Saturday, May 28, 2005

Paper Chase worth staying up for

I've always loved The Paper Chase in all its forms: book, TV series, and especially movie. Tonight the movie is on and it brings back lots of memories from high school. This was my first glimpse into what university would be like (albeit Harvard law school!). Would we have such large classes, ruthless professors, and difficult relationships with our fellow students? Would we be driven to near-insanity by the workload? Well, I guess we tried our best to make it thus, but thankfully the film is far more dramatic.

I especially enjoyed the scene with the two students moving into an hotel room just before exam time. They send away the TV, and study their brains out for two days straight. The hotel cleaning staff: "They don't want their room cleaned. Nobody's seen 'em and they've been in there two days. Something funny's going on." When I was in school I always fantasized about booking myself into an hotel to help me focus on my studies. For some reason residence never really felt like that hotel room.... Fortunately I was also spared study groups and having to construct course outlines. 8-)

Friday, May 27, 2005

New Drug Adverse Reaction Database

This week Health Canada opened up its Canadian Adverse Drug Reaction Monitoring Program (CADRMP) Adverse Reaction Database. I got as far as the big disclaimer/explanation pages and quit there. Perhaps someone who needs to use it can try it out and let me know how well it works. It doesn't look like something you would casually test out for fun, that's for sure. I expect that was done on purpose: you can imagine how the drug companies would like having adverse reactions waved around in the public.

Here is the press release as well, dated May 25/05: Minister Dosanjh announces the launch of a searchable online database of health product adverse reactions.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Materials - CALL/ACBD 2005 Annual Conference

Materials from CALL/ACBD 2005 Annual Conference are now being posted together on one page here. (My link is to English materials; click on "Francais" in upper right of the page to access the French).

At some point I will put a direct post to my two presentations (poster and PowerPoint) on this blog, but they are both available from this page. "Anatomy of a Blog", the poster presentation, is one PowerPoint slide. I have reduced it to letter size so you can print it out if you like. The one listed as "Blogging Presentation" includes a bibliography of recent articles on blogging.

Let me know if you have any questions.


Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Blogging - Hyperlocal Expertise

Lately I have been asked a lot of questions about the benefits of blogging. One question in particular has made me pause a few times this week: does it not defeat the purpose of blogging if everyone blogs? Are we not better with fewer blogs? My off-the-cuff response was that, the more blogs, the more specific each blog can be in its topics and coverage.

Supporting that idea is an excellent post by Toronto lawyer Rob Hyndman: Blogging - Hyperlocal Expertise. From his article:
One of the fascinating possibilities that blogging has created is low-cost, user-generated news and information about local community.

Have a look.

TALL 25th Anniversary - June 23, 2005

I attended one of the planning meetings for the TALL 25th anniversary party, and I must say it is shaping up to be a terrific evening! This will be a great opportunity to see old colleagues, meet new ones, and take a fun walk down memory lane.

Quite a few people have registered already, but there is still room (we aren't limiting the numbers). Registration and payment is due June 1st. For further information, see the webpage and the dinner reply form (pdf).

Can't wait! I hope to see you there.


Tuesday, May 24, 2005

New: Thomson CompuMark

As of May 9, 2005 Thomson & Thomson in North America combined with Compu-Mark in Europe and Brandy International in Japan to form Thomson CompuMark. See the press release. A little bit light on the facts, but as a client we did receive a more informative letter.

Thomson & Thomson are the people who brought us trademark search tools Saegis and Trademarkscan. The new Thomson CompuMark is a business owned by the ubiquitous Thomson Corporation.

Monday, May 23, 2005

CALL 2005 - St. John's - my blog coverage

To view all my coverage of the CALL conference, somewhat in order, take a look at all my May 2005 postings. There is some extraneous material here, but mostly it is photos and some written impressions of the conference. Enjoy!!

Monday Reception

Monday Reception
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

A better photo of the Canada Law Book reception Monday night at The Rooms.

Tuesday Cocktails

Tuesday Cocktails
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Cocktails were held in the "Garden" area of the hotel. We were then escorted into the dinner by a drum regiment. Unfortunately my photos of that part were too dark.

Celtic Fiddlers

Celtic Fiddlers
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Our pre-dinner entertainment. They invited us up for a "scuff".

Pre-Dinner Scuff

Pre-Dinner Scuff
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

A couple of our local hosts took them up on the invitation, to everyone's delight.

The Irish Descendents

The Irish Descendents
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Local celebrities The Irish Descendents played after dinner. We had a terrific time, especially those of us who had attended their concerts in town the previous three nights.

Enthusiastic Dancers

Enthusiastic Dancers
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

The dance floor was quite crowded; this is the best shot I could get of the big group arm-in-arm dancing together in a sort of group jig.

Wednesday Coffee Break

Wednesday Coffee Break
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

After the AGM, a number of people stuck around for the final session. The numbers at this coffee break were no indication as to how full the room would really be.

The Tip

The Tip
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

"Thank you for the tip. Have a great afternoon!

Room Attendant

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Law Librarian Blog - Academic Focus

Based in the U.S., the jointly produced Law Librarian Blog has an academic focus. Part of the Law Professors Blog Network. Edited by Joe Hodnicki of University of Cincinnati Law Library. Contributing editors are Mark Giangrande of DePaul University Law Library and Ron Jones of University of Cincinnati Law Library. Sponsored by LexisNexis. Taking law library blogs to the next level...

UBC's Law Library Blog

Thanks for reminding me about this, Elim! -- University of British Columbia's Law Library Blog. Notably they are posting their new books (or "new acquisitions" in libraryspeak).

St. John's Celebrity Sightings

Well, anecdotal evidence suggests there are more celebrities per capita in St. John's than in Toronto (and I do see a LOT of celebrities in Toronto). In addition to Blue Rodeo on the flight over, Wendy and others report having Justin and Sasha Trudeau on the flight over with them. Wendy saw Mary Walsh in the hotel on her floor. I am currently in the airport waiting to get out and have seen the lead singer of Great Big Sea,Alan Doyle, on his way to a concert in Yellowknife, and pollster Allen Gregg is here in the waiting room. I suppose it might have something to do with being on a rare direct flight between St. John's and Toronto, if there is going to be a celebrity this is the flight they will be on. And is it a coincidence that Blue Rodeo and Great Big Sea are friends? It appears it is the season for Canadian concert tours!

Reuse Those CDs! Mail Art Project

Here is a little aside: from creative Carla Cryptic comes a new type of mail art project, the Mandala Mail Art Call. "Mandala" is Sanskrit for circle and this project is about circles, oh, about the size of that CD you are about to throw out. Carla asks us to explore some artistic alternatives. Due date for this project is June 30th, 2005.

I have sent Carla mail art once or twice in the past (a long, long time ago). She often puts the results together as an exhibition, either physically or virtually.

Carla, by the way, was one of my fellow hosts on Cafe Utne a lifetime ago (of which I have spoken periodically). I like to check in periodically to see what new projects she has on the go!


Final Day CALL 2005 - quick summary

This morning's AGM was well-attended. We had a by-law amendment to allow for electronic voting; a resolution (the content of which I should probably allow to be publicized by more official means); and messages from the various associations represented (AALL, BIALL, the Australian law libraries group, New Zealand Law Libraries, and SLA - Legal Division were represented). A public thank you was made to the 2005 Conference Planning Committee, and the 2006 Committee made a splash for their city, Edmonton. They showed us the entertaining film Edmonton: The Movie. Then they had us all sing an Edmonton folk festival favourite, Ian Tyson's Four Strong Winds which nicely tied in with the theme, "Four Strong Winds: Leadership, Resources, Innovation, Expectations". Perhaps they will be holding more singsongs in Edmonton?? We then had an entertaining entrance by new CALL President John Sadler in his sou'wester. I'm afraid my photographs in this area are sorely lacking!

After the coffee break we enjoyed a panel discussing reference tools: how to conduct reference with someone at a distance; an academic review/study as to how reference research has changed since 1985 when electronic resources became more prevalent; top 10 non-legal resources for the law librarian. All speakers, Caroline Hyslop, Holly James and Lindsay Glynn, were excellent.

After that, a number of people shipped out; however, I was surprised to see how many are staying around to spend some personal time either around St. John's or around Newfoundland. Pairs of familiar faces could be seen strolling around the Duckworth and Water Streets in the early evening.

Vanessa and I had dinner in a local pub this evening, having barely seen each other during the whole conference. We agreed, however, that we've had an excellent experience here. Despite the cold! Fortunately the sun was still shining (even while the fog rolled in) as we walked around.

I hope to post more photos soon, but have run out of all that energy this evening. I am heading back home tomorrow afternoon. Vanessa is off on a boat to see the puffins and then will be touring the island for several days. I am envious! However, at this point it will be quite wonderful to see home (whatever state it is in, Mom) and sleep in my own bed.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

A Quick Update

Well, I haven't been able to blog as much as I hoped. I was optimistic the conference centre would have good wireless connection so I could blog to you during sessions; however, it appears the wireless was mostly in the lobby. Nevertheless I have continued to take photos and mental notes and will gradually catch up over the next few days.

Let me tell you, however, that I just got back to my room from a riotous good time dancing to the Irish Descendents. Really only stopped because the band did finally. What a great time! I think they were genuinely surprised how much this group partied.

It was called the closing banquet, but we have a little more to go tomorrow--final installment of the AGM and then last programme before the crowds head out.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

CALL/ACBD 2005 - Welcome Sign

CALL/ACBD 2005 - Welcome Sign
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This sign greeted us each day at the entrance. I LOVE the logo of the houses in St. John's.

Sunday Reception

Sunday Reception
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Hosted by CCH at the GEO Centre. This photo taken from the glass elevator looking down. Note the planets at the top. We toured the Titanic exhibit and the geological exhibit.

Monday - Connie Speaking

Monday - Connie Speaking
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is me in action during the "Cool Things I am Doing in my Law Library" session. Eight presentations, five minutes each. I was thankful not to have to speak longer than a few minutes! The room was packed, and I even heard of people who could not get in. Thanks to Steve for kindly taking photos for me during the session!

Monday - St. John's Harbour

Monday - St. John's Harbour
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Monday afternoon between sessions, Richard and I took advantage of the sun to have a nice stroll. Some great photos!

Monday - Tall Ship

Monday - Tall Ship
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Richard kindly took this photo of me. That is not a toy behind me--that is a real tall ship in the harbour.

Monday - Reception

Monday - Reception
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is from the reception at The Rooms, new imposing architecture not yet opened. Canada Law Book hosted this one to celebrate their 150th birthday. They also made the announcement that (surprise, surprise) they were newly co-operating with Thomson Carswell to create a new IP product on WestlaweCarswell (presumably to be called IP Source). Even though some of us saw it coming a mile away, it still seems a bit strange (a la Belinda Stronach as a Liberal...)

Tuesday - Coffee Break

Tuesday - Coffee Break
Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Tuesday's coffee break was held in the "garden" area of the hotel while the exhibits were being torn down in preparation for the evening's banquet.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

My Head is Swimming

First day in to CALL 2005, and already my head is swimming with ideas. I helped to host the First Timers' breakfast this morning, which was host to over 20 people whose first time it was to the conference, and our delegates from other countries. I met quite a few people who are delighted to be here first time out. One good tip we learned was that, unless a session is specifically marked "closed" in the programme, everyone attending is welcome to a session.

Immediately after we slipped in to some of the Special Interest Group (or SIG) business meetings. I caught the end of the Private Law Libraries (PLL) SIG, where they managed to appoint a couple of co-chairs for next year. This is not an onerous job as the SIG does not have a lot of carry-over business one year to the next, and the main bit of business is to chair the annual meeting (such as this one) and organize a speaker at the annual conference. This year's topic is negotiating skills Tuesday afternoon featuring Denis Mahoney, partner at McInnes Cooper. Looks like he may be using the "Getting to Yes" model of negotiation (originated at Harvard Business School), something which we strive toward in my firm as well. The suggestion for next year's session is regarding training (presumably of law students--I only heard the last snippet of this).

Then it was off to the Vendors Liaison SIG. Wendy Reynolds and Mary Saulig from Toronto spoke to their involvement giving CCH feedback at a focus group yesterday. They invited other vendors to use CALL member librarians (and presumably other law librarians) as a resource for improving their products and getting feedback, both bad and good. Pat McNeill from LexisNexis Canada Inc. spoke to the question of the content of Factiva moving over, and he invites input from librarians as to what we would like to see happen in the transition. He has invited us to the booth to discuss this. Presumably if you weren't at the conference you can contact him or your sales rep if you have feedback in this regard. The consensus seems to be that we trust Pat and know he will do his best to smooth things over with this difficult transition period.

Finally, the new Knowledge Management SIG held its first organizational meeting, run by Phyllis Thornton and Jane Parkinson. Phyllis was unanimously appointed as the new chair. This group is co-sponsoring the session on Tuesday originally organized by the Electronic Information SIG, the topic being developing a taxonomy for business records classification. Today the new KM SIG developed an idea of how this group will share ideas, what level of interest everyone has with KM, and the types of topics we would like covered in the next year. It was felt it is time to embrace KM rather than waiting until we are pulled "kicking and screaming" towards it. Level of expertise in the room ranged from "gestation" to "advanced knowledge".

Some other things that have come to mind as I have spoken with colleagues. These are just little ideas not fully gelled yet:

- if we want students and new librarians to be involved, we need to lead the way. We need to extend a personal hand to contact them and not expect they find us on their own. If we want them to develop CALL (and other organizations) in a certain way, we have to lay the groundwork and pass along the memory of that groundwork to them. We can't just toss it up in the air and hope someone will catch it.

- lawyers are highly skilled wordsmiths. Whether students, practitioners, or judges, we have to take care with the wording we use, written and oral. Rather than focusing on the ideas we are conveying (oft times in quickly-spewed e-mail messages) they may be focused on our exact phraseology. Should you have used "at" "on" or "in"? It makes a great deal of difference to them, and so should it, as a result, to us. They may have a difficult time hearing the message if it is not relayed correctly. In the case of e-mail, best get to the point in the first couple of sentences.

- Wal-mart and other big box stores are starting to require their vendors mark products with RFID tags. Should we be requiring the same of our vendors, with CIP (generic bibliographic/catalogue info) included in the tags? We could load data from the RFID tags up to our catalogues by scanning, "tweak" the records for our own libraries, then re-load the corrected version back onto the tag. Sue Rigney from the Dept. of Justice in Brisbane says she walks around and scans the barcodes in each office each week to track location of the books. With RFID tags we could just walk around the halls to read this information. I'm waiting for the day when we can track it all on satellites! (And in case you asked, RFID = radio frequency identification - see RFID in Libraries.

That's it for now! I'm going back now to see the vendor demos. A little break and then the opening reception. I am starting to get hungrier what with little substantial food. I may need to grab a bite beforehand.....


Saturday, May 14, 2005

This Morning's Sightseeing in Newfoundland - Flat Rock

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This morning Marty and I took a drive part-way around the northern coast from St. John's. This is at Flat Rock

Flat Rock - take 2

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is a continuation of the coastline--a boathouse is perched on top of a natural boat ramp.

Blessing of Pope John Paul II

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

"Site of the Blessing of the Fleet and Homily By His Holiness Pope John Paul II September 12th 1984"

Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto. In 1958 a bishop travelled to Lourdes, France, site of various Mary sightings (I think). He was impressed with how the rock formations were similar to here near St. John's, so he created the Stations of the Cross in the rock. It appears they have everything to conduct a service outdoors as well. Marty and I walked around and up top, as there are stairs carved into the rock. It is difficult to see against the bright sky, but their is a crucifix on top of the rock on the left side.

Pope John Paul Was Here

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

In front of the "pulpit" at Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto: "On this Spot His Holiness Pope John Paul II Knelt and Prayed September 12th 1984"

Pouch Cove

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Coastline at Pouch Cove.

Coastline at Torbay, Newfoundland

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Coastline at Torbay. This photo was taken from a churchyard, as evidenced by the graveyard in the foreground.

Friday, May 13, 2005

View from my window in St. John's

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is the view from our window at the conference hotel. This photo was taken yesterday about 5 pm, when it was quite foggy. This is looking out over downtown St. John's, Newfoundland.

Breakfast at Classic Cafe, St. John's

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Marty recommended we eat at the Classic Cafe, across the street from the conference hotel. It was almost noon (more lunch than breakfast), so I had the "Newfoundland Fish Cakes" which included two huge cod and potatoe cakes, two eggs, toast, and home fries. Marty was trying to get me to order scrunchions, but I wisely selected this instead. (Scrunchions are basically fried pork fat and wouldn't do in my diet at all!)

Lighthouse at Cape Spear

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is, you guessed it, the Lighthouse at Cape Spear.

Connie at Cape Spear

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

This is me earlier today at Cape Spear, the most easterly point of North America. It is raining and I am a little soggy here!

Overlooking the lighthouse from Signal Hill

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

View from Signal Hill, looking out over the lighthouse. The Cape Spear lighthouse is located on the point at the left (in the distance)

Tour of Quidi Vidi Brewing Company

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

Marty and I took a tour of Quidi Vidi Brewing Company (the green building). $3 for the tour, $5 for tour with tasting of all their beers, $6 for tour, tasting, and a free beer! We went for the $5 deal. Our tour guide, a marketing student, was very knowledgeable.

St. John's Friday afternoon

Originally uploaded by ConnieC.

The view from our window Friday afternoon. After raining during our big tour, the sun broke out when we reached the hotel again!

Can't Find this Blog?

Thanks for checking out this blog! I am currently at the annual conference for the Canadian Association of Law Libraries, this year in St. John's, Newfoundland. Photographic evidence above!

If you cannot gain access to this blog, it may be that the support service, Blogger, is down for maintenance. I was trying to gain access earlier today and was frustrated with it down. Please have patience and try back in an hour if you cannot get on.


Hello from St. John's!

Arrived about 4:45 yesterday. Mild weather, not much cooler than Toronto, but foggy. Today is cooler still, about 7 C, with rain and possibility of snow.

We had a good flight over; they said it would be rough, but seems to me it was actually quite smooth. Several of our colleagues were on the same flight. Also most of the band Blue Rodeo, on their way to do a few concerts on the Rock, playing at Mile One Stadium here in St. John's tonight. Jim Cuddy was actually sitting with me and Marty. I think there might be a joke in there somewhere....a country/pop band and some law librarians were on a flight to Newfoundland... Oh, never mind.

We found a nice spot for dinner last night, the Thymestone Cafe on Duckworth Street. It was pricey for St. John's, but we thoroughly enjoyed our meal. And we had the place to ourselves at 7 pm on a Thursday evening. I had a lovely squash/roasted vegetables soup, and the wild mushroom ravioli Marty had was to die for. For our main courses I had the special, a cod and salmon combo and Marty had "surf and turf". We were both very pleased with our choices. Portions were a good size but not too big. Anyone here at the conference looking for a nice meal, I would highly recommend it. The soups, salads and appetizers in particular sound exquisite. Marty says the Thymestone Cafe is a relatively new place since it wasn't here last June when he was last here. Hopefully it is here to stay.

Well, I look forward to seeing some of you arrive on Saturday, and for others hopefully I will get the photographs working shortly.


Wednesday, May 11, 2005

CALL on the Cover of The Lawyers Weekly

I am quite excited--our talk at the upcoming CALL conference "Cool Things I am Doing in My Law Library" has been covered by the May 13, 2005 issue of The Lawyers Weekly, and the photo of yours truly (same one as I use for this blog) has been included. See May 13 Lawyers Weekly PDF for the front cover. (It will be up on the website for about a week).

Full text of the article is currently available here: current issue The Lawyers Weekly (again, for about a week).

How thrilling! I look forward to seeing lots of you in St. John's. I will, by the way, hopefully be blogging from the conference. Maybe even adding photos if all goes well with the new camera battery. I leave for St. John's tomorrow, so will send out a message to the CALL listserv if I can get it all working and will be blogging.

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Where Were You When You Realized the World Is Flat? (Or Have You?) has a great interview with Thomas L. Friedman, the author of the new non-fiction book The World Is Flat : Where Were You When You Realized the World Is Flat? (Or Have You?).

Quoted from the interview:

...most of our political elite has not realized that the world is flat. Most of the leading U.S. companies get it and are responding like crazy. But no one has told the country, because most of our politicians don’t have a clue. I just wrote a 469-page book about this and I interviewed only two people in Washington--and I live in Washington! [laughter] We are led by lawyers who do not understand either technology or balance sheets. I am hoping, though, that many of them have kids, who, when they have a moment to take a break from their iPods, Internet, or Google, will explain to their parents running the country just how the world is being flattened.


I have a daughter who is a sophomore in college and another who is in the 11th grade of high school. My message to them is very simple: Girls, when I was growing up my parents used to say to me, "Tom, finish your dinner. People in China and India are starving." I say to my girls, "Girls, finish your homework. People in China and India are starving for your jobs." When the world was round, say 30 years ago, you would much rather have been born a B+ student in Indianapolis, Indiana, rather than a genius in Bangalore, India. Because the Indian genius, unless he or she could get a visa out of India, really could not plug and play with his or her talent. Today, you do not want to be a B+ student in Indianapolis. You would much rather be a genius in India, because that genius can now innovate at a global level without ever having to emigrate. That is what the flat world makes possible.

Should we be concerned about this?--

There is no substitute for face-to-face reporting and research. But it is now much easier to do all the things that go with it. I basically did all the library research for this book on Google, and it not only saved me enormous amounts of time but actually gave me a much richer offering of research in a shorter time....

Certainly some thought-provoking statements in the interview. Okay, so now I'm going to have to take a look at the book itself.

Aside from supply chains, economics, and globalization, I think the act of blogging itself has helped to flatten things out. Never before has it been so easy for so many average people to publish their opinions widely. I wonder if we are in the midst of a publishing revolution as influential as the advent of the Gutenberg printing press?

Monday, May 09, 2005

Virtual Reference Coming Soon for Ontario Lawyers

Michel-Adrien Sheppard, in his blog Library Boy, points out a recent notice from Library Co., the country and district law libraries system in Ontario: LibraryCo appoints Project Manager for Virtual Reference Service. It will be interesting to see what business model this virtual reference takes on, whether extended hours will be in the picture. If so, it may just supplement reference already provided on a "9 to 5" (I use this phrase loosely) basis.

My CALL 2005 Presentations

I will be making a short presentation about my blog at the upcoming CALL conference. I will be talking about why I started blogging, benefits I have seen, and where blogs are going in the future. All in five minutes! It is part of the "Cool Things I am Doing in My Law Library" session on Monday. See: Program - CALL/ACBD 2005 Annual Conference - Monday May 16, 2005.

I have also created a related poster presentation, called "Anatomy of a Blog". I finished creating that last night, and think it looks pretty good for my first attempt at a poster. It will hopefully be printed out for me in 3 ft X 4 ft size tomorrow. Can't wait to see it! I chose a simplified look at a blog, both the public screen and the behind-the-scenes administrative screens. Since it uses this blog for the screen shots, it therefore has a focus on Blogger features. It will allow me not only to talk about how easy it is to set up a blog with Blogger, but will also allow me to discuss other features available in packages such as WordPress and Typepad. For anyone who is currently blogging, I doubt there will be anything new; however, I find a lot of people are still not familiar with all of this so will be a good starting point for discussions.

If you are at the CALL conference, do drop by my poster. I hope to get it set up Saturday afternoon. I look forward to your questions and feedback.


Friday, May 06, 2005

Blog Software for Law Firms

From "Real Lawyers :: Have Blogs", this post is interesting: Which blog software best for law firms?. Kevin O'Keefe recommends the use of WordPress or Moveable Type for firm use. He says Blogger is fine for personal and social journaling, but WordPress and Moveable Type are more professional. Also, they may allow for taking an RSS feed from the firm blog and posting it to a firm's website. Both of these applications require technical set up and periodic installation of updates. As he says, you wouldn't use a Yahoo or AOL e-mail address for work, why would you use a free application for work blogging? It's good to learn on the free "amateur" applications, but when using it on a professional level, get the professional application. I tend to concur, but have yet to move away from Blogger myself. Maybe someday soon!

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Are Bloggers Journalists? - Protecting Confidential Sources

Some good things in today's Modern Practice from Findlaw. Of note is this article about a high profile court case in the U.S., discussing whether bloggers can be considered journalists and thereby keep their sources confidential: Can Bloggers Invoke the Journalist's Privilege to Protect Confidential Sources Who Leak Trade Secrets? in this month's Cyberlaw column by Julie Hilden.

Developing a Law Firm Taxonomy

Today's Modern Law from Findlaw had some gems in it. In particular, I thought people interested in KM or indexing generally might find this article useful: Developing a Global Law Firm Taxonomy, Inside-Out - this month's Technology Tech column by Jason Marty.

He compares two different ways to develop a taxonomy for a law firm. He relates this back to work done at the global law firm Baker & McKenzie, where they looked to the experience of other law firms before jumping into this area. From the introduction:

We were interested to note that for some firms, the difficulties a global taxonomy project entails are causing them to focus more energy on other aspects of content management - search, information architecture and workflow. A global law firm taxonomy though, if accepted and adopted, can provide tremendous benefits to working lawyers, not only by helping them find needed content, but also by helping organize activities and content development efforts.

Nov. 5/08 - link updated

Monday, May 02, 2005

Les Blogs - conference WIKI

Posting this here for my future reference: Les Blogs wiki - Paris 2005. Take a look. I found it from a link to a recent paper on Sabrina Pacific's blog beSpacific.

Hunter's Passing

I am saddened to hear about the passing of Bob Hunter earlier today. While I came to know him on our local TV station City Pulse, especially from his "Paper Cuts" segment on Breakfast Television where he gave a critical reading of the morning's newspapers, he is best known for his environmental work. He was a founder of Greenpeace and spoke often of his experiences.

See the story here: Pulse24 - Toronto's News.

Thomson Financial acquires Macdonald & Associates

Thomson Financial, owned by Thomson Corporation, has now acquired Macdonald & Associates Limited. MacDonald & Associates specialize in Canadian private equity market information and are best known for their service the VCReporter. See: press release (PDF).

See also the Macdonald & Associates website .

Another independent info company being purchased by one of the "big three". Sigh.

CSA - Industry news feeds

The Canadian Standards Association is now publishing industry-specific news from this page: CSA - News & Events - Industry News. News is provided by Thomson Dialog's NewsEdge service. Industries covered are: construction, electrical, environmental, fuel cell technology, health care, oil & gas, and privacy news. Articles appear to be very specific--about specific companies and products.

While it doesn't look like you can read these feeds in an aggregate feed reader, you can sign up for an e-mail subscription to the industries of your choice and receive the headlines once a week.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

I'm now updated

Last night I added my updated photo. But wait, there's more! I spent tonight working on the column to the right, finally giving you direct access to my feed once again, adding links for sites I refer to frequently, and list of blogs I like to read now and then. Of course, it took several hours only because I had to read through all of the latest on each of them since I hadn't read them in a while.

Still to do: add statistics counter; list of blogsearch links (esp. for those with which I'm listed); and as per the last post, improve the printability.

All of this is in preparation for the "Cool Things" session at the upcoming CALL conference. I have five minutes to talk about my blog. My focus will be: why I started blogging, what benefits I have seen, and where I see blogs going in the near future. For anyone into blogs, most of it won't be news; however, I figure it will be personal. I'm hoping to also put together a little bibliography of recent papers and articles on blogging.

They've also suggested I do a poster session to accompany this presentation so I can speak individually with people. I have an idea for that, but want to keep it under wraps until it's actually put together. You know, just in case I decide to go in a different direction.

Well, time to pack it in. It's been a busy day; in addition to my usual workout and lunch-with-the-gang routine, had to hunt down a fleece for CALL (in St. John's) and office supplies (bought a new colour toner cartridge finally) and signed up for the SLA conference at the last minute i.e. just before the early bird pricing ended. Back to the gym in a few short hours (spinning at 9:30 am), and then groceries and continuing on with the PowerPoint for the presentation. Oh well, the housework will have to wait yet again. Oh, but I got the laundry done as I've been sitting here. I've got that going for me.