I've been taking a break . . . Sat 27 Aug 11

. . . a long, long break.

Hammock time katiew With the start of the New Year I decided to take a break. I stopped blogging, stopped using Twitter, and just made a complete break from the whole social networking arena. The routine of researching and writing articles was taking a lot of time and I needed some time off to recharge my batteries as they say.

I really intended for this to be a short break but free time can really be an addicting luxury. And so my “short” break kept extending and extending and here we are 8 months later.

I was recently asked about my blog and if I had given it up? Was I sick? Was there some other issue? The simple answer to all of these is no. I am simply taking some time off. However, I was remiss in letting you, my readers, know and for that I apologize. I should have posted something about taking a break and failed to do so. Thank you for your patience, your encouragement and your understanding.

Having said that, I do miss the opportunity that blogging provides to voice my opinions as misguided as they may be. I hope to be back soon but I probably won’t be publishing as regularly as I have in the past.

"hammock-time" photo by katie weilbacher / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 (That's not me in the picture but it is a great way to take a break)

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A Tale of Apple, Microsoft, Google and Others For The Holiday Season Tue 21 Dec 10

In the spirit of the holidays and with most profound apologies to Moore and/or Livingston my gift to you this holiday season is this little poem written with extreme poetic license.  Please feel free to add a stanza of your own.

Danish Christmas Tree Wikipedia Malene Thyssen 'Twas The Night Before An IT Christmas

'Twas the night before Christmas, and in all of the NOCs

All was quiet with laptops secure in their docks;

The tapes were hung by the racks with care,

In hopes that St. Techolas soon would be there;

The techs were nestled all snug in their chairs,

While visions of the fun soon to be theirs;

And with Ballmer in his suit, and Jobs in his jeans,

Each trading barbs and being so mean.

Continue reading "A Tale of Apple, Microsoft, Google and Others For The Holiday Season" »

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A New Blog by HR Competency Expert, Robin Kessler Tue 30 Nov 10

Robin Kessler, a good friend of mine (we went to B-School together way back when) has just become one newest members of the blogosphere with her blog.  Robin is a Competency Speaker and HR Consultant.  Note that I said "Competency" not "competent" (although she is that too).

Robin is an expert on competencies - those skills that are essential to be successful in our job.  She's written 3 great books on them:

Anyone of that's written a resume, had a job interview and performed or received an employee evaluation (who hasn't done these?) will find these useful and you may want to check out Robin's blog to get the latest insights on this.  After all - it's your career - do all you can to make it a good one.

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SIMposium2010 Sun 10 Oct 10

Simposium2010 I'm not a big fan of IT conferences.  For the most part you're just paying for the privilege of attending a vendor sales pitch.  I don't like the free ones and certainly see no need to pay for one.

The one thing that is nice about the conference is the opportunity to meet other practitioners and discuss topics of interests openly and to learn from each other.  When I have gone to conferences this is the factor that draws me in.

I've been a member of SIM (Society for Information Management) for about 10 years but have never bothered to attend their annual conference for the reasons mentioned above.  However, as I became the president of the Houston Chapter of SIM I thought I should attend to see what it was all about - so last week I was in Atlanta for SIMposium2010.

 All I can say is - boy, was I wrong about judging this one.  SIMposium2010 was fantastic!  Although there are vendors there it is not just one big sales pitch.  The vendors are limited in number and there is no hard selling.

As I mentioned the one thing I do like is being able to meet other practitioners.  SIMposium was great for this as it is designed by and for senior IT leaders.  Because of this you have a great opportunity to discuss issues with people that are in similar situations as you and they understand the problems and opportunities you meet on a daily basis.  The panel discussions in particular were very good as they had a lot of open and frank discussion among both panel members and the audience.

My only regret about SIMposium is that I waited so long to attend.  I met a lot of great people and made some good friends.  I'm looking forward to next year's conference in Orlando.  I hope to see you there.

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CIO magazine - what we're Reading Mon 26 Oct 09

Cio The October 15th print edition of CIO magazine featured this blog in its "what we're Reading" section. This section is about "books, blogs and the latest leadership about IT, management and leadership". It's very flattering to be included. Thank you CIO magazine!

To those of you visiting my blog as a result of reading about it in CIO magazine, welcome! I hope you enjoy it and would love to hear your comments and suggestions.  The best part of running a blog are the conversations it starts. Please leave a comment.

I'd also like to thank Steve Francia  for alerting me to this as I on vacation last week when this came out and would have likely missed this in the crush of catching up. Check out Steve's blog, spf13, where he's "Living at the intersection of Business, Technology and Strategy".

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CIO Insight - China Profile and Interview Wed 09 Sep 09

CIO_Insight_ChinaLi Xiaohui with with CIO Insight - China wrote a profile and interview piece about my non-traditional IT career, customer service orientation and interest in social media.  Translations from the Chinese are available via Bing or through Babelfish.  Neither translation is perfect but do manage to convey the general intent.

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CIO.com Interview Tue 01 Sep 09

ForbesA few days ago Kristin Burnham with CIO.com published an interview with me for her article, Expand Your Brand.  In this article, Burnham also interviewed Kirsten Dixon, online reputation management expert and coauthor of Career Distinction: Stand Out by Building Your Brand along with Chris Curran(@cbcurran on Twitter), CTO and partner at Diamond Management & Technology Consultants and creator of the "CIO Twitter Dashboard" and me on the use of social media.  As Burnham states, "The benefits of social media outweigh the downsides. It's time for CIOs to reach out."

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12 CIOs Who Love Social Media Mon 29 Jun 09

Forbes Michael Eggebrecht on CIOZone published an article on the adoption of social media, 12 CIOs Who Love Social Media.  He writes "Sticking your head in the sand and ignoring social networking technology, as some large enterprises have opted to do, probably isn't the solution. But there are many CIOs who don't need to be told that -- they're already out there, blogging, twittering and networking on sites like CIOZone and Facebook."  Eggebrecht was kind enough to include me and this blog on that list.  Thank you, Michael.

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Fluid CSS With A Sticky Footer Fri 20 Mar 09

Adventures In Programming

The title makes this sound a lot more interesting than it really should be but does describes my latest adventure in programming.  You may have noticed that my blog has a new format primarily regarding how the main column appears.  It is now a variable width or "fluid" column that varies with the size of the browser window to maximize the viewable area.

Back at the beginning of February I rolled out a new blog format with slightly wider columns and different font to help improve the readability.  At that time I really wanted to have a variable or fluid main column that adjusted to the available screen resolution.  Unfortunately at that time I didn't have a clue on how to do that so I set the page width to 1360 pixels and left it at that.

Continue reading "Fluid CSS With A Sticky Footer" »

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Guest Post - The Courage To Lead Mon 23 Feb 09

Terry_oceanport Terry Seamon is one of my favorite bloggers.  He writes Here We Are. Now What?, a blog dealing with leadership, transition, and as he says "Facilitating wisdom to make the world a better place."

He is running a series of guest posts on the topic "Leading in the Crisis" and has honored me by asking me to guest post on this topic.  You can find my post "The Courage To Lead" on his site.

Thank you Terry.

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