Is Chicago really ready for my visit?

I was hoping that my new netbook would arrive before my trip to Chicago. Unfortunately, the shipper used some type of UPS ground shipping that does not provide an estimated delivery date. I’m hoping that Andy from Chicago (formally Andy from Kansas City) will at least have some top quality barbeque sauce on hand. I figure if I’m going to be forced to consume food from Chicago restaurants, then I should at least have some high quality barbeque sauce available to kick it up a notch.

For the first time in my academic career, I was selected to be a conference panel chair. The only real preconference duty of a Midwest Political Science Association (MPSA) panel chair is to ensure that participants upload their papers and show up to the conference. As of today, I have successfully completed my preconference panel chair duties. Every paper for the 2012 MPSA conference panel 39-4 Digital Government is now available online.

39-4 Digital Government
39-4 Digital Government

My paper is already uploaded for the 53-1 E-Government and Information Technology panel.

53-1 EGovernment and Information Technology
53-1 EGovernment and Information Technology

Enjoying Colorado Springs

The editors over at Kiplinger’s personal finance managzine just released their top ten value cities list for 2011. The City of Colorado Springs, Colorado happened to be ranked #4. Colorado Springs has infinatly more outdoor activities, local travel opportunitys, and scenic mountins for residents to enjoy compared the #1 ranked Omaha, Nebraska.

Notes from the San Jose Airport

Recently, I started to take a visual survey of what types of laptop, notebook, and netbook personal computing devices people are actually using. Today for example, after checking in with airport security the long walk down the terminal causeway provided the perfect opportunity for a visual inspection of computer usage. The results were very interesting. People were using a series of Acer, Asus, and Dell computers. Only one computer could not be identified. Somebody working near the coffee bar was using a very small nebook that did not have a manufacturer label. The system was obviously running Windows Vista, but however built the system did not provide any identifiable markings.

During the last few days at the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) 2010 conference in San Jose, California people were using Acer (Ferrari), Dell, and Macintosh. Academics run the gambit of computer usage. Some academics are true computer power users that demand absolute performance. However, some academics take an almost Luddite approach to accepting technology. Technology buyers tend to be a rather bimodal group of spenders. The first category of technology buyer avoids overspending at all costs; even performance considering are secondary to a perfect fit between price and basic functionality. The second category of technology buyers tends to spend based on the intersection of the bleeding edge of technological innovation and mass production.

Technology seems to be a topic that requires constant reevaluation. Without question understanding how people value computers requires empirical evidence based on observing what technology people transport with them across the country. If people value technology enough travel with it, then the way people use that technology needs to be functionally understood.

A new day in San Jose

Checking into the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA) conference today in San Jose, California required a fair amount of walking. Initially, I thought the conference was being held at the convention center. After doing some research, I found out that all of the ASPA 2010 conference sessions are being held at The Fairmont San Jose Luxury Hotel. The conference registration information included a schedule that lays out the details for a very promising weekend of public administration theory and scholarship.