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Amazon’s LibraryThing Competitor April 27, 2008

Posted by JR Dixey in jobs, news.
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Just found out about this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/ays, which Amazon calls Your Media Library. Looks an awful lot, at first blush, like a LibraryThing clone:

“Your Media Library on Amazon.com provides you with tools to catalog your media collection, share information, ratings and comments with other Amazon.com users, and discover what other people are reading, listening to, and viewing. You also have easy download access your digital purchases, such as Amazon Unbox videos, eDocs, Amazon Upgrade books, and Amazon Shorts. With quick links to IMDB, Amazon’s extensive media catalog, and our library of song samples, you have all the information you need about movies, books, and music all in one place. Organize, share, and discover!”

They’re also hiring software engineers. Interestingly, the job description calls Your Media Library a “standalone website”, so they may be considering spinning it off.

Google I/O, Apps, and App Engine April 7, 2008

Posted by JR Dixey in outside events.
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A link to what I thought might be the announcement of the very cool sounding Google App Engine SDK (for which I was, alas, too late to be one of the lucky first 10,000 to sign up) turned out to be a link to Google I/O, a developer conference focused on the Google platform, coming up May 28-29th at Moscone Center in San Francisco. Ajax, Mashups, and Code, Oh My! Sounds like a whole lot of fun for only $50 (student registration price).

If you’re keen on developing cutting edge web apps using Google’s SDK, follow the App Engine link, download the SDK, and sign up for email notification when they open it up to more users. Or, if you just want to link online documents, calendaring, and a website, go for Google Apps. It’s free for students, and there are 120 other UBC students already signed up.

Update: More on Google App Engine, from the good folk at Ars Technica.

Another Reason to Blog for Love, not Money April 5, 2008

Posted by JR Dixey in news.
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The NYT has an intriguing hypothesis: blogging isn’t good for you*. The author profiles the rapid-paced lifestyles of several well known bloggers, and reports on the recent demise of two among them, both at the relatively young age of 50. After which, he delivers the shocking news (shocking, perhaps, to someone who has never known people who toil on the lower rungs in the high tech industry) that professional bloggers eat poorly, sleep too little, and suffer from deadline-oriented stress.

*registration may be required to view story

ASIS&T@UBC AGM! April 3, 2008

Posted by JR Dixey in meetings.
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ASIS&T AGM Poster ASIS&T@UBC will have its final meeting of the year on Wednesday, April 9th, 2008 in IKBLC Room 491. We decided to do something a little edgier than the usual ASIS&T fare for this poster … I doubt whether anything quite like this has graced the walls of SLAIS before! … At any rate, in case you missed the email but are an avid reader of this blog (hello, all two of you!), here is the low, low, lowdown on the meeting:


  1. Elect new executive officers for 2008-9
  2. Discuss plans for 2008-9 including:
  • Developing half-day hands-on instructional workshops for SLAIS students on software and skills relevant to the information professions such as screencasting using Camtasia, CSS/XHTML, working with RSS, KompoZer, and lots more. Suggestions welcome!
  • Bringing in expert speakers and instructors to provide animated & interactive information about cutting-edge developments in IT and the information professions.
  • Organizing social events for SLAIS and other UBC students interested in technology.
  • Other?

Backgrounder: What is ASIS&T? With the ongoing proliferation of techniques and technologies that emerge in the fields of library and information science, communications, networking and computer science, there is a need for one organization that can bring all of these fields and practitioners together. Formed in 1937, ASIS&T brings together everyone involved in Information Science and information research, from technical specialists, to librarians, from researchers, to business professionals – all fields that need, use, or investigate information fall under the ASIS&T umbrella. What can membership in ASIS&T offer?

  • Professional membership in a global organization with over 4000 members
  • A job board, with jobs from around the world!
  • Two professional Journals (online versions are free with a student membership)
  • Conferences, seminars, and summits on topics of interest to information professionals
  • Interest groups that bring together working professionals (one is included with your membership)
  • Professional development opportunities
  • Networking

What can membership in ASIS&T offer at UBC?

  • A chance to bring together students involved in the information sciences from across campus!
  • Develop programs and events of interest to our student body
  • Social, networking, and discussion groups
  • Career and educational development opportunities

Check us out online Blog: https://asistubc.wordpress.com/ Website: http://www.slais.ubc.ca/PEOPLE/students/student-groups/asist/index.htm Drop us an email at asist.ubc@gmail.com if you have any questions or comments.

Make Yr Own Fonts April 3, 2008

Posted by JR Dixey in links.
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Just in case you are hurting for something to break the spell of OMGIHAVESOMUCHTODORIGHTNOW, here’s a nice little diversion that shouldn’t be too embarrassing (unlike, say, being caught in SLAIS lab watching a YouTube video of Naomi Campbell being arrested as she left her plane at Heathrow):


It had to happen sometime: a social network for type geeks. (Requires Flash Plugin.)

Don’t say we never did anything for you. If you make a font, upload a link to it in the comments!