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Databases for Change


Databases for Change

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Bill Nicolich
Bill Nicolich
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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Databases for Change

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BobSaint
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Bill - excellent editorial, and I like your thinking. I think that too many of us in the IT world become possesive with our knowledge and skills, and forget that the prime directive - especially among DBA's - is to share knowledge; to take "data" and turn it into information, in a way that is highly available, reliable and makes sense to the consumer. Data should certainly be protected, but only from those who would abuse it. We should all strive for the holy grail of data stewardship: available anytime, everywhere it's needed and right on point.

And I've met too many IT professionals who have a very smug attitude toward juniors in their field. Share what you know, eagerly and enthusiastically, and you do credit to yourself in the process. Remember that we all started out not knowing anything.
Ian Massi
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That is an excellent suggestion. Seeing as how we have specialized, valuable skills we could certainly help out organizations that we support. You've given me something to ponder for the day.
Steve Jones
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Bill,

I think you did a great job (and thanks for the break for today).

This is one of those places where you can make a difference in an organization. It would be great if there was some central place that helped match up organizations and people with time. I think a lot of these projects would take time and it can be hard for one person to keep going on it, but if a couple people shared the load, they might be able to sustain it well.

Maybe some "volunteerdbas.org" or "volunteercoders.org" is waiting for someone to set up.

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IowaDave
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Excellent call for involvement! We all need that "gentle reminder" occasionally.
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Great editorial, Bill.

There are many opportunities for volunteerism today, and this is another one that deserves our support. We have to bring our government out from the shadows.



Alan Vogan
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This is a great idea, and also one I've been thinking about. I've built a handful of small database applications for non-profits, as I'm sure alot of you have. I've also retained the rights to these applications, thinking that I might sell them at some point. But they just sit and collect dust. Whistling

So I'm going to make them available for free to the organizations that have asked for a copy. I'm not quite sure about how 'open' I should leave it and would welcome any of your thoughts on distribution and open source. Now, the only thing really slowing me down is that I'll need to create a small user manual. Ah, documentation...w00t
Philip Hurzeler
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Great editorial! Corruption always relies on misrepresenting or hiding facts. Voters need good information. So does the marketplace.



Wayne West
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Alan Vogan (9/17/2008)
This is a great idea, and also one I've been thinking about. I've built a handful of small database applications for non-profits, as I'm sure alot of you have. I've also retained the rights to these applications, thinking that I might sell them at some point. But they just sit and collect dust. Whistling

So I'm going to make them available for free to the organizations that have asked for a copy. I'm not quite sure about how 'open' I should leave it and would welcome any of your thoughts on distribution and open source. Now, the only thing really slowing me down is that I'll need to create a small user manual. Ah, documentation...w00t

Excellent idea, you might consider Sourceforging them. I think there are sites devoted to software that supports charities (not that I have any URLs handy) which would be good for describing them to the community.

I want to put a database that I developed for work up on Sourceforge that makes it easy to report election results (for cities, got a kudo from the political reporter of the local paper that it was the best election reporting that he'd seen in his career!) on web sites or whatever, I've mentioned it to my boss and really should follow up on it.

-----
Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves or we know where we can find information upon it. --Samuel Johnson
Andy Lennon
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The idea of the federal government putting databases together gives me pause, but I do think it's a good idea. Not only could it potentially improve transparency and accountability in government, it could also provide the necessary impetus to put together some comprehensive laws on what information can be kept, about whom, for how long, etc.

I also think Bill's suggestion for the philanthropic appliaction of database skills is an excellent one. I work as a developer; the client i work for has a couple of layers of personnel between me and the end-users, so it's difficult to tell if my work is really making things better for anyone. A distinct, project-based outlet for the donation of skills/time would be a great way to make a difference for a good cause.

Cheers Bill!
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