Club Admiralty

v7.0 - moving along, a point increase at a time

Club Admiralty Blog

A blog about life in general, in as many languages as I can manage. Ενα ιστολόγιο περι ζωής, πολυγλωσσο - σε όσες γλωσσες εχω μεράκι να γράψω.

Workplace Communities

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I was debating whether to post this on Multilitteratus (since it is ID related), or if I should post it here - guess who won ;-)

I was reading an article on ASTD learning circuits the other day called Learning 2.0 and Workplace Communities which reminded me of my knowledge management class - the one I took many moons ago while an MBA student.

In this article Dave writes about the three models of using social media in workplace learning. The ultimate model is the community model, which reminds me of the discussions we had in Knowledge Management of trying to get people, in the company, involved with both using things like knowledge bases to retrieve information and also to contribute solutions to these knowledge bases to help out their colleagues. In other words you were taking the water cooler troubleshooting (and in a lot of cases information giving) and moving that to an online medium.

Of course, as we see in real life, and as we discussed in class oh-so-many-moons-ago, while people do freely give out information like this at the water cooler, they aren't always motivated to do so. Perhaps it's such a different paradigm that they don't see the value of it.

I think that the embedded model (see article) is probably a good model to use to get people's feet wet. If you require people to use a specific system (be it community, knowledge base, whatever), they might say "no-way, no-how" to using it. If you provide alternative avenues for getting content, but at the same time use social media for value added content, you will get some people used to the system, and you can empower users to experiment without feeling that they are messing up their only way of getting information - fear of failure is a big deterrent.

Overall, it was an interesting article - which I wish was published a few years ago - it would have made discussion in class much more exciting (it was an exciting class, but you can never have too much excitement in a 7pm class)
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Battlestar Galactica: the Second Coming

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OK, so this series was never produced but this trailed for the aborted series makes me wish that they had created this :-)

I guess what I like about this is the Star Trek DS9 aspect of the war with the dominion. The first series of Battlestart was more like Star Trek Voayger - we're looking for our kin. Now they seem to have settled down and they are ready to fight.

The cheezy factor stills seems to be there (acting, uniforms, graphics, etc.) at least according to this promo, but hey - some shows are meant to be cheezy.

I have yet to see the newest Battlestar that started and ended - I guess I have to see to see if someone has it on DVD that I can borrow :-)

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Courier, meet Knowledge Navigator!

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Back in 1987 Apple Produced this video on the Knowledge Navigator, their concept of how a computer/PDA could be used to do work in all aspects of your life. Of course the inspiration for the Newton was the Knowledge Navigator (and the Knowledge Navigator was probably influenced by the Star Trek PADD)

Here's the Knowledge Navigator:


Now this past week Microsoft announced the Courier:



Does it look familiar?

Well, it's not really the Knowledge Navigator, but it isn't a Tablet PC, it isn't an iPhone and it's not an Android OS device. This looks kinda cool, doesn't it? If Microsoft does come forth with a device like this, it would be really cool! You could use it as an internet tablet, a PDA, an eBook reader and so much more.

Of course the potential pitfall here is creating yet another OS that does not play nice with any of the other holdings that Microsoft has like Windows on the Desktop, Zune on the PMP, Xbox on the console and Windows Mobile on the PDA/phone.



Here's another use case scenario with the codex prototype (that looks insane expensive):
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Google sidewiki

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This week I've gone through and I've check out Google's Sidewiki (promo video bellow).

I have to say that I am quite intrigued by this functionality given that people can contribute information to any website they want. Of course the big question is why would people want to provide content for other people's website. I know that some websites do foster communities through their commenting systems. Site regulars log in (as is the case with the brazen careerist network), and leave comments, and add value to a particular site, but the sidewiki seems to duplicate information. For example many sites would talk about the particular act that was highlighted on the demo video. Presumably this information on your site's sidewiki would just be connected to your site, and not aggregated out the rest of the web to other sites that use that same wording, so why put the effort in?

I suppose the authors to the website can provide added value to their content by linking to certain sites or keywords, but if they wanted to do that, wouldn't they just use links to begin with? I suppose for this technology I am taking a step back and watching how it rolls out and how people use it. It seems like a solution waiting for a problem from where I stand, but it will be interesting to see how people use it.


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iPhone Homescreen

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The image on the right made the rounds on the internet, via theNextWeb, this week. TheNextWeb asked people whether this is a step in the right direction, or a step in the wrong direction.


Personally I think that the direction is right-ish. It's a step in the right direction, i.e. there needs to be a notification screen on the iPhone and iPod Touch, but this isn't quite it. For one thing this screen is highly reminiscent of the Home Screen on Windows Mobile. The one thing I hated about my Windows Mobile Home Screen was the fact that if I wanted some information I would have to scroll down. This kind of defeats the purpose of a Home Screen as a HUD (heads up display) which is what it's supposed to be - a quick overview of what is happening.


If information is going to be on the HUD (or Home Screen if you will), it needs to all be visible and not scrollable.


In addition, I think that the HUD needs to be the lock screen and not the first screen you see when you unlock your device. The point is that you don't have to unlock in order to see what's happening - who called, who messaged, what appointments are coming up and what the weather is. All your quick access information would just be there, on the lock screen. Since it's supposed to be on the lock/unlock screen (in my opinion), then you don't need the bottom row (dock) of icons.


I do suppose that some people would want to have access to the HUD when their phone is unlocked. I can see some use case scenarios for that. In that case I would say that a HUD could be implemented in the spotlight screen. If you need to do a spotlight search, you can tap on the search bar and the keyboard comes up, otherwise, the bottom portion of the spotlight screen can be used to house information such as current weather in a specified location, upcoming events, incoming messages, missed calls and so on.


While the design is a little flawed (they are copying windows mobile for heaven's sake ;-) ), I still think that a HUD is needed on Mobile OS X.
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Aaahhh, the good ol' days...

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I was reading this article on OS news recently about the original Mac and it brought back some fond memories. My first experience with a Mac was in 1994, in my high school's "writing lab". This computer lab was housed in the English department and had 25 or so Mac plus computers, with 20 megabyte external hard drives, and a keyboard and mouse with that famous RJ-11 cable (or at least I think it was RJ).

Yes the screen was monochrome, but it was a computer that I could use whenever I wanted (and school was open of course). I remember that in the first few weeks that I used the Mac I used floppies like temporary memory. I started working on my paper, saved it, printed it and handed it in. I came back to the paper once I had received corrections and made the necessary edits. Once the final grade was in I started deleting my old papers before any subsequent ones (that is until someone told me that I should save my work just in case).

Those were the days! I didn't use the Mac Writing Lab (with Word 1.0) for very long. Once I discovered the LC III lab I rarely stepped foot into that old writing lab again - but that was my introduction to the Mac (and the amazingly huge 20MB hard drive)


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Φταίνε τα άστρα;

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Πραγματικά δεν ξέρω τι γίνεται τον τελευταίο καιρό. Πολύς κόσμος, και γνωστοί και άγνωστοι πνίγονται σε μιά κουταλιά νερό!

Βλέπεις κάποιον στο μετρό να προσπαθεί να ανανεώσει την κάρτα του μετρό για να μπορεί να συνεχίσει να την χρησιμοποεί και γίνεται νευρόσπασμα όταν κάνει σαν μωρό επειδή το μηχάνημα δεν δουλεύει - και ο μόνος λόγος που δεν δουλεύει είναι επειδή ο τύπος δεν διαβάζει τις οδηγίες

Η μήπως το άλλο: στέλνεις σε κάποιον ένα URL εντώς παρενθέσεων μέσω η-μέιλ, και επειδή είναι εντώς παρενθέσεων δεν λειτουργεί, σου βγαίνει κάτι σαν http://www.eteria.com). Μετά μου στέλνουν απάντηση και μου λένε δεν παίζει ο σύνδεζμος. Καλά, βλάξ είσαι;, δεν βλέπεις που είναι το λάθος;

Τον τελευταίο καιρό βλέπω πως ο κόσμος δεν διαβάζει οδηγίες, τα παίρνει στο κρανίο όταν δεν λειτουργεί το κάθε μαραφέτι, από μαλακία τους, και σε γενικές γραμμές δεν έχουν πια το μυαλό;, την γνώση;, την ικανότητα να κάνουν τα βασικά για να λύσουν το πρόβλημα τους - το λεγόμενο troubleshooting. Φταίνε τα άστρα; Ή μήπως κάτι άλλο τρέχει;


-- Post From My iPhone
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The pack that keeps you organized in the '00s ?

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On the NewtonTalk list recently I came across this Newton ad from the '90s. It compares a '70s purse (or backpack?) to a Newton carrying case, Newton 130, Modem and software. The tag-line? "The pack that will keep you organized in the '90s"

The Newton was quite an amazing device, and as a matter of fact it did keep my undergrad years organized, of course I did not purchase this advertised bundle since I was a poor undergrad ;-) I bought my first Newton on eBay after they were cancelled.

I kinda wonder what an Apple ad would look like for the'00s ( or the 2010s since we are so close to it). Would they use an iPhone? Of course you don't need a bag to store an iPhone in, so maybe not. How about the mythical apple tablet? I suppose that a tablet would necessitate a bag/pack of some sort, so this would be a good candidate device for such an ad. With built-in 3G modems the external modem in the '90s ad would not be part of the pack...so what would take its place? Wireless A2DP bluetooth headset? One of those video visors?

Interesting thing to ponder...







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Γλωσσολογικά..

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Χτες διάβαζα ένα ενδιαφέρον κομμάτι από ένα Ελληνικό μπλόγκ το οποίο ασχολείται με την γλωσσολογία. Το συγκεκριμένο δημοσίευμα ήταν περί πόλεων και τα ονόματα των πόλεων και τον κατοίκων τους στους αρχαίους χρόνους.

Να ένα μικρό απόσπασμα (αξίζει όμως να το διαβάσετε όλο)

The surprise in Byzantine names is that both the learnèd and the vernacular sources transliterate names differently from how they're now done. On the one hand, the vernacular sources don't bother rerouting names via Ancient Greek, and write the names as they heard them. Austria is now Αυστρία /afˈstria/ ; but it's first recorded in vernacular garb (the same garb it had in the 18th century vernacular), as Ἀουστρία /auˈstria/. Bavaria is now Βαυαρία /vavaˈria/ , but it is first attested in, of all places, the War of Troy, as Βαουβέρη /vauˈveri/. (Admittedly, that's not that close to /bajern/, and was probably just a written form to the translator.) Hungary was called Ματζαρία /madzaˈria/ "Magyary"; Budapest is now Βουδαπέστη /vuðaˈpesti/ , but Buda back then was Μπούντουνη, Πιτούνιν, Μπούδα: /ˈmbunduni/, /piˈtunin/, /ˈmpuða/. The Germans were Αλαμάνοι /alaˈmani/, when they weren't Νέμτσοι and Νεμίτζοι /ˈnemtsi, neˈmitsi/.


Η αλήθεια είναι πως το άρθρο μου άρεσε όχι μόνο για τις ονομασίες, αλλά και για την προφορά. Όταν έκανα αρχαία (στο πανεπιστήμιο στην Αμερική), η προφορά των αρχαίων ήταν κάπως περίεργη. Έμοιαζε μεν με την Δημοτική, αλλά κάπως περίεργα μου καθόταν. Το θέμα προφοράς θα ήθελα να το ψάξω παραπάνω...
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Disappearing footprints, part deux

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I was having some more thougts on the issue of archiving our digital lives. This line of thought reminds me of Palm's new ad for the Pre that mentions that "your life is made up of so many other lives".

In years past, people snapped candid photos of you in group and private occasions. Those photos may have been shared, or they may have been kept private and you would have been none the wiser. Today the cultural trend seems to be to share app these points of information. Do these need archiving? Well some you might want to archive and others not.

The same holds true for things like facebook; instant messaging and Twitter. These digital media have taken the place of conversation. Do we record every single conversation? No we don't, but there are some coversations that we do save for posterity, or sentimental reasons.

YouTube falls under this category too. A year or so ago I saw a call on some blogs to stop using YouTube videos in blogs because YouTube periodically removes videos and you blog won't make much sense 10 years down the road: perhaps this is true, however why stop using rich media today because it may not be available in the future? When we wrote letters by hand and sent them via snail mail we never (or rarely) attached media. That's because sending a tape or CD may have been a pain. The point is that out text supplemented the video that was generally not there; and if it were, it was generally something we made and not something someone unknown to us made.

In the end, since our digital lives are made up of what we do and what orger people do, is there need to document every single aspect of our digital lives?
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