What I have been up to or lost in Information Systems Land!

It has been quite a while since my last post. A lot has happened since then. Currently, I am almost half way through my Master of Information Systems (MSIS) with Central Michigan University (CMU) online.

So, far I have taken classes in:

  • Project Management
  • Information Systems
  • Systems Design and Analysis
  • Database Management
  • Designing Business Applications

Through the program, I have gained quite a bit of knowledge and familiarity with different programs, applications, and languages. I have also been able to apply some of the course work at my current position as a property manager (non-information systems).

One of the byproducts of the program is that I am finally starting to feel comfortable with my writing and how I communicate with others. That’s not to say it is always perfect, just that I am able to confidently do it. Grammarly has been a big help!

I’m going to try and post more often.

Categories: Uncategorized

MSIS Course One Done!

October 30, 2017 Leave a comment

So, I started the MS program in Information Systems (IS) with Central Michigan University (CMU) online. I have very successfully completed my first class in IS. There was a lot of good material such as cyber security, project management, strategy, networking, supply chain management (SCM) topics, knowledge management (KM), and an introduction to databases.

The course meshed well with my prior graduate coursework in Performance Improvement and Training and Development. A little overlap with regards to knowledge management and project management.

A few very brief takeaways (amongst many that are worth sharing) are:

  • The OACB writing system is a great way to structure communication, both written and oral. The O is for Opening. A equals the agenda. B is for the body of the communications. C is the closing paragraphs. The structure reduces the guesswork and provides sort of a “writing by numbers” or at least acronym.
  • At face, IS problems might seem to be about the technology, but working backward, there often management or organizational causes. IS issues are the dependent variable. This was observed in many of the weekly case studies.
  • There are some very exciting areas related to IS such as artificial intelligence (AI), cyber security, project management, and knowledge management.

Currently, I am taking a business communication course and next semester plan to take courses in project management and application development.

Sunday Morning Work

February 5, 2017 Leave a comment

Feeling productive today, Sunday goals:

  1. Work on Cybrary tutorials
  2. Write a post on WordPress 
  3. Check on job boards/posts
  4. Start taxes (or at least get everything ready to complete the task)
  5. Check in on Linkedin Groups
  6. Get some work done…for the actual job I get paid for.

Hopefully my “feeling productive” mojo will hold the duration of the day!


Categories: Uncategorized

Unfinished Drafts

January 11, 2017 2 comments

What is and what might never be. My unfinished blog post drafts (and most will probably remain in stasis) includes titles and topics such as:

  • “Return to HTML & CSS”
  • “A Simple Prayer”
  • “LinkedIn Bad habits” (I almost certainly was going to bitch about random people that want to connect and use the generic greeting).
  • “Random thoughts” (surprisingly there is only one such post like this).
  • “Untitled”….ooh I bet that will capture reader attention!

Similar to life, this blog has a lot of incomplete, half-done, and works-in-progress. Perhaps in both areas it is time to close the proverbial loop and complete those blog posts and things we allow to remain unfinished for whatever reason.

Time to work on “Untitled.”

Deep Winter Blues!

January 10, 2017 Leave a comment

Lately, I have been in a “winter funk” combined with the busyness of the holidays and all the post election media, I just haven’t felt like writing (or doing anything for that matter).

But, it is now a new  year! So, a few professional New Year’s Resolutions:

  1. Professionally re-position myself and pivot towards my passion and away from the things that drain my energy, leave me mentally exhausted, and unfulfilled. This is my fancy way of saying, I am going to pursue new employment adventures!
  2. Write more. Here and else where. Personally and professionally.
  3. Make it a point to reach-out and network more and increase my social media presence.

Like most, 2016 has professionally and personally have left me feeling drained, mentally exhausted, and yearning for a new year and new opportunities.

For some real soulful “Deep Winter Blues” By Chris Rea. Enjoy.

Social Engineered/Tricked by a Six Year Old.

November 6, 2016 Leave a comment

Originally, I posted this on Facebook  10/30/2016 as a note, but thought it would have a home here too.

My iPhone was hacked last night, it wasn’t by the Russians, the Jester, or Feds, but Charlotte. She used a technique called social engineering. Here is the story.
Recently, I put a password on the iPhone and this bothers Charlotte when she wants to play Flappy Bird. I know she has been watching me put the password in. Earlier in the day, she figured out after weeks of watching me. So, I gave her the phone and told her “prove it.” She entered the correct password and got access. So, I changed the password and told her so. Fast forward to the evening.

Charlotte and I are watching the Cubs game. She casually asked if “Trick-or-Treating time was from 4 pm to 10 pm?”. I said “No that seems early, let me check my phone.” I reach for the phone and type the in the password, proceed to ineffectively search for the information. I tell respond to her that I believe the times are “6 pm to 8 pm, like it had been in the past.”

Thinking about it, I ask her, “You weren’t interested in Trick-or-Treat times, were you? You just wanted to watch as I put the password into the phone?” She responded honestly. She was correct in reciting the password back to me.

A few things were happening here. First, she knew I would reach for the phone to find the information. I always do this, recent searches include: “Alec Guinness,” “Parkour,” “Duvet,” and “Napoleon Dynamite.” She knew my tendency or habit to just go online and search. Second, she knew the previous password wasn’t too sophisticated, because she was able to learn it over time. Like many of the passwords we use, it wasn’t for the record the it was “111222.” A better password might have been “121212” or “238391” or at least something a little tricky. Easy passwords to remember are often easy ones to crack.

1/2 Way Point – Some Random Thoughts.

September 18, 2016 Leave a comment

My intro to web programming course is just about at the half way point. So far, I am doing okay grade wise. There is always room for improvement. I definitely need to spend more time reviewing the book and exercises. I have been able to make it through the weekly homework and discussion posts with only a few problems.

I really believe that in HTML/CSS and coding in general, it is important to spend as much time doing it as possible. The more time one spends with it, the better they understand it, and thus in theory the easier it should become.

I have somewhat noticed this with the assignments. It is not that they have gotten easier, I just have gotten a little bit better. Even though there are instructions, it is too easy to miss a semi-colon or backslash. Little mistakes can equal code that the codes not correctly function. This leads to frustration and stress.

Overall, online learning isn’t too bad. The hardest part is making dedicated time each day to spend with the materials. I have done okay with this, but could do a little better. The second is being on tight weekly deadline. Sometimes there are non-learning factors that make this tricky (example recent switch of internet service providers). Third, other than the discussion posts, I don’t feel connect to any of the people in the class.

I assume they are like me and living local but going to campus 3 or 4 times a week isn’t an option. It is kind of crazy to think that I am a 5 minute drive from campus, but taking the course online. It is a work scheduling issue. Maybe I will see if anyone from the class wants to have a meet-up, have drinks, or connect via Linkedin.

The good news is that even with my ongoing course and autodidact learning, I feel ready to begin assembling a portfolio. The portfolio will be key increasing my chances of landing meaningful employment.