Monday, August 30, 2010

Google's Demo Push of HTML5

It's a worthy demonstration of what the future web browser will be like. The link above creates a personalized music video using HTML5, integrating the address of your childhood home [via Google maps & street] view, and letting you write a note to your younger self. It's impressive, and given today's coverage around the tech blogs, I'm not the only one who think so.

You will need an HTML5 compliant browser to see it. That list includes both Google's Chrome & Firefox. Google takes a chippy shot at Microsoft, noting that IE won't run it. Had to be expected, right? ;)

Nonetheless, it's an interesting plug for the coming interactive HTML5 web standard. Don't be surprised when your browser launches a bunch of new windows; but then watch as the audio & visual pieces float in between them.

Perhaps I just wanted to be impressed by this, especially in light of so much current pondering of the web's future, and our current fixation on closed app environments (Yup, we're doing it too). But this is creative, and cool, and anything but the cookie cutter approach that the Apple's & FB's of the world are giving us.

Friday, August 27, 2010

VALL Loses Pioneer Law Librarian

Some very sad news this week via current VALL President Elizabeth Kinersley. Marjorie Keddy, one of VALL's most beloved members and our Association's first honoured member passed away on August 12th, 2010.

A copy of her obituary is available in the local press. To do proper justice, however, I'll point you to this tribute published in the VALL Review (pg. 2 of the PDF). Over the course of a 38 year career, Marjorie had a hand in many of the law libraries in Vancouver. Most of the older major firms in the city have her finger prints somewhere on their collections.

As Diana Inselberg describes Marjorie in her tribute, "she was the den mother of private law librarians". Still a beautiful statement.

Marjorie will be missed.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Why no one likes to explain propagation

We (Stem) signed up with a new hosting company today, Fused Network. Well, kinda new since Slaw has also hosted there in recent years. Needless to say, I wouldn't have signed on for the second account without a great experience on the first. That said, what I'm appreciating at the moment is the humour embedded into the sign-on experience. This is a quote from their welcome email:
"Please keep in mind that your domain name will not be visible on the internet for between 24 and 72 hours due to DNS (Generally they're up within 15 minutes though). This process is called Propagation."
Any time you start up with a new web host, or make a change to domain name settings, the companies involved need to pre-explain the answer to the next logical question: "how long until my website works?".

Unfortunately, it's a question that has no answer. It's pure guesswork. I have seen propagation happen in 30 seconds - literally re-setting name servers, hit refresh, boom it's up. I've also seen it happen in 24 hours (more for country-code domains like .ca's), 4-6 hours, and the more common time frame offered by Fused, under 15 minutes.

Perhaps I'm the only one, but I get the giggles when someone tries to explain propagation to me. I love the '24 to 48 hours' part; or even better, Fused's ultra-safe "24 and 72 hours". 72 hours! wow, that's long .... yes... but... it could also take 30 seconds. :)

Somewhere between safe and sorry, the answer should be 'we have no clue'. It's too bad no one likes that answer. Even when it's the truth.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Quickscribe Manuals Updates for July

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Links Between KM & Law Firm Profitability

Colin Cameron has a new post up at his Profits for Partners blog: The Link Between Knowledge Management and Profitability. One of his central points:
"... you can increase rates through specialization, innovation and adding value. The use of properly developed KM systems can significantly increase rates in all three of these areas."
Essentially, that firms can justify higher billable rates through KM support, repackaging and commodification of the firm's know-how. Or perhaps these days, an equally important point: sustaining current rates, while competitors are looking at rollbacks.

Lots of interesting ideas connecting KM to firm business interests. Well worth reading.