Sunday, June 27, 2010

Happy workday to meeeeeeeeee!

Oh yes, today I'll have been with my current employer for 5 whole, entire years (of course, I started work on a weekday, not a weekend, but lets not be picky here). And long may my present employment continue: I do enjoy my work, there's always something interesting to learn each day, and I have a fabulous and fun boss who supports me and encourages me to explore any techie interests I have. These are rare and wonderous things to be able to say, and I know it. *I am now touching wood and doing any other superstitious manoeuvres to avoid bringing disaster upon me for these outrageous statements of happiness and contentment*

For someone in their early thirties (ok, thirty one, but early thirties sounds much more grown up), to have been in the same position for anything over a few years is slightly uncommon, and it seems this sort of "settled" employment is something that the newer generation of professionals are unlikely to have. There ain't no such thing as a "job for life" any more, but is that a good or a bad thing? I suppose it depends on whether you're moving on from a position because you want to, or because you have to. A voluntary move must be an exciting thing, and I can sometimes find it difficult to keep track of professional friends, as they suddenly announce they're off to pastures new!

So, what are your expectations in a job now? A few years, then moving on? Or staying for as long as they'll have you?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Good design doesn't date


Not even if it's a book satchel, of a style that would originally have been used by monks carrying books that brought Christianity to Scotland.

Hell, I'd have one of them - they're pretty!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Free SLLG member event in Edinburgh

Thanks to the lovely @technollama, I'm pretending to be professional, and organising an event for the Scottish Law Librarians Group. The Mighty Llama himself will be presenting on this topic:

Digital Copyright: The Next Generation

During the first decade of the century copyright law has been one of the most important legal issues when it comes to the Internet. Recent developments may give copyright law a different face for the next decade. From the passing of the Digital Economy Act, to the rise of user-generated content and open licensing schemes such as open source and Creative Commons, the future of copyright is shaping up to present an interesting juxtaposition between two very different ideas about content management.

Date: Thursday 1st July 2010
Venue: Edinburgh Training and Conference Venue, 16 St. Mary Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1SU
Time: 5.30pm

Members should have received their email invite by now, but if not, and you're a member, email me on the address in the contact details on the right and I'll add you to the attendees list.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Knowing when to give in


Bloglines, I'm not going to mince my words here, or break it to you gently: it's all over between us. I don't know if you noticed, but I actually dumped you about a month ago.
I'd got fed up with your lack of attention, your seeming lack of knowledge that I existed...but the final straw was when you went away. For a day. Without telling me about it.
Eventually, you got your idiot friend the plumber (or whatever he claims to be) to make an excuse on your behalf, but it was too late. I didn't trust you any more. How could I, when you left me in the lurch like that?
At least Google was there for me in my time of need. I'd given it a backup version of my feeds long ago...I never thought I'd have to turn to it in desperation.
Look what you drove me to, Bloglines.

Goodbye.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Like a book, but better

Ohhh, an interactive book, with QR codes embedded that links to additional content ! Tempted to buy a copy, just to see what it's like :)

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

I got there in the end

Yes, today, I was a good girl, and joined my local library. I've not been a public library member since my university days, and I'm still unlikely to actually use it (and I've explained why before), but having options is always a good thing.

And the thing that finally made me join? Well, they made it so damn easy to do! I didn't even have to go in to the library to do it (too busy on week nights, and likely to be the last thing that occurs to me at a weekend, if I'm not running around then too). I just had to go to their website, fill in this form (either do it online or print it out), and save it and email it (or post it) to them. Simples! Yay for Edinburgh City Libraries!

The card should be posted to me when it's processed, I also signed up to get email alerts about library events, and overdue notices (although as a good librarian I would never get any of those. Honest. Though I would be in good company if I did), so maybe that'll prompt me to actually go visit.

Someday.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Council blogging

So, The Improvement Service (which sounds faintly menacing, and makes me imagine the staff all walk around the office with straight backs, books balanced on their heads and have perfect pronunciation) have issued a guide for Scottish Councillors about blogging and tweeting.

Now, is it just me, or is this a bit silly? If you're tweeting or blogging, then you're at least mildly tech savvy. And if you're a Councillor, then you're probably pretty smart, and also reasonably aware about confidentiality, public image etc. You know what people will be interested in hearing about from you, what your constituents concerns are.

So, does it really need an 11 page guide to tell you how to do that?

I think that 3 sentences on page 7 about what not to do should perhaps be given a bit more prominence, else Councillors are going to blunder into trouble....

So, some top tips for Councillors on blogging and tweeting, from moi:

  • Don't talk about confidential stuff.
  • Don't be abusive or racist.
  • Don't say anything about someone you wouldn't say to them in person.
  • Don't forget that, once something's on the internet, it's there for good, even if you delete it.

In other words: Don't be dumb.



Thursday, June 03, 2010

Not "liking" it

As Andy from Little Britain might say..."don' like it".

The like-that-I-don't-like is the Facebook "Like" button. It's fine and dandy in its natural habitat of, well, Facebook. It's the best apathetic way to show people you care about something, with minimal effort. But when it's used outside Facebook, by third parties, it's not so snazzy.

I had followed a link to a page that was talking about the business uses of being able to place the Like button on external websites. It explained that when you click on the button on those websites, that action (e.g. "Jennie liked x page") gets fed back and posted on your profile. There was also a Like button at the foot of the page, if you felt like trying it out. That was fine: the page was interesting, relevant, and I was happy enough for it to be posted in my news feed that I'd liked it, so I clicked the Like button at the foot of the page to test it.

Sure enough, it fed back to my profile, and that was fine. The original external website also showed who else in your Facebook friends group had liked that page, which was fine too, and interesting.

So, I forgot about having done that until a week or so ago, when I was tidying up my public profile, and removing any groups I'd joined or things I'd Liked that were no longer relevant, or I just didn't care about. On Facebook, you can do this by going into your Profile, and clicking on the groups / interests area, which will take you to the page of any group you've joined. Once there, you can leave a group, or unlike the page you'd liked, and the information disappears from your profile. However, if you've used the like button on an external site, there's no obvious way of getting rid of it. Clicking on the link to what you'd previously liked just takes you back to that page. I was stumped as to how to get the link to this (perfectly useful, professional) page off my profile. I didn't need it gone (it's not like it was anything controversial; it was actually professionally relevant), but I don't like not being able to change things that I should.

In the end, some experimentation by Phil Bradley meant that he could help me out. It turns out that to NOT like something on an external site, you have to...erm...like it again. Somewhat counter intuitive, yes? So I pottered off and unliked something I did actually like, all in order to remove it from my public profile.

Anyway, that ramble was triggered by this "clickjacking" on Facebook, which means those hijacked by clicking a link are then posting on their own profile that they "liked" the site...I wonder if those clickjacked now also have a permanent link in the Likes on their Profile to the clickjack site. Because, to unlike it, you have to go and like it again...which would need the "Like" button to be visible to unlike it, which in this case seems to have been disguised as an "I am over 18" confirmation button.

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