And She’s Out of the Gate! (Almost)

So I see here that I haven’t posted since 2007.  Typical.  I’m glad I fit right in with those statistics detailing how many people leave their blogs for dead.  This blog was started for a class at the beginning of my Master’s program in library and information science so it’s appropriate that the occasion of my return is a class assignment toward the end.

But, before I get to that, let me just tick off the box labeled “Ongoing Personal Data” and say that I have passed my comps.  After this summer, I have two classes in the fall which finish my program.  I recently read that the graduates of 2009 will have the hardest time finding a job since they started tracking such things.  I choose to believe that they are referring to UNDERgraduates with no experience who live on either coast.  We’ll see if my blatant and willful denial translates into a confident and charming impression on my prospective employers.  🙂

Now on to the reading I did for this week and my thoughts on it.

I read out of Joseph B. Miller’s   Internet Technologies and Information Services.       There were 2 chapters on connections technologies and TCP/IP.  To be honest, I already was familiar with most of this material. 

If I read this before and forgot it .. or whether it was new info – the detail about ISDN being favored because of it’s swift handshake… it seemed new to me.  Interesting tidbit.  And that providers are re-evaluating the option with the large files of streaming media.  Particularly salient to me because I have Netflix and tried to get movies over my Netflix-partnered Blu-ray DVD player.  That’s when I discovered how woefully inadequate my internet speed is.  I will soon upgrade (the sound of Beyonce Knowles strangely fills my head every time I say that word) to the higher speed.  Just as soon as I get that great job with the luxurious salary.  🙂

The mention of WiMax was intriguing.  I hadn’t heard of that before, I’m sure.  It seems so simple I wonder why someone didn’t think of it sooner.  I’m sure that’s completely NOT the case, but I certainly appreciate the potential and will look for further news about it.

I have two things that come to mind about TCP/IP.  One is Star Trek.   You know, the whole beaming thing.  That is honestly how I pictured the process when I was first learning about it.  The visual helped tremendously. 

The second is more exoteric.  As I was thinking about the TCP/IP standard and what it has meant to the development of the interent, I am aware that some people think of the internet like they think of God – sort of a polymorphic mass of basically benevelant energy somewhere ‘up there’.  Witness the ‘cloud computing’ label.  But, actually, the internet is ALL of us.  Your computer and mine – HP’s (somewhat bigger) computer and my grandmother’s.  ARPAnet was the spine at first .. but like some mythical mutant, the internet finally grew so many spines it had no need of one.  In fact… one spine would have crippled the internet. 

 (I have a point – I’m working up to it.)

As a web designer, I know there are many, MANY different machines out there – with many different settings.  Making a web page work for all of them is tough.  Something aided incalculably by the HTTP protocol.  In the same way, TCP/IP allows all these disparate entities to coexist and form something much bigger than any of them.  And so much more powerful.

It’s still hard for me to get my head around something as simple as an agreed-upon standard connecting the world as it has. 

I know this hasn’t addressed the more technical aspects of the text.  But, darn it all, they’re boring.  I’ve heard the details so many times both during this program and before that I honestly would rather talk about the philosophy.  It’s a shame the library program teaches more internet protocols than it does anything else.  But there you are.

Thank goodness for work experience and intellectual curiousity!

I think passing comps fulfills the detail about becoming a librarian in today’s post. 🙂


1 Comment

  1. […] She’s Out of the Gate! (Almost) [web link]How to Become a Librarian in 40 Years or Less (26/Jul/2009)“…is honestly how I pictured […]

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  • Playing God

    I wrote in one of my posts here that I thought of authors as God when I was a kid. And now I'm putting MY random thoughts out there for general edification. heh. Karma. As a job, being God is kind of intimidating. Thank (God) only adults are reading this. (I hope.) That way, I only have to be intimidated about being, say, a lesser cherub.