Why we have too few women in the boardroom

An absolute kickass 15 minute TED talk about what women can do to make themselves prime, unavoidable candidates for the boardroom without belittling themselves along the way.

Some things wot I did write and a workshop wot I will do.

Hey, hey. I’ve written a couple of  articles and I have a workshop coming up:

One here for the glorious 24ways.org: a content strategy for personal sites which does what it says on the tine.

And another for 52weeksofUX.com: Words are the Soul of UX all about making time to make the littlest interactions count.

Also, I have a fun workshop coming up courtesy of Five Simple Steps – which handily ties together the above two topics! Come experience my rants in the flesh, in London, in January 2011: http://workshops.fivesimplesteps.com/

I’d love to see you there. Places are limited, as is the early bird price, so book yourself a pre-Christmas treat and have something to look forward to in January.

It all counts.

This year, I have made an Advent basket for Toby with a small Christmas task for everyday of the year, like read a Christmas story, make a gift for the birds, watch a movie with popcorn, drink hot chocolate with marshmallows, make cookies and much more.

I found the idea on Ali Edwards blog and I love the idea of ‘doing’ Christmas things in the lead up, just a little each day so that he is excited and motivated about the season, not just presents. It’s going really well so far and complimenting the usual chocolate Advent calendar nicely. I’m filling in a December daily with small snaps of the tasks and other daily stories as a record too.

Cards

I’m not quite sure what has come over me but I appear to have made some Christmas cards this year.

Walnut stain ink on inkadinkadoo stamp and pro marker finish.

They might even make it into the postbox if the stars and planets align.

Snow!

Cat constitutional trip

Last year I was concerned we might have to spend Christmas on a raft above the rain. This year we have some of the earliest snow seen around these parts for years, with even the cats declining to go out other than to do their ‘business’ to the side of the flower patch. It’s kind of fun that everywhere looks like Christmas cards say it should, even if Royal Mail seem to have given up all hope of delivering anywhere. I’ll be generous and assume that’s because some depot somewhere is snowed in because it certainly isn’t around here. That said they do have it pretty deep elsewhere.

Anyway Toby had fun sledding with our Nanny and some friends from nursery. Tomorrow they are off to see reindeer. I caught up with him before tea and we wrote a letter to Santa.

Time to get that into today’s journal. You can find yesterday pages on my flickr account.

Gifts of a geekily awesome nerdish nature.

Inspired by the everinspiring Sazzy, I have put together my own post of gifts for the geek and geek-at-heart. They are obviously influenced by my own tastes so Your Mileage May Vary.

Anyway, no commissions or affiliate perks were collected in the making of this post and equally I don’t own them all either so I can’t vouch for their awesomeness in the flesh. Caveat emptor and all that.

First up: A ‘What Would Spiderman Do?‘ print.

What would spiderman do?

Extra awesome – you can go right through to their page and personalize this print however you like. Bonus points to anyone that gets a ‘What Would Zeldman Do?’ print for the office.

Another thing to make sure your walls aren’t a plain magnolia – this city co-ordinates canvas. It’s smart, it’s factual, it’s ready to be personalized with the world city of your choice. Tell the nice people what city you’d like and they’ll whip up a number just like this for you. Now, with just one nifty canvas print, even your loo can represent the city of your birth! Unless you live in Bolton or somewhere and then you probably already have that covered.

City co-ords canvas

Every guy needs one set of fancy cufflinks for weddings, Christenings and funerals so you might as well alert everyone to the fact you aren’t usually found in a suit:

Alter-ego cufflinks

And what else does a guy need for the aforementioned events? A tie. A tie that doesn’t suck. Even better, a tie that might help pass the time if the gathering at Auntie Gladys’ wake runs on a bit longer than the bar tab for G’n’T’s. And so, I present:

Rocket Science Tie

The design is a gorgeous silk-screened number based on the “NASA’s “Command Module Main Control Panel” – from the Apollo Operations Handbook Block II Spacecraft, 1969″. This tie is f**king rocket science, my friends.

Now this next one, I *do* have. Or at least some from the same Etsy store. I bought a bunch of different images for gifts this year and they are really fun. Very crisp prints on old dictionary pages ready for framing:

I <3 you

Animals, Anatomy, Instruments and Mechanicals are just some of the themes available.

Another Etsy store I frequent? Risky Beads. They have small but perfectly formed necklaces and keyrings for crafters, sports players and the nerdaratti:

weapon of choice

Combining two of my loves – Nintendo and my iPad, I’ll give you first shot at this Handmade iPad cover by yummypocket on Etsy. Quick, before I change my mind.

Gameboy iPad cover

Maybe pick up their Moustache iPhone Cozy while you’re at it.

Moustache iPhone cozy

Still, why get an iphone case that just does the one thing right? Firebox has a combined iphone case and bottle opener. I know, right. But tell me you don’t want to try it, just once?

iphone bottle opener

Speaking of iPhones, guarenteed that if the geek in your life has one you’ll have heard them say “Bol***ks, I forgot to charge it. I’ve only got 10 per cent battery!”. Stop the inevitable disconnect (and breakdown that follows thereafter) with the Zipcharge.

Zipcharge

Not just the iPhone either. Interchangeable tips means loads of gadgets can benefit from the physics defying ability of this box to charge stuff really fast. It must be homeopathy or something.

Anyway, Ladies, let’s make sure we aren’t missing out this year right? Yeah! W00t! Yes, a handmade sterling silver number that knocks the mass-produced Topshop efforts into a cocked hat.

W00t necklace

More practically, can I suggest gloves? But not just any old pair. Gloves that work for touchscreens! Gloves that fit lady-hands! Gloves that do both these things and are a bit stylish too! These numbers from Firebox, in fact:

Stripy touchscreen gloves

I have the stripy pair on pre-order.

For t-shirts, Think Geek is the place to go, especially for ladies’ styles. Particular favourites:

Ada Lovelace tee

Ada Lovelace Heroine tee

Sparkle Bacon!

Sparkle Bacon tee!

Self-Rescusing Princess

Self Rescuing Princess. Yes, Mario, your princess is already in another castle because they were having a Left 4 dead 2 session.

Which brings me on to my next selections. I’m a bit of a video game fan, you know. Perhaps the lady in your life would like a fused glass Tetris pendant? Well, she would if it were me. Handmade from an Etsy seller, no less.

Tetris pendant

When Steam came to the Mac I got a really excited because I could play Half-Life instead of paying attention during meetin … WAIT. I mean, look at this rad Portal macbook decal.

Portal decal

Perhaps I’d do as well to get me some invincibility from Etsy seller Until It Ends, perhaps on a charm bracelet Mario style!

Invisibility charm bracelet

Admittedly that is a bit girly so finally, for the real hardcore gamer in your life, a handprinted shirt:

I went outside once ...

Well, quite.

Getting excited and making things.

Me and the boys play trains

As with all things in life, creativity has an ebb and flow. Currently I’m teetering on a flow (I think) which does mean some other things have to ebb.

I’ve been assessing my interests recently – what’s important and what’s not, and what’s fun for me and what’s not. Making things is fun. Helping other people make things (like content!) is fun. Workshops are fun. Classes are fun. Crafting and baking and writing is fun. Creating epic train tracks with my kids is fun.

Some other stuff, not so much.

Obviously we can’t avoid some things we aren’t so keen on (what is they say about taxes and death) but some stuff really can drop off my horizon right about now. I’m going to push it off in fact. Get back to getting excited and making things.

Linkorama for EdUI attendees.

Hey dudes and dudettes.

I hope you enjoyed my session. Here are a bunch of links for you related to the talk.

http://www.headscape.co.uk

http://www.boagworld.com

http://www.contentstrategyfortheweb.com

http://www.flickr.com/groups/microcopy/

http://www.abtests.com

http://www.bokardo.com

http://www.performable.com

http://24ways.org/2009/the-construction-of-instruction

http://www.webdirections.org/resources/relly-annett-baker-all-the-small-things/

http://www.huffduffer.com

http://icanhaz.com/audit

http://www.leeds.ac.uk/comms/styleguide/guide.pdf

Others to be added as I find them.

Re: timekeeping

Dear my clocks,

I’m not sure if you are the responsible party here so, if this is incorrect, please forward to someone in management (perhaps based at your HQ in Greenwich?).

I’m sorry to say that standards of timekeeping recently have been slipping. I have noticed breaks in time, often when I’m sat at my computer, where the house timekeeping team obviously think it is okay to slack off a bit and move the clock on.

These breaks start to add to hours missing in my day. It is the only possible explanation for my taking a thirty minute blog reading break and looking up to find three hours have past. Equally, when there is two hours in which to make dinner and suddenly just forty-five minutes remain and all I have done is check Twitter.

I’m not sure if your lunch breaks have been extending a little or perhaps conversations around the water cooler between the kitchen clock and the wristwatches have started to dominate your days a little but it is having a knock on effect on the household.

I look forward to your response to this urgent issue. You can find me at my desk browsing Etsy.

Yours,

Your Owner.

True Stories: a journalling class

A few weeks back I sent Shimelle an email that kind of went along the lines of “Hey, so you know your classes are really cool. I wonder if some of my writing methods might help out some of your scrapbookers and bloggers?” She very graciously said that yes, maybe they might just and would I like to be the guest expert writer for her new journalling class? Some email went back and forth, we called each other panda a lot and the class came to be. In fact, it is in a state of being right now and you can sign up through Shimelle’s site to get daily prompts to help you tell your personal stories, for the new three weeks.

If you want to know a little bit more about it, watch this fabulous video by the gorgeous Shimelle herself: