January 18th, 2010

pineapple pineapple

I celebrated my halfway to 70 birthday early with friends this past weekend. It involved a large amount of cakes, cookies, oranges, and chocolate fondue.

On my fourteenth birthday, my mother once accidentally embarrassed me by asking or local Japanese restaurant if they did anything for birthdays and all my mother heard was, “Yes, pineapple pineapple.”  The entire staff ended up singing to me as they brought out a carved pineapple studded with cocktail umbrellas.  It isn’t the best thing to do to an awkward teenager …but I have forgiven her.

I also received many individual mp3s from my friends which make up a great playlist!  I love how all the songs go together.  I think I need to make that a tradition.

January 15th, 2010

Stella growing up

Stella in the big chair!

January 12th, 2010

My buddies

Miles misses his furry cousins and is very glad he doesn’t have to wear a cone like one of them.

January 11th, 2010

Reading list

I am taking full advantage of the of fact that I work in a library.  I am too lazy to actually enter this into GoodReads or type out my reading list so here is a screenshot of my interlibrary loan items:

And here are the items I have checked out from NCSU:

I have actually read a little bit of each of these books except for the books by the two Jonathans: Chronic City (Jonathan Lethem) and Eating Animals (Jonathan Safran Foer).  Those two just came in and I will be picking them up tomorrow.  My goal is to actually finish a couple these books before they are due or recalled!  Maybe I will get a review (or a haiku review) written for one or two.

That last item listed is actually a Flip camera which I am borrowing to get some experience using a Flip and to learn how our tech queue system works from a patron perspective.  My general feeling is we have way too many systems for our patrons and we need better integration.  However, it is one of those things where solving the problem is a lot harder than complaining about it.  The interlibrary loan system, for instance, is a different vendor than our regular card catalog system (aka the “ILS”), a different database type, and has different data formats.  Just getting books from the two systems to appear on the same page (not even in the same format) takes some effort.  I am starting to look at these different pieces since we hope to eventually create mobile instances of all these tools and it is quickly becomes pretty overwhelming…but would be very satisfying to solve!

January 10th, 2010

A sunny Saturday

We were determined to get out of the house on Saturday so despite getting a late start, we made it to the Nasher Museum of Art to see an Andy Warhol Polaroid exhibit.

The exhibit included an interesting collection of portraits of people from maternity dress manufacturers to people like Keith Haring and Jean Michel Basquiat.  In general, all the women were powdered white and all the men are holding their hands near their faces in an odd way.  It also included the photos and the painted portraits of Patsy Nasher (who helped fund the museum) and her daughters which seems a little…vain? My favorite photo was this one:

After the museum we stopped at Guglhupf for brunch and people watching.  It always feels like you are somewhere other than Durham.  There was one man straight out of the Sartorialist in a beige suit, brown loafers, a pocket square, and an Italian (?) accent as well as a cute French family…and, of course, these two:

January 8th, 2010

Strange scene in the dollhouse

I got to visit a really cool dollhouse tonight but there was a strange scene going down in the bathroom.

January 7th, 2010

In the kitchen

Stella has appropriated a cutting board from the big kitchen to put in her little kitchen! In other news, Stella seems to prefer sitting in a regular chair at the kitchen table rather than sitting in her high chair. Tonight E & I fixed vegetarian bbq with garlic fries for our dinner and Stella quickly figured out she preferred our garlic fries over her green peas.

January 6th, 2010

A sad evening


No Tree
No tree

There is a path of needles trailing from our living room to the end of the driveway.

January 5th, 2010

My office

One of my desks sits in a very dark spot in our IT department.  I’ve tried to decorate a little but I just realized that I don’t even have a photo of my child in my cube (although I do have multiple photos of my dog and his best friend).  My everyday machine is a MacBook Pro (with additional monitor on the left) but I just got a new (to me) computer to try out Windows 7 and programs like Pivot along with some other non-mac friendly tools to work with for mobile devices.
I’ve also been pondering how to improve the e-board content for the big screens set up around the library and I’ve started to demo some tools using the Windows machine. We have some cool tools like computer availability, study room availability, and now a tool called GroupFinder that allows people to leave messages to their group study partners about where they are sitting in the library. I’ve been thinking about how to use other sorts of dynamic content that uses webcams or Twitter feeds to create engaging boards. Of course, if it were up to me, I would have random Jenny Holzer phrases pop up on random TVs around the library. I fear that students are starting to tune these out and we really need to grab their attention. What content would make you look twice at a TV monitor?

January 4th, 2010

Back to work

Going to work last week lessened the blow of work today. Actually, my job is pretty fun so I didn’t mind too much. I am currently reviewing a new gadget:
Sony Reader Daily Edition

It is a Sony Reader Daily Edition– Sony’s first ebook reader with built-in 3g and a touchscreen.  I am still trying to shake the initial feeling that it is a large Palm Pilot.  It is probably as fast as my Palm from 2000.  It also includes a stylus and it is so gray.  Also, even though it has a 3g connection for the Sony ebook store, you can’t do anything else (like get your math article on to the device) without a cable.  On the brighter side, you can make notes on the stuff you read.

I don’t think I am going to abandon my iPhone, MacBook, and library card for one of these quite yet…

Switch to our mobile site