Bernie Cohen

Senior Technical Writer

I'm a resourceful writer and proactive problem solver with a wide range of experience for technology companies in Silicon Valley including Cisco, Oracle, NVIDIA, RSA Security (EMC), and Loudcloud (Opsware/HP).

I've written OpenStack, Hadoop, Java, JavaScript, Python, and C developer documentation and tutorials. I've also written user, installation, deployment and system administration manuals, code samples, technical white papers, training materials, online help, and release notes.

On the marketing side I've written white papers, flyers, brochures, press releases, web sites, corporate backgrounders, executive bios, data sheets, FAQs, and wikis. I can also produce videos for software demos.

I roll up my sleeves, dive in, and master the material. I gather information by reading source code, exercising APIs, verifying, modifying and creating code samples, working hands-on with software applications, and collaborating with developers and other subject matter experts.

Feel free to contact me to discuss your current or future needs.


Redacted, San Francisco Bay Area, CA
Created developer documentation for an Eclipse plugin for visual analytics
Wrote and edited significant portions of the developer guide including installation, configuration, implementation, customization, and deployment
Worked closely with product management, developers, and UI/UX team to determine new product functionality
Edited Javadoc comments in source code
Attended Agile Release Planning sessions and Scrum training sessions

Cisco Systems, Inc., San Jose, CA
Created developer, DevOps, and system administrator documentation for Ciscoís OpenStack cloud
Took ownership of OpenStack Horizon User Guide and VPN Tunnel Guide
Edited Data Center Networking Guide describing hardware and networking configurations for data centers hosting the Cisco OpenStack cloud
Worked hands-on with OpenStack Horizon and OpenStack CLIs and REST APIs
Attended Agile Scrum release planning sessions, training sessions, sprint demos, and retrospective sessions
Collaborated with product managers, program managers, feature owners, developers, and QA to prioritize information needs, develop documentation, and maximize quality during tight timeframes

MapR Technologies, Inc., San Jose, CA
Wrote Hadoop developer documentation
Revised documentation for using Pig, Hive, HBase, Mahout, and NFS in the MapR environment
Created and updated REST and command line API documentation for querying and configuring MapR disks, nodes and clusters
Wrote MapR Hive-HBase integration tutorial

Karmasphere, Inc., Cupertino, CA
Completed various assignments for this creator of advanced applications for Hadoop developers
Wrote Installation Guide and Getting Started Guide for Karmasphere Studio Community Edition, an Eclipse plug-in for visually developing, debugging and deploying MapReduce jobs
Wrote tutorials showing Hadoop developers how to deploy MapReduce jobs from Karmasphere Studio using JAR files, using Hadoop streaming with Python, Ruby, PHP, Perl and R scripts, and from MapReduce jobs developed visually using the Karmasphere Studio Workflow Wizard
Led a UX/UI initiative to make the intuitive Karmasphere Studio interface even easier to use
Created release notes for Karmasphere Studio Community Edition, Karmasphere Studio Professional Edition, and Karmasphere Analyst, a visual analytical application that enables developers to run SQL and Hive queries on Big Data stored in Hadoop clusters

Oracle Corporation, Redwood Shores, CA
Wrote Java and JavaScript SDKs for the Unix-based Oracle Video Server Application Programmerís Guide using FrameMaker for Unix
Wrote Java and JavaScript tutorials, commented code samples, and edited the APIs
Installed and ran applications
Interviewed developer, customer support, and QA subject matter experts
Made extensive revisions to the Oracle Video Server Unix System Administrator's Guide

RSA Security, Inc. (EMC), San Francisco, CA
Updated Java and C administration and runtime chapters in the RSA ClearTrust Developer's Guide
Updated Java and C API documentation and code samples
Added sections to Java and C chapters of the RSA ClearTrust Developer's Guide describing the new functionality in the 5.0 and 5.01 releases
Wrote and edited comments in Java source code and C header files

Switch++ (Wind River), Santa Clara, CA
Wrote SDK for an embedded networking software application in private beta
Wrote SDK documenting the external API of an embedded C/C++ library that used SQLite3 for persistent storage and an XSD schema for data bindings
Wrote Python code samples showing developers how to use the API to pull down data, generate detailed reports, test for system conditions, and modify the system on the fly
Functionality included creating LAGs and VLANs, adding ports to LAGs and VLANs, adding VLANs to LAGs, specifying STP/RSTP/MSTP, and modifying attributes like duplex and port speed
Wrote cross-platform network management software prototype that dynamically generated cascading menus from an XSD database schema and used Python/Tk/tkinter/ttk to implement Layer 1, Layer 2, and Layer 2+ functionality via the API using an XML/RPC proxy server

Verity, Inc. (Autonomy/HP), Sunnyvale, CA
Wrote Java and C developer documentation for Verity's K2 and Ultraseek search engines
Wrote two new Java chapters, wrote code samples, and edited javadoc comments in source code
Revised existing Java and C SDKs including API reference materials

Progress Software Corporation, Apptivity Division, Newark, CA
Created developer documentation for Apptivity's 100% Java N-tier client/server development suite
Created and modified tutorial, developerís guide, installation guide, deployment guide, online help, wizards and release notes for beta, point and major releases
Subject matter included JavaBeans, Enterprise JavaBeans, JDBC database access, data objects, server functionality, installation, deployment and CORBA
Provided UI/UX design feedback and helped drive improvements

Fujitsu Software Corporation, San Jose, CA
Owned the six-book documentation set for i-Flow, a 100% Java business process automation engine
Wrote and edited javadoc comments in source code
Wrote custom code that generated MIF files from source code using javadoc's MIF Doclet extension, then created API/SDK books from the MIF files using FrameMaker
Revised developer, administration, installation, user and integration adapter guides for major and point releases
Revised and edited architecture white paper, tutorial, brochure, corporate backgrounder, data sheet, FAQ, code samples, press releases and release notes
Contributed to the design of the EJB specifications for the J2EE-based version of i-Flow
Handled all aspects of relationships with print vendors

Electric Classifieds, Inc., San Francisco, CA
Created developer documentation for a Unix-based e-commerce app that used Netscapeís NSAPI and a Perl library interface to an Oracle 7 database
Interviewed engineers and read source code to determine the softwareís functionality
Wrote programming reference materials including functional diagrams

Aviatis Corporation, Campbell, CA
Wrote Java SDK for meta model-based software that enabled data exchange between data sources with dissimilar formats
Interviewed engineers and read source code to determine system functionality

TeleNav, Inc., Santa Clara, CA
Completed numerous assignments for this provider of navigation apps and web-based management for mobile devices; topics included geofencing, location services and privacy management
Added comments to the Java source code and generated TeleNavTrack javadocs
Made extensive updates to the TeleNavTrack Installation, System Administration and BlackBerry manuals
Analyzed the functionality and usability of the TeleNavTrack web site and made UI/UX recommendations
Revised and edited the TeleNavTrack flyer and brochure
Wrote the TeleNav 5.0 Userís Guide
Analyzed TeleNav 5.0 and made UI/UX design recommendations
Wrote installation and configuration instructions for TeleNavís mobile device software simulation workstations

Twezr, Sunnyvale, CA
Writer and UI/UX consultant for this mobile startup with its first iPhone app in private beta. Twezr consolidates, organizes and prioritizes wall posts, direct messages, emails, and SMS messages from multiple Facebook, Twitter, email and text accounts into a unified Twezr account.
As consulting technical writer made developmental edits to the product guide and online help
As consulting first beta user provided UI/UX feedback improving the appís features and usability

NVIDIA Corporation, Santa Clara, CA
Led various documentation projects for the IT storage/backup/restore team of this cutting edge GPU company
Created documentation defining worldwide data retention policies, backup schedules and restore procedures for all corporate data and engineering source code
Revised and edited documentation for worldwide data storage architecture and infrastructure including data center and VM environments

Loudcloud, Inc. (Opsware/HP), Sunnyvale, CA
Completed numerous assignments for this bleeding-edge cloud startup
Wrote technical white paper on designing web architectures that scale; topics included designing multi-tiered systems, separating the presentation and application layers, horizontal and vertical scaling, caching, queuing user requests, connection pooling, session management, database optimization, logging, monitoring, and benchmarking
Wrote detailed overview of Opsware, Loudcloudís data center infrastructure software; this was the first time that Opsware had been documented
Made developmental edits to existing white papers for delivery to CEOs of vendor partners
Developed collateral for vice president of R&D including writing VPís bio, collaborating on an outline of a speech for Oracle AppsWorld, and editing a press release
Worked with legal department to develop legal guidelines for internal and external white papers
Assisted with redesign of research department's intranet site
Revised job descriptions for research engineers and senior research engineers
Rewrote R&D department's extended mission statement
Mentored writers and editors

SuccessFactors (SAP), San Mateo, CA
Completed various assignments for this SaaS cloud startup
Documented XML configuration settings and procedures
Documented web hosting IT architecture in a white paper and in a PowerPoint presentation
Created IT architecture design document for a large manufacturing client under tight deadline
Wrote a functional and design specification gap analysis report for a large financial services client
Provided UI/UX feedback on their application and web designs, and helped drive improvements
Analyzed Processional Services' timesheet and resource management processes and gaps and recommended a customizable web-based software solution to meet their needs
Prepared monthly PowerPoint presentations for their board of directors
Participated in client conference calls and WebEx meetings
Maintained the company's IT and tech pubs wikis

Jelastic, British Virgin Islands
Wrote and edited various web-based documents for this Java PaaS. Topics included architecture overviews, getting started, app deployment, autoscaling, migration, and high availability.

CMP Publications, Inc., Manhasset, NY
Wrote article about outsourcing web hosting services for Network Computing magazine
Included sidebar discussing procedures for troubleshooting slow server and network response

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Oracle), Menlo Park, CA
Designed HTML online help for Sun Internet Mail Server using WebWorks Publisher
Programmed WebWorks Publisher to generate HTML pages from FrameMaker documents
Linked HTML pages to table of contents, index, and cross-references

Kaiser Permanente, Oakland and Walnut Creek, CA
Designed and wrote training materials for customized HR software application
Created online help prototype using RoboHelp

Deloitte and Touche (Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited), Toronto, Canada
Documented Oracle Financials accounting system for a division of the Dow Chemical Company
Interviewed division's treasurer, auditor and controllers to determine business rules
Defined additional business rules in consultation with Oracle subject matter experts

Advanced Research, Inc., Chattanooga, TN
As a Registered FrameMaker Trainer taught the beginning, intermediate and advanced FrameMaker classes

Software Development Forum, San Jose, CA
Wrote an article for the SDF monthly newsletter reporting on a dinner talk given by Steve Westly, eBay's VP of Marketing and Business Development


Switch++, LLC, Santa Clara, CA
Created cross-platform network management software prototype that dynamically generated cascading menus from an XSD database schema and used Python/Tk/tkinter/ttk to implement Layer 1, Layer 2, and Layer 2+ functionality via a C/C++ API using an XML/RPC proxy server
Wrote Python code samples showing developers how to read/write via the API to pull down data and generate detailed reports, test for system conditions, and modify the system on the fly

SuccessFactors (SAP), San Mateo, CA
Coded JDOM prototype for automating manual XML server configuration procedures

Synergistech Communications, San Mateo, CA
Designed and implemented Unix-hosted web site for this recruiting firm
Dynamically generated complex web pages from text files using Perl CGI scripts
Created online forms with checkboxes, radio buttons, tables and validated fields
A confirmation message appeared if all of the form fields passed validation; a detailed error message appeared if one or more fields did not pass validation
Separate emails were sent to the candidate and the recruiting firm for each job selected; each email included a subject line, data from the appropriate fields, and the full text description associated with each job posting
A separate form allowed candidates to subscribe or unsubscribe to email lists for immediate notification of new contract or staff openings

Knight-Ridder/Poppe Tyson, Division, Mountain View, CA
Modified Unix-hosted web site for Knight-Ridder's division
Redesigned the look and feel of the search and faxback pages
Modified the Perl code for the faxback page to create a shopping-cart for selecting and faxing articles
Wrote a Perl script that added copyright information to page footers

DHL Airways, Redwood City, CA
Managed the intranet site for an $18MM IT development project
Redesigned the intranet site, including implementing a more attractive and navigable menu system using HTML tables and JavaScript popup menus

Whittaker Communications (formerly Hughes Communications), Santa Clara, CA
Modified web site for this communications equipment company
Redesigned the layout to create a more balanced visual presentation
Added text, links, graphics and image maps
Coordinated collection of information from content providers
Taught basic HTML skills to content providers

Transvirtual, Berkeley, CA
Completely redesigned company web site including graphics and layout
Created site content including corporate backgrounder, press release, CEO bio, and product literature

Presenting Data and Information (Edward Tufte)
Java and OO Design: An Intensive Introduction, UC Berkeley Extension (Allen Holub)
Introduction to C++
How to Document C and C++ Object Oriented Programs
Intermediate Unix
Python Professional Interest Group Meetup
Write the Docs Meetup
Society for Technical Communication
Franklin and Marshall College

Contact Bernie Cohen

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Copyright 1997-2016 Bernie Cohen. All rights reserved.