Happy Birthday, Dad!

July 22, 2007

My Dad in Saint Marten

Originally uploaded by ScruffyNerf.

Today is my dad’s 60th birthday. He is currently playing golf with my brother, my husband and a friend. Later on this afternoon, my mom, dad, husband, brother, sister-in-law, niece, two nephews and I are all going out to dinner at the restaurant of his choice. It was my father’s birthday wish to take the entire family out to dinner.

Anyway, happy birthday to the bestest dad ever. I love you! May today be all that you hoped it would be. While I can promise to behave – and I can’t speak for anyone else.

Las Vegas At Night

July 22, 2007

Ballys & Paris in Las Vegas

Originally uploaded by ScruffyNerf.

Weekend O’Homework

July 21, 2007

The end of the summer semester at SCSU is fast approaching. In ILS566-Library Personnel Management, I have one discussion question to formally answer and then a final exam which must be completed between July 25th and August 1st. In ILS655-Digital Libraries, I have several discussions to participate in and the major class project which is due on July 30th. I believe we then must comment on other projects from the class. While I am in a decent position grade-wise with the work that I have already completed, I have a serious amount of work to do for this course project. Hence, the weekend of homework to which I alluded in the title of this post.

For my course project, I am creating a digital library of technical resources specifically designed to help library staff – this includes some videos, documents and website links which have been created at my place of work. The idea is to create a kind of knowledge-base for specific applications that people in the library use consistently. I’m fairly excited about the project. I was dragging my heals – mostly because I was busy being apathetic about school. I finally decided that I needed to work on a topic about which I was interested. My attitude about school underwent a dramatic shift once I started to refocus my efforts in those areas that I believe to be most critical. This is good, because I was starting to get nervous about my state of mind. I truly believe that my school experience will ultimately be what I make of it – and I was not even making a decent effort. Things seem much brighter now.

Some Exciting Developments

July 21, 2007

Despite the fact that I will not have the opportunity to take any “Library School 2.0*”classes in my time at SCSU, I’m very excited about some nascent movements in that direction. It looks like Meredith Farkas will be teaching a class on social software to library students (via social software?). Additionally, Ellysa Kroski will be teaching a class on Web 2.0 at the Palmer School of Library Science this fall – complete with a website community for the class. I couldn’t be more thrilled. Library school programs, especially those conducted via distance, need more than what they currently possess to be well rounded and engaging.

*Library School 2.0 – With this moniker, I am not referring to classes about Library 2.0 or Web 2.0. I’m alluding to classes that are conducted using 2.0 tools. It seems to me that actually using these tools to conduct a class is the best way for students to learn about them. It is also a wonderful way for distance students to connect, bond and collaborate – things are are quite difficult to do with current modes of online education.

Which Book Am I?

July 20, 2007

Interesting – in a weird sort of way. I like the thought of being both brilliant and repugnant. Cool! Found via John Miedema

You’re Ulysses!
by James Joyce
Most people are convinced that you don’t make any sense, but compared to what else you could say, what you’re saying now makes tons of sense. What people do understand about you is your vulgarity, which has convinced people that you are at once brilliant and repugnant. Meanwhile you are content to wander around aimlessly, taking in the sights and sounds of the city. What you see is vast, almost limitless, and brings you additional fame. When no one is looking, you dream of being a Greek folk hero.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

It Was Just One Of Those Days

July 19, 2007

Today was the type of day that makes me question whether technical support is a viable task – and more specifically whether it is something that I can do and remain sane. I can tell that today was stressful because my entire head aches – especially me teeth and jaw. My entire body is tense – and I need some serious down time. Fortunately, I have finished the assignment that I have due today – otherwise, I would be in serious trouble.

Sometimes it seems like trying to offer decent technical support is like trying to nail jello to a wall. Today, I had to tell someone that due to a virus, spyware and human error, they had lost all of their email. I also had another situation where someone’s email seems to be just disappearing from the inbox. Realistically, it must be downloading to a POP3 client somewhere – somewhere that I don’t have control over – somewhere that I can’t pinpoint. Adding to the problem is confusion over where and how email is stored – on a local computer or on the server. This is not an easy concept for many to grasp (probably because it isn’t explained well enough). Technically, the email probably isn’t lost – but it isn’t anywhere that the user can find it either. The worst part is that with better planning, better training and more information, both of these situations could probably have been prevented. A great deal of the blame rests with me. I’m the one that failed to make sure that either person had a good knowledge base about best practices for email and/or backup procedures. So often, it is easy to let information sharing go – there is just so much else to do. And, let’s face it, catastrophic failure isn’t that frequent.

Today was a painful one – and not just for me. Sadly, these types of things are part of the job. There probably is no fullproof way to prevent catastrophic failures. Sometimes, nature combines all of its forces to allow a series of events to take place that wreak havoc for some. Meanwhile, I will continue to persevere – try to minimize the chances of these types of events taking place – and try to be there to help. Now, I need to go take a bath!

Personnel Management

July 18, 2007

Rialto Bridge  Originally uploaded by ScruffyNerf.

I am currently working on an assignment to design a performance appraisal system, explain the system and discuss the handling of poor performers for ILS566-Library Personnel Management. The assignmentis due tomorrow evening by 11:30PM, but I have a good portion of it done already. I should be able to finish it on time – maybe even with a couple of hours to spare.

As a whole, this class has been very interesting – and I am thoroughly enjoying it. It is quickly rising up my mental list of best classes. All of the assignments have been extremely practical in nature – developing interview questions, writing an outline of an employee handbook and designing a performance-appraisal system. None of these have been intense research projects. The idea has been to learn and research a bit about general topics – interviewing, handbooks, and performance-appraisal systems – and then use that knowledge to make decisions on how best to deal with real-world situations. So, no extensive research really, but a great deal of thinking, of making decisions and justifying one’s decisions.

I have deeply surprised myself by becoming drawn to management – by getting the most out of the management classes that I have taken at SCSU. What this actually means, I do not know. Hopefully, I am learning to be a better manager.

Again, no real reason for a picture from my trip to Venice in June of 2005. I just like how images break up the text.