Living in More Than One World,

The Blog of Bruce Rosenstein

CIOs, IT and Kindle

A very short post today, as I get ready to take a few days off. I’ll resume blogging on September 1. In the meantime, whether or not you are a CIO (Chief Information Officer), and whether or not you own a Kindle, have a look at CIO INSIGHT for the Books Slideshow: 10 Kindle Books for CIOs. There are thumbnail descriptions and covers for books aimed at busy technology executives. Many of these titles seem like they would have broader applicability for people who want to understand more about how technology is applied in organizations. The #1 book is CIO Best Practices: Enabling Strategic Value with Information Technology, by Joe Stenzel, Gary Cokins, et al; a 2007 title described as “the bible of technology leadership.” #2, CIO Survival Guide: The Roles and Responsibilities of the Chief Information Officer by Karl D.…

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Paste Special: Music and Literature

Justin Jacobs, in Paste magazine, combines two of my favorite topics in the August 24th article Ten Fantastic Songs Brought To You by Books. Numbers one (“Song for Myla Goldberg”, inspired by the Bee Season author) and nine, “The Tain,” on Jacobs’ list are from a great band, The Decemberists. (I also remember the ‘70s album The Tain by the Irish band Horslips.) The only other female writer to be serenaded in a title is “Sylvia Plath,” #4 by Ryan Adams. Another writer name-checked in a title is “Saul Bellow,” #8 by Sufjan Stevens. The source for #3, Radiohead’s “2+2=5,” says Jacobs, is George Orwell’s 1984.…

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Visit a Hidden-Gem Museum

Economist.com has been running a web-only series of columns this summer spotlighting “hidden-gem museums” around the world. The pieces are beautifully written, and do an excellent job of placing the houses of art in historical context. The first was July18, about the National Museum of the Renaissance at the Chateau d’Ecouen. The column points out that although attendance rose to 85,000 visitors last year, that’s not particularly good, especially considering its location in Paris. July 25 spotlights the Museum of Handbags and Purses in Amsterdam.  On August 1 is the dryly-headlined Arles together now, about Museon Arlaten in Arles, France.…

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Peter Drucker on Leadership and Self-Management

Rich Karlgaard, Forbes publisher and columnist, points out in his August 17 commentary Drucker’s Final Words On Leadership: Manage yourself before you take on responsibility for others, that people who aspire to become leaders must get their own life in order. It’s a brief and to-the-point column; mostly drawing attention to and setting the context for a link to the full text of Peter Drucker’s 1999 Harvard Business Review article Managing Oneself. The latter is an excerpt from Drucker’s important book from the same year, Management Challenges for the 21st Century. I was pleased to see Karlgaard’s column, since the subject matter dovetails perfectly with the self-development theme of my new book, Living in More Than One World: How Peter Drucker’s Wisdom Can Inspire and Transform Your Life.…

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Design Ideas for Success

Garr Reynolds, on his consistently useful Presentation Zen blog, has a handy and helpful recent post, 10 Tips on how to think like a designer. The ideas and insights he presents have applicability to a wide audience, which was his intention. Whether you are designing a presentation or anything else that people will have to look at and understand, you’re likely to discover things that will help you consider your project in new ways. One of the most provocative tips is the first: embrace constraints. The inclination for most of us is to complain about what we weren’t given to do something, rather than to focus on how to make the best of the situation.…

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Scranton Comes Alive

Scranton, Pa., where I was born and grew up in the ‘50s and ‘60s, was not particularly a cultural hotspot when I lived there. But in recent years, the situation has changed dramatically. Many people know it as the fictional setting of the hit NBC show The Office. There are now Office-themed tours, the subject of Jayne Clark’s recent USA TODAY story Scranton welcomes fans of ‘The Office’. And during last year’s presidential campaign, the city became known for the family roots of both Hillary Rodham Clinton and Joe Biden. Among the major improvements in recent years include two top minor league franchises shared with their neighboring city, The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees, the Triple-A baseball affiliate of the New York Yankees; and hockey’s Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, the top affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins.…

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Listening for Self-Help

Beth Farrell of Library Journal has an extensive survey of self-help audiobooks in Mind, Body & Soul. Although the article is aimed at librarians, anyone interested in this genre will find it useful and informative. Referencing an article from Forbes earlier this year, she notes the billions spent in recent years on these types of books, CDs and related products and services. She also calls attention to LJ’s most recent ranking of most-borrowed audiobooks, in which 15 of 20 were in the self-help category. And not all the audiobooks that libraries offer come only in the traditional CD format; others are available through web-based digital downloads from companies such as Overdrive or Ingram Digital, and in the preloaded digital Playaway format (a new one to me).…

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Fairport Convention’s Festival Came Around Again

The past weekend was not only notable as the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. It was also the weekend that one of my favorite bands, Fairport Convention, held its annual Fairport’s Cropredy Convention festival, in Britain. The long-running event regularly draws around 20,000 people. Besides the band itself – which has had countless members over the years — it attracts an eclectic lineup of performers, including former members of Fairport, especially Richard Thompson. For more background, see this Reuters blog posting. I’ve never been to the festival, but I’d love to attend one day. Fairport traditionally does a three hour closing set on the final evening, and this year their special guest during the set was Yusuf [Islam], formerly Cat Stevens.…

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You’ll See It When You Believe It

Guardian.co.uk continues to produce useful, thought-provoking content in easy-to-digest formats. The latest example I’ve discovered is How to Believe. So far, this series of blogs by expert commentators is mainly centered on philosophy, with some religion. Mark Vernon, a multi-talented author, journalist, teacher, broadcaster and former priest in the Church of England is doing a series of eight blogs on Plato; two so far with the next due tomorrow. His next book, Plato’s Podcasts: The Ancients’ Guide to Modern Living, will be published in the UK in October. He does a nice job of setting Plato in context in the two blogs so far, demonstrating his importance in the middle of the linked chain of philosophers between Socrates and Aristotle.…

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How a Novelist Culls and Saves Her Books

Although her posting ran nearly a month ago, check out Michelle Richmond’s I can’t bear to part with… on sfgate.com, the San Francisco Chronicle’s website. She explains that she is culling her bookshelves, but that some books not only couldn’t go, but “beg to be read again and again.” Some of the ten books on the list are new to me, such as The Palace of Dreams, by Ismail Kadare and The Death of a Beekeeper, by Lars Gustafsson. What initially drew me to her post was the inclusion of one of my all-time favorite books, Ficciones, by Jorge Luis Borges, as well as A Mathematician’s Apology, by G.H.…

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