Monthly Archives: August 2004

on biting bullets

Alex Halavais summarizes very well in a recent posting on quotidian IT hassles: “when it needs to be something that is consistently maintained, and when I want to consistently be able to do something a bit more fun on a Saturday, I need to bite the bullet and leave it to the pros, even if—like paying someone to change the oil—it grates just the tiniest bit.”
These are, after all, productivity tools… and what matters to me is what can be done with them, not the details of how they work. “Now the dependencies start stacking up”, as he puts it.

Halavais’ BlogClass

I’ve been following the blogging of Alex Halavais (at University of Buffalo) for several months, and find his perspectives and initiatives especially interesting. His recent posting of the course information for his imminent BlogClass (“Media in the Information Age”) is a wonderful example of ballsy pedagogical self-invention, and just the sort of thing our little cabal of blog-to-teach-and-learn argonauts needs to follow, study, and adapt where practical and relevant.


Jon Udell continues to be a source of inspiration and an encouragement to keep exploring and expanding Web possibilities. His most recent column Prime-time hypermedia [and see the expansion at infoworld] hits several of my nascent interests, and reminds me of outstanding organizational/retrieval questions:

  • “the two-way Web” that IS blogging isn’t obvious to everybody, but Udell’s is a nice clear crystallization that underlines the essentially communicative side that so attracts me. It’s a way to attract people to the MEDIUM of hypertext.
  • …and it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that the LINKS are the big deal, and that the lattice of interconnections is really the important thing.
  • Multimedia is a grand frontier –but the legalities have to be made not-a-problem, AND users have to have reasonable access, in aural privacy. And so I’m curious about evolving earphone technologies…
  • Udell’s piece underlines how important the information management tools are. The person who is putting togethehr a message with included AV links needs to be able to FIND AGAIN the source stuff. Udell emphasizes finding the extracts via indexed bloggings… but once again we note the vital importance of personal information management…