So there I was, tagging some new social bookmarking web sites to del.icio.us (and of course actually social bookmarking while I was doing it) when my colleague asks me for a pen. As I hunted around in my rucksack pockets behind the cables and memory sticks to find a biro, she remarked: “You obviously don’t have to use a pen very often these days.”, thereby obviously cocking a snook at my technophilia and general nerdiness. I was vaguely ruminating on the truth of this observation when she jaw-droppingly pointed out the reason for her request: “I need it to write down the address of a web site”.

This provided some encouragement to my plans for a work-based social networking project, but left me wondering how much of an uphill struggle it might be to get it working. She readily agreed to join the project when I explained what it was and the irony of her request, but clearly didn’t have too much of a clue as to what I was going on about. I had a similar experience yesterday when explaining the project to one of our IT Power Users; he has decades of nerdiness under his belt but has thus far singularly failed to embrace the Web 2.0 world.

A presentation next week to staff seems to be the way forward with some clear guidelines and a pathway for the project to follow. You never know it might just work.

Aside from its usefulness in the workplace, as part of my studies on H806 (code for a module on the Open University’s MA in Online & Distance Education), this method of sharing resources seems to have great potential for increasing access to well targetted and useful resources related to ours studies. The system of tagging makes it easier to see the relevance of the resource at a glance and will almost certainly save time in looking for resources, hopefully also creating a synergy of aour efforts as they are combined for the greater good of all in this particular community of interest/practice.

My love affair with Ubuntu has experienced something of a renaissance with the arrival of Hardy Heron, or version 8.04, as my fellow Twitterers may already be aware. As I’ve already remarked elsewhere, this user-friendly version is approaching comparisons with Windows for ease of use but still has some aspects that need work. On the plus side, automatic detection of your router settings make navigating a one-click affair these days, while setting up your mail accounts is as simple as under Windows. File-sharing and CD burning are problem free areas. On the other hand, I was becoming frustrated with the general sluggishness of Firefox under Ubuntu, that is until I came across this rather wonderful hack. It makes all the difference and now Ubuntu seemsevery bit as good, if not better, than Windows (if only I can get my web cam to work in Skype). It’s just a pity that all this messing around with code was necessary – still there’s a certain nerdy appeal to it of course, and that surely makes it all worthwhile.

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