Wednesday, September 07, 2005

LinkedIn - what took me so long???

OK - I was in Portland weekend before last, and a friend told me about LinkedIn. He looked at me like I was crazy because I hadn't heard about it or signed up. He waxed about the marvels of networking that can be done through this marvelous tool, so when I got back to the office, I thought I'd do a little "check it out" thing.

Oh my gawd... this thing is absolutely incredible! If you haven't explored the wonders of this tool, stop now, click the link above and go... do not pass Go, do not collect $200... you must go now! Upload your Outlook contact database into the system, and you will be SHOCKED at how many of the people you ALREADY KNOW are "LinkedIn"... when I uploaded my database, over 100 of my very own contacts were in the system.

Now, here's the fun part... once you get LinkedIn, you can explore the systems and learn how to make new connections... you can catch up with former coworkers by tying in the name of the old company. If they have uploaded their resumes/job histories to the site (which almost everyone does), their name will pop up. You can request an introduction through one of your very own contacts and start the process of reconnecting.

We've wanted to pitch a couple of different editors at the New York Times, so I typed in "New York Times." The results came back complete with how far they are connected to me. One of the juiciest contacts was just two connections away!!! I requested an introduction, and now this holy grail of a contact is connected to... MOI!

A little less exciting but fun nonetheless... I saw that a former client was connected to one of my contacts, and he and I are getting together for lunch next week.

Again, go you must... load your contacts you must... request to be linked to me, and I'll accept... it's amazing! Heck... you might even be six steps to the infamous Kevin Bacon!

Cosmic Log: Space and the storm

Cosmic Log: Space and the storm - Cosmic Log - "Space and the storm: Could NASA's new vision suffer because of Hurricane Katrina? It may seem like a stretch, but some space policy observers believe that the damage in the Southeast could have a long-term impact on America's space effort.

The Space Review's Jeff Foust explores the possibilities this week in 'The Hurricane and the Vision.'

If you look at the physical damage sustained by NASA facilities, the picture doesn't look that bad: The Michoud Assembly Facility near New Orleans, where the space shuttle's fuel tanks are manufactured, wasn't damaged as much as forecasters feared during Katrina's approach. But for now, most of the people who work there are cut off from their homes and work - and it could be that way for days or weeks longer."