Tuesday, October 31, 2006


As promised, the world's greatest hand drier in action at the Crown and Anchor in Monterey.

Awesome drying power. And a test of YouTube/ videoblogging.

Monday, October 30, 2006

YouTube and Copyright

In my post-conference haze I think I've noticed several articles/ news stories about the copyright issues now facing YouTube. They've been asked to remove a bunch of Japanese clips and will have to figure out a way to keep the hipness of the site going while making deals with copyright holders to provide materials that folks want to watch. Not that there's anything wrong with cute kitties or people singing "Happy Birthday" to me. Although I doubt we paid any royalties on that last one.

This article from the SF Chronicle gives a good overview of the issue.

Monterey Birthday Thanks!

dinner 2
Originally uploaded by dwfree1967.
I just wanted to say thanks to everyone who came out to help me celebrate my birthday in Monterey last week. Sushi and drinks were great, as were stroke of midnight drinks the night before! I figured most people would be leaving after the conference and I would end up watching Lost and Top Chef in my hotel or something, so it was greatly appreciated. You guys are awesome. Hope to see everyone again soon!

Just found this rousing/ scary rendition of Happy Birthday that Cliff Landis videoed at our fave Monterey English pub. Speaking of which, I have video of the Xlerator. Watch this space.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

IL2006 Wrap Up

Well, IL2006 is now officially over. I took a few notes on the sessions I went to today but since they'll be posted other places by better session bloggers than me I'm not going to post them. Check out the IL2006 Technorati tag for great conference coverage. And the flickr tag for photos. I'll finish posting mine in the next few days. And fill in a little more blogging too.

I really enjoyed the closing keynote by Elizabeth Lane Lawley. She talked a lot about the gaming world and how many live games can be used to reclaim unused public spaces, including possibly libraries. The whole area of gaming, both online and live games, is something I don't know a huge amount about and the talk really got me interested in investigating this world a little more. I was sitting next to Michelle Boule who told me about some cool game stuff that she knows about too.

The Blogging Update sessions featuring Karen Coombs and Aaron Schmidt was good. As was Steven Cohen's What's Hot With Social Software talk. With a couple of exceptions, everything I went to was very informative. And I got to meet and talk to some really interesting people, both old and new. So another great conference experience.

Off to dinner tonight with the blogging posse and then back to SF tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Monterey Update

Hello again from Monterey. Been a long but fun and rewarding couple of days. Our podcasting extravaganza this morning went very well. Everyone had a different perspective and a good mix of audio and video podcasting talk. Good crowd too that I may have gotten some pics of, but we'll see. I was pretty happy with my talk. There were a couple of things I forgot to say but nothing too major. And now it's time to head to the Anchor and Crown for another few pints. More tomorrow.

IL 2006 - MySpace and Facebook

MySpace and Facebook – Aaron Schmidt and Cliff Landis


ß Can be frustratingly slow, ads etc
ß Denver pl = cool myspace page (evolver)
ß UIUC Undergrad lib
ß Administrative problems in setting up myspace sites for k-12 schools
ß MySpace videos on YouTube
ß Myspace classes at library, teaching parents about what myspace is and behavior
ß Be authentic
ß Give up control
ß Have fun
ß Consider who want to be
ß Include song/ video
ß MeeboMe widget – IM lib from Myspace
ß Decoding MySpace article in US News – good balanced article about potential problems
ß More danger at home than on Myspace
ß MySpace is fad, but use it while its around part of larger trend
ß MyOwnCafe – library made Myspace for community


ß Nature of representation – why do people use image representation tools?
ß 4th Floor Odum Library Bathroom users group
ß how can facebook benefit? Trad ref/ create groups/ clubs/ marketing/ instruction
ß ask for book suggestion in area where students comfy,
ß ubiquitous librarianship
ß meet user where they are
ß point of need service
ß effective marketing – using flyers etc in facebook
ß “user isn’t broken”
ß library profiles taken down by facebook
ß created ask a librarian group instead of making institutional presence – students can join if they want and ask questions
ß who owns the library? Librarians/ students/ admin all think of library as theirs, work w/ students where they are to reach them

Q: How choose one over the other?
A: Depends on user community. Or don’t necessarily have to choose one.

Q: Use MySpace IM for reference instead of meebo me?
A: MySpace IM kinda sucks. Can’t ad widgets to facebook.

Q: Work around being institution on Facebook?
A: Yes, represent as individual librarian.

Q: How do you deal w/ confidentiality in ref q’s in ask a lib group?
A: Patrons aware that open group.

IL2006 - Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets

Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets!
Barbara Fullerton, Sabrina Pacifici, Aaron Schmidt

o Aerocool infinite drive
o Speech-to-speech translation – used by military in iraq
o Cell phone jammers – illegal in Usa
o AimuletLAbambo audio device
o Glow in the duck [fun!]
o Usb data link transfer cable – no mac!
o Handheld printer – available 2007
o Flowbee! [awwww yeah]
o New treos
o Lcd scrolling badge – japan only
o Smart wheelchair – no blind spot
o Traveling lcd projector – 2,000 luems
o Zune – wireless for zapping
o Super fun walk computer speakers
o Usb turntable
o Next gen ipods
o New kurzweil reader – pricey! But great tech
o Silver rag photo paper – inkjet
o Mop slippers!
o Cell stik – transfer contacts to new phone
o Flash based storage – some laptops w/o harddrive but using flash drives
o Slingbox
o Brando 32 in one card reader/ writer - $28 from hong kong

IL 2006 - Alliance Second Life Library

Alliance Second Life Library 2.0: Going Where The Users Are
Lori Bell, Michael Sauers, Tom Peters


ß Second life lib info island video on youtube
ß More and more avatars tired of sex and gambling, looking for other stuff
ß Buildings like trad library, collection, staffed (ref service etc),exhibits, author readings
ß People like meting in lib, safe place

Sauers (reality checks)

ß Tech requirements on SL website
ß Costs $$$
ß Lag time when busy
ß Lots of updates
ß Avatars chance appearance often
ß Some bugs


ß Backup and security big issue – gunfights on info island! [crazy!]
ß Privacy issues
ß Self-inflicted burnout
ß How to make collaborative experience
ß Architecure will evolve away from real architecture
ß Events big

Q: charge for services?
A; no but take donations

Q; For profit company?
A: Owned by private company, publically owned private space,just manages environment, you keep IP of what you make

Q: real world ref qs?
A; some real world some second life related

Q; will 2nd life last? Replaced by new tech?
A; Learning how to put together lib in virtual world, can translate to future formats

Monday, October 23, 2006

Greetings From Monterey

The conference is going quite well so far. Seeing lots of familiar folks from Computers In Libraries and hanging out. I went to another Library 2.0 session with Karen Coombs and Jason Clark after Paul Miller's talk but I had to stand in the back so no report. Good examples of real world uses of Web 2.0 technologies in library setting, including collaborative content management and tagging. Had slooooooooooow lunch service so I was too late for current sessions. But the wifi works. Woohoo.

IL06 - Web 2.0 Challenge For Libraries

Web 2.0 Challenge For Libraries – Paul Miller
[my comments in brackets]

∑ Talis 2.0 whitepapers (www.talis.com/resources)
∑ Open library
∑ shared innovation – open niche innovation
∑ discussion w/users – engage w/community
∑ system broken,not user
∑ break up lib systems, sell as modules so customize to meet needs, open systems
∑ mashup competition – ann arbor, second life lib
∑ take service to users where they are
∑ talis innovation directory (www.talis.com/tdn/innovationdir)
∑ falling cost of storage/ comp power
∑ more connectivity – broadband etc
∑ camera phones/ photo sharing – participate add value
∑ open source – not nec free, spend $$ in dif ways
∑ open data – more access to data, too much control now
∑ open api
∑ architecture of participation – blog, tags etc just means to participation, part. = whats impt
∑ www.aadl.org/catalog - good humor bout lib, lets users add content
∑ vendors not participating in convo for must part
∑ pines – [go ga!] Open source lib system, still lib system tho, just replaces current system [chance for more adaptability down road? More flexible than commercial ils maybe]
∑ open data – lipstick on silo, data still in silo, data should be accessible [confidentiality laws for lib records some places?]
∑ CC doesn’t work for data, talis community license – freedom to use share modify data
∑ Open systems: silkworm dir (directory.talis.com)/ greasemonkey scripts (amazon-lib/ librarything)/ aquabrowser – sits on top of catalog (islington.aquabrowser.com)/cenote.talis.com – open data makes building systems quicker and easier
∑ Liberate the data/ get data to users/open open open/shared innovation

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Ask.com Maps

Greetings from San Francisco. Just a quick note to say that the Ask.com maps and directions search is awesome. It gives walking directions as well as driving, which has definitely come in handy with all the one way streets in SF. It would take 41 hours to walk from SF to Monterey by the way. Glad I'm driving!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Monterey Or Bust!

I finally got finished with upcoming presentations and work loose ends, so it must be time for Internet Librarian. I'm heading to San Francisco tomorrow for a couple of days vacation and then down to Monterey sometime Sunday afternoon. Drop me an email at dwfree(at)gmail if you want to meet up at some point. Probably no blog posts until Sunday, but watch for Flickr pics.

Hope to see some of y'all in Cali.

Friday, October 13, 2006

New (To Me) Library Podcasts

In doing some research for my ACRL Virtual Institute talk, I ran across a couple of interesting new to me library podcasts.

The Mohawk College of Applied Arts and Technology Library has launched a new podcast called TheBRAINcast. They've done three episodes so far including a library tour (featuring a student), information on reference services (including chat) and e-books. They're aiming to publish every two weeks and look to be on schedule so far. They've had five different people talking in the three episodes, which lends a great variety of voices.

The Claude More Health Sciences Library at the University of Virginia is now providing podcasts of its History of the Health Sciences Lecture Series. The schedule for this year's series is available on their podcast site and audio will be available the day following the lecture. There are a few older programs available now in the podcast feed too, so I'm not sure how new this one really is. And in poking around their site, I found the UVA Podcasts and Webcasts page, which has information on all kinds of podcast content. And information for podcast developers.

EBSCO RSS Success?

There was some discussion on Information Wants To Be Free last week about difficulty in getting results from RSS feeds for keyword searches in EBSCO databases. I followed the somewhat confusing instructions and set up a feed yesterday for "podcast* AND librar*" in Academic Search Premier since I was looking for articles for a bibliography. I added said feed to Bloglines and this morning I had article links! I must have set it up to run every day since they were all the same articles I looked at yesterday, but I did manage to get results.

Wish I had some sort of magic tip to report, but I have no idea why it worked for me and not others. Of course it could have just been a fluke too. I guess the real test will be to see if I ever get any new articles.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Academic Blog Wiki

One item I had in my save folder was adding my blog to the university librarians section of the Academic Blog Portal wiki that Steven Bell mentioned last week on ACRLog. Fortunately, it got added for me. I did go in and edit my wiki entry though.

If you're a blogging academic librarian, add your blog to the list. It seems like a great resource. I found several blogs I hadn't read before. It will also come in handy for demonstrating the wealth of academic blogs in general when I do blogging lunch n learns. And if you live in Georgia let me know too and I'll add your blog to the Georgia librarian bloggers list.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Carnival of the Infosciences #57

scarecrow 1
Originally uploaded by dwfree1967.
Happy October and welcome to The Carnival of the Infosciences #57.

I had a couple of submissions this week, and ran across a slew of interesting posts, so awaaaaay we go...

Wally Grotophorst sent me his multi-topic post "Moving, Zotero Translators and Vista (VM)", covering his recent tech adventures, including what you need to do to build "translators" for Zotero. The public beta release of Zotero did come out this week. But as a few folks noted it only works with Firefox 2.0.

Laura sent me Steven Bell's "What’s Our Contribution To Retention" from ACRLog. Steven discusses the problems that academic libraries have in figuring out how to document their impact on retention rates.

It’s somewhat frustrating because I’m sure many academic librarians believe we offer all sorts of human and material resources that contribute to retention - but how to we prove that? What might we try doing to create a more solid link between the libary and retention?
He goes on to give a few ideas on how to demonstrate our contriutions in this area of inceased focus. I know that retention is big, big, big at MPOW, so this is a topic that will be of interest to those of us in academia for a while, especially when funding is based on retention contributions.

I ran across really too many great posts this week to include in my picks. But here are a few that I fit together in a sort of narrative. Many are from the usual suspects, but cover great information.

There was a little uproar over an opinion piece in the Lawrence, KS newspaper this week about how libraries are limited obsolete. Michael Stephens, Sarah Houghton-Jan and John Blyberg (amongst others)posted great rebuttals/ thoughts about the editorial. Michael posted "Ten Things I Know About Libraries in 2006 (A Response to "Libraries are Obsolete")", Sarah responded in her piece ""Libraries are limited, obselete" -- No sir, I beg to differ" and John gives us "Going To The Boneyard".You've probably already read these, but if not go do so now. We'll wait. Make sure to check the comments and trackbacks for great discussion too.

One of Michael's (and others) points is that libraries aren't going way. Our physical space is important. This was a topic of discussion at Library Garden this week in Peter Bromberg's post "Library As Place". He offers several excellent tips on making your space more inviting and relevant to your community.

One thing we do very well inside our place is provide information. But we also need to collect information to do our jobs. A post titled "asymmetric information in libraries" on explodedlibrary this week examines information exchange in libraries, both between librarians and our users and between librarians and vendors. Very interesting food for though. One of the situations examined in the piece is user having more information that the librarian:

This aspect of asymmetric information is more acute with faculty, who might have extensive, amazing knowledge of a particular subject area, but only scant knowledge of current research processes.
Interesting stuff!

One big part of the exchange of information in libraries between librarians, user and hopefully vendors revolves around the library catalog. It's very important for people to be able to find stuff in our place, but that catalog has to be better than what it is now and mirror our users experiences in other online arenas. Karen Schneider addressed this topic this week on ALA TechSource with her post "Toward The Next Gen Catalog".

Some vendors could use a little more transperency in their communications and decision making processes. Meredith Farkas addressed this topic last week in her post "Why transparency is important (or, how to lose your customers)". Of course the experiences we have when dealing with vendor and business customer service can teach valuable lessons on how we serve our users. Are our libraries as transparent as they could be?

Of course our "place" also extends to the online world in various guises. Maybe your library has or is considering setting up a place in MySpace or Facebook to remain relevent to your younger users. Brian Mathews has some tips on what to do if your library's Facebook page has fallen vicitim to the axe in his post "What to do when Facebook closes down your Library Storefront".

If you're interested in learning more about how to move your library into the world of Facebook, Flickr and blogging, the application for the way cool Five Weeks To A Social Library online course is now available. Applications are due by December 1 .

And that's the carnival for this week. Fall is always a great time for carnival fun with all kinds of festivals, and of course Halloween. If you can't get the library off your brain to figure out what to be, there's always the Sexy Librarian costume at Target. Wonder if it comes in my size?

The Carnival is taking a little break next week but will return. Please consider hosting a carnival! It's a great way to explore the biblioblogosphere. Take a look at the carnival wiki for more info on hosting. And remember to submit early and often for the next host.

Google buying YouTube - Oct. 9, 2006

CNNreportsthat the Google/ YouTube deal is a go. Will be interesting to see what, if any, changes Google makes! And if YouTube will remain as popular.

Friday, October 06, 2006

The Distant Librarian: The Fall of Screencasting

Paul Pival has a cleverly titled post today,The Fall of Screencasting, with some info on new versions of both Captivate and Camtasia. This will come in very handy when I start of my screencasting project after Internet Librarian. Paul is also doing a presentation on screencasting for Sirsi Dynix Institute in early November. Another big help for me! Thanks Paul.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Podcasting Lectures

EDUCAUSE Quarterly had a nice article recently called Podcasting Lectures about podcasting lectures at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. The students had orginally requested that video of lectures be made available, but evaluation of the program found that audio lectures worked better for their learning needs. The article gives a nice outline of the program and evaluation process.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Any Way You Want It?

In honor of International Day Against DRM yesterday, Jenny Levine had a great post about her ongoing battle with portable music and video technology. I had some notes on online music in the draft file, so here we go.

I'm one of the 47 (now 48...welcome to the club Jenny!) people in America who use a non-iPod(tm) mp3 player. Although I don't really have much of a commute to speak of, I do use my Zen Sleek at home and on the road. I download music from a couple of different sources:

1. Emusic: Emusic tends to get overlooked in many discussions about online music sites. Their service is great, my plan is 65 tracks a month for $15. Not as good as back in the day when it was unlimited, but still not bad. They have stuff from a wide range of indie labels in all genres. I can always find my 15 bucks a month worth, unless I forget to use my downloads. All of their tracks are also non-DRM mp3s. No problem downloading or adding to any flavor of player. Downside: no Journey.

2. Rhapsody To Go: Another 15 bucks a month for unlimited streaming and downloading. A huge selection of indie and major label music available. For the price of the 1 cd I would buy a month and listen to once I can listen to pretty much anything. Journey at 1am rocks! Ask my wife. Rhapsody also lets you listen to your library through the Web instead of having to download their player on multiple computers. And they have RSS feeds. Downside: DRM. You have to sync your player once a month to renew the rights for as long as you keep paying for the service. As Jenny found out, this has as many potential problems as you think it might. Most months it works fine, but sometimes there are weird license renewal issues that pop up.

Add in Naspter and other sites that use Windows Media DRM (not to mention iTunes) and you have a whole mess of competing plans and rights management systems. This really sucks for libraries as well as individual consumers. If you want to provide a download service for ebooks or music or video (which would be great!), the number of options you have to consider are staggering. Claims that player X will work with provider Y are really more of a guess than a guarantee. The number of obstacles make me glad I don't work in media librarianship.

I guess one solution would be to accept iPod(tm)/ iTunes as the standard and forcably collect all the iRivers (does Apple own the lowercase "i" yet?) and Creative Zens. There are only 48 of us using them. But a better solution would be for media companies to stop treating consumers like criminals with "anti-piracy" schemes that don't work. From my experience, DRM causes pretty much all of the tech problems that can make listening or watching frustrating. I think it's going to take more than one Day Against DRM for that to happen though.

Monday, October 02, 2006

The User At The Center

Registration is now open for the ACRL Fall Virtual Institute: The User At The Center. The institute takes place on November 9 and the presentations will be archived. I'm going to be part of the excellent group of speakers, talking about podcasting. My talk is called Podcasting: A Primer For Libraries. Here's the abstract from the program:

Podcasting is one of today's hottest social computing applications. Amateur broadcasters and large media organizations are embracing podcasting as a method of distributing audio content, and "podcast" was named the 2005 word of the year by the editors of the New Oxford Dictionary. But what can this emerging technology do for libraries? This webcast explores how different libraries are using podcasts for outreach and learning, including tips on what types of content work for library podcasts. Information on how to plan for and implement podcasting at your library will also be provided.
After a very brief introduction to podcasting, we'll examine and discuss how libraries are currently using podcasts to communicate and collaborate with their users, talk about the process of planning podcasting at your library and go through the steps of creating a basic podcast.

Take a look at the institute website for a complete list of program descriptions. There are some great speakers so it will be a very interesting day!

The registration deadline is October 26.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Return Of The Carnival Of The Infosciences

It's baaaaaaack. I'm hosting the 57th edition of the Carnival of the Infosciences on October 9th. I had some great submissions last time so I know you can do it again! Don't be shy, nothing says Fall like a good carnival. Maybe we'll even have a hayride.

Send your submissions to dwfree(at)gmail.com by 6pm Eastern on Sunday, October 8. Make sure to put "Carnival" in the subject line too.

And while you're at it, take a look at Carnival #56 at TangognaT.