Friday, May 30, 2008

Office Pranks

I don't think pranking is a good idea.

Whew, caution out of the way: here is an effective use of skills--drywallin' and video editin'--with the end result of a no-person harmed laugh.

I have a day off and I'm going to make dinner for my grandma and my aunt. Happy Friday. L8r.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


I made my first loan on Kiva today. I decided to do it because I read Banker to the Poor over a year ago and I was interested in the premise. However, after I did it, I wondered: can you get a microloan to pay for college?

Yes. And expect that more companies may be throwing their hat into the ring in this area of lending. Why? Because lenders can see who they are giving money to--a feeling that their money is helping a real known individual--and, if they do their research, the lender can feel that all of their money is going to the recipient, little or no money to administration.

Here's microloaning in a nutshell: a person who is unable to get a loan from a bank, gets a loan, which they have to repay--loan not gift--that suits their smaller needs. Some people like this model--personal, just feel so warm and squidgy after, and if the loan is repaid, the credit can be reapplied--and others wonder if it is really helping: banks turn these people down for a reason and/or the terms of the loan may make them difficult to repay. For more information, check out Microfinance on Wikipedia, or this article from The Tyee.

As it gets more difficult to get loans for education--or if you just need an "emergency loan" and you don't want to go through the scholarship office or get a line of credit that has exorbitant interest--more people may opt for the microfinance option for their studies. And grad studies--short period, usually for professional education with higher learning potential (=pay back loan) may be an answer for some students.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Is your minifeed blasting?

With Friendfeed, Twitter and the updates from the minifeed in Facebook, our friends and professional colleagues could get tired of us. And since Facebook has changed the setting so you can't close the minifeed in your profile, I have gotten a good look at how much information I am blasting out to my friends: tons. No wonder people think I'm on Facebook all the time: the constant blare from my apps is noise on their dashboards every check in.

You might want to tone down some of your apps. Each of these apps in Facebook has their own privacy settings, on the right hand side of the privacy dashboard.

Once you've selected from the apps menu, you can pick and choose the level of privacy. By default, most of my apps only let friends see what I am doing, but this means that I am constantly shouting out to my friends. For now, I'm going to switch off certain apps, knowing that I can go back in, turn on others, and tell them about other stuff that I am interested in (ie not always into the book learning, sometimes looking for new music).

One of my friends says she checks my profile for stuff to play with on Facebook (back atcha) but getting the habit of presence control is a good idea, especially if there are some days or some hobbies that you would like to go below the radar on. Reduce "spit".

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Career Jet

Career Jet is a new vertical search engine for job postings. Since the vertical search engine market for job postings is a bit crowded, I'm not sure how successful it will be. It does have some strengths:
  1. The search engine is international, with international and multilingual versions of the engine available from one main page. (A Big Number One.)
  2. There's a directory on the main page. You can search occupation keyword, but you can also explore by industry, which a bonus for special librarians who may be looking for "information officer", "researcher" or "evangelist" positions, but don't know what the company will call the job.
  3. Filters, such as job type, and alerts are available, but this is a pretty standard feature for these types of engines.
  1. Need to work out wonky results. I searched in the Canadian version of the site and got back a library director position located in Pennsylvania that had the SK (Saskatchewan) identifier attached. This was an early problem with SimplyHired (which decided to just throttle outside US jobs instead) and may be worked out in coming weeks.
  2. You can't toss out duplicates or remove postings from third-party recruiters. This inflates your job search results, making you think there are more postings, when you are really just seeing fifteen scrapes of the same post. Indeed has had a duplicate, as well as a recruiter, filter for over a year.
Despite the drawbacks, Career Jet is a good multilingual vertical search engine to add to your job search tools.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Managing Millenials

I actually hate the use of types to categorize people--I'm an individual, but I think that because I'm a Gen-X--but if you are interested in the beliefs people may hold about your generation, you might want to check out these videos:

The Infamous 60 Minutes expose on Millenials. I really liked the underwear advice--does butt floss count? Get the feeling the wise interviewers and Millenial-tamers are ignoring the signs and feeding the animals at the zoo? They're not patronizing at all.

Managing Millenials from BNET

Wall-to-wall flannel, uncombed hair and sneers.

Generation Y Shoots Back. Watch this video if you ever felt you were dismissed by an employer because of your age and their pre-conceived generational horns/halos.