New Home, OpenID Redux

Okay, I finished the big job of migrating my blog from it’s old home to my new digs, and I think I have the bugs out, with thanks to the two blogs that linked to my OpenID article, and the two people who let me know that the email was broken (making it impossible for people to register). We’re off to a good start! I offered some preliminary thoughts and asked a question about OpenID, proposing that, while this is a boon for users, it might have a negative impact on an organization’s ability to coax contact information out of web visitors, as providing personal… Read More »New Home, OpenID Redux

Social Source Commotion

I was happy to be invited to participate on the advisory board for Social Source Commons, a project of Aspiration Tech‘s that collects, catalogs and distributes feeds of software tools useful in the non-profit community. The social designation is no accident – anyone can sign up and contribute. The newly formed advisory committee met today, with five of us on the call – two from Aspiration (Tim, who runs SSC, and Gunner) and three community advisors – one working with an org that does poverty outreach and two community consultants: Dan, Zac and I. Our sixth member, Sharon, who works with a non-profit that provides… Read More »Social Source Commotion

Free as in "Hurricanes"

As NPTech community members have heard, a brilliant metaphor was coined the other day by Karen Schneider in her excellent article titled IT and Sympathy: “Free as in kittens” (as opposed to the popular “free as in beer”). It’s not a hard sell to tell the average executive that open source, or donated Salesforce.com licenses, or volunteer labor isn’t exactly free of cost. But “as in kittens” really says it well, implying the commitment and caring that need to be applied to critical IT investments, regardless of the license terms. I think Salesforce.com‘s offer of 10 free licenses to any 501(c)3 is a great example… Read More »Free as in "Hurricanes"

What does OpenID mean to Non-Profits?

Earlier this month, in the Q&A following my Managing Technology 2.0 presentation at the NTC, I was asked how OpenID would impact organizational data management issues. I was somewhat familiar with OpenID, in it that I knew that it was a proposed standard for single sign-on and identity management on the net, but I hadn’t paid a lot of attention and I think my answer, that it would make verifying user data easier for non-profits, might have been way off target. So, to clear it up, I did some research. The “I’m feeling lucky” response from a Google search for “Open ID” is the very… Read More »What does OpenID mean to Non-Profits?

I’ve been busy

As you’ve noted if you read this blog either through NPTech.Info or Techcafeteria.com, I’ve been doing some serious remodeling. I’ve never been happy with the plain white look of NPTech.info, but, being much more of a plumber than a gardener when it comes to web development, I’ve been too shy to tackle it. But I’m actually proud of the work I’ve done on Techcafeteria, so I decided to share the wealth, bringing NPTech into the fold, so to speak, but I think it’s an improvement. Let me know if you have any thoughts one way or the other. Techcafeteria was thrown up in my spare… Read More »I’ve been busy

Buying Software is like Buying a House

Well, let me qualify that. Buying a data management system is like buying a house. And it isnt, really, but there are some important parallels that highlight the things that go into a proper needs assessment. A data management system is any application that stores business information, usually in a database format. Common examples of data management systems include HRIS Systems, Accounting packages, Donor databases, etc. While Office applications like Word and Excel can be thought of in this manner, they’re actually tools that work with data and don’t really manage it at all – they leave that to you. In the early 21st century,… Read More »Buying Software is like Buying a House

Why I won an Anonymous Blogger award at NTC

I’m just back from NTEN‘s wonderful annual conference, which was in DC this year. This is my third year attending, and my first in my brand new career as a technology consultant. You can check out that gig at my new domain, Techcafeteria.com. Right off the bat, at the Member’s reception, I was the proud recipient of an “NTENNIE”, which is awarded to those of us who are big NTEN supporters. It’s a pretty congenial and humorous honor – recipients receive a headset of antennae to wear, and my seven-year old boy was thrilled to appropriate that on my return. I was somewhat surprized by… Read More »Why I won an Anonymous Blogger award at NTC

Better Organization Through Document Management Systems

This article was originally published at Idealware in January of 2007. Is your organization drowning in a virtual sea of documents? Document management systems can provide invaluable document searching, versioning, comparison, and collaboration features. Peter Campbell explains. For many of us, logging on to a network or the Internet can be like charting the ocean with a rowboat. There may be a sea of information at our fingertips, but if we lack the proper vessel to navigate it, finding what we need — even within our own organization’s information system — can be a significant challenge. Organizations today are floating in a virtual sea of… Read More »Better Organization Through Document Management Systems

Google’s Writely Beta

Google has opened up the beta of their online Wordprocessing application, Writely. Done in Ajax and, as usual, containing some clever features. I’m most intrigued by how cleanly it converts Word documents to HTML, something that Word itself is abominable at. But it also seems like a very nice interface for remote blog posting (yes, this wa a test!) and a decent tool for collaboration. Funny how it arrives just shy of Windows Live. http://www.writely.com