On the use and abuse of Technology and its Management from the perspective of an academic at UCL specialising in Project Management, Systems Engineering and Space Science/Technology.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Doug Mather : communications

Doug Mather of The Creation Company spoke at tonight's UCL/APM Project Management workshop about communications issues in project teams, using a fun exercise based on Myer-Briggs Type Indicator theory.

The fun part was getting up and moving around according to one's assessement of position along the various type axes. Great ice-breaker, and also the physical act of moving seats places you in a mental "camp", which illustrates the theory nicely.
Why can't that lot be more like us?
He's graciously provided his slides: 760 KB Powerpoint file

Friday, November 18, 2005

Hello Dave

I'm glad to see Peter Antonioni has resurged his blogpiece. He's a management lecturer with me at UCL, but he's got good qualities as well.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Subscribing to feeds

You might have heard of RSS FEEDS, or Atom feeds, and wondered what they all are.

RSS and Atom allow you to simply subscribe to a weblog to receive new postings in what’s called a news aggregator or newsreader (NB not the same as software that gathers Usenet articles).

First get hold of an aggregator. I’d recommend setting up an account with Bloglines (it’s free and works on any machine with a web browser, and there's no software to install) – but if that's not to your taste there are many others.

If you’d like some step-by-step help then this ‘how to’ is perfect for a Bloglines beginner.

Then copy and paste the URL of the RSS feed (in this case of Double Loop: “http://loop2.blogspot.com/atom.xml”) into the appropriate box and click on ‘Subscribe’ (or ‘add’ or whatever looks best)..

Now you can check your aggregator the same way you can check email. Each time a new item is posted to this weblog you’ll be able to read it there.

What’s even better is that you can now use the aggregator to subscribe to as many weblogs and news sources as you like… for example if you like one site you will probably like some of the sites they are reading (typically listed down the right of any given blog), they all have RSS or Atom too.

In fact the Guardian has RSS feeds, so does the NY Times and so does the BBC. These links will tell you more about their feeds.

So when you turn on your aggregator it’s like you’re reviewing hundreds of sites to check for new content, all by visiting one place.

So what are you waiting for, get going… get a bloglines account (1 minute), subscribe to my RSS feed, check out the sites I’m reading, your favourite news sites, subscribe to them and you'll wonder how you managed before!

[If this text looks familiar, it's because I nicked it almost verbatim from Incorporated Subversion.]

Friday, November 11, 2005

Mind the planet

I'm really not sure about Minding the Planet. On the one hand it's interesting enough, and up to speed on right-now things in webness. On the other hand, it's a bit gee whizz and breathless about other topics. I had thought about unsubbing (a bit of churn in my bloglines can't be bad - let's get things done - GRR!) but I'm letting it stay for now, especially since I might get one of his 178+ readers to come here.

My aim is to steer my blog reading habit away from the obvious top of the rankings pioneer blogs to sources that are directly related to what I'm all about, with a healthy mix of the broad and the deep.

You know, everybody subscribes to Kottke, because he's Kottke. It's how the power law is powered. These days he's in HK looking for things to eat rather than doing groovy web design (which is why everyone latched onto him in the first place – only he had a clue about what CSS was for).

And another thing, just while I'm being iconoclastic, I really don't get calling things Web 2.0, (graphic) let alone Web 3.0 (semantic layer). I see a sort of progressionist fallacy emerging, and I don't think life's like that. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for microcontent and emergence and user-driven change and peer power, but I don't think I need a one-dimensional label for it.

Speaking of links in general, if you look at Matt Whyndham on Superglu you'll see there's now a feed. So you can subscribe to all my web stuff in one place if you want to.