[JISC] Weeknote 7/33

Weeknote 6/33 was a no-show as I was on annual leave that week and while I could write an update on vodka, champagne and Erdinger consumption and Twestival attendance it probably is inappropriate for this format.

Week 7/33 inevitably consisted of a fair bit of catching up. As I have mentioned before JISC is a very email driven organisation and thus having a week off creates something of a brutal backlog. I had a couple of very useful teleconferences; one a catchup with a project based at the OU that is going very well and is looking to take forward some additional activity around a pretty cool sounding event and another with a consultancy that have been taken on to do some evaluation and review work about the wider programme of work we have been doing but also a smaller piece of work reviewing some more specific work we have funded. Turns out I had more to say on this topic than I expected and the questions from the consultants really helped clarify my thoughts on alot of things.

I had my semi-regular more formal catchup with my line manager as well – while we do sit opposite each other and I try to keep him informed of what I am up to as I go along these longer chats are very useful particularly as sometimes while talking things through it becomes clear there are quite obvious solutions to problems I was having plus it helps me get a picture of the scale of the work I am undertaking. It is only during these chats I realise what a crazy portfolio of work I have taken on.

Got my hands dirty with some basic wireframing and WordPress prototyping for an event website – I’d sketched out some basic IA stuff on paper and then using Balsamiq but wanted to make sure it held together as an actual site before I asked Stef to get started. The joy of WP is this was just a small bit of fiddling and I was happy enough with the basic idea. I also spent a bit of time investigating venues for a 100 person event in late June in London – think I have a couple of interesting possibilities that I’ll ask someone to follow up next week.

I’ve also been asked to speak to an institutional web team to discuss some ideas for future-proofing their websites so I have been brushing up on some ideas I have around that topic (the one, quite honestly, that is closest to my heart workwise) – really looking forward to that discussion.

I’ve also agreed to take responsibility for making some tweaks to our ePrints repository to make it a bit more appropriate for use in the run up to May 2011 and the end of this programme of work. I haven’t done anything with ePrints before but I can usually figure out most systems at least to a ‘super-user’ kind of level pretty quickly and it isn’t like I don’t know a couple of dozen ePrints experts via Twitter!

Will be a short week next week as well – University of Bristol gives us an additional closure day after Easter so it is only a 3 day week! That said I am hosting Bathcamp on the Wednesday and due to the topic of that evening that will likely feel like a long workday..