March 30, 2004

Instant Messaging & Video Chat between the Branches

Joe and I IM after class. Dale, our Web Developer, made his custom icon!

This is cool. I just spent an hour with our branch heads teaching them how to use AIM on their Mac PowerBooks to communicate with each other from wherever they find themselves. With all the talk about IM: at CIL, in blogs and in SLIS classes (a recent email from a student/SJCPL colleague reported that an IU SLIS professor stated that IM will be the way to communicate by 2007!) -- it is good for the branch librarians to be aware of what IM is, how it works and how they can participate. This is info/tech literacy for sure! Our next step, conceived by the Coordinator of branches, is to try video chats with iSights!

I gave them an assignment: to login in the next 2 days and IM me a greeting. Simple? Yes. Pointing toward the future? Yes.

IM me at mstephens7mac if you are so inclined...

Posted by Michael at March 30, 2004 03:59 PM

I have been following the IM/VR threads with some serious interest. Our ISP for our library uses AIM and I can use it for quickie tech support questions without taking up a phone line and while I am right on the computer. When I worked for an ISP in Seattle we regularly used IM while we were on the phone with customers to contact the CLEC [the people who provided us with DSL connectivity] and we could run line testing via AIM while keeping the customer on the phone to tell them what we found out. We also used it within the office to get quick answers interdepartmentally. I think now they've switched to an in-house Jabber solution so that they can keep open lines of communication to eachother and still use the phone to queue customers and make the voicemail system flow right. I have always thought that a network status bot would have been killer. Or, one that would [in the library's case] parrot the hours of the library or other stock info that might change ["ping our new titles bot to get the last 20 new titles at the library"] might really take off.

Posted by: jessamyn at March 30, 2004 04:21 PM
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