Skip to main content

Government + IT = a mess

The GNN (or Government News Network) was nice.
It published the press releases from all the Government departments, and if, like me, you prefered to pick them up through an RSS feed instead of emails, it was lovely, helpful, efficient.

On the 1 April 2008, after quietly announcing it on the 28th March 2008 on their site (where, if you're using their RSS feeds you will never go), the GNN became NDS (News Distribution Service).

They boldly stated "The look and branding of this site have therefore changed, although the services remain the same."

Nuh-uh.

If you took the RSS feeds, these are now all dead, as they are coming from a different web address.
Emails of the press releases are coming from a new address too apparently.

This meant, for me anyway, re-registering as a new user (as they seemed to have wiped my account in the process) and re-subscribing to all the feeds again. Not a great start to the day! Especially when the Government had just announced the "Power of Information Task Force, which will drive forward the Government 's pledge to meet rising aspirations of modern communications practice and improve engagement with citizens through social media." It didn't bode well, if they managed to break one of the things that WAS working well at improving communications!

Also, during the 1st of April, any link to any news release prior to that date wasn't working either. Thankfully though, somebody there realised the problem and fixed it! A big relief for me - I really didn't have the time to spare to go in and fix every link I've made to the site over the past 3 years!

Lets hope things go smoothly from now on - after the DTI / Berr farce, I wasn't holding out much hope for this, but the rapid fixing of the dead links problem definitely gives me hope!

Comments

PSL said…
I use the GNN RSS feed too and don't seem to have had any problems - it's still updating today. I know that's not much help to you, but just in case anyone else was panicking...
Jennie said…
I may just have been unlucky!
All's working well now, but the teething problems weren't fun :-)

Popular posts from this blog

Relaunching a library service

What do you do when you decide to do what is verging on library-based insanity, and basically scrap your current library service, and relaunch everything - physical layout, LMS, and classification system? In my case, spend a year, planning, developing, preparing….and then a frantic few weeks hauling stock!
The background to this apparent madness is this: when I took on this role I inherited a library using a layout that didn’t seem to make sense, a classification system I wasn’t familiar with, and an LMS that had been in place for 20 years but didn’t seem suited to our needs. As I was new to the library, a major part of the time I had available while settling in during my initial few months was dedicated to exploring how well these things were working, both for users, and library staff. I had the benefit of my colleague also being new to the library, only a few months after me, so together we looked at these issues with fresh eyes.We came to the following conclusions: The physical layou…

Learning from the experts

One regular occurrence, no matter what the age of your collection, is finding a book in need of some sort of repair. Whether it's become overheated and dried out, with random pages falling out, or if it's "shelled itself", with the whole cover block detaching from the pages, there's always a book that needs some attention. My problem is that I'm not skilled enough in this area to know what sort of repairs are possible, and where the line is between me being able to do some basic repairs, and when a book needs to be sent off to the book binders for some expert attention. 
Luckily, the binders we usually use, Downie Allison Downie, run a variety of classes on all elements of book making and repair. My colleague and I were able to go along to one of these classes recently, carrying a few sad examples each of books in need of repair. The way we spilt the carrying weight, I had the hardbacks with me, and my colleague had paperbacks in various states of dirtiness …

Impressive shelving technique

I have a new role model: the shelving technique demonstrated between 12 and 18 seconds by the librarian in this Lucozade video is something to aspire to! :D