24 August 2014

Sharing some Twitter experiences

During the week I met with some of the Bond University Women’s Network organisers to share our experiences with Twitter.

On the 19th of September they are hosting an event (Speak Up Forum) where we are going to experiment with social media as a way to introduce another dimension into the BUWN experience for members and others to share ideas and speak up about issues affecting them.

So we went around the table and talked about the things we knew about twitter (very limited number of characters, lots of rubbish on there) and what we didn’t know about twitter (how do hashtags work, how to have an effective network focusing on big issues and not just cat pictures, what’s an RT and an MT).

I used this slideset as a starting point to cover off some basic content – Thank you Benoit Guilbaud @benguilbaud.

Some other tips and resources:
  1. Use a photo or avatar or logo – don’t just use the egghead – to distinguish yourself from other twitter users
  2. Twitter’s very own getting started guide is worth a look at and should reflect any recent changes to Twitter functionality.
  3. Consider TweetDeck or Hootsuite for a dashboard look at Twitter and the ability to schedule tweets if you get seriously into twitter
  4. 7 steps to building an effective Twitter network
  5. The more you contribute, the more you’ll get out of it

CAUL Leadership Institute

Recently I was in Canberra for two days at the CAUL Leadership Institute.
Attendees were from Australian and New Zealand universities and we were treated to the counsel of some University Librarians (Directors) and experts in the higher education arena. I found all of the sessions very accessible – even on Friday afternoon (Day 2) it was still easy to stay focussed.
We had a mix of presentations, conversational question and answer panel sessions and activities. Nothing as confronting as Aurora – which I was fortunate enough to be at in 2004 – but engaging and quite fun. Who would have imagined having 2 minutes to pitch quite outrageous business plans to fictitious Vice Chancellors?

Ian Young, VC from Australian National University set the scene for us with his outlook for the higher education sector, Maree Conway got us practising some foresight skills, Sue McKerracher Executive Director of ALIA was the one who took us down the outrageous business pitch track, Belinda Robinson Chief Executive of Universities Australia shared her insights into communication strategies using the successful #scrapthecap campaign as a case study.

Topics ranged over strategic thinking and how that is different to strategic planning, communicating, presenting yourself and your message, lifestyles of the rich and famous, er… work-life balance, and more.
Thank you to the very generous and frank sharing from those involved in organising and presenting, and a big thank you to fellow attendees for some stimulating conversations and networking.

I certainly felt revved up at the end, and my brain was buzzing as I waited for my flight at the airport on the Friday evening. Strategic communications from our managers' group is one of the things I have already put on the agenda for our next meeting, and my LinkedIn network has grown as a direct result of the connections made at this event.

Lake Burley Griffin at sunrise on a cold morning.

I managed to get up early both days to take a walk in the cold Canberra air. This first shot was taken on Thursday morning at sunrise at Lake Burley Griffin. It was -2°C. The next day was quite balmy at 1°C and I walked up to Parliament House.

20 August 2014

Blogging from Word

I used to like using Live Writer for blogging, but last time I tried I couldn't find an updated version to install. So, I thought I'd give the Word blog template a go.

This post is being composed in Word.

I'm not very confident about how pictures will work as the set up doesn't seem to enable posting pictures the way LiveWriter did when posting to Blogger.


Let's see.

Lakhsa photo – attempting to upload from a local drive:


Inserting a picture from linked Flickr account:

Inserting a chart – pretty neat.

Inserting a screenshot – captures and inserts directly into editor. But will it upload?


How will the table look?








Only Blood Oranges


29 July 2014

Automated Task creation from Evernote Checklist

This tweet intrigued me this morning. Thanks @colwar

By this afternoon I had automated tasks being added to Outlook based on checklists in Evernote notes. And still managed to fit meetings and other work in between. I didn’t worry about the text expansion aspects described at the post as my tablet/phone apps for Evernote have easy to insert checkboxes anyway.
My steps…
  1. Using this post from DEG Consulting via @tabletproductiv as a guide I signed up for TaskClone
  2. In TaskClone I set Task App to Outlook and Task App Destination Email to my work email address. Along the way I tested sending these to a Trello board and it worked great. I just don’t want to use Trello for work reminders.
  3. I set my TaskClone:Evernote corresponding tag to #todo so that TaskClone knows which Evernote notes it should monitor. Each checklist item gets its own task created so they can be managed separately. This image shows the note after it has been handled by TaskClone which sets |TC| after each checkbox so that if the note is updated in the future and new checklist items are added it knows not to duplicate existing tasks.
  4. In Outlook I had to set up a rule that runs a script based on this advice. I may need to tweak the script (setting different due dates) & rule (deleting the email) but I now have tasks being created based on emails received.
Downside: This script will only run in Outlook client (not on Exchange server), so the tasks will not be syncronised to my phone/tablet until I’ve logged in at work. Using other compatible task managers would avoid this. For example with Trello the items appeared immediately as tasks in the app.

11 June 2014

Applying 10 rules for care & feeding of scientific data

Based on the rules in this slide posted by @flexnib on Twitter


The rules come from:

10 Simple Rules for the Care and Feeding of Scientific Data by

Alyssa Goodman, Alberto Pepe, Alexander W. Blocker, Christine L. Borgman, Kyle Cranmer, Mercè Crosas, Rosanne Di Stefano, Yolanda Gil, Paul Groth, Margaret Hedstrom, David W. Hogg, Vinay Kashyap, Ashish Mahabal, Aneta Siemiginowska, Aleksandra Slavkovic


… here is how we applied them to our data from our research into the use of Instagram by libraries for VALA 2014.

The perfect storm: The convergence of social, mobile and photo technologies in libraries (data set)
Wendy Abbott,  Jessie Donaghey,  Joanna Hare,  Peta J. Hopkins.

Date range : 2013
Paper presented at VALA 2014, February 3-5, Melbourne, Vic.
200102 (Communication Technologies and Digital Media Studies); 080709 (Social and Community Informatics)
Creative Commons Licence

  1. Love your data, and help others love it too. Advice here is to cherish, document and publish your data.
    We put some effort into compiling the data into consumable file types, we published it online and we mentioned it in our presentation (video available) at the conference along with the URL. We also blogged about the paper and data.
  2. Share your data online, with a permanent identifier.
    We posted our data to our institutional repository. We don’t have a DOI, but it is an archive with long-lasting URLs and provides metadata to make datasets findable.
  3. Conduct science with a particular level of reuse in mind.
    We planned for our data to be inspectable, and if a curious mind wanted to do something creative, or extend it then that was a bonus. Our paper and the presentation describes the methods that were used in compiling it albeit at a high level. In addition the survey instruments used were included in the data set.
  4. Publish workflow as context.
    I’m going to have to check how well we recorded this and made it available with the data set. It included some basic modifications to the raw data from the 3rd party monitoring tool we used as the first set of data from them varied slightly in headings to the 2nd set due to Instagram making some changes to their service eg. they implemented video sharing. We also made some minor modifications to make sure that the country information was comprehensive. We output some of this data to csv and uploaded it to create a Google map. While we covered our methods at a high-level in the paper and presentation, I suspect that we could have done better with this rule when it came to publishing the dataset. Ah, well – there’s always room for improvement.
  5. Link your data to your publications as often as possible
    Our slides (prezi) includes the URLs of both the paper and the dataset, and in our presentation we mentioned the paper and the dataset. However, on inspection we neglected to add links between the paper and dataset in the institutional repository. So that’s on my to-do list.
  6. Publish your code (even the small bits).
    We didn’t write any code – we made use of a 3rd party product to gather public data from instagram accounts.
  7. Say how you want to get credit.
    We published our data (and paper) under a creative commons licence. This is encoded in the dataset elements.
  8. Foster and use data repositories
    As librarians in an academic libraries we support and promote the use of our institutional repository e-publications@bond. Our Scholarly Publications & Copyright Team provide research data management support to our University community including upload of metadata to Research Data Australia.
  9. Reward colleagues who share their data properly
    Tell them how you have “loved and fed” your research data and librarians can help to raise its profile through research repositories, inclusion in open access collections and recommendations to those who Ask-A-Librarian for help finding information. We undertake to always credit the sources of data that we use in accordance with best practices.
  10. Be a booster for data science
    Well, I’m writing this post to demonstrate that it is not that hard to apply these rules in cases of simple data. The more complex the data, then the more time is needed in sorting out the data management plan and implementing it. Many academic libraries are ready and available to provide advice in research data management from the planning to the publishing stage.