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ALA Annual Conference Tech Wrap-Up Webinar - July 8

Submitted by Patrick Hogan on June 27, 2013 - 4:54pm

Once again, our team of Marshall Breeding, Sue Polanka, and Jason Griffey will present a free webinar on the technology that caught their eye at conference. Join us Monday, July 8, at 2:00 p.m. EDT. (Note an email promotion today stated an incorrect time.) Register here.


Tools Are Us

Submitted by Kate Sheehan on June 20, 2013 - 10:56am

 I’ve been posting about a more logical, less emotional approach to working with technology. But Nina McHale’s recent post about leaving libraries has inspired me to come clean. I’m thinking a lot about taking some of the emotion out of our relationship with technology because it’s giving us agita. Like Nina, I’ve been working in and with libraries for around 10 years. And like Nina, I sometimes can’t believe we’re still having the same conversations (and not in an iterative-improvement, baby-steps kind of way). Read More »


Common Sense Media's New App: Kids Media

Submitted by Sarah Ludwig on May 21, 2013 - 10:37am

Kids Media is Common Sense Media’s new app. Free and available for Android, iPhone, and iPad, it's a convenient way to access the content from the website offering parents and educators reviews of games, movies, books, TV shows, and more.

I have a love-hate relationship with Common Sense Media, Unlike typical reviews, Common Sense Media helps parents find age-appropriate media for their children. Each review identifies the most appropriate age group to consume the media, as well as specific content that might concern parents: sex, violence, drug use, materialism. For example, the review of the new "The Great Gatsby" movie identifies the target age as 14 and alerts readers to the following acts of violence, among other things: “A man is held by two others while someone else hits him, in a very brief scene. Another character runs over a woman with a car; her body is shown many times hitting the windshield and thudding to the ground. A man is also shown shooting someone from a distance and then putting the same gun in his mouth. A man strikes a woman hard.” Read More »


Books-to-Shorts Learning

Submitted by Sarah Ludwig on May 14, 2013 - 10:23am

One of the best parts of my job is sharing books with students. Sometimes, as a school librarian, I get so overwhelmed with research and technology instruction that I forget about books (it’s true!). But we have a robust YA collection that enjoys high circulation, and partly because three times a year, our middle school students are required to read a free-choice book over a long break in fall, winter, and spring. While requiring reading goes a bit against the grain of pleasure reading, the students can select any book they like and they do not have to finish it, which takes some of the pressure off. Before the break, every one of our middle school English classes comes into the library to hear about new books from me and to browse our collection for something to take home. The best part of this cycle, however, is the reflection. Read More »


The Stories We Tell Ourselves: Memory and Technology

Submitted by Kate Sheehan on May 10, 2013 - 8:51am

Last time, I said I’d talk about memory, but I just went back and checked the post to be sure. Our memories are dark, murky backwaters where events shift, timelines change, and we’re never really on stable ground. The more I read about how untrustworthy our memories are, the more I feel like I’m sliding into a more tedious, daily-life version of the movie Memento (did I do the dishes? Did I send that email? Not exactly murder and mayhem, thankfully.)  Read More »


Sue Polanka and Jamie LaRue Discuss the Next Episode of American Libraries Live

Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on April 16, 2013 - 8:54am

We are very excited about our upcoming episode The Present and Future of E-Books, which is going to take place next Thursday, April 18th at 2pm Eastern. I had a chance to talk briefly with our moderator Sue Polanka and panelist Jamie LaRue about what they plan on discussing.

Please be sure to tune in next Thursday! You can pre-register at http://goo.gl/WjrDP. Pre-registration is not required. If you can't attend live, the event will be recorded and available at www.americanlibrarieslive.org shortly after it concludes.


Skills We Can’t Teach: Facilitating Authentic Experiences with Digital Citizenship

Submitted by Sarah Ludwig on March 19, 2013 - 10:46am

Can students learn online skills from a teacher? More and more, I’m thinking the answer is no. Countless times, I  see high school students watch a YouTube video to better understand a concept that was already covered in class. It’s how kids learn. When they work independently, they apply and therefore retain the skills.

Yet we can’t turn students loose on social media without some discussion of responsibility. Character education is as important as Internet research. We have a charge to cover copyright, fair use, effective communication, and privacy. But how? Without real-world consequences, how will students understand that they really can’t use someone else’s image without asking? Do we teach our students these topics for the sake of plausibility? We teach them as is our duty, in other words, but they can choose whether or not to listen? Read More »


Slides, resources from the Integrating Tablets workshop

Submitted by Patrick Hogan on March 14, 2013 - 4:50pm

Thanks to Rebecca K. Miller, Heather Moorfield-Lang, and Carolyn Meier for today's workshop, Part 1 of Integrating iPads and Tablet Computers into Library Services. The slides are on slideshare and embedded below. The presenters also keep the Tumblr on iPads and Tablets in Libraries, where they shared Recommended Reading for today's presentation. Watch that space for the App Guide in advance of next week's presentation of Part 2. Read More »


Which 3D Printer is Right for Your Library?

Submitted by Caitlin A. Bagley on March 8, 2013 - 9:38am

Choosing the right 3D Printer for your makerspace is a big financial commitment, and one that you’ll likely have to live with for some time. Below are a few of the more common machines with pros and cons to help you make your decision. Read More »


Innovative Interfaces Absorbs SkyRiver and Withdraws Lawsuit Against OCLC

Submitted by Marshall Breeding on March 5, 2013 - 4:29pm

In a major shift in strategy reflecting a more collaborative style of its new ownership and management, Innovative interfaces has withdrawn the lawsuit it filed against OCLC in July 2010. SkyRiver Technologies, the sister company and lead plaintiff of the suit, has been absorbed into Innovative Interfaces, which will integrate the SkyRiver cataloging service into its product offerings. Read More »