Is that you, my fine feathered friend? Yes,
Lord Baelish, it is I. Please forgive my, umm, peculiar appearance, but you of all people
should appreciate that a convincing disguise is oft more tactical than a gold coin secreted
into an ambitious palm. Aye, that I do, Lord Varys, that I do. I however, will stick to
wielding the gold. So, do tell… and please… satisfy my curiosity. What obliges our clandestine
meeting here in this shuttered soup-room, lost in a forgotten quarter of Kings Landing?
News to tell? To the contrary, actually. I’ve not news, but rather some knowledge to impart
that I hope you’ll find indispensable in your upcoming endeavor. My little birds, you
see, have sung to me of the song of your impending departure to the Vale of Arryn. I’ll speak
not of my travels, but what indispensable, as you say, knowledge would this be, Lord
Varys? Well, allow me to remove the delicacy of this conversation… It’s been quite
some time since you’ve visited the Vale, and while you’re there you’ll most certainly
need to fashion, however craftily, your team of players in this… this… this Game of
Thrones, shall we say. Now, I have my little birds… and you’ll need yours, if you’re
to prove efficacious. I’m… all ears… and all eyes, my good friend… Yes. Very
well, then. Come closer and I’ll show you the instrument that I, the Spider, use to
weave my webs within webs of both information and, ah, human capital. You see here, I craft
my schemes using Microsoft Project, yet I use that tool in unification with Project
Online. This allows me to untangle and make sense of all that I have entwined. Fascinating.
I do see the profit of it… go on, please. Let’s focus on your pawns, your resources.
You will, of course, have already crafted your complex ruse using Microsoft Project.
This is essentially all of the activities that make up your scheme. Then, using Project
Online, you will assemble a team of players or assets who are specific to performing the
tasks in the scheme. This is powerful, you see, because it allows you to maintain a categorized
list of your assets, both human and non. Here’s how it works – you highlight one of your
schemes in the list on the Projects Page… click the Projects Tab to expose the concealed
ribbon of commands, and then select Build Team, like this… You can also choose to
Filter, Group, or select other Views, in order to narrow your focus to those resources that
meet the particular needs of your ploy. Once you have some assets selected, simply click
the Add button, and they’ll be added to your team – as shown to the right of the
buttons. Absolutely beguiling! But I must ask… what function does the Replace button
perform? Ah, you’ve a keen eye, Lord Baelish. This allows you to swap out a member currently
on your team with a resource from the reserve pond on the left. Simply make your selections,
one from each side, and click the Replace button. Dreadfully effortless, agreed? Yes.
Yes, I would, Lord Varys. I am truly in your debt. Truly. I’m already imaging how to
employ this powerful tool to my advantage. I am already thinking of all the alliances
I can forge and replace with this button. I suppose you are in my debt. But understand
this Lord Baelish, what I do I do for the good of the Realm. The realm. Do you know
what the realm is? It’s the thousand blades of Aegon’s enemies, a story we agree to tell
each other over and over, until we forget that it’s a lie. Lord But what do we have
left, once we abandon the lie? Chaos? Microsoft Project can help keep us out of chaos. However,
do understand that I’ve not revealed to you everything you require to master this
tool. I’m afraid there’s simply not enough time at present. But before you reach the
Vale of Arryn, detour from the High Road, southeast to Redfort. There you’ll find
Lord Todmeier with House EPMA whose sigil is Projects Refined, Work Simplified. Look
to them for additional Microsoft Project and Project Online wisdom, but keep this close
to your chest. Secrets are worth more than silver or sapphires.