28 June 2005

Salford : ... One Shocking City!

I discovered today that I worked in One Shocking City

One Shocking City

Apparently, Public hangings are back in Salford

Public Hangings are Back

But furthermore, You're never far from a main artery in Salford

You're never far from a main artery in Salford

and believe it or not, Salford's full of pond life

You're never far from a public artery in Salford

... to discover the truth visit www.oneshockingcity.com

PS. Of course I had no idea as I work in the Ivory Tower

Peel Building, University of Salford

In the meantime, Bolton, where I live, seems to have set its mind to becoming a slum as the Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council has decided to no longer collect refuse weekly but fortnightly! A Dickensian summer in perspective

24 June 2005

Toolbox + Workflow = GTD

I have just come across a very interesting posting by Sonny Cloward over at Vermont Nonprofit CommunIT blogs. He says "I suppose everyone gets those proverbial late night wild hairs every once in awhile and I'm no exception. Around 11:00PM last night I decided it was time to finally do some work flow diagramming; taking my toolbox list and laying out how I use them to Get Things Done. Truth be told, I love doing this sort of stuff."

I am not completely sure about the meaning of "late night wild hairs", and probably do not have enough hair left for anything wild. It remains that I must confess that not only am I partial to both diagramming and minp mapping, but I was doing the very same thing yesterday night. Using the cMap concept mapping software, I was designing a similar diagramme of workflow and tools to clarify my thoughts on my own little on-going experimentation with getting things done.

This involves in my case DevonThink, Gmail, Backpack and Firefox; I am only really taking the first steps towards using ical and/or Mozilla Calendar. The big incentive in this respect has been that my new cell phone, an Sony Ericsson T610, could talk to my Powerbook G4, and syncronise calendars. Having to use wintel at work complicates things but ...

Toolbox + Workflow = GTD Diagramme

19 June 2005

Steve Jobs Speech at Stanford University's 114th Commencement

Steve Job was invited to give the Commencement Adress at Stanford University on 12 July 2005. You may find interesting the account given by the Stanford Report and even more lesson to the actual speech, Heard on Campus: Steve Jobs' 2005 Commencement Address or read Text of Commencement address: 'You've got to find what you love,' Jobs says (6/15/05)

17 June 2005

Ketchup of the day

Baker & McKenzie on of the world largest law firm made the headlines tonight on the BBC, but for all the wrong reasons. The story is given in some details in an article on vnunet.com: Ian Thomson, "On the internet everyone knows you're tight", vnunet, 17 Jun 2005. (Accessed 17 June 2005 at 1913).

"Richard Phillips, a senior associate with Baker & McKenzie ... emailed secretary Jenny Amner asking for £4 to cover the cost of cleaning a ketchup spill she had made on his trousers.
After returning to work the day after her mother's funeral to find a note on her desk reminding her about the money, she replied to his email and forwarded it to colleagues.
"With reference to the email below, I must apologise for not getting back to you straightaway but, due to my mother's sudden illness, death and funeral, I have had more pressing issues than your £4," she wrote.
"I apologise again for accidentally getting a few splashes of ketchup on your trousers. Obviously your financial need as a senior associate is greater than mine as a mere secretary."
Despite friends offering to have a whip-round, Ms Amner paid the money back herself. Meanwhile, the email began circulating within the legal profession before spreading to inboxes worldwide."

Good for you Ms Amner! Richard Phillips, is undoubtedly having his fifteen minutes of fame. I wonder how he likes his fries ?

According to the London Daily Mail, he is a a "City solicitor specialising in computer law and electronic commerce", believe it or not. :-)

16 June 2005

Devonthink Pro

Terribly exiting news: at long last DEVONthink Pro is now available as public beta. The final release is scheduled for the 17 August 2005, it should therefore be available by Christmas! :)


I must say that I like the new icon (below) which is much better than the really uggly brain of the PE version.

10 June 2005

mémoires de la colonisation et manipulations de l’histoire

mémoires de la colonisation et manipulations de l’histoire lundi 6 juin 2005 La LDH vous invite à une rencontre-débat mercredi 15 juin 2005 - 18h - Aix en Provence amphi Guyon - faculté des Lettres (av. Robert Schuman) avec le soutien des sections locales d’AIX-SOLIDARITE, ASTI, ATTAC, MRAP ... [première mise en ligne : le 20 mai 2005, mise à jour : le 6 juin 2005] * Olivier Le Cour Grandmaison, enseignant en sciences politiques à l’université d’Evry-Val d’Essonne, * Gilles Manceron, historien, membre du bureau national de la Ligue des droits de l’Homme, * Christiane Taubira, universitaire, députée de Guyane, auteur de la proposition de loi du 21 mai 2001 qui reconnaît la traite négrière et l’esclavage comme crimes contre l’humanité. Non au mépris de l’Histoire et des victimes Le 23 février 2005, le Parlement a voté une loi qui prévoit que « les programmes scolaires reconnaissent en particulier le rôle positif de la présence française outre-mer, notamment en Afrique du Nord ». Cette loi oublie les souffrances des peuples qui ont été colonisés par la France, et notamment celles des Algériens. Toutes les souffrances méritent d’être reconnues. Mais, concernant la guerre d’Algérie, les seules victimes évoquées dans la loi sont des Français. Et la République continue à garder un silence prudent sur les crimes commis à l’occasion de ce conflit. Injustice également pour les harkis et leurs familles dont la loi ne reconnaît ni l’abandon, ni le traitement discriminatoire qui leur a été réservé en France, dans la pure tradition coloniale. Cette loi est le résultat d’un travail de “lobbying” d’un petit groupe d’activistes, nostalgiques de l’Algérie française, qui détournent à leur profit la douleur mémorielle des rapatriés. Ils ont réussi à faire inscrire dans cette loi une indemnité en faveur d’anciens condamnés de l’OAS, qu’elle semble vouloir ranger parmi ceux qui ont fait « œuvre positive » en Algérie ! Ce sont les mêmes qui comptent, en leur élevant un monument à Marignane le 6 juillet 2005, présenter les membres de cette organisation terroriste comme des héros ! Peut-on exiger de la Turquie ou du Japon la reconnaissance des pages noires de leur passé tout en dispensant la France d’un tel travail ? Alors que de nombreuses personnes issues des anciennes colonies subissent des discriminations inacceptables, cette loi cherche à imposer une vérité officielle aux enseignants et aux chercheurs. C’est une insulte envers eux et envers tous les citoyens. Cette loi doit être impérativement abrogée. Non à l’histoire officielle ! Non à la réhabilitation des crimes et des injustices du passé ! mercredi 15 juin 2005 - 18h amphi Guyon (fac des Lettres) à Aix en Provence

04 June 2005

Problem solved

I have just managed to solve the problem by changing the template I was using on Blogger. Everything seems to have reappeared. But this was SO frustrating.

Trouble with Blogger

I have been experiencing a lot of trouble lately with www.blogger.com. Some of my archive postings seems to no longer appear and I my new postings are not visible. The time to move this blog somewhere else might have come and I am now looking into it.

03 June 2005


I have recently started revisiting Backpack. It clearly had not impressed me at all to start with. My initial conclusion: so what?
Postings by But She is a Girl, tech ronin and plasticboy among others, have made me think that I should perhaps try again.
I gave myself a week to try and integrate it to my current implementation of gtd. After a few days I must say that I am now very, very impressed. So much so that I have already upgraded to the $5 a month option.
. I find the ability to send emails lists on Backpack hugely convenient. The Backpack account gives me the possibility of creating 20 lists, which I use for context and projects. I am now processing emails every time I check my in-box. I use backpack to translates any e-mail, or the meaningful text from emails, into a next action item on the lists I keep in Basecamp. All it takes is to forward to the page. This is very easy as each page has its very own emain address. I also use a gmail account, completely separate from my main email account, to store emails, which I may need just in case. All emails on my main email account have now been processed and I aim at having it empty by the end of each day.

I keep the research side of my work as an academic entirely in Devonthink, as most of the research in libraries and archives is conducted off-line. I incidently spent a wonderful afternoon working on old Edwardian periodicals at the Manchester City Library today.