Phil Bradley’s Blog describes how he has joined in the Blogtagging game and has Blog tagged me: he has posted 5 interesting facts about himself, and invited 5 people he knows to do likewise. It sounds like a pyramid chain but, rather than predicting ill-fortune on those who break the chain, I take a positive view that this can be useful in building a community by getting to know each other better (we normally have to wait for the social events at IWMW events to do this, so this is a useful approach in the run up to Christmas).

1. Despite Phil’s assertion that he probably ran the first Internet course in the UK in early 1994, in 1993 I had ran a number of Web sessions around the country. I can remember running a live demonstration and (very slow) hands-on session at Manchester Metropolitan University at a JANET User Support Workshop on (Google finds for me) 14 September 1993.

2. Not only am I a regular prize-winning comic character at the international rapper sword dancing competition, there is a photograph of me in my costume to be found on Wikipedia (if you haven’t come across this previously, feel free to post the URL).

3. My first job, at Sunderland Borough Council, I was a Cobol programmer (keep it quiet!) My final project was releasing a Births, Deaths and Marriages system (“Hatched, Batched, Dispatched”) – at a time when disk storage was at a premium, so I don’t expect it was Y2K compliant.

4. I’ve been to Russia more times than I can remember (13 or 14 times). St. Petersburg (or Leningrad as it was called then first time I went there) is an incredibly beautiful city (especially in the winter) and travelling across Siberia (on a slow stopping train, rather than the Trans-Siberian where to buy antibiotics online canada Express) is an incredible journey, the highlight being the stop at Lystvayanka on Lake Baikal.

5. When I meet a Russian I often ask them to say, in Russian, “24 watches” as in “I would like to buy 24 watches please”. About 90% of Russians I have asked realise, when they start to say this, that it is very difficult to say in Russian (and sometimes I have to give the answer). If they do know the answer, I follow up by asking them to count pokers (for a coal fire) in Russian – one poker, two pokers, three pokers, four pokers, … silence, much laughter. Do we have words in English which are too difficult to say or which we don’t realise that we can’t say (perhaps this is along the lines of the funniest joke in the world which featured on Monty Python’s – “this one will kill you”).

The Bloggers I would like to Blog tag are:

  1. Kara Jones: a Blogging Librarian here at Bath (and an Australian, so I’ll be avoiding her for the remainder of the Ashes series).
  2. Phil Wilson: who posts articles related to Semantic Web and related Web developments on his Blog. Phil is colleague of mine at Bath University who has given talks at two of my recent events andis often one of the first to respond to many of my postings.
  3. Michael Webb: Newport College has a Web 2.0 strategy, developed after Michael listened to a talk I gave at the UCISA Management Conference in 2004. He posts about Web 2.0 and related issues on his Blog.
  4. Sheila Webber: who posts on her Information Literacy Weblog and who has recently posted articles about myself and …
  5. Dave Pattern: … whose Self Plagiarism Is Style Blog describes his Library 2.0 ideas and development activities.

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