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Blog posts from July 2009

Annual 2009: Catalogers Look to the Future

Submitted by Shirley Lincicum on July 31, 2009 - 10:58am

ALA Publishing staff working on RDA:Resource Description and Access are watching for library innovation building on bibliographic records.  Shirley Lincicum has offered some fantastic coverage of a technology that had catalogers excited at this year's annual conference.
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The Visitors

Submitted by Michael Stephens on July 21, 2009 - 7:45am

visitors.jpgMichael & the Shanachies, July 2009

Late one February evening in 2007, I found myself sitting in my Oak Park, Illinois living room with two visitors, sharing wine and talking about libraries. It was late, I had to teach the next day, but I couldn’t say goodnight. I met the he two fellows with me­--Jaap van de Geer and Erik Boekesteijn of the DOK Library Concept Center in Delft, Holland--in London the year before. And now they were visiting Chicago area libraries videotaping gaming initiatives and gaming librarians. The wine was good--it may have been Australian--and I’m a little cloudy about how the evening played out but the one thing stayed with me. Erik said the role of the 21st Century librarian is three-fold: Read More »


Submitted by Tom Peters on July 16, 2009 - 9:44am

I’m a cheapskate and proud of it.  If I can get something I want or need with little or no out-of-pocket expense, I can ignore the resulting flurry of ads and give sales callers a virtual karate chop with the best of them.  So, when I became aware that Chris Anderson has a new book out, published on July 7, called Free: The Future of a Radical Price, that was available for free (as in no direct out-of-pocket expense), I downloaded the free audiobook version and transferred it to my Creative Zen audio player in a heartbeat.  Then I headed off for ALA Annual Conference in Chicago. Read More »

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Library 2.0 Gang 07/09: Library Mashups

Submitted by Richard Wallis on July 13, 2009 - 5:13am

The Mashup, where data from one or more sites is brought together to add value to the data on another site, is only four years old. Google Maps, the basis for so many of these was released in February 2005. The iconic early example being which brings together [mashes up] data from and displays it on a Google Map. Nevertheless in those few short years the mashup has become an established part of the web, and libraries are not immune from the trend. Links out to Google Book Search, WorldCat, and many other ways of enriching the library interface are not that uncommon an addition to OPAC and other library interfaces. Read More »

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Annual 2009: Let the Games Begin

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on July 10, 2009 - 8:52pm

Annual kicked off today, and at one of Chicago's swankier hotels I took part in a distinctly non-swanky event: Open Gaming Night. In an elegant ballroom at the downtown Hilton, a group of professionals from around the country gathered to kick back, socialize and have some fun. Read More »

Back to Basics?

Submitted by Kate Sheehan on July 9, 2009 - 8:23am

Here in the Northeast, it seems that summer means pretending we’re living in the Pacific Northwest. We spent much of June huddled under umbrellas and hoping our patrons don’t snap when they see our cheerful suggestions for beach reading. Librarians choose lighter fare for our pleasure reading in the warmer (or wetter, as the case may be) month to offset summer’s serious work. Academic librarians (I am told) cram their big projects into the studentless (or at least student – light) months between school years. Public librarians have summer reading, countless storytimes, bored teenagers and harried adults to work with. For many of us summer also means a new year. Fiscally, that is. Read More »

As we barrel into this dismal fiscal year, libraries are scrapping to keep funding, prevent lay-offs and even stay open. Things like cool technology and even books start looking like objects of unrequited love. Where will we be without our stuff?

Implementing RDA: Call for the Alpha Geeks of Library Metadata

Submitted by Patrick Hogan on July 8, 2009 - 2:32pm

"Forget Silicon Valley," writes publisher Tim O'Reilly in a article:

It turns out that many of the great waves of creative destruction that have reinvented Silicon Valley didn't start there. More important, they didn't even start with the profit motive. Rather, they started with interesting problems and people who wanted to solve them, exercising technology to its fullest because exploring new ideas was fun. I call these people "alpha geeks." They are smart enough to make technology do what they want rather than what its originator expected.

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TechSource Forum: Annual is Coming!

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on July 2, 2009 - 7:54am

Annual is just around the corner. Our bloggers discuss what they're most looking forward to this year in the Windy City: Read More »