• Opinion,  Profile

    Lit Review

    As some of you may know I have been working on a masters degree in Technical Communication for about eight thousand years now. Happily I’m on my last class – an independent study course – and finishing up the menial tasks required to receive approval in the form of a very expensive and official piece of paper. I might actually frame this diploma – I’m not even sure where my undergrad one is… Despite the required work still to be done on my final class, I don’t actually have to be in a classroom this semester so it feels very much like… well, like I’m free! And so I’ve turned my attention…

  • General Information,  Opinion

    Put the “social” in social media

    Anyone who is using social media without investigating the local component is missing a huge piece of what this technology has to offer. Location-based tools like Foursquare have clearly shown that social media provides value in the way we get to know our communities and companies like Groupon and Living Social are getting us deals on our local adventures. Twitter is no different - there are many local groups who have routine “tweet-ups” to facilitate connections in the community. Whether you’re new to town or just want to learn a little more about the area, staying connected with these groups is a great way to make new friends and expand…

  • Opinion

    I heart beer

    I was raised on beer. Literally. My dad began making beer before I was born and has continued, off and on, through the years; he now has a brewery in the basement. I’m a child raised with hops in my back yard, who crushed malt in the kitchen and sampled beers before it was technically legal. I love beer. So being both a beer lover and a girl I was intrigued to hear that several breweries have plans to release new beers targeted towards women. I probably should have been wary – my favorite beers tend to have lots of hops, yielding an often strong and slightly bitter flavor that…

  • News & Events,  Profile

    Social Media and Technical Communication

    I’m very happy to report that I’ve completed and submitted my capstone project for my Masters degree. Huzzah! The project, to create a university, graduate-level course on social media and technical communication, was a big task and represents a lot of hours of work over the course of this semester. I’m very pleased to have it in the bag. I’m not quite done, however. Next Tuesday, April 26th I’ll be doing my defense presentation for my department faculty, my peers and other interested parties. As you might imagine I’m pretty nervous but also confident in my knowledge of the subject matter. And I’m looking forward to really being done. I’m…

  • General Information,  Opinion

    Chain Letter Wannabe

    My mother is a wonderful, near-perfect human being but there is one aspect of her personality that makes me wake up in a cold sweat: she has the tendency to send chain letters. Well, chain emails but it’s the same thing. Actually, chain emails are worse – I like getting mail that isn’t a bill but a chain email is one step above SPAM. One teeny, tiny, oft-abused step. So when my cousin, Jellybean Mama (a.k.a. Cate) tagged me in what is essentially a blog chain letter I sighed dramatically and resigned myself to my fate. But I was secretly a little happy 1. for the excuse to blog and…

  • News & Events

    TED Comes to Campus

    I don’t get a lot (== understatement) of opportunities for training or development in my current job but every now and then the NC State campus will host an interesting speaker or worthwhile seminar. The prize of working in an intellectual environment is that sometimes we get the opportunity to expand our horizons. Today I went to TEDxNCSU. TED Talks are “ideas worth spreading” – think “viral” in the good sense. Celebrities, comedians, professors, scientists and everyday people come to these TED events and share inspiring ideas. TEDx events are meant to be TED Talks on a smaller local scale and today’s event had students, professors and professionals from NC…

  • General Information,  News & Events,  Profile

    All-Star City

    I am very proud of my city. Raleigh, NC hosted the NHL All-Star game (and associated a activities) this weekend and it was fantastic. I don’t know how the experience was for an outsider visiting or watching at home but from my perspective Raleigh was a wonderful host, threw some great parties, offered up some beautiful weather and just generally impressed. A few high points:  

  • Opinion

    Under the Weather

    Side effects. We’ve all had ’em. You start a new drug or maybe a diet and BAM! – all of a sudden you’re dizzy or hungry or tired or have the ability to levitate. Ok, I haven’t seen any evidence of the last one but I don’t want to limit the discussion. The problem is, no one really likes side effects (although if the levitation is available, I’m interested). They’re the unexpected, and generally unwanted, elements that come from trying to get something you DO want. You want to get rid of migraines and you end up with insomnia. Or you want to be able to meet a nice a…

  • News & Events

    Welcome, 2011

    Had a really fantastic Christmas and New Year. While they haven’t lacked for stress and drama, the last two weeks have been informative – transitional – as the time around the new year often is. There are three relationships that got some consideration over the last couple weeks. Despite the fact that I have a blog and occasionally expound upon my feelings at length I’m generally pretty uncomfortable doing so publicly. But I feel the need to make a few comments here and now – for posterity, I suppose. The first relationship is with work – with my job, office, whatever you wanna call it. It’s not in great shape…

  • News & Events

    The Gospel of Social Media

    While my current job doesn’t have a lot of social media work built into it, it is still something I find myself thinking and talking about a lot. Since I do website development for clients we’re often asked about the need for social media accounts and I frequently find myself trying to talk these folks off the proverbial ledge: you do not need 15 accounts in each of the “hawt” social networking tools. I’m also in a grad program for Technical Communication and have over my years in the program become something of an advocate for providing training on these tools in a professional environment. In fact, I’m requesting that…