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One from Maria - Bibliochaise

My lovely friend Maria sent this in a link by email....she shares my book lust, and I'm thinking this chair may well be an improvement on this one, what with the fact it's got lots of book space, and it's not possible to just lift it up and wheel it away... you can play by clicking on it to change cushion and wood colours.

I'm liking medium brown, with a pink seat...sadly, I think it's likely to be something CRAZILY expensive!

*sigh*

Getting with the technology

I'm quite liking this - the Scottish Government are trying new things with technology, in this case, paying to put anti drink-driving adverts in billboards in X Box driving games.

Definitely an interesting way to get the message across, and I suppose it also doubles as a type of tourist advert, as it doesn't say anything about the ads being restricted to players in Scotland only?

Either way, it bodes well for a Government to be as comfortable with using different media as this one looks to be! What next....

Trial bias

It was while reading this report about the farcical trial for the Omagh bombings that I realised something worrying.

I've unconsciously started to believe that, if someone's put up for trial, they're almost certainly guilty. Because people only get sent for trial if there's enough evidence to make the prosecutors believe they can get a conviction, right? Maybe it's the result of watching too many police / forensics TV dramas, but I've definitely started to pick up a belief in 'guilt proven by fact of trial, regardless of result'.

So, seeing the many high profile cases coming up on appeal here in Scotland or abroad (Kenny Ritchie (yay, finally free soon!), Luke Mitchell, William Beggs and Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi), I wonder how many of them who were vilified after their trial really were guilty? Or did people just start to think they were guilty as soon as we heard there would be a trial?

The whales are surfacing

An article in The Guardian discusses "Facebook whales", individuals with more than 1000 'friends'.

I personally have currently got 42 friends, all of whom I either know in real life, or know of professionally. I'm polite and add people that ask, if I know them, but if I don't really have any interest in them, I delete them a few weeks later. I can't even begin to imagine how you would try and manage that size of a network (allegedly, humans cope best with a network of between 100-200 individuals), and to be fair, Mr MacLeod does actually admit that he doesn't read the news feed. Which leads me to wonder why he uses the site, if it's not for keeping up with the activities of the people he's interested in? Is he just friend collecting for the show-off element: "I've got SO many more friends than you, I'm so much more worthwhile"?

Anyhoo, I'd definitely like Facebook to develop a way to turn off certain peoples feeds, or certa…

A little oopsie

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has apologised nicely for the mistakes they made with the introduction of Beacon, their purchase tracking / advertising software.

They do seem to run the site a bit like awkward teenagers - trying new things out, pushing the boundaries to see what they can get away with...then going all red and embarrassed when things don't work out quite as they planned...

In the UK, they'd probably be an unplanned parent by now...will be interesting to see what sproglets Facebook may spawn!

Dolphin bothering

The first man in Scotland to be convicted of recklessly harassing dolphins has been fined £500 for the offence.

I have to confess, this rates highly on my 'what the hell?' radar...and the Scottish courts judgements website is being its usual unhelpful self, so I may never know the details of how he harassed the poor things...obviously he was on a jet ski, but was he using them as ramps?!?!

Wikis in business continuity planning

This post at Information Overlord caught my eye. We've been discussing for a while the best way to incorporate some business continuity planning into the library service: ie, what would happen if one of the two of us (who a lot of the time function as solo librarians, dealing with the issues arising in our own offices with little or no reference to the other) was suddenly unable to work.

Or, even worse, if one of use decided to leave!! *takes moment to lie down and stop hyperventilating at thought of boss ever leaving*

The structure of the company, the core duties of each staff member, the procedures needed for each activity, the suppliers we use, the products we take, the codes we use, who to ask internally for various things, data on the special professional interests of each fee earner...all information essential to getting our jobs done, but if and when one person isn't there, is the other person fully equipped with information to continue without them for any length of time…

The evils of piping

Bagpiping, that is.

Apparently, they're a threat to the environment, and not just the ears of those subjected to the often-horrifically-bad ones that pipe for the tourists on Princes Street!
Who would have thought that once banned symbols of Scottish pride would help decimate the forests of other nations!

Btw, I can highly recommend the Good Gifts site mentioned in the story, have used them for a few years, and they've always got a good present idea, especially the stocking fillers!

Going our own way...

The Scottish Government have decided to introduce a bill to reverse the House of Lords recent judgement on pleural plaques, and give sufferers some chance of compensation. This will mark a difference in Scots law, and English / Welsh law on the subject, and would have retrospective effect to the date of the House of Lords judgement.

As Scots Law News (709) says though, it's unlikely that the money involved will be huge...but at least it'll allow those who face the prospect of a horrible disease developing the satisfaction of acknowledgement of their condition in some way.

No timetable for the introduction of the Bill as yet.

Facebook again

Well, they've responded quickly, as usual...do you think their motto's a variation of Googles?

"Do only the evil you can get away with, but if anybody's upset, fix it"?
Not really so snappy, but they do seem to be quite quick with their responses to issues...even if it was an odd concept in the first place.

I'd go nuts if a site decide to share what items I was buying, and where, with a loosely connected network of friends, colleagues, and people-I-went-to-school-with, who-don't-understand-that-there-are-good-reasons-we-lost-touch....

Facebook..for EVER!

I knew it was a bad idea signing up to that thing! :-)

I did know about not being able to delete your account, but it's one of those things, you only want to be able to do it in concept, you want the option, but might well never use it.

I know I wouldn't actually bother deleting my MySpace, Bebo or Facebook accounts, mainly because I occasionally get contact from people through them, there's nothing on them that's 'dodgy', and they're an amusing way to while away some time sometimes (but would people puhlease stop trying to turn me into a vampire on Facebook?!!?).

But what about those people who signed up with their 'proper' name, then reconsidered their membership later? I know of people who've adopted a child, and don't want the childs 'interesting' family to be able to find them after...how do they get themselves off it? Or the people who've unfortunately become the object of some over-attentive online friends obsession?

I assume …

la-la-la-la...

For various reasons, including the library move, a pile up of work, and personal issues, mean I've not had a chance to blog lately.

Hopefully over the next few days I'll get time to write up the course I went on on Friday the 9th November, "Practical Uses for Web 2.0 in the Library Environment" with Phil Bradley...until then, back to the huge cataloguing pile, the current awareness backlog, and wondering why the partner at the desk next to me seems to have brought a windsurfing sail into work....

Blogger security

Readingthis article referred to by James Mullan, I can see a lot of sense in it. Although I deliberately don’t blog anything provocative, and I’ve not made great attempts to hide my identity, I feel I’m reasonably anonymous, unless I choose to give away more information / contact others.But meeting with a colleague from another sector last week, she told me how she’d been looking for a quote about Facebook for a presentation, and found a post on a blog which seemed to say what she wanted…then she saw the name of the blog, read the profile…and a few things added up to confirm that the blogger was me. Now, that’s not a problem, I know her, she knows me, and I’m happy enough to be identified as the author of this blog (what my employers view on that may be is unknown, as yet!), but it just shows what a small world it really is…especially in the legal profession in Scotland! If I’m identifiable professionally, what about personally?In my personal blog I’d though I was very careful about g…

Genius!

Ok, Library shelving units are not known for being highly active, right?
And if you install a motion sensor for lighting, you tend to want to put it in an area of high activity, yes?
So, what genius put a motion sensor on the lights in the Library area, so if the shelves don't move for 30 mins, the lights go off? I have to make sure to get up from my desk every 30 mins or less, to make sure they stay on!
Sensor is (hopefully) being moved this week (I actually pointed this out before the move, but I'm just the librarian, what would I know about the activity levels of the library shelving...)

And yes, this means I spent yesterday unpacking and shelving 62 crates worth of library...I have many interestingly coloured bruises (knees and legs I understand, but how did I bruise my hand?!?), an aching back and shoulders...but the result is a lovely new library area! And that's a mahoosive improvement on the previous library layout!

Today, I'm a happy librarian...who's conside…

I’m back!

Between frantically finalising my portfolio for my Chartership application with CILIP, catching up before holiday, going on holiday, catching up AFTER holiday, running back and forth to vets with a suicidal cat…it’s been a busy month! Not to mention the fact that me and my library are moving to another floor as a result of expansion, which just so happens to occur when I’m on holiday, and means I’ll be crossing my fingers that it’s all packed up properly, then reshelving the whole lot in its new location, whilst covering two offices as my boss is then on her holiday next week…my firm do like us to multitask!In the meantime, I’ve been reading about Wyoming libraries mudflap girl campaign, Sony’s ‘sexier than a librarian’ campaign, favourite library blogs have been surveyed, virtual picket lines and demonstrations in Second Life, social networking and its business usefulness / timewasting, Enquiring Minds Want to Know has moved to a snazzy new site, The Annoyed Librarian has annoyed ma…

I wonder...

....since my employers seem intent on adding little study chairs to the library (of course, the staff will use them instead of their spacious desks..), perhaps they could be persuaded to get these instead...



Link from Boing Boing,
More pictures here

E-reader technology and trauma

Both the English Law Gazette and the JLSS have information on Sweet & Maxwells trial of a new eReader, the iRex Iliad Reader.

Now, while they seem like fun, the downsides (like lack of search and index) do make it look like it's going to still be a good few years yet before this sort of thing is commercially available, and the fee earners start demanding them / similar technology, which gives me plenty of time to try and work out, for a commercial law firm, the following questions:

Are the ebooks individual plug in elements? Or downloadable files?Will we have to provide every solicitor with an eReader, or would we need a library eReader that would be borrowed out on demand? Given their attachment to their other devices such as Blackberries, I can't visualise them being happy to share a resource like that.How many copies will we need of standard texts? I can only imagine this'll lead to every solicitor wanting their own copy of each available relevant text...the other alt…

Different Worlds

I love my social media: blog-hopping, forum-chatting, IM-ing…yet there’s a large number of my friends who don’t feature on any of these. They’re not technologically averse, these technologies just don’t fit easily into their lives. Take one friend for example: she works part-time, has two small children, and a busy family life. She’s got no spare time to spend on forums and blogs…she’d rather just pick up the phone and call me, or send a text! She misses out on little bits of my life that others don’t…my random thoughts and recent events are often posted on my personal blog, and online friends read that, so when I actually talk to them in person, they’re often quite aware of what’s going on in my life. Non-online friends aren’t, and sometimes I almost resent having to tell them about my life, as I feel I’ve already done that ‘work’ on my blog.I wonder if, as I get more web-based in my social interactions, these friends will continue to be close friends, or whether something has to giv…

Silent Blogger!

I still exist, have just launched into a frantic and concerted effort to pull my portfolio together for Chartership, so all other activities are on hold, and that includes commenting on or posting to blogs…although it doesn’t include reading them, so I’m still busily reading, just not visibly ‘active’.I’ve been having fun compiling my portfolio on a Peanut Butter wiki, which has many advantages….and disadvantages! Overall, I think it’s helped me to organise and compile things far better, despite the many frustrations with formatting quirks between it and Word! Have written an article on the process of using it, which hopefully shall appear in some journal somewhere in the near future…Now, all I have to do is have peeps read it, comment, redraft, and submit…and hope the Board pass it!

BIALL call for papers, Dublin study weekend 2008

BIALL have sent out their call for papers for the Dublin study weekend, Thursday 12th – Saturday 14th June 2008.The theme is: BEYOND THE PALEPlanning for the Next Information GenerationTopics they’d like to cover include: •The future impact of digitisation of data•Probable trends in respect of electronic resources•How does information become knowledge•The growth of globalisation of legal resources•Will librarians be needed in 2010 ?You know, I’m even actually considering submitting for a parallel session…what’s the point of being a Web Monkey if I can’t share the fun? Now, to try and work out a topic that I know enough about, that's useful, and that I can make reasonably entertaining...any ideas?
More information here.

The problem with online ads...

....is that you can't control where they're placed, as First Direct and Vodaphone have just discovered.

Facebook do seem to be quite quick off the mark for technical fixes once they're pointed out, but if companies can’t currently choose their placement, and if Facebook introduce that ability, I can see fights over who’s paid what to go where breaking out!

Giving up on Google

Well, it’s public policy blog at the moment anyway. I don’t know if it’s Blogger itself being mad (early this week it seemed to re-publish the feeds of almost all blogs I subscribe to, or maybe it was Bloglines that did that….who can tell!), but the Google PPB seems to have decided to randomly republish its posts, in any order, on a regular basis. Or maybe the posts are being updated, but to be honest, the amount of times the same posts are re-appearing, I can’t be bothered to analyse them…So, for now, it’s bye-bye Google blog!!

Another reason why I’m happy to be vague…

On MySpace and Bebo, I don’t have my full name, my first school, my mothers maiden name, my date of birth etc listed anywhere… all information that’s very useful for the nasty-types out there to make hay with.With the launch of this search engine in early August, I’ll be even happier about my vagueness about my personal details on social networking sites…not that I’ve done anything so terrible that it means I don’t want anyone to find out about it ( my hobbies are scintillatingly dull, and don’t usually involve anything illegal…usually…), but it’ll probably allow even MORE people I purposely lost contact with after school / Uni to get in touch with me. It’s already annoying me that I felt I had to allow certain individuals to ‘friend’ me on Bebo when I don’t actually like them that much (but feel I can’t say no to them in case of bad feeling about the ‘snub’), but when the people I’ve spent years trying to escape track me down through this…yeesh!Maybe I should have titled this post “W…

What's with the image?

So, I was following the debate over the last few weeks on whether that New York Sun article and various others are a good thing or a bad thing for librarians.

Now, I don't quite gets the fuss. We're librarians, and we have a stereotype about us. Everyone knows stereotypes aren't totally true...as a Scot, the stereotype is that I should be ginger haired, pasty-skinned, and unhappy about having to spend money...and in reality, only the money one's true! ;-)

Here's a few more more:
Lawyers are evil, doctors are noble, firemen are brave.

We know stereotypes aren't true, so why bother fighting them? Will it really make the world a better place if people know that librarians aren't actually all old ladies who wear tweed, half moon glasses, pearls, and sit behind big intimidating desks in dusty libraries and say 'shhh' a lot? That sometimes we have a drink, act a bit silly

And what the hell is a guybrarian? Is librarianship such a female dominated world that th…

Unrecognised number

I don’t think I’ll be opting-in when these people call me up in the future. My mobile number is only given out to friends, or if essential, businesses that may need to contact me for something like a delivery time / date alteration.My home number’s on TPS, I LIKE my privacy.But…I can see the usefulness of a directory…Then again, I don’t like my life being intruded into by a phone that I carry around with me, at least the landline is in a fixed location and I can walk away from it / ignore it, if you don’t answer your mobile people immediately assume you’re dead …hmmmm, dilemma.Is it bad to want other people to join in, but not play myself?Info originally in CILIP Weekly Information World 13 - 19 July 2007

Slightly ironic!

Isn’t it amusing that the first prosecution for breaking the English smoking ban would be in a pub called the Happy Scots Bar?Now, that’s just setting a challenge for a Scot to find a Happy English Bar in Scotland and do the same…although the quest might be similar to finding a needle in a haystack, to be honest!

Today I discovered splogging!

I never knew that there was such a thing...blawgs were the most unusual combination of 'blogging' with other words that I'd come across.

Now, I discover splogging: setting up spam blogs and filling them with AdSense ads. I don't quite get the point...methinks I need to read this article in more depth when I can actually concentrate!

Personally, I just quite like the term!

Turning the pages...in a different way.

Is it just me, or is it offensive that this judge thinks we just "turn the pages" of books?

And also, I personally know people who've had to have operations on their hands to repair damage caused by their work as a librarian. I've felt the aching pains in my wrists and thumbs after spending hours photocopying old cases for users...the thumbs take the strain as you flip the books to photocopy them...I'd say it's pretty clear that librarians CAN injure themselves by "turning the pages of a book".

Big Brother is watching you....flying on internal flights

C'mon British Airways, what good are these measures really going to do, other than create feelings of huge paranoia and fear in your passengers?

Why will you need to scan faces twice? Do you think people are coming through with Mission Impossible style rubber face masks and false fingerprints, escaping detection by eagle eyed security staff (who're otherwise occupied trying to figure out if over 100ml of baby milk is allowable, and confiscating highly dangerous nail clippers in case they're used on the flight to threaten anyone with a nasty nip), then ripping them off as soon as they think they're clear of security?

Will it really be a case of "your face doesn't fit here mate"?

And would it not have been far simpler to just keep international and domestic lounges separate?

Or would that mean you'd have no good excuse for introducing yet more invasive tracking of individuals in the name of 'security'?

Link via RFIDNews

Are we WEEEing properly yet?

So, the WEEE (the prime contender for the title of "Most Ridiculously Named Regulations EVER"...seriously, have you been able to read about "separating different types of WEEE", and types of containers for different types of WEEE without sniggering?) Regulations came into force on the 1st of July 2007.
So, that should mean that when you buy a new appliance, the very least the provider must do would be to advise you about how and where to dispose of the appliance you’re probably replacing. They should be a member of the Distributor Take-back Scheme, or allow in-store take-back. At least, that’s what this document from the Environment Agency tells me.So, why is it that, after buying a TV from Dixons online, we’ve received precisely NO information on the WEEE Regulations, our duty of responsible disposal, or where / how to do it?Our old TV is now being rehomed by Freecycle, but what if I didn’t know about this, and if I didn’t know that I had new duties under WEEE? (sn…

Oh no, wait…

Links to some documents from 2007 and 2006 on the old DTI site still work, so at least we can still access them (for now).Links to some pages from 2006 and 2007 actually have a redirect…which is an advance.
Apart from the fact that the redirect takes me to a page that I’m ‘not authorised to view’
1.You are not authorized to view this pageYou might not have permission to view this directory or page using the credentials you supplied. If you believe you should be able to view this directory or page, please try to contact the Web site by using any e-mail address or phone number that may be listed on the www.dti.gov.uk home page.You can click Search to look for information on the Internet.2.HTTP Error 403 - Forbidden
Internet Explorer
I think it’s an advance, but I’m not altogether sure….although the fact that a redirect from a DTI page to a BERR page actually sends me to a DTI screen and advised me to go to www.dti.gov.uk, not www.berr.gov.uk makes my poor brain hurt.

DTI / BERR – I despair!!!

Ok, so as well as deciding to suddenly change departments / name with no notice (in itself enough to make me scream with frustration), those clever chaps and chapesses at the ex-DTI have gone one step further…and shifted most of the materials onto the new www.berr.gov.uk web address.With no redirects.Wonderful.Here comes a good few weeks of altering every single damn link to their materials that we’ve ever posted to our current awareness service.Even changing the ‘dti’ part of the web address to ‘berr’ doesn’t work.They helpfully tell me this when I click on a link:“The DTI web page or document you are looking for has not been found.AdministrationThe DTI web page or document you are looking for has not been found.
We have restructured our website, and the information you are looking for has been moved, or you have clicked on an inaccurate link.If you are looking for a specific piece of information, you may find it easier to use the search engine or our Site Map. If you are looking for …

RFID item tracking

Now, I confess, it’s a longed-for dream to be able to instal RFID tracking for our books…I’m going to have a look at the video of this at home tonight, when I can actually hear what they’re saying!I’ve got to say, being able to pinpoint exactly where specific items are would be a VERY good thing for me!

Losing information

I had a summer student come to me this week and ask me to fix back on the installation instructions for a CD that the sellotape holding them on had yellowed and fallen off from…a hint perhaps of its age! Although a 10 year old book isn’t that old in the grand scheme of things…The CD itself was long gone, but the installation instructions remained.They were for: M.S. Word for Windows 2.0Wordperfect 5.1 for MS-DOSWordperfect 6.1 for WindowsUnsurprisingly, I made an executive decision not to keep those instructions, but I thought about them when reading this story from the BBC.How many people still have information stored on floppy discs (the ‘hard’ floppy discs, not the floppy-floppies, as I remember from my far-distant youth…) but don’t have a machine that can now read them? It’s one of the only good points about my creaky, 7 year old home pc, that I can actually put these things into it and access the information.One of the things on my eternal to-do list is to save the data to my pc,…

Turning the Pages for a treasure

IWR reports on the release of the British Library Turning the Pages software to a wider audience. I was lucky enough to be at a roadshow on British Library technical developments in March, held in the National Museum of Scotland. (As an aside - Boy, do those people know how to make a great goodie bag...messenger bag, notepad, funky folding cube of notable images from holdings, there was even a big bar of chocolate!).
I was practically drooling at the lovelyness of it all! I really wished that my former workplace would be able to afford the insane cost of digitising (and then the ongoing hosting of the digitised material) any of their historical collection, but it's out of the reach of most libraries without a very wealthy patron...which is why when I read the IWR post I was reminded about the BL competition for public libraries, one from each area of Britain, to have a "hidden treasure" from their collection digitised.

The entries closed on the 29 June 2007....shortlisted …

Basic Blogger

Reading the article by Nick Holmesin Legal Information Management about law blogs, made me think about just how little I really know about certain technical stuff.I’ve been blogging personally since March 2006, so I can post, I can hyperlink, I can insert pictures, yet I still don’t know how to make a banner. HTML is a mystery to me (new look Blogger = so nice!!), I can’t trackback visitors (to either blog), and I failed when trying to put a statcounter in the code of this one.I’m a techie failure.But, I ask myself, do I NEED to know all these things? A banner makes things look prettier, and I may not be able to do it myself, but I know people that I could ask to do it for me. I can live without prettyness, and save favours for essential times. Do I really need to be able to rummage in HTML? Why would I need to track back visitors, other than for my own personal interest? Do I have the time to learn how to do any of these things anyway, and if I do, would I be able to spend enough tim…

Sorry Jennie Law!

I admit, my choice of blog name was not particularly clever or well planned. I didn’t expect to get linked to, or even read, so I just thought, when Blogger prompted me for a name, “erm, my name, yup. That's taken. Ok, so it’ll be mainly about law / my work…so law will do. That combination's not taken yet. Yay. Job done.” It's not particularly anonymous, but I don't think I need to be anyway. Although a lady does like to retain a little bit of mystery...I didn’t think there’d be a lady out there actually called Jennie Law. Or that she too would be a librarian! Perhaps I should get in touch and apologise for accidentally stealing her identity as my blog name?

Why must government websites do this?

Thanks to Binary Law, I now know that the DTI has become something unpronounceable, the DBERR. Is it ‘deeber’? ‘debeer’? ‘deberr’ (which allows me to say: to deberr is human, to forgive, debine?) Fingers crossed that they decide to be sensible about the whole process, and don’t just decide to shift the whole site, with no redirects, thereby rendering entirely useless the work of anybody who’s spend any time creating weblinks to any of their information…yup, that’d be me then!Wonder if they’ll also fix the fact that their inbuilt websearch is the biggest excuse for a user enhancement I’ve ever seen, and has yet to ever actually work for me. Google and site specific searching is the only way I’ve been able to drag anything out of its depths!And did I miss any prior notification of this? As of yesterday, their site was DTI, today it’s morphing (logo gone, I assume the new one’s coming), but no hint of todays change. Today, it’s their entire front page. Have I been selectively blind?And n…

Freedom of information trumps restriction of access

The constitutional affairs select committee has declared that the Governments plans to limit FOI requests (including bundling multiple requests from the same group / company together and regarding them as a single ‘request’, regardless of the information requested) has not got enough basis, and on that grounds, there is no support for changing the current charging and handling regime.Quote from summary page:“The Government has not shown that it adequately reviewed whether the existing charging regime balanced public access rights with the needs of public authorities to deliver services effectively, before deciding to restrict public access rights further;• We have not received sufficient evidence to support the need to change access rights in the way proposed;• The cost-benefit analysis prepared by the Department for Constitutional Affairs (DCA) to support the proposed regime is insufficient;• We have not received any evidence to show that the new charging regime would be transparent …

Widening the privacy investigation

As posted on OUT-LAW yesterday, the Article 29 Working Party is expanding the scope of its investigation of search engine privacy practices beyond Google to ALL search engine companies, and their data retention practices.Will be interesting to see what the other, smaller (and less media-targeted) companies policies are…

I'm not obsessive!

I just worry about my online privacy and security, hence why this information makes me glad not to be a FaceBooker… admittedly, they’ve now updated the settings to prevent those searches from working now, but seriously, why was it ever possible in the first place?

It’s a mystery!

Why Blogger thinks my time zone is significantly different from reality, and skips me forward an hour, even when I’m set to the right location / time zone.As a result, I’m currently posting from the Azores. Well, their time zone, which seems to match Scotlands…Unfortunately, the weather isn’t quite the same…
Wait, now London works. Oh the joyous mysteries of Blogger....

Facebook again!

Ohhhh, according to this, your choice of social network reflects your social status….I’m still being a difficult sod and refusing to Facebook though! :D
Perhaps MySpace reflects my eternal inner geekiness?

Educating X and Y

So, I followed the link posted by lo-fi librarian a few days ago, and looking at that chart, at first I was surprised by the low takeup of my generation (yup, I'm a Gen Xer too, though I've yet to read the book), and then, thinking about my own experiences, began to think that perhaps it's not so surprising really.

After all, who's teaching us?
I feel like the generation that was overlooked.

For example, typing skills when I was at school were something you learned if you weren't going to go to University, and instead were going to have to go out and get a 'proper' job when you left school. So I was never taught to type, as it was regarded as a 'menial' skill, not for us Uni-destined types. Yet within the timescale I was at Uni, it went from being acceptable to submit handwritten work, to it only being acceptable to submit in 12 point type, with 1.5 line spacing to allow space for comments! When was I meant to have learned how to wordprocess? As a resu…

Do you Facebook?

The answer in my case is…no. And it’s been a deliberate decision (under regular review) not to join it, despite regular requests from various friends. I use (with varying frequency) My Space, Bebo…I blog, I email, I wiki, I forum. I like to be in touch and aware of what’s going on in the world. I don’t, however, have an incredible compulsion to be constantly connected to my friends 24 hours a day, so, although I joined up to find out more about it, I can categorically state that I will never Twitter (unless someone can give me a better reason than “you can tell people who don’t care enough to speak to you in person everything you’re doing throughout the day, in response to a totally inane question about what you’re doing”). I also have a limit on the amount of times I really need to see the same people duplicated in my network of friends in different sites.It started with MySpace, which I joined in a spirit of investigation and fun in February 2006, when it was filling the news headli…

Excuse me sir, but is my science showing?

Ok, it’s a geeky concept but it amused me!I like LOLcats a lot…I read Cute Overload (although it gets a bit overly-cute for me at times)…I did a science degree (what do you mean, I'm meant to have done a law degree!?!?)...So I really like this, I’mright there in the middle section!Link

Google again

Honestly, I'm not obsessive, really, they just seem to be pretty active just now!
Google have opened up their internal blog on their public policies, to allow users to see what their views are on various important areas such as privacy, content regulation etc.
Which is pretty interesting, but I've got to say, I'm not sure I entirely trust any organisation when they say 'look how honest and open we're being'...probably cos I know there are very, very few of them who will be!
But it's a pretty good attempt to make more transparent the internal workings of a section of a massive corporation.

What does the Web look like?

I use it every day, for work and for pleasure, it's become an essential part of my daily life ....but what does it look like?

Well, according to researchers at Tel-Aviv University in Israel, it looks like...that.

Prettier than I expected, it looks like the first seconds after the Big Bang! Wonder which dot is Earth... ;-)

Link from Popular Science Blog, the link to the original research paper it's taken from isn't working just now.

Google - doing evil?

So, I confess my dirty librarian secret: I really like Google. I know I'm meant to be an expert online, using the most appropriate search engine for whatever information I'm looking for (I keep meaning to try to use Sputtr for that too, even though the name sounds like it's an asthmatic with a cold, but never quite remember), but... Google works so WELL!
And it allows you to personalise it with iGoogle, and narrow searches to UK only, and that's lovely!

But, I do worry about what they do with my data. After all, to personalise to iGoogle, you must be logged in. Which means every search you do is logged against your user name / ID, and whatever other information about yourself you've given them. Even if you've not said where you live, your searches are likely to do that. Been on holiday recently? Researched that on Google when logged in? That data's been recorded too. Looked for recipes? Childcare tips? Been looking for a new job? Snap. Although it may be anon…

Legally Blogged

So, what a great start: first post, and Blogger lost it, retaining only the first word. Brilliant.

Anyhoodle, I decided to set this blog up so I can post about things that interest me professionally, and keep a separation between my personal life (and blog), and my professional life (and blog). It does mean constantly having to switch between my two IDs for Blogger, but I'm a big girl, I can handle that!

I'm interested in the ways that IT can be integrated into my working life, and my regular reading of the blogs I've linked to has already helped me out: I've started myself a wiki to organise my Chartership materials (but this unfortunately means I'm pretty much ready to submit, so I'm now perfecting my procrastination techniques), I'm using Cite Bite quite a lot already, and I only read about it a week or so ago, my awareness of professional issues is much better....

This "series of tubes" is pretty exciting and fun stuff to be working with! (Lookee…