Tag Archives: Library

eReaders,Tablets, new technologies, new methodologies

10 Dec

While everybody’s concerned with what the kids are watching, what’s your mom and dad reading on this thing?

With new technologies come new methodologies and the technology that has caught my attention recently is the e-Readers, Kindles, Amazons and tablets (not the pharmaceutical kind), apparently they are addictive, people love them, my love is conditional and i will explain why.

So today after a marvelous bike maintenance workshop by the city of Sydney, i navigated on 2 wheels to the Waterloo library for a wonderful presentation on e-Readers, check it out here, courtesy of Jeffery Cruz and the city of Sydney library

Now whats interesting to me is, there seems to be a big trend for people downloading books on these e-Readers according to futurist Stephen Euin Cobb, it would appear ‘Romance novels‘ are a huge hit on these devices and why? Well, it would appear people like reading stuff that they would be embarrassed to buy, interesting?

Tom Hanks liked e readers in the movie ‘Big’Image

Tom Hanks was in the year 1988, this is 2012, the movie Big was one of the first movies i ever saw in the big screen, back in the days when people (me) would get the bus into the city, queue up and see a movie on a Saturday afternoon, it wasn’t quite Cinema Paradiso, but it wasn’t too far away, the good old days as i sometimes recant

Now, maybe i’m from a different generation or the idea hasn’t really caught on for me and i can see why Steve Jobs would have said dedicated ereaders would never take off, it’s not for me, it wasn’t for him either.

Cinema Paradiso


Maybe Steve Jobs was the kind of guy that would go into any book shop and buy what ever he wanted, whenever he felt like? Me too, except i dont so much buy new books, i like pre loved books and random books, i looked through op shops for over 10 years for a book called ‘Papillion‘, i wanted to buy it for a $1 and i got it at a garage sale too…for a $1 and that people is my thing, i have no idea why i wanted to get that particular book in an op-shop, i dont think downloading it would have been as much fun?

Worth waiting for? You bet!


I like to think books find me, last week i was cycling home and i found a book entitled ‘Your voice and how to use it successfully’, you can download it to your eReader here

And now i realise that we are getting somewhere folks, for rare publications, out of print books, i would defiantly use an eReader, technical books, reference material, of course i would, they are a gift from god, this is why i would love them, otherwise i would rather wait and bide my time and let these publications find me or get them from the library, cycle to the library to get them, stop off in the park, have ice cream, maybe coffee later

I love that experience of going to my library, especially the library in North Carlton in Melbourne and truth be told, i’m not the only one, there are more like me, the nostalgia of Cinema Paradiso for books


The term nostalgia describes a sentimental longing for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations.

I couldn’t help eves dropping on some people around me one day using a computer in the North Carlton library, pretty much everyone around me shared the same story of how they loved going to the library so much, they got rid of thier personal computers at home, for me i would stop for ice cream just up the street, sit in a beautiful park, watch dogs playing, the little kid in me loves that, how could i deny myself that?

It was a great experience that resonated within me, every time, the experience is locked in associations in my mind, its hard to appreciate something if you didn’t grow up with it, now cricket comes to mind


I was quite surprised other people felt the same way of going to a library as me, i really was most of the people were about 20 years older than me too?

Its interesting how these things take off, some ideas take off, some dont, plus an eReader would keep a lot of environmental people happy, but i wonder if people who are all about nature would be all about holding and reading a tablet to Die-Dye a t-shirt?

This is the future and 1988 is here, like it or not, we’ll just have to deal with it, maybe some will take advantage of it and accept ‘romance novel’ are Big, could Tom Hanks have predicted that?

One of the big hits initially with the internet was people felt more comfortable chatting with someone on the other side of the world about their likes and dislikes, a lot of ideas caught on from people chatting with strangers outside their peer groups, just so long as your mom didn’t find out and now, and now she’s got one of these eReaders!

I can remember picking this book up on a beach cafe in India, i didnt put it down until i finished it


I can clearly remember finding at random ‘The count of Monte Christo‘, ‘Dr Pascal‘, Francis Chichester’s autobiography, The lonely sea and sky, don’t judge a book by its cover i remember thinking when i picked it up and that cover was in tatters, i found it in my first night in Sri Lanka too, you can download all these books and check them out yourself, call it  serendipity, maybe it’s something more?

But don’t take my word for it.

Serendipity: A “happy accident” or “pleasant surprise”; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.


What i do like about the eReader is the E Ink technology, crisp clear, and it uses real ink that gets magnetised, the battery lasts two weeks, with WiFi off, it’s not like looking at a screen, so theres no strain on your eyes

The six eReaders that were presented were only 6 months old and are already obsolete now, sounds a bit like stories of laptops 10 years ago, newer models were coming out within months of each other, eReader technology is moving fast and definitely becoming more and more appealing

Social media, the correct use, i didn’t know there was a correct use…

21 Nov

While searching for lectures/information sessions 2 weeks ago, i saw that the city of Sydney library run a series of courses about technology subjects, i picked Social media 101

Introducing Jeffery Cruz and an introduction to social media 101

What i learnt from this session was how to use social media in a positive, less time consuming way

Many businesses and individuals are using social media to:

  • Reach new customers
  • Engage existing customers
  • With the key performance indicators (KPI’s) this effort on social media can be measured on the return
  • 64% of people in Sydney are on Facebook

While Facebook is the current preferred social media of the masses, it’s worth noteing, this might not be the case in the future

What does that mean? Well all signs seem to indicate that Social media isn’t the waste of time other’s make it out to be, the difference being you need to have a strategy before you start participating

Which is another interesting point, the city of Sydney posts content based on a calendar.

Monday might be lifestyle, Wednesday events in the library, Friday might be a weekend festival and so on…

The point is it isn’t randomly created by someone that’s bored with dealing with customers or needs a break from checking in Harry Potter books, to the city of Sydney posting on Facebook, Twitter and the rest is a science an art and it works, Jeffery explained how he controlled content, had tools like Hootsuite to enable them to do just this.

Introducing David

I learned about a librarian futurist called David Lee King, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was all made up, gone are the days where a library was just a library, they are so much more and offer a huge range of services with enthusiastic people who are really switched on to social trends. And they want you too, if that’s your choise

So, i’m now following David and he has some interesting things to say too

The most notable difference after this talk later was my behaviour, i was very excited!

When i was telling some friends about the ideas i learnt, i experienced quite a bit of rolling of the eyes, the playful glance of eyes, like i had lost my marbles and maybe i did?
My mind was being flooded with ideas, new possibilities for moving forward and of course as a professional software tester, stepping up my game and being able to demonstrate just what i am capable of doing, by demonstrating what i have done.

In the presentation Jeffery gave some examples of Facebook pages that had won awards, on of which was a small dog training company from Ireland that took booking’s though their page and others

Introducing Craig Rispin

I was listening to a talk by a futurist called Craig Rispin last week (and he’s coming to Sydney soon too, before Santa Clause too) and he was saying that in the future all jobs will be Freelance, a lot of them currently are if you have been folowing globalisation outsourcing trends

Craig says you need to ask yourself:

* Where do I ultimately want to be in my life?
* How should I do it?
* How does this fit with my life values and goals?
* What could be my next step?
* How can I prepare for the next change as I do my current work?

It’s becoming clearer to me that to have a professional presence on social media is crucial, like it or hate it, this is the way of the future. You are marketing a product, the product it you, if you don’t decide your future someone else will do it for you, thank you someone else, i think I’ll decide my own future

A man ahead of his time on his Nokia?

What’s interesting is, when i think of all of this is that social media technology, iPhone technology is nothing new, what’s new are the ideas, even the ideas are not that new. Not if you spent your youth watching Star Treck that is

If you have the idea you can pretty much do anything, crowd sourcing is an idea for getting the labor, crowd funding is another idea to supply the $$ for the idea

Before the social media presentation i didn’t have any ideas for social media, except maybe it was something to be avoided, all in all, a bad idea and many people are of that opinion.

But not so, the facts speak for themselves.

Jeffery explained:

Incorporate your organisation’s goals to your Social Media Plan:

1. What is your online organisation?
a. What is your unique voice online?
b. What is your story and how is it compelling, authentic, personal?
c. What will make your organisation appealing to SM users?

2. What is your online product?
a. What makes your product different?
b. What makes your product appealing online (photos, videos, stories, interactions)?
c. In addition to your product, what value-added information/entertainment can you provide?

3. Who are your online customers?
a. Demographics (location, gender, age)
b. Interests
c. Spending habits

4. What are your online goals?
a. Build your brand?
b. Drive online traffic? In-person traffic? Immediate sales?
c. Build connections/engage customers?

So, as a software tester, a soon to be freelance software tester, i never thought of this option before, i will now be aligning myself (i am the product) in this light.

The funny thing was, before going to see this Social media talk, i checked out a book downstairs in the library called ‘Accordion crimes‘ by Annie Proulx, a friend said it was the best book he has ever read, i was looking forward to reading it too.

In an Agile world, this book would be on my backlog

After the talk, i brought it back and told the librarian that i just had too much work to do to read Accordion crimes, but it’s on my list, i can order it online and go to my local library and pick it up, just about the only thing i cant do at the library is get coffee, i have to go next door for that and i do.

Everything has its correct use, a machine always has the exact number of functions, nuts and blots, any craftsman will tell you this and a bad craftsman will always blame his tools.

Social media is a great tool i learned and when you know how to use it to your advantage it can make the world of a difference

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