Week 13

Monday was the tail end of our holiday so the working week began on Tuesday to a mere 128 emails. The emails were largely CC messages and so were dispatched in 10 minutes. I have been making it clear to everybody that email is great but I don’t need to know everything – if you need a reply from me then send it but I don’t need ‘reference/covering’ emails. The rest of the day could be spent clearing a path for activities in October.

Tuesday and Wednesday were both used to catch up with various staff about their projects and for me to better understand some of the detail a few of our roles deal with. The devil really is in the detail and I feel the more I can understand the better for future working together.

Thursday was a social media oriented day. First I met with the Bristol Records Office to see how they run social media and where my team could be of assistance. Then I checked in on the Red Lodge as they are doing an outstanding job and have plenty of ideas for continuing over the winter. In the evening I attended “This Happened Bristol” at the Empire Theatre which had three enjoyable speakers (John Durrant, Dan Efergan, and Lizzie Ostrom) talk about past interaction projects, one of which was about smell.

On Friday I got to tinker with a small website project and had an important meeting regarding a project i’ll keep quiet about for now.

Bonus day. On Saturday I attended a raspberry pi bootcamp run by uob at the @bristol site. The event was spilt between 90min sessions on a broad range of introductory topics and some drop-in areas to ask questions and see some very interesting uses of the kit. The event had a lot of help at hand and was well attended by school children and a few oldies like me. I attended a non-pi session on using twine, a easy to use tool for making interactive if/else type stories that spits out html. I think this could be pretty handy for lightweight public facing games and stories.It was great to see kids coming to events at the weekend like I used to.

Attending local events in the evening and weekends not only helps keep me in the loop but i think is crucial for raising our service profile. I know that these things are hard for many to attend but I really hope I can convince a few others to start doing likewise.

GDS Service Manual – the ebook

Back in July Jukesie asked if I could knock out the GDS Service Manual for his commute and as a handy guide to refer back to.

I completely forgot I did this ebook and meant to stick it online somewhere so here it is…kinda. It was a bit of a rush so PLEASE do let me know about missing/broken bits.

I have the EPUB version (ipad, tablets of all flavours etc) and Kindle kicking around. As I am still on holiday the epub will have to do for now as I don’t have access to my FTP and WordPress has a 2mb limit (aargh).

Soon I will post the epub and Kindle properly, not from my phone abroad when I’m meant to be offline !

Note that I purposefully left out the YouTube videos as myself and others may not regularly have WiFi so I figured this was a fair compromise. If there is interest in the video I can put one out.

I hand coded this file so there may be errors which are likely mine!

I hope you’ll find it useful as I know Matt Jukes and I have.




Week 10

This will I got up to the following:

  • Welcomed our new team member, an apprentice who will be helping with our digital marketing including social media and storytelling across our collections
  • Shared internally our 7 service digital principles for feedback
  • Investigated leasing tablets
  • Explained our digital plans to central ICT for the Council
  • Continued writing our expression of interest for the Big Data call
  • Discovered it takes 1.5hrs to read and digest the average report (thanks to harvest timer)
  • Caught up with my old team (cheers!)
  • Started to think about how we should tackle our websites
  • Floor walk of two sites to watch the public use our interactives and see how they move around the building

Week 9

Monday was a Bank holiday. Tuesday was enjoyable as it was our second introduction to the visitor services assistants combined with a floor walk. Long story short a fair amount of our AV needs revisiting. The VSA staff use the kit and see the public using it all day and quickly pointed to poor interaction design, missing content and failing kit. The whole experience made me very glad I am taking the time to listen to the tiniest problems as there are some patterns emerging.
On Wednesday the guys setup for a special session at M Shed to celebrate 50 years since the Bristol bus boycott. Really good talks followed my my schoolboy error of lifting cables which were held down by masking tape… never again. Also the recording failed so we need to figure out exactly what caused this.
Thursday was a meetings day around our future data management planning.
On Friday me and Tom went out to Blaise Castle Museum to have a flying tour and then to discuss options for digital on-site. I think with a little investment we can make lots of impact on-site for the public whilst using the site as a testing ground for wider deployment e.g. Nexus 7 vs iPad.
Throughout the week our funding bid was shaping up quite nicely.