Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Productivity tip: Email your Outlook Calendar

Ever needed to let someone know when you are available for a meeting?  And you spend time typing in your schedule?  Well Outlook allows you to email a person a copy of your calendar:

1) Click On Calendar in Navigation Pane


2) Under My Calendars, Right Click on Calendar


3) Left Click on “Send Via Email”


4) Chose the Date Range and amount of detail you want to send


5) This is a piece of what my next seven days worth of appointments showing just availability would look like sent in an email:


Monday, September 22, 2008

Information Overload: The real problem is Filter Failure!

Web 2.0 Expo NY: Clay Shirky (shirky.com) It's Not Information Overload. It's Filter Failure.

Clay Shirky makes an argument that Information Overload has been with us for a long period of time; it began with the invention of the printing press.  He backs up his argument with some interesting points:

  1. Books always had built-in filters because of the cost of publishing
  2. With the cost of publishing to the web relatively cheap, the filter is no longer built in to the system

Web 2.0 Expo

Saturday, March 01, 2008

VBA - What is it and How can it help you?

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is a programming language built into Microsoft Office. I first learned about it When I started working for my current job. My supervisor taught me the basics of it and I ran with it. Currently 70% of my job is spent writing code for projects that will make people more efficient. Now you may be wondering how this might affect you:
  1. It may be used to speed up repetitive tasks. Ex: I am taking a Management course currently and the professor has strict formating guidelines. So, what I am doing is writing code to do all the formating for me. All I need to do is press one button, instead of 2-3 minutes of clicking.
  2. You may be able to create features that were not originally in the program.

I think is is useful for anyone who uses Microsoft Office. Everyweek, I find other ways to use it. If you want to learn it I would suggest:

  1. Record a few macros in Excel and Word and look at them. This is a good starting point but you may have to alter them for them to work correctly in the future.
  2. Read a few books on VBA - I currently have about 30.
  3. If you still need help go to the great website VBA express. The people there are always willing to help. Here is a link: http://vbaexpress.com/forum/

In the future I will post some code here that I think would be useful for students. If anyone else has any code that they think may be beneficial for students email it to me and I will Post it.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

How to Study Chinese

China is the fastest growing economy in the world. Many experts believe that one day they will surpass the United States as the world super power. Whether or not you believe that is irrelavant. The study of their language, culture, and history is in high demand in the business world. I have already begun to study about their culture and language. Some of the tips that I have come up with to learn the language are helpful for any language but some will only be useful for character based languages.

Here are the tips:
  1. Buy a wide rule notebook - I know, I hate them as well but especially when you first start with characters you need the extra room to write them.
  2. Get a language exchange partner - A language exchange partner is someone you help with english and they help you with their language. Some people will be so impressed with you wanting to learn their language that they would be willing to help you even if they don't need help.
  3. Use Flash Cards - Use Index Cards to make them. Put the character on one side and both the pinyin and english on the other side.
  4. Carry a little notebook with phrases - You can use this to study important phrases while you have 5 minutes waiting on line.
  5. Listen to Chinese while exercising or driving - If you have language CDs copy them to a MP3 player and listen to them while you are at the gym or have any free time.

That is all I have for now. If anyone has any other ideas please post them.