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Octoberfest links

What downturn?

It turned out that embedding a call for documentation writers in between screeds about the election turned out to be wildly effective (even though I do not speak for My Place Of Work, blah blah blah — something they did NOT ask me to say, in case you’re wondering).

I wish I could get Margaret and Helen to post this, but FRL will have to do: My Place Of Work even has a little more documentation work left — and not only that, MPOW has two openings (two!) for “self-motivated, enthusiastic software developers … with at least 2 years of systems (non-web) development experience.”

Access was Fabu!

I finally made it to Access, and this conference was amazing (except that Amy Buckland and I never got to meet — boohoo!). The favorite modifier was “Evergreen,” as in Evergreen-LibX, Evergreen-Vufind, Evergreen-SOPAC, Evergreen-Zotero, Evergreen-Google-Book-Search… whew!

The list of people I finally got to meet face-to-face — and it’s a long list! — included Andrew Nagy (I’ve seen him from afar), Annette Bailey, Godmar Back, David Fiander, and Dan Scott. I also had reunions with many, many folks. Conferences are about learning, but a lot of that learning happens informally… there’s something so companionable about sitting at a table with people I like while we listen to a speaker and tap away at our laptops.

Tweeting the Debate!

During the debates I’ve been wildly tweeting — and now I learn I can even embed my tweets in this coverage! Twitter, despite some bumpy scalability issues earlier this year, has really embraced its zeitgeist with a Twitter site specific to politics (post there, and your tweet also shows up in your timeline). The debate may push me over the 5,000-tweet mark!

My writing

Someone wrote me yesterday to mention I hadn’t written much about my writing. Lately I have had time for two writing activities: aggressively revising older essays (and sending them out), and staying on top of the monthly writing workshop I manage.

The workshop is good because when I’m not writing, I should be thinking about how to write, and every month I need to look very closely at several manuscripts. I do have a whole “how to run a writing workshop” post in my head, but my failure to write about writing may be more of a sign that when I have a little time, I’m actually writing.

How to “win” against open source

This article, co-authored by Harvard and Stanford business wonks, made my skin crawl. I’ve wanted to respond to it in length, but in some ways I’m simply dumbfounded. You should read the full article to really catch the strange alien vibe of economists talking about how to use the “network effect” (which they do not fully understand to begin with) and other strategies to undermine open source. Even Gartner, the ultimate business-analysis squares, has cautiously tipped its hat to open source (in a kludgey, uncle-with-obvious-dentures-and-green-plaid-jacket sort of way). Boo Harvard and boo Stanford.

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