Friday, March 30, 2007

ACRL on Flickr

For those who haven't found it yet:

ACRL2007 tag on Flickr

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ACRL, Day Two, Part Two

First, Jenny, seriously, media card readers at Annual!

Second, I did get a picture with John Waters at the booksigning. He was even kind enough to let me photograph his *tres* cool gold lame sneakers.

After the booksigning, I wandered by the poster session. During the break in my morning session, I stopped by and was caught up in the mass of humanity flowing through and didn't really get a chance to ingest any of the information presented. I did see a friend from grad school though. The afternoon session, at least when I was there, was quite pleasant. I think the morning session scared off a number of people. I got to listen to two presenters, one of whom was in my morning session. I think I need a bit more time to digest what I learned, but I really liked Simmons' MassBLAST intern program.

I then stopped by the ALA booth and talked with Cathleen Bourdon, the former author of the Librarian's Toolkit (?) column in American Libraries and who was on my flight out here and will be on the one back, and Mary Taylor, the Executive Director of LITA. Both are very nice ladies.

Next on my schedule was the session where David Silver was the speaker. Looking up title...oh yes, "Invited Paper: Digital Media, Learning and Libraries: Web 2.0, Learning 2.0 and Libraries 2.0". While there were some technical difficulties with the microphones in the beginning, Silver quickly fell into an engaging rhythm. He talked about his concept of AEIOU: Already Existing Information Optimally Uploaded. I'm still a little unclear on some of the theoretical details, but I think (and those who were there, please correct me if I'm wrong) it's a way to repackage/bundle content in a more accessible way. One of the examples he gave was library displays, in particular a display on graphic novels in his school's library. The library already had a collection of graphic novels, but they used this opportunity to publicize it, make people aware of graphic novels and what subjects they cover, and they invited -- through a suggestion box sitting on the main display case!! -- patron input on what titles they should consider buying.

He went on to talk about how "Web 2.0" is really collective intelligence, which is what a lot of people consider libraries to be. I would go a step further and say that it's collaborative intelligence. The other way he put it was the web is no longer a lecture, but a conversation. As librarians, we also need to think beyond the high technology of "2.0" and think of low technology: the suggestion box among other things. I thought this was very interesting because you're taking a concept that's been proven to work, but looking at it in a fresh way.

The room was packed (I have pictures to prove it, though I'm sure others have posted theirs already), and I know that he inspired a lot of the audience members.

To wind down, I enjoyed a walk along the Skywalk to the Inner Harbor. I'm glad I did it because I needed a little touristy time and the weather was nice! Tomorrow is another full day of sessions followed by two meets and greets.

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ACRL, Day Two, Part One

I spent the morning in a session on CoLAB(R). It turned out to be a training the trainer workshop for a process on developing collaborative relationships. The presenters were very dynamic and I came out of it with ideas on how I can bring this back to work. I could also see the percolating ideas among the other attendees. Even better, I was able to get a number of academic librarians interested in 5in5!

Today was the luncheon with John Waters as the guest speaker. No photography was allowed, but I hope to get a picture with him at the booksigning later. He is a *highly* irreverant speaker. I was greatly entertained, but not every one may be. A few of the things that I feel I can repeat:

- Librarians need to make books cool again.

- "It is impossible to commit a crime while reading a book."

- He thinks the Hairspray remake is really good, and he would be the harshest critic.

That's it for now!

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

ACRL - Opening Session

Today we had the joys of mass registration, the keynote session, and the exhibits opening.

Registration - If you you come to a conference the day of and try to register right before the fun begins, be prepared to wait. The ALA staff did a good job and kept the line moving at as brisk of a pace as they could manage. I will say the conference bags are pretty nice as they're messenger bags. I probably won't be carrying mine around however, as I brought my "conference bag" with me.

On my way to the opening session, I ran into Courtney L. Young who is the ALA Councilor for NMRT. Courtney is a lot of fun and we ended up hanging out for the rest of the night.

Opening Session - This afternoon's speaker was Michael Eric Dyson. He is a *vibrant* speaker. He is thought-provoking, engaging, comedic, dynamic and completely quoteworthy. Once Courtney realized I was taking notes, she kept making sure I wrote down certain tidbits. Here are but a few:

"Yes, I'm preaching to the choir, but the choir got to sing better."

"[Librarians must be] True patriots of the country and nation of Literacy."

"...patriarchal and phallocentric metaphor..." (I completely missed what this is in reference to)

***"Meet the people where they be and take them where they need to be." (emphasis mine)

Potential response when asked what we do: "arbitrator of enlightenment for the future of civilization."

Other highlights:

-If you're interested in the movement towards anti-intellectualism, read Richard Hofstadter's book "Anti-Intellectualism in America" from 1966.

-We need to help create learning addicts.

-To create those learning addicts, we need to be Trojan Horses by slipping those learning moments into the students', and patrons', everyday lives.

If you ever get the chance to hear Dyson speak, do.

Exhibit opening:
The more conferences I go to, the less time I want to spend in the exhibit hall without a plan in mind. I like talking with the vendors and learning about their products, but with the position I'm in now, there's not much call for what the vendors are trying to sell me. I did win a $10 Starbucks gift card from H.W. Wilson, though. This was after I told Courtney that I wasn't interested in hunting down all the giveaways, especially as I had won a gift bag from Borders last week (I was the first name drawn after I walked in the door). The salesman was good, and we sat down for a short session with four or five others. When they did the drawing, Courtney said, "watch, you'll win." I started to reply "Don't even joke about that" when he did call my name. In addition, the exhibit opening was fun as I ran into one of my committee's members and a chair of the same committee and we talked shop for a little bit. I'm feeling a little like a fish out of water as my background is in public libraries, but I do know a fair amount of academic librarians, and luckily, I have been running into them.

After I came home from dinner with Courtney, I discovered that while I had printed out my responses to a pre-survey for my morning session tomorrow, I had neglected to actually take them out of my printer and put them into my bag. Seeing as that and my toothbrush were the only things I forgot, I think I'm doing good.

Tomorrow, sessions, workshops, posters, and more sessions.

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Welcome to Baltimore!

While I've flown in and out of BWI before, this is my first time staying in Baltimore. I was hoping to make it to the First-Timers orientation, but my flight out of Chicago was almost an hour behind schedule and the shuttle took longer than expected. We ended up at my hotel at the time the orientation was to start, and after standing in line to check-in, I decided I needed a break after almost 8 hours of traveling. While standing in the check-in line, I did get to speak with a presenter who is doing a panel session on how academic and public libraries and cooperate and work together. With my new position, this would be an ideal panel session for me to go to, but I'm signed up for one of the three-hour long workshops at the same time, so I'll be missing it. Unfortunate, but the nice thing about the schedule I've seen so far is there's good programs spread out and not all grouped together at one time. This afternoon/evening is the Opening Session speaker and the exhibits opening. I'll report back later tonight, especially as my hotel has free wireless!

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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Keeping an open mind

I need to keep this short and sweet. I signed up for a Twitter account. Not to let everyone know what I'm actually doing, but as a way to easily update a "currently reading" feature on the sidebar over there. I like to tell people about what I'm reading because one of my long-standing interests is RA. As constantly updating the template through Blogger would be a bit of a pain, I thought this would be a good way to experiment with Twitter. We'll see. In the meantime, feel free to comment on the books I'm reading!

I'm off to the Iowa Library Association's Legislative Day, so look for the next update after I arrive in Baltimore for ACRL.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Non-liblog reading meme

Despite being a long time blog writer, I'm not that much of a blog reader. That is, if you discount my friends' personal blogs, which I will here. About the only non-libraryland blog I read on a regular basis, and actually read rather than skim, is Smart Bitches, Trashy Books: Come for the Man Titty and stay for the Cover Snark (tm). Romance genre world oriented, they aren't mean just to be mean, but they don't pull their punches either. Not everyone's going to appreciate them, but the discussions in their comments section rarely devolve into flamewars.

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My life in 2.0

Discussion about 2.0, web, libraries, life, what have you, has been happening for a while. Maybe because I've been plugged in more often for the last month than I have been previously, but it seems like the frequency of discussion has spiked in the last month or so. I thought it would do me some good to practice some self-reflection on the topic. I'm not going to hit on every 2.0 app out there because I don't know about all of them as there seems to be a new one popping up every day. It's also hard to separate out sites into categories after a while because the majority of them use similar features. Anyway, here's my shortlist.

I'm scared to count up how many blogs I contribute to, let alone am considered a member of. I started my first blog about four years ago. It's long dead, but it led to this one. Contributing to blogs helped me to hone my writing skills and build my presence on the web. I currently use Blogger, LiveJournal and Vox for somewhat regularly updated blogs, all with different purposes.

It took me a while to see the value in wikis. I now use Wikipedia as a starting point in personal research like how many soldiers comprise a legion. I've contributed a little to a few other wiki projects. This is a service that I can see the value of, but rarely have the proper context in which to use it.

Social networking sites
I could almost do a whole essay on the use of social networking sites alone. Here are the networks that I have accounts with, even if I don't use the accounts:

Ning - Library 2.0, Library Bloggers

The only one that I'm particularly interested in at this point, because I actually understand the use of it, is Ning.

I never got on the bandwagon, once again because I couldn't figure out the usefulness of it to myself. However, I'm a big user of LibraryThing. I got a paid account back when $10 got you a lifetime account. I have a secondary, private account, for a project I'm a member of and man, is it easy for managing my part of that project. See, I found the use for myself.

Photo sharing
I've had a Flickr account for about a year and a half now, and when I remember to upload pictures to it, I really like it. This is one of the services that I wasn't quite sure where to put it though because it's more than the tagging feature, and it's not quite blogging.

Instant Messaging
Is IM really 2.0? It's hard to think of it as being a 2.0 app, mainly because I equate 2.0 services as being available only after I left college (1999), and I was using IM well before I graduated. However, if the IM aggregators like Meebo are to be 2.0 apps, then yes, I'm a Meebo user when I remember to use it. It's only been recently that I've returned to regular IM usage. Why? Because I had AOL on all the time when dial-up was my connection to the internet. When broadband became my mode of connection, my computer was not robust enough to handle multiple programs with any efficiency and IM fell by the wayside. At home I still forget to turn it on, but on my work computer, AIM and Y!M turn on when the computer turns on.

Notice how many services I didn't mention, like the 2.0 app du jour, Twitter? I'm glad there are others out there experimenting with it because it's a service that I just can't see the usefulness of for myself. And I think that's the whole point of 2.0. What do you have a use for? If you can't see how a service relates to, or joy of joys, eases your life, you're not going to use it. This is why I'm a secondary adopter. I love new techie toys (I'm often teased by my siblings for being the uber-geek of the family), but I need to have a use for them or they get tossed by the wayside fairly quickly. Like I said, I was quick to hop onto the LT bandwagon, however, as my cousin and brother will be happy to attest to after helping me move, I own way too many books.

Yeah...Forgot about the YouTube thing. So, I guess the header for where Flickr is should be Media sharing. And, I'm adding the tags I forgot.

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Sunday, March 18, 2007

New 5 in 5 video

I'm getting better at this. It didn't require as many takes to get this one as down as it was going to get.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

2007 LJ Movers & Shakers?

Has anyone seen any announcements about who this year's Movers & Shakers are? Once I figured out that today was March 15th, I also realized that the library-web-world has been dead silent on this since the call for nominations was put out.

**Update:Even though most everyone has already posted this, here's the answer to my question:

Congrats to the 2007 LJ Movers & Shakers!


Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Two things

1. There is another group specifically for young and new librarians on Ning. As they've been around longer and have more traction, I'll happily cede the field to them, but I'll keep my space open if anyone feels the need. The other group is at:

2. ALA-APA is looking for volunteers for researching "Loan Forgiveness Programs". Here's the e-mail sent out by Jenifer Grady on Newlib.

I'm looking for volunteers who will research Loan Forgiveness Programs so that I can present a report to the ALA-APA Board (same people as the ALA Board) to find out if this is something ALA-APA or ALA can pursue or has pursued. As you know ALA-APA can only work with the help of others, and this would be a wonderful service. You also may have immediate access to government documents that I don't have here. The Board is meeting mid-April, so I'd need what you find by April 6 so that I can synthesize what you sent me. The questions I have are under the umbrella of "What is the history of the Loan Forgiveness Programs?" and I'm sure there are more. Do I have any volunteers?

Who initiated it the Teachers Federal Loan Forgiveness Programs?
Who was involved along the way?
What evidence did they give to convince the government to pass this?
Which government agencies were involved and how?
What barriers were there to its acceptance?
Who were the main supporters and detractors?
What was asked for initially and was the request limited before acceptance?
How has the program changed?
Are there programs for other professions? e.g.
What state level programs are there for loan forgiveness and what are the parameters?

Non-MLS and Librarian Salary Surveys available now! Order Now! For more information: or 866-746-7252
Jenifer Grady, Director, MSLS, MBA
ALA-APA: the Organization for the Advancement of Library Employees
50 E. Huron Street
Chicago, IL 60611
800-545-2433, x-2424
312-280-5013 fax
Library Worklife newsletter

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Monday, March 12, 2007

99% of my best ideas come when I'm in the shower

While I was brainstorming for what I want to say in an upcoming post about my life with Library 2.0, it came to me. "It" is a new area for young librarians. I've been active since the end of last week on the Library 2.0 group on Ning. Over the weekend, I was reading a recent Blatant Berry blog entry. It brought back an idea that I thought about and discarded when I first started tYL: a forum for young librarians. Back then, I didn't have the time to muck around with a bulletin board program and NexGenLib and Newlib were going strong. They still are, but NexGenLib has moved to a new service and new management, and I didn't stick around for the brouhaha that caused the shift. Newlib has recently been the setting of a series of highly negative discussions, hence the Blatant Berry post. Two comments in that post are what struck a chord with me. The commenters wanted the positive elements of NexGen and Newlib without the overwhelming negativity. There needs to be a new area for young librarians. The problem with listservs, and frankly with any electronic communication tool, is that it's easy to turn it off and forget what usefulness it has when it's being inundated with negativity. I'm in no way trying to supplant NexGenLib or Newlib because I do feel they both have value, and they both have developed communities over the years. Plus, what works for one person is not going to work for all. So, with all of that background, I am unveiling the Young Librarians space on Ning.

I'm saying this now, I will not tolerate trolls or extended negative discussions. I'm not denying your opinion or your right to have it, just the ability to burden this space with it. The lot of new librarians is rarely a walk in the park, but downward spiraling discussions over your inability to find a job or furor over the party line of the "Great Librarian Shortage" helps no one. If you join the group and want to complain about not being able to find a job, be prepared to post your resume and/or cover letters and have them critiqued.

Anyone can join, but only members will be able to get beyond the first page. I will not be moderating photos and videos, so please use your best judgment. However, I am asking that everyone share a little about yourself when you join. There are some positives and negatives about Ning that I've come across.


  • Ability to concentrate your own little social network

  • Purpose to the social network

  • Forums for threading discussions

  • RSS capability for virtually everything you'd want an RSS feed of


  • Can take a while to load, even on fast connections.

  • Cannot see member profiles of those not in a network with you (if anyone knows how to do this, please let me know)

  • You can't immediately go to the newest posts to a discussion from the website

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Too cool!

Lissa and Carrie at the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library have done their own riff on 5 in 5:

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Yes, I do look at my stats

I found the following website thanks to a search out of Google UK looking for "young librarians of the future". It looks to be one UK group's answer to LJ's Movers and Shakers. Congratulations to those named! This reminds me that I need to dig around more on the international side of things when I have the time.

Love Libraries - Young Librarians of the Future


Monday, March 05, 2007

For those interested in 5 in 5

If you're interested in participating in 5 in 5, here are some directions:

1. Take a video of yourself talking about the books. With the way my
computer's set up, I just keep going until I get a good run and then I
cut out all the other "takes".
2. Edit it for length, and if you want add in titles and credits. I
use Windows Movie Maker (Start -> Accessories) because it's free on my
computer, and I'm assuming most other XP and Vista based ones. Be
sure to save it as a .wmv file by going through the "Finish movie"
step if you use WMM as the default file type isn't anything you can
really use except to edit.
3. Sign up for a YouTube account. Upload your video. Be sure to have
Javascript enabled.
4. Join the 5 in 5 group at
5. Add your video to the group.

***OH! For those who do videos for 5 in 5, please use 5in5 as one of your tags. Thanks!

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Friday, March 02, 2007

I have too much time on my hands...

Okay, I really don't, but once an idea burrows deep into my psyche, I can't get rid of it until I act on it. The latest one hit me yesterday as I was brainstorming for classes to develop for the fall as part of my new job.

Readers' Advisory, meet YouTube:

Anyone can join in, so please do. Let's start a video RA meme.

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