odds ‘n’ bods

My life is rather fuller than I’d like at the moment, particularly as my house (jointly owned with my sister) is now on the market. My stress levels are way high, my level of forgetfulness is way high, and so on. Nevermind that I’m also trying to find, with lots of wonderful assistance from my girlfriend, a new place to live.

I’d just like to point out that the leather Shorter is now 45% off. I have decided that should either the AU $ achieves parity with the US $, or the leather Shorter reaches 60% off, I will buy a second copy to use at work. The full OED remains steady at 33% off, should it reach 45% off, I will buy it. It is already a bargain but my life is too uncomfortable to consider it right now. There is a leather edition of the full OED too but I ain’t that rich…alas.

Of searches and stuff, I happened upon a link to a search engine, from last year I think, called “Search Mash“. The link is new and contains a summary of a talk on search engines (I think) by Mary Ellen Bates at a conference this week. An initial play reveals that it runs fast, has some nifty features eg start typing anywhere on the page and it replaces the current search with what you type. Also has an option to link to a site specific search from within the results. According to the notes, this is an unbranded google site. It runs sweet.

Also looking good places to see the Northern Lights, or the Aurora Borealis, a site of long desired to behold. There is a possibility that I may be in Finland later in the year, in which case it would be very tempting to travel further north and see if I can catch a glimpse. The time of year matters and it’s good to see folk, already have tools available for prospective watchers.

It looks like it’s been available for years, but I’ve just noticed that wordpress.com offers domain hosting. This may be a useful interim possibility for relocating my domain https://snail.ws/ (currently ably looked after by one of my best mates). One of these days I will get round, honest guv, to getting a self hosted option going and will move my blog there. Main contender at the moment is LISHost, especially as it’s a library based operation. It seems to work well and I’ve been following various blogs hosted on it over the years, nevermind LISNews itself.


Returned home earlier this evening after a lovely few days in Brissy. Was there primarily for a conference, Beyond the Hype, at QUT, and also got to meet my girlfriend’s brother and his family, who very kindly hosted the pair of us during our stay. A full on conference that was everything I’d hoped it would be, not to mention a chance to meet and hang out with a great bunch of librarians. Will blog in more detail later. Feeling a bit exhausted, and I fly to Melbourne tomorrow for a week or so. First up is VALA, to be followed a few days later by my company’s internal sales conference. Gauranteed that I will be very, very tired by the end of my stay.

BTH was also the first proper roadtest of my Eee, and it performed wonderfully! Twas a joy to unfold it on the plane and have space beside for a coffee and iPod. Was able to work comfortably on the way up. During the conference, it was great and as near as I can tell, I took a few thousand words in notes. Power was one of my concerns but a friend had the answer, Kathryn bought her own powerboard, and 3 of us sat up the back near one of the only powerpoints, all plugged in via Kathryn’s board. No luck with accessing the QUT wireless network so was unable to live blog. Having a small, light laptop meant it was easy to carry (no lugging) and didn’t dominate my seating space, whether I was in a lecture theatre or on a plane. This is the closest I’ve come to a truly portable computer. I’d still like something about half the weight again and I need to explore options for continuous net access, probably 3 or nextg or something like that. Then I can have net access everywhere I go…well, assuming I can get a signal :-)

conferencing and stuff

I’ve had a couple of bits of nice news in the last couple of months. I had been part of a group paper for VALA, unfortunately whether it be my inability to write a paper collaboratively or simply continuing personal dramas, I failed to contribute to it. Actually it’s not necessarily an inability to collaborate, it could just be that I see deadlines as fluid and flexible whereas everyone else meets them :-) While I’m sad that I let folk down, I’m also glad that they got the paper done without me. I’ve also been keen to get my name taken off the paper and requested it a couple of times. Got a very nice email in the last week asking if I’d be ok with my name being removed given my lack of contribution – the person in question had missed my emails requesting the same and I’m guessing was rather relieved when I happily responded that removing my name would be fine :-) In other news, I’ve been asked to chair a session at Beyond the Hype in a couple of weeks. That at least I can do, and do on time, and as I know all 3 folk in my session, should be able to mostly adlib it. Well, I’ll be reading up on all 3 papers and people anyway because adlibbing works best for me, when I have a good foundation of knowledge. Preparation does wonders and it means if my muse fails on the day, I have a fallback position.

beyond the hype

Early Feb 2008, just before VALA, there’s a library symposium in Brisbane that looks rather tempting. Pricing has just come out and it’s just over $200 for ALIA members to attend the 2 day symposium. It’s devoted to 2.0 type stuff and importantly for me, there’s going to be a workshop on open source software for library management systems – an area I’m currently exploring for a work project. The symposium covers a fri and sat which means I only have to get one day off work; as it’s work related I may be able to claim it as a work day. Plus I might be able to visit friends in Brissy on the Sunday before flying back to Sydney. Much to ponder.