Thursday, October 18, 2007


A strange phenomenon with the forthcoming Educause trip. The conversation goes as follows:
Me: "I'm going to Educause"
Just about everyone: "Where is it this year?"
Me: "It's in Seattle"
Just about everyone: "Oh, that's where Starbucks/Frasier/Nirvana/Microsoft/Amazon/Jimi Hendrix/Grey's Anatomy are from" (or any combination thereof)
Just thought I'd mention that this is pretty strange, I've never known it happen with any other conference location, is Seattle secretly the best known city in the US?

But what 'just about everyone' doesn't seem to know is that Seattle is the home of one of the coolest local government websites I've ever seen. My favourite part is the Seattle Fire Department Real-Time 911 Dispatch - on this site you can check out all the dispatch calls for today indicating which are still active, what sort of apparatus is used and the nature of the incident (updated every 60 seconds), you can also check out the archive for the past four years - why? I don't know but it is public service at its best and it is one of the most visited areas on the site.

Secondly, on a sister site, Seattle Climate Action Now check out the Blitz and Moose video (you need to scroll down a bit) with voice over by the Seattle Mayor, if Susannah and Abbi would be willing to "mascot up" a bit I'm sure we'd see a greener LTI in no time ;-)


Paul Helm said...

who or what are these things or people you mention? Have sort of heard of popular beat combo Nirvana, didnt their singer have an unfortunate incident with his lawn mower. How else could you excuse that haircut.

Isnt Seattle, Pearl Jam, post modern ironic tribute band. God they are funny, Jeremy. And Twin Peaks? Lets all talk backwards, ?tahw ro.

gs said...

guilty as charged for the frasier comments. any city that was home to kelsey grammer (albeit fictionally) for so many years has to be cool. not even the-english-woman-who-used-to-be-a-benny-hill-girl-and-pretended-to-be-from-manchester could ruin it with her terrible acting.

the 911 dispatch is inspired and strangely fascinating (oh god...). though they could learn something from the online traffic cameras that we used to watch the sheffield floods. the recent one, not the 19th century one that is.

somehow, i don't think that abbi will take much persuading to do a fancy dress promotional video :)

Abbi said...

Bagsy being Blitz - the slightly sinister looking eagle.

Susannah Diamond said...

Loved Blitz and Moose, but for me the point is that it's the Mayor that's doing the voiceover.
So step right up Paul... or d'you think Lord Winston would be up for it?

Abbi said...

btw Louise, did you know seattle is the most educated city in the US?

Louise said...

I'm not surprised - the Univ of Washington has its own TV channel and I am being very educated by it right now as it is available in the hotel rooms (infection control at the moment - nice), also TV channels more PBS than Law & Order.

Louise said...

Update on the TV stuff (I feel I've undersold the educational provision by only mentioning the U-Dub stuff). There are also two channels devoted to access course type programmes and one channel devoted to CPD for school teachers. My personal favourites are the govt channels (no kidding) - in addition to C-Span and C-Span 2 (loads of presidential nominee stuff but also a gripping 5 min live floor vote in the H of Reps to create a National Park in New Jersey - electronic voting so you can watch the figures changing every 20 seconds whilst people mill around in the background). But in addition to national stuff there is also a channel devoted to state government and one to local county government (currently televising the Regional Wastewater Quality Committee review of integrate waste outlets....) So, you see, why would I sleep

Louise said...

Little bit more Seattle-tastic stuff - we found the first ever Starbucks yesterday (it's tiny) and the whole Seattle/coffee thing might seem like a cliche but it is absolutely true. You can't go 5 paces without passing a coffee place - it is the Yang to Dallas's Yin - here's a little taster