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July 24, 2002

Flawless consulting

Terry Frazier has a pointer to a book that looks interesting:

Flawless Consulting by Peter Block is one of the better how-to books on consulting I've read. [Blunt Force Trauma]
I can confirm that it's interesting; I just sat here at my desk and read the first ten pages or so online. No, I didn't go use Amazon's "look inside" program: I went to Georgia Tech's library web page and looked up the book. There were two entries: one for the book on the shelf, and another listing that said [computer file] in the middle of the record. Clicking further into the catalog record produced a URL, and that took me to netLibrary where I was able to browse the complete book.

Georgia Tech apparently has a deal with netLibrary, which is part of OCLC. Interestingly enough, the listing for Flawless Consulting showed 3 copies. netLibrary gave me the option to check the book out or just browse it, and I did the latter.

That's not the only useful on-line service I've used at Tech's library. Marcia Bate's insightful article After the Dot-Bomb: Getting Web Information Retrieval Right This Time has some interesting looking references at the end from Journal of the American Society for Information Science. A few weeks back I walked over to the library, prepared to go find the articles on the shelf and photocopy them, just like I did back when I was at UC Irvine in the early 80's. I asked someone at the reference desk where I could find the backissues on the shelf. He told me, but he also showed me that the library had that journal in electronic form. I went back to my office, downloaded PDF copies of the articles, and printed them. No library copy charges!