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FreePint BlogConvenience and Value

Thursday, 20th September 2012 Please login top-right to be able to star items

By Robin Neidorf


Current articles in FreePint provide different views into the concept of "convenience" and what we're looking for in information tools and systems. Check out these and other articles and reports via issue 359 of the FreePint Newsletter.


In reviewing the latest articles for this issue of the FreePint Newsletter, two jumped out at me for very different reasons.

The first is Tim Buckley Owen's commentary "Inconvenience sucks". Tim's title comes from a comment Dialog founder Roger Summit made during a panel discussion at the SLA annual conference in July: "Convenience is king; inconvenience sucks." Every time I see Tim's headline when I scan the FreePint Subscription articles list, its bluntness causes me to catch my breath. Let's not beat around the bush, it seems to say to me. And truly, it reflects a kind of frustration we probably all feel more often than not with poor user interface, clumsy search, and the "why can't it be as easy as..." (fill in the name of a search engine. Which might rhyme with "schmoogle"). Read more from Tim to learn how some of our industry's Big Thinkers are wrestling with the idea of convenience in a complex world which also requires thoughtfulness.

The other article that captures my attention is also about convenience of a sort: Helen Clegg has researched and written a mini-review of PrivCo, one of the latest entrants into the world of providing private company information. Helen was particularly impressed with the ease of use of the advanced features, as well as the depth of coverage on private companies. In one comparative search, she found that PrivCo provided 18 years' worth of income figures, compared with just one sales figure from another "well-known company." 

We're all looking for that almost contradictory combination: Easy access to hard-to-find information. Convenience and value. Scan this issue's headlines, abstracts and latest reports, and I'll bet you'll find a few items that deliver just that.


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Robin has been working with FreePint since 2004, and, since joining full time in 2006, is responsible for strategic planning, product development, relationship management, research and communications. She currently heads the FreePint Research division.

Robin Neidorf ran a research and communications consulting business for 10 years, prior to joining Free Pint Limited. As a consultant, she focused on strategic planning, using information to make better decisions, and creating effective audience-focused communications across different media.

Robin has worked with a wide range of organisations in the for-profit and non-profit sector. She has developed online communities, publications and distance learning modules for a range of business purposes. She is the author of Teach Beyond Your Reach: An instructor's guide to developing and running successful distance learning classes, workshops, training sessions and more (second edition, Cyber Age, 2012) and the co-author of E-Merchant: Retail Strategies for e-Commerce (Addison-Wesley, 2001).

Robin can be reached at

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Sources: Staying informed and aware
Technology: Improving information work with technology
Value: Maximising value for information work and investment
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