Unplugged. My uncle used to work out of a home office, back in the day when the way to stay connected with the world was to have your own fax machine. On days when he wanted to unplug, he just unplugged the fax machine.
Here is a partial list of things I will be unplugging:
- Turning off my cell phone (client knows the number)
- Not checking my landline answering machine (client knows that number too)
- Not checking work email (client knows that address)
- Not checking personal email (client knows that address too)
- Not checking backup Yahoo mail account (client knows that address too)
- Turning off instant messenger program (always on during working hours)
I will also be turning off my news aggregator and not updating, tweaking, or otherwise working on any of my personal web sites. [dive into mark]
Ideagraph – interesting project for semantic/RDF/topic map folks. Ideagraph is a “Personal Knowledge Manager” that is in early beta. It is intended to eventually be a commercial product, but is currently free to download. [ia/ – information architecture news]
Hottest jobs for College grads. – The sixth one down on the list is corporate librarian. Neataroo!!! Here is the description from the site:
“Job opportunities for librarians not only exist in public libraries and school districts, but there are numerous and well-paying opportunities outside of the traditional environments, such as government agencies, law firms, advertising agencies, museums, professional associations, medical centers, and research laboratories, with salaries reaching to the low- to mid-$60,000 range.” (via Warrior Librarian) [Library Stuff]
Now what I'd like to see is courtrooms deploy wireless access points so that attorneys could, during the course of a trial or hearing, access the Internet to do on the spot research, or pull up a key document from their office. When do you think that will happen? [Ernie the Attorney]
The Chronicle: MIT DSpace Progress. Quote: “Six major research universities announced this week that they are working with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to fine-tune an MIT program for archiving scholarly works called DSpace, which has become wildly popular in academe in just a few months.” [Serious Instructional Technology]
Dealing with difficult clients: Patrick Andrews offers a short taxonomy and set of tips at Builder.com… seems practical, effective. [JD on MX]
“How to be a programmer:” This is a 40-page PDF essay from Robert Read. “I have attempted to summarize as concisely as possible those things that I wish someone had explained to me when I was twenty-one… Debugging is the cornerstone of being a programmer. The first meaning of the word to remove errors, but the meaning that matters is to see into the execution of a program by examining it… beginners have to learn to poke at the code to make it jump.” I've skimmed it, and he seems to hit good topics, although it might be on the wordy side… have printed it out for the bus ride home. [via Slashdot] [JD on MX]
Privacy News from Wired News – 9-Digit 'Social' Overused as ID.
For many American companies and universities, it's common practice to use Social Security numbers as unique identifiers. But growing concerns over identity theft are pressuring state legislators to limit the practice.
[ … ]
Faced with growing pressure from constituents concerned about the risks of identity theft, lawmakers are contemplating ways to curtail use of Social Security numbers for purposes other than taxpayer identification.
“The request for a Social Security number is now often made as if it were the most natural thing in the world, when this number is actually the passport to your identity,” said California Assemblyman Joseph Simitian (D-Palo Alto), who is sponsoring a bill that limits the ways universities and employers can use Social Security numbers.
Simitian's bill, submitted to the state assembly this month, would prohibit universities from using Social Security numbers on student IDs, a practice that has provided easy pickings for identity thieves.
The bill would also prohibit any employer “from requiring an employee to use his or her Social Security number for any purpose other than taxes,” and would raise criminal penalties for those who misappropriate the numbers of minors.
[ … ]
Several states, including New York, Arizona, Wisconsin and Rhode Island already have statutes on the books that limit how schools may use Social Security data, Hoofnagle said. A number of universities have also established task forces to develop ID systems that keep Social Security numbers secure. [Privacy Digest]
ABC News (Australia)- Face scan set to replace passport check..
A new air passenger identification system that uses automatic photo-matching technology instead of a Customs officer has been launched in Sydney.
The technology is called biometrics and uses body characteristics like fingerprints, iris patterns and face recognition to check identity.
Passengers will walk through a kiosk called Smartgate, place their passport picture on a scanner and look into a camera, which performs verification in less than 10 seconds.
It replaces the face-to-passport check normally done by a Customs official and takes into account age, ethnicity, expression and changes such as hair and glasses. [Privacy Digest]