WOOT!! FINISHED!!

Masters Degree comicOkay, everyone. I know I’ve been pretty MIA this year, particularly the last few months, but I have a very good reason.  After 3 years of working full-time (or freelancing while looking for full-time work) and attending grad school in my “spare time” (ha!), I have officially completed my dual-Master’s Degree program!  The Fall 2012 semester ended last week, and grades posted earlier this week.  Finishing with a very respectable 3.056 GPA, I am now the proud possessor of a Master of Science in Technology Management, Information Systems AND a Masters of Business Administration.   WOO-HOO!!  Now I get to be “that guy.”  My cards will soon read, “Dawn Meade, CTS, MBA”   ^_^

Now that the insanity of grad school is over, I plan to be a far more frequent blogger, both here and over at rAVe [publications].  I will also have time to look at other opportunities and education possibilities.  Do you think “Dawn Meade, CTS, MBA, CVE, PMP” is too much?  *pondering*

Cartoon from Toothpaste for Dinner webcomic, by Drew of Sharing Machine. http://www.toothpastefordinner.com/       http://www.toothpastefordinner.com/092303/my-masters-degree.gif

Your Opportunity is RIGHT NOW!

They Took Our Jobs!I’m sure you’re all pretty sick of hearing about convergence.  It’s been the buzzword from InfoComm, NSCA and most of our major publications for, oh, the last decade.  IT is coming!  Convergence is upon us! Adapt or die!  The clarion call has been shouted from rooftops, proclaimed in industry classes and discussed endlessly — in roundtables and keynotes and blog upon blog.  To an average integrator, this tintinnabulation has echoed falsely in our everyday work life.  Sure, we meet with more IT guys than general facilities guys these days, and yeah, once in a while an IT firm shows up at an AV project pre-bid, but the wholesale takeover of our industry as predicted has simply not come to pass.  It’s not that big a deal.  Okay, business has slowed some places for integrators, but it’s the economy, right? Things are down all over! Read more

RIP to an AV Pioneer

Eugene Polley, RIPI just learned that Eugene Polley passed away on Sunday at age 96.  Most of you are now saying, “Who?”  Eugene Polley is widely credited as the inventor of the television remote control.  In the 1950s, Polley was the Zenith engineer who developed the Flash-Matic television control unit, along with many other innovations.  In his nearly 50-year career, he earned 18 US patents and was influential in the development of many features and products we all take for granted.  And, he invented the remote… which in his day resembled a ray-gun and sounds infinitely cooler than the button-laden brick we all lose in our couches.  Thanks, Eugene, for all your great ideas and innovations.  Rest thee well.

Read more about Eugene Polley:  http://www.marinij.com/business/ci_20680677/eugene-polley-inventor-tv-remote-dies-at-96

Technology and Time March On…

Peter Shankman is a genius and a social media and marke1980's Gear Guyting GIANT.  He’s also a great guy who curates and shares a lot of fabulous content online and shares with his network… in which I am lucky to be included.  He just read a great (okay, greatly depressing) posting on BuzzFeed by a guy named Matt Stopera called “48 Things That Will Make You Feel Old.”

The original post is located at http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/things-that-will-make-you-feel-old and I highly recommend surfing over to check it out. If you are anything like me, you will vacillate wildly between “OMG! I remember THAT/HIM/HER!!” and “OMG… I am soooooo old! *le sigh*”

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NAB-Goers! Visit Booth SU10519!

I’m not at NAB this week, but if I were, I’d be stopping byWounded Warrior Project logo Booth SU10519 to visit Cabletime USA.  Cabletime is the manufacturer of MediaStar TV, Multimedia and Digital Signage Delivery Systems.

Okay, I’ll be honest here. I don’t know much at all about Cabletime and their MediaStar product. Seriously.  Like, I’ve heard of it in passing. It could be the best thing on the planet for that application, or it could be the absolute worst.  But what I do know is that the folks at Cabletime are good people.

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Answering Arthur’s Rhetorical Questions

So, I caught the remake of Arthur on a cable movie channel the other day. I’m absolutely NOT a fan of Russell Brand and was quite upset to hear that they were remaking the movie originally. While it was never high art or anything, the original Arthur is a bit of a classic and good for some laughs, mainly at the manic performance of Dudley Moore as the namesake loveable drunk – a performance that has set the standard for a generation of actors “acting drunk.”

Still, I adore Helen Mirren (Can I *be* her when I grow up?) and figured it was worth a watch on a boring afternoon.  I’m so glad I watched it, if for no other reason, for the following scene:

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The Power of Social Media

The Power of Social Media – A true story.Y108 (Pittsburgh's Country) Fish Fry banner

Yesterday, I got a very vivid illustration of just how powerful Social Media can be.

I grew up in a very small town in Western PA.  Very small.  Like, 200 houses maximum, small.  The town was settled in the early 1800s by about 25 families, who lingered and intermarried until today when pretty much everyone is related to everyone else somehow… and folks are still known as “that new family” if they’ve only lived in town since the 1970s or so.

Now, this li’l speck on the map doesn’t have its own government – it is, in fact, an unincorporated area that straddles two townships – but it does have a church and a fire department.  The fire department is an all-volunteer service, founded by the town fathers (including my grandfather) in 1942.  And, like many volunteer fire departments in Western PA, Paintertown Volunteer Fire Department holds an annual Fish Fry supper every Friday during Lent.  This town social event serves as a fundraiser for the upkeep of the fire trucks. The volunteer fire fighters, the junior fire fighters and the members of the Ladies’ Auxiliary all work together to cook and serve a variety of delicious dinner options, and everyone who buys a meal also gets a complimentary dessert – homemade cake or pie made and donated by the town mothers (including my mother).  It’s one of those great small town traditions that makes us all long for Grover’s Corners, Bedford Falls and Mayberry.

So what on earth does this have to do with Social Media?  Read more

Corporate Stockholm Syndrome

I recently started a new job, after more than a year of freelance jobsStockholm Syndrome Comic from My Medicated Life and short-term contracts in and out of the AV industry. I’ve now “tasted” a variety of companies in different segments of our industry and now that I’ve returned to my roots as a systems integrator, I’m discovering that I’ve suffered from Corporate Stockholm Syndrome.

If you Google “corporate Stockholm Syndrome,” many bloggers and authors have tried to redefine the psychological phenomenon of hostages identifying with their captors for the corporate and business world. One of the best attempts comes from a programming company, C2, which describes the term as “the phenomenon wherein employees of a business start to identify with, and are exceedingly loyal to, an employer who is manifestly hostile to their own self-interest.”  For my purposes, however, this definition can be expanded. Read more

2011 Goes Boom – Bring on 2012!

New Year's Eve 2011It’s New Year’s Eve… the end of 2011. It has been a crazy year in general – for the world, for our nation, for the economy, and both personally and professionally for AVDawn.

I will not bore you with endless lists and recaps of 2011, nor will I take this time to play perfect prognosticator and attempt to predict the possibilities post-midnight in 2012.  (Nice alliteration, eh? ^_^) Read more

A Pittsburgh Christmas

With sincerest apologies to Clement Clarke Moore, I hereby present, “A Pittsburgh Christmas”

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Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house,
All the family was scurrying like an A.D.D mouse.The AV Pups, Arwen & Wesley, wish all a Merry Christmas, from gramma's house in Pittsburgh!
The lights and the tinsel were strewn about with flair,
For in just a few hours, a great party’d be there.

The children were scrambling with chores to be done,
In anticipation for much Christmassy fun.
With Mom in the kitchen, and I as her aid,
Lots of cookies and holiday treats, we got made.

When 1 o’clock came and a pause came o’er all.
It’s an NFL Saturday! Time for football!
Away to the TV, ran young and old.
Time to cheer on our own Black & Gold! Read more