I need a place to accumulate odds and ends that have to do with preparing for retirement --ruminations, legacy stuff, things to do and not-do, etc. This is it. To some degree, it's also a continuation of The Disgruntlement File, but the Watchword is/should be Fuggeddaboudit!, liberally applied, with a dash of Master Kung:

The Master said, "To learn something and then put it into practise at the right time: is this not a joy?

To have friends coming from afar: is this not a delight?

Not to be upset when one's merits are ignored: is this not the mark of a gentleman?" 

(Leys translation --but see the end of this page for other renderings of the passage)

14 March

Looking at \acadproj\vol4, I see some areas that will need careful dismount, because of their complexity. One such is /public_html/easia/, which has a LOT of GIS data. What should I do with that?

/public_html/geneal/ needs to be relocated to oook.info (and is now in the iRiver /fromacadproj/, but not yet deleted from /xliberty)

/public_html/image33/ and /33/ both need to be transferred to oook.info (now in the iRiver /fromacadproj/, but not yet deleted from /xliberty)

A category I'm encountering is projects I worked on which are part of the History of Information Systems at W&L --they're Legacy. I need to make a page linking them --partly quarrying from current.html, and partly a chronology of what I did.

I've also copied but not yet deleted from /xliberty/ the /surnames/ folder

Started Weblegacy to handle that chronology

15 March
Wrote a Data DVD with 4+ GB of GIS data, from acadproj. Two more writable DVDs will collect all of the remaining stuff that's "mine" from that drive.

30 March
Need to collect recurrent stuff (e.g., to change addresses for contact person), and periodic tasks

Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics arrives fortnightly in paper copy; Treatment Guidelines is monthly

3 April
What I most want to accomplish/set up at the moment: the wherewithal to address a segment of an mp3 file in a URL. But this is part of the grander desideratum of becoming more competent to handle the resources at my fingertips.

21 April
I've now moved ALL of my materials from //acadproj/vol4 to my H: drive space, and I'm going through to correct links and make them relative, so that I can back the whole thing up to DVD. In many cases, the links to external resources will be dead ends, and the only sure way to repair would be to look ALL of them up at archive.org... a gigantic and largely pointless task. So I'm mostly keeping external pointers as they are, if only to indicate how I was thinking about things at the time I constructed each page.

23 April
'Endgame' is more than an end... it's a process, a series of contingent moves based on changing information, so it's entirely reasonable to include here stuff that indicates whither I might go next. In the last week or so I've encountered several articles and podcast bits that want to be linked, for myself and potentially for others. these include:

Computer–aided music distribution: The future of selection, retrieval and transmission by Nancy Bogucki Duncan and Mark A. Fox (First Monday, April)

Social Bookmarking Tools (I) by Tony Hammond, Timo Hannay, Ben Lund, and Joanna Scott (D-Lib Magazine, April)

TRANSPARENT BUNDLES by Seth Goldstein: a series on Media Futures (thanks to yatta @ unmediated)



3/5: API


(awaiting #5)

Disposable thinking? Tangled in the metaphors By Brian Lamb on Abject Learning

Tracing the Evolution of Social Software by Christopher Allen

24 April

I've been snipping out bits of podcasts that seemed especially eloquent, and I need to make some memory space for them. Most recently:

Two from Tim O'Reilly's ETech presentation from April 2004, on Open Source: the Internet is the platform (2 min), and network effects Amazon example: the added value is the data (5 min)

from an interview with Cory Doctorow:

consequences of the rupture of scarcity of bits (1:30)

giving away Down and Out as good business move (:55)

future directions of publishing (3:19)

Jam and Underpants Gnomes (3:12)

DRM as junk science (2:20)

5 May

As a consequence of cleaning up my own digital real estate in network space and in the heaps of floppies in my office, I've been led to thoughts about the general problem of legacy and the challenge posed by the potential resources of emeritus faculty. I was prompted by an email exchange with Merrily to a minirant on Commonses, some of which I'll quote here:

For me this all goes back to what I've said enough times as to be thoroughly tiresome: a Commons is, first, a VIRTUAL environment... and only a distant second, a physical space. There are important and vibrant Commonses out there, to which we (and especially teachers and learners at W&L) are only tenuously connected, mostly through search interfaces (Google... Web of Science... Lexis/Nexis...) and primarily via licensed products.

and then extend:

All of us really should be participating more fully in these virtual communities, via RSS, blogs, API experiments, applied folksonomic tagging... and those growing edges really should be incorporated into courses and the individual digital libraries that all of us build [however tacitly] and navigate with our various Web activities. These are the realms that " 'Digital Commons' software" ought to be aimed at.

Merrily was referring to institutional repository software, specifically the Berkeley scheme that Trinity and Carleton and others are exploring. That, along with DSpace, OAIster, etc. are interestingly entangled in ways I'm still sorting out.

6 May
Not sure where to put this, so it might as well be here... While cleaning up various floppies that were lying around in my office I found one of text files rescued from the TI-Pro, my first computer. One of them was a proto-essay that I wrote almost 20 years ago: Might there be an "Anthropology of Computers"?. Some of it still seems fresh (other bits are distinctly musty).

25 May
Jon Udell says it very well

In a knowledge-based economy, narrating your work becomes part of everyone's job. That narration produces artifacts we call blogs. They'll transform Big Media, but only because they'll transform society.

That's just what I've been doing in the last decade of Web stuff. Alas that I didn't label it so clearly.

27 May
How do we find our way around in this virtual verdure? Yesterday I started playing around with Piggy Bank, and this morning I found a pointer to a Greasemonkey connector between Rojo and del.icio.us, and I've been exploring Onfolio's RSS capabilities. There's something pretty remarkable going on with tagging and similar affordances, and a cloud of people who are at work exploring and articulating... I feel that I'm one of them, though just what my role is still remains to be clarified. Or to emerge. I'm trying to work this out, meanwhile juggling vast amounts of new stuff. Wade Roush's Continuous Computing seems the best moniker of the moment, but I'm feeling that my small pieces need to be less loosely joined. What I really need to do is join the sets I'm lurking on the edges of, and find common cause with the many other lurkers who must be in a similar state.

I need to make the case for continuing to have full access to my W&L digital world --or, if that turns out to be administratively indigestible, to sever and move entirely to another platform. It just seems so obvious that what I do is in some sense 'good for' the institution... and that its cost (in terms of resources) is minimal, but it needs imprimatur and guarantees of continuity. Space may be an issue, especially if audio becomes an important element... but that's an issue that UC needs to address more generally. I'm not sure who I need to get to recognize that.

1 June
I'd like to record my gratitude for the Retirement Citation crafted by Merrily Taylor, and presume that linking it here is Fair Use.

2 June
I need to create a space to stash materials for my Successor, but until the shape of that clarifies, I'll stick things into this space as they come up.

SciFinder Scholar Communique ("...helpful tips that we hope will help you in your role as the SciFinder Scholar Key Contact...")

One thing I keep thinking of doing, but never seem to get to: I have multiple caches of Web links that are basically heaps, not interconnected but surely overlapping. Not only do I need to go back through them for content and improved tagging, but I need to devise a sensible integrated future procedure...

Another seeming essential, which I'd hope my successor would adopt some semblance of: my practise of logging/blogging has certainly made it possible for me to keep track of what I was doing. To an unknown degree, it's been practical for others to follow along, or discover post hoc via Google. I should have found ways to centralize and organize better, but it's always seemed more important to keep moving --figuring that someday I'd be back to straighten up and improve the access, or something... Fact is, whatever apps I'm using in one month may be superceded in the next, so it's hard to standardize on anything (unless it's this bare-bones WordPad html), but necessary to keep trying new things as they come along.

10 June
I started another branch of this to contain thoughts pursuant to developing schemes that might be relevant to Yahoo.

9 August
Much activity in those two months, and now the problem is how to close parentheses. At the moment the most vexing thing is the Web legacy, some 827 MB of stuff from /public_html/, most of which nobody will ever look at again... but it's hard to predict what will be accessed via Google searches. I could undertake to change pointers to archive.org, but that's a lot of recoding... I do see that there's a backup of current.html from Oct 18 2004, and that many of the items have backups there... so one possibility is to switch the URLs in the current.html to those, and maintain only those AFTER 18 Oct 2004 as live storage at W&L. This needs thinking about... What such a strategy would miss is the links within the /public_html/ space, which wouldn't point to living links but also wouldn't point to archive.org versions... Painful to contemplate.

There are some directories that I think of as 'open', as realms in which I imagine I'll continue to work, or that people might need in the next year or so: /emeriti/, /geneal/, /meta/, /stgeorge/ for the former, and /scilib/ and /biology/ for the latter. Most of the rest are either closed books or static content.

I think a DVD version, as of (say) 15 August, might be a sensible product to attempt, for deposit in Special Collections.

29 August
The e-mail archive has been a challenge to solve. Groupwise isn't a pleasant roach motel (are there pleasant rms?), but a bit of searching found Transend, which seems to be an efficient way to migrate from Groupwise to HTML, folder by folder, for $50 or so. As I sorted through my archive and moved stuff into folders, I was pretty surprised at how vast the correspondences have been with various people.