exist in Zendesk. Amazing, right? What I appreciate about ChatGPT is that it can introduce you to features you weren't even aware existed. How could you ask someone or search online when you didn't even know what to ask or look for? ChatGPT certainly opens up new horizons of knowledge.


UPD: 7. Writing instructions based on the diagrams

Imagine you have a diagram and you need to describe it step by step. Simply choose Setapp GPT-4 Vision as it supports image upload.


Click the paperclip icon to upload the diagram and describe your request.

See the result:


Summary


To sum it all up, these are my commonly employed AI tools and use cases in tech writing. Hopefully, they resonate with your workflow.


If you decide to give TypingMind (plus 240+ more apps!) on Setapp a try, you don't need to worry about registering with OpenAI. You can access OpenAI directly using your existing Setapp account. However, if you already have a ChatGPT Plus subscription, you're free to use your own OpenAI API key in TypingMind.


I also welcome you to share your experiences with AI apps and their practical applications in your work. It's always great to learn from one another!

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7 Σχόλια


Ivan Cheban
Ivan Cheban
15 Φεβ

That's a brilliant article on the topic that I included in one of my goals for this year—learn how to use GenAI more in my technical writing work. Experimenting with prompts and finding new ways of applying AI in your tasks, this is the way. My favorite part from this article is about dark/light themes in MadCap Flare ❤️

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Ivan, promise you'll share your prompts with us in your article;)

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Ivan Cheban
Ivan Cheban
15 Φεβ

Wanted to comment the same as Maryna. Exude, OMG.

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Thank you for sharing your experience. Regarding Upgrade your text, I don’t think that this is always needed. Your original text sounds quite natural, personal and easy-to-read, as it gives perfect storytelling tone. The AI refinement made it sound as an IELTS academic text (ample, exude etc.). Using these fancy words can make us sound more like a native speaker, but definitely doesn’t make the text easier to read.

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Sure, sometimes AI can help us to refine some phrases and it’s ok to use it. However, we shouldn’t lose our personal style :)

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