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Blog posts from October 2010

Free webinar: Building Community: from distribution to engagement

Submitted by Patrick Hogan on October 29, 2010 - 3:38pm

ALA TechSource invites you to our upcoming free webinar, hosted by WebJunction, “Building Community: from distribution to enagagement,” on November 16, 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST. Chrystie Hill of WebJunction will moderate a discussion with presentations by Helene Blowers and Nancy Dowd.

With the heightening competition among e-reader manufacturers and ebook retailers has come reasonable concern and alarm from publishers, booksellers, and librarians. The distribution chain.

  Read More »

Library Automation at the Statewide Scale

Submitted by Marshall Breeding on October 28, 2010 - 8:01am

This column appears in the Nobember 2010 issue of Smart Libraries Newsletter. To read more from Marshall Breeding on mobile library technology and other facets of the library automation industry, you can purchase this issue or subscribe to Smart Libraries Newsletter at Read More »

Continuing the Conversation: New Models of Metadata

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 27, 2010 - 7:52am

Earlier today, we held the first session of our three-part workshop, Using RDA: Moving into the Metadata Future. The session, New Models of Metadata with Karen Coyle, was a huge success--there were so many questions that we didn't have time to answer or resolve the conversation on all of them. The following are some questions for continued discussion. Karen Coyle will be chiming in via comments--please join her. Read More »

Tech Tricks and Treats

Submitted by Kate Sheehan on October 27, 2010 - 7:42am

Inbox zero. Did you just clench your teeth or tense your shoulders? I did both, just typing the words. Like most people I know, my relationship with what I have come to think of as “productivity porn” is, as Facebook would say, complicated. Just as catalogs from furniture stores make me feel a little anxious about the piles of to-be-read books and magazines (and, ahem, the occasional tuft of dog fur) in my living room, productivity blogs and books make me eye my multiple inboxes with some trepidation. Read More »

ALA TechSource Workshop: Using Social Software in the Library: Facebook, Twitter and More

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 26, 2010 - 10:46am

We're happy to announce this two-session workshop in the important topic of social networking tools and their use in the library.

The popularity of social networking software—tools like Twitter, Facebook and blogs—continues to skyrocket, particular among younger populations. For libraries in the 21st century, a presence on these social networking sites is an essential part of library outreach and patron services. In this exclusive event, librarians and social software experts David Lee King and Robin Hastings will teach you about what tools you can use to engage with your patrons and the best practices for using them.

You’ll learn about: Read More »

Welcome Guest Blogger Andromeda Yelton!

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 25, 2010 - 8:56am

We’re happy to announce that starting this week, Andromeda Yelton will be joining us as a guest blogger. We’re excited to add Andromeda’s perspective to our blog. She’s an active new voice in the LIS community, and she’ll giving us her perspective on digital divide issues, the changing face of library instruction and the role of technology in bridging the gaps between communities.

Andromeda has a BA in Mathematics from Harvey Mudd College, an MA in Classics from Tufts, and recently completed her MLS from Simmons. A former middle school Latin teacher, she currently lives in the Boston area and is looking for full-time LIS work. She blogs at Check out her first post here.

Thoughts on Broadband, Mobile Access and the Digital Divide

Submitted by Andromeda Yelton on October 25, 2010 - 8:55am
The Bobbi Newman / Jason Griffey blog debate on mobile access the digital divide got me thinking. What do we mean when we say "mobile access": is that Jason's iPhone (that gave us directions around Providence last Friday, complete with FourSquare tips) or my paint-chipped-off, sans-camera, three-year-old (but web-enabled!) Samsung?
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Deleted Does Not Mean Gone Forever

Submitted by Michelle Boule on October 18, 2010 - 8:42am

Most of us know that things, once put online, have a way of remaining online, no matter how hard we try to delete them or forget them for that matter. In May of 2009, Jacqui Cheng of Ars Technica started an experiment to see how quickly deleted photos were deleted from social networking sites. In the original article, Twitter and Flickr both came out on top, with deleted content actually being deleted in seconds. Even direct URLs to content came back broken. Facebook and MySpace did not do as well.
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On the Map

Submitted by Tom Peters on October 13, 2010 - 8:44am

My friends and family will tell you that I’m an AMN (Amateur Map Nut).  The symptoms first appeared decades ago, before computerization.  In my office I still have (and frequently consult!) the Times Atlas of the World, the Rand McNally Atlas of the World, the MapQuest Road Atlas, the Rand McNally Road Atlas (both the current year and the 1960 version, so I can see how road networks and urban areas looked before they were sliced and diced by the interstate highway system), the AA Road Atlas of Britain, A-Z London Street Guide, and a host of state and city maps distributed free of charge by tourism offices and chambers of commerce.  I’ve even feigned being an outsider at local offices just to obtain maps.  I’m an AMN, tried and true.
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New on the ALA Editions Blog: TechSource Bloggers Discuss eBook Summit with Sue Polanka

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 12, 2010 - 8:35am

When we created the new ALA Editions blog, one thing that we were very excited about was giving our authors a place for expansion and further discussion of their work. This was especially important for technology-oriented writers, because when a book on a tech topic is published, the topic remains fluid, discussion continues, and updates are often needed.

Sue Polanka's No Shelf Required: eBooks in Libraries is a perfect example. While the book itself provides a perfect starting point for any librarian who is interested in implementing an eBook program, we all know that discussion of the general topic is heating up, not cooling down. Read More »

ALA TechSource Workshop: Selecting and Evaluating Online Resources

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 11, 2010 - 9:33am

If you're a librarian, you probably understand the pressures involved in managing your library's online resources. Libraries of all size and type invest a significant portion of their budgets in the acquisition of electronic resources.  In addition to implementing and administering these resources, ibrarians are responsible for analyzing and demonstrating their cost-effectiveness. Read More »

How Amazon is Winning the eBook Wars

Submitted by Jason Griffey on October 7, 2010 - 8:15am

Amazon announced a new piece of their eBook strategy this past week, with the launch of Kindle for the Web. This allows you to:

  • Read a book sample from without leaving your browser. No download or installation required.
  • Share book samples with your friends via email or social networks.
  • Embed a book sample in your personal blog or website and earn referral fees on sales.

This is the first step in what I think will be the logical progression of their “read your books anywhere” strategy, which will probably end with the ability to access your library directly in the browser. They haven’t announced this, but it seems like the natural endgame for accessing your Kindle books: you can already buy an ebook from Amazon and read it on your: Read More »

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Again with the Slide Decks?!

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on October 6, 2010 - 8:04am

The primary argument that I was going to make in this post was that the content of one’s slide decks depends on the delivery method of the accompanying talk.  After seeing Eli Neiburger’s talk at last week’s Ebook Summit, I think I was wrong.  Slides that contain photos are excellent accompaniment to a talk, no matter if that talk is delivered face-to-face or remotely, a point that Eli slam-dunked.  Slides that contain nothing but bullet points are deadly, even if the speaker is scintillating.  At best, they add nothing. At worst, they are (ant)agonizing.
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Check out the Brand New!

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on October 5, 2010 - 8:46am

You don't have to be Jeff Bezos to know that the publishing industry is changing dramatically. Ten years ago, books, magazines, journals and reports were pretty much the same as they'd ever been--head to the library, check them out, smell that great papery smell and enjoy. Today, eReaders, tablets and a wealth of other technologies have taken print publishing for a ride that doesn't appear to be ending any time soon. The industry has changed, and continues to change as new technologies that supplement or replace print publishing emerge. Read More »

Training, accidentally

Submitted by Kate Sheehan on October 4, 2010 - 8:50am

How did you answer the question “what do you want to be when you grow up?” when it was posed to you? I recently unearthed the 3rd grade journal Mrs. Laufer had her students keep and found my own scrawled meditation on the subject. Librarian was not on my list. Most of us stumble into our lives, making the best decisions we can at the time. A few have an action plan early on and pursue their destiny with a single-mindedness that can impress and sometimes alienate the rest of us mere mortals. For librarians, there seems to be a second episode of “how did I get here?” if the professional titles that include the word “accidental” are any indication.  Read More »