Friday, 25 January 2008

ITC Ipoh/ STM Road Show

the majority of the stm lecturers and all the first year students will be in ipoh during the coming weekend for the ITC (Ipoh Theological Centre) celebration and STM Road Show. the ITC, under the leadership of the anglican churches, was started in Ipoh as a sort of extension centre for STM to conduct its courses for laypeople. students can sign up to do a CertCM and DipCM through the center.

once a year, usually at the beginning, the STM Road Show swings into existence. the ipoh road show has a dual purpose - firstly, to present STM to the churches in ipoh so that the laypeople will know more about the seminary and what we do, and secondly, to participate in the ITC graduation ceremony.

we travel down with the first year students to conduct a series of meetings and preaching engagements in the local churches in ipoh. on saturday night, the students will conduct 2 youth meetings, one for the chinese-speaking youths at st michael's anglican church kampung tawas and the other for the english-speaking youths at st john's. some lecturers will also be preaching during the saturday church evening services. on sunday mornings, the lecturers with some students will proceed to the local churches for their preaching enagagments. i have been assigned to preach in 2 churches, wesley methodist church ipoh during the 8.15 am service, and corner stone anglican outreach during the 10.00am service.

later in the evening at 5.00pm in wesley methodist church, the ITC celebration will be held. it is usually a church service where the principal will preach the sermon, presentations by the students in english and chinese, the anglican bishop will share about the occasion, and finally the presentation of certificates for those students attending the ITC courses. the meeting will end with a buffet dinner. by the time we leave ipoh and head back for seremban, it will be around 11.30pm when we arrive home.

so much for the STM ipoh road show (thankfully, they don't dress up the lecturers in tutus or dance the can-can or sell medicine by the roadside!).

Monday, 21 January 2008

Endnote or other alternatives?

to those thinking of using something like endnote, it is very pricey. even for students with valid student ID who get a 50% discount, it is still expensive. tim has put up an entry on his blog about an alternative called Zotero which is a Firefox plugin. it can do something similar (but with lesser flexibilities). go to tim's blog below to see the full blog entry (with some screenshots).

Referencing for the financially challenged

Rich students/scholars and those in institutions with the clout to get a good deal use Endnote (or some similar full featured expensive) bibliography and referencing tool. The rest of us use Zotero, which is a brilliant free Firefox addin. That I have mentioned before but has got even better with version 1.0. Zotrero is great for taking the info from webpages, and often Library catalogues. It would extract the data from the University catalogue, but I'm no longer teaching at the Uni, and the College catalogue is not Zotero compatible. My workaround has been to search Google and click the Amazon link - Amazon is Zotero compatible - but that only works for recent books, enter a tip from Judy Redman, that I bookmarked long ago, but only really tried today: use WorldCat you can even get a Firefox tool to add WorldCat to your search box in the tool bar (I know the first one works, but do try the second):

OCLC WorldCat Catalog and away you go, fast, free and accurate referencing, now just click and paste into your essay/article/book...

Type in a search term (left) and you go to a page (right) from which you can select the book you need and from the page that appears (below) and for a moment watch in wonder the Zotero "Saving Bibliography Item" message before right clicking the new entry, and presto you are ready to enter the item in your document!

chris heard has dropped in to give his comments on endnote. for mac users, he suggests bookends.

there is also something called Refworks. anyone have any experience with that?

Updated: tim has added a second entry on how to install and use Zotero. this entry has him narrating along which makes it like a tutorial! check it out: