April 01, 2004

Greek Dinner at CIL

I am still finishing up all the CIL stuff I wanted to post. Losing access to my blog in DC totally through me off and I think in some ways I am still catching up.

Here is a hearty group that fell in together for a late dinner after the Wednesday evening session. Captured by Jude Lewandowski: L-R Michael, Greg, Bob, Aaron and John, St Mary's archivist and SJCPL Geneologist.

Posted by Michael at 07:53 AM | Comments (0)

March 29, 2004

Computers in Libraries 2004 Quick Takes

CIL Highlights included all I've written in this category before and the following:

Meeting Rachel Singer Gordon before Friday’s keynote. Her book came out the same time as mine and we were reviewed together a few times. Her writing has inspired me ever since, especially her well-thought views on where our profession is heading.

Our Bloggers Dine Around (WE missed you Steven!) where 12 people fell in for great Thai food, some yummy cocktails and some darn fine chat: blogs in the library workplace, PDAs, the wireless world, evil PowerPoint presentations and of course a recap of the Dead and Emerging Technologies program the night before.

David King of Kansas City Public Library speaking about meeting users needs with the PL Web site and a local slant. GOOD STUFF! He and I have chatted since then and I look forward to chatting again about all this cool IT stuiff we get bto mess with at the public library. (and about MUSIC too!)

More laptops in the audience this year… a few PCs, tablets, and yes, some Macs!!! I was please to see Roy Tennant’s 17” PB and I told him so in the elevator.

Hanging with Jenny and Aaron between sessions in the WiFi Lounge in the lobby of the Hilton, watching CIL dignitaries pass by…

Posted by Michael at 02:27 PM | Comments (0)

Jenny Levine on Dead Technologies

One of the highlighhts of this Conference was seeing Jenny Levine at the Wednesday night Dead and Emerging Technologies session. She made some great points. This stuff is spot on. She gratefully shared her notes with me, so here's a bit that really hit home for me: (Jenny's words are in bold!)


- Library web sites with email reference forms that say “We will respond to your email within 48 hours” Uh Oh - SJCPL is guilty!

- Libraries that don’t provide wireless access for patrons, librarians that don’t understand why they will need to OH YES!!!

- Librarians who think patrons won’t bring their own mobile devices into the library and expect to use them there (laptops, PDAs, cell phones, smartphones, Tablet PCs, MP3 players, etc.)

- Librarians who sit behind a desk waiting for kids to walk into the building and up to the reference desk to ask them a question Case in point: Aaron the roving untethered librarian who was sitting next to me during this session!

DEAD TECHNOLOGY: any electronic device you can hold in your hand that does not have wireless capabilities

Posted by Michael at 02:00 PM | Comments (3)

March 26, 2004


I got to spend time with Aaron of thebizz.org fame. I've been a fan of Mao for a long time. We discovered a mutual enjoyment of good tea and healthy breakfasts so three days of CIL we met early and went to Teaism...which is just down the hill from the Hilton.

Aaron works at Thomas Ford Memorial Library as all around Tech Librarian guy (he did their web site as a series of blogs) and as I type this he is roving the stacks with a wireless enabled laptop. Purely, in my mind, the definition of the Untethered Tech Info Literate Library type if there ever was one...

Back to CIL though, I was always a minute or two behind so he was always waiting at the bottom of the escalator on the lower level, Treo 600 in hand.... I kid you not: same place, same stance...every morning:

Aaron really helped me through the big blog crash of March 10, 2004. He got me going here on Movable Type and helped make this version of TTW what you see here..now... Thanks Aaron!

Posted by Michael at 01:25 PM | Comments (0)

Preconferences at CIL 2004

One of the posts that got lost when my previous blog software crashed mid-conference was about Tuesday March 9, the day before the conference started when many of my colleagues and I were teaching preconference workshops.

I started the day by swinging by the Cabinet Room and giving my best to Jenny and Steven who were doing their Blogging 101 program.

Then, Scott Brandt and I spent the morning fine-tuning our 5-Star workshop I wrote about here.

Lunch was provided by InfoToday, offering a chance to have some good food and see old friends from previous conferences. A group of students for our afternoon session sat with Scott and I and we chatted before heading into our workshop space.

Posted by Michael at 01:10 PM | Comments (0)

March 22, 2004

Organizations & Tech Training

Sharing the slot with Bob and I was Angela Ballard, Information Technology Training Librarian at NCSU.

Her talk was titled "Ahead of the Curve: Insuring Success of a Technology Training Program for Library Staff" and it really hit home some very important points.

To insure a successful Technology/IT Training program:

The library must take responsibility and devote time and resources
The library must provide a training reesponse to every library-wide technology implementation
The library must provide tools for on the job tech training
The library must distribute training responsibilities.

They do about 50 classes a year at NCSU.

AND adminstrators must do this:

Believe in organizational impact of a programmatic approach to training
Budget for technology training
Support continuing education for trainer(s)
Understand the nature of training work
Project-oriented approach to technology implementation
(From her PowerPoint at http://www.infotoday.com/cil2004/presentations/Ballard.pps)

Right ON! I may be preaching to the choir here but there can never be enough PLANNING for tech implementation in the library - especially where some training should occur. From rolling out new Zip drives at all locations on public stations (OMG, what is that thing??) to launching a new OS upgrade system-wide, it behooves those of us in project managemnt to make sure staff are informed. It's simple communication!

Thanks Angela! It was great to present with you.

Posted by Michael at 04:21 PM | Comments (0)

March 21, 2004

User Centered Instruction

Scott Brandt and I did our pre-conference workshop Tuesday afternoon. "Make Learning Stick: Creating 5 Star User Centered Training & Instruction"featured a DVD presentation about Bob, a harried trainer faced with training his entire staff on Web mail. We outlined 5 factors to insure training is user-focused and successful everytime!

We had 23 participants and a lot of fun. It was an afternoon session and I must confess by 3pm were were all a little bleary eyed but Scott provided chocolate and we sailed through the rest of the session. Thanks to all who participated!

Here are the workshop leaders hamming it up:

Posted by Michael at 03:49 PM | Comments (0)

Top Tech Trends @ CIL Friday Keynote Session

One of my favorite parts of this conference: lisdtening to some forward-thinking speakers outline what the future may hold for library services...

What follows is an annotated congrunt...

Roy Tennant
Theme: Digital Libraries

XML -- Standards must improve
Harvesting data
University faculty are realizing the crisis with scholarly communication

Also: Storage!"As somone who has recently landscaped his house, I can officially say that storage is cheaper than dirt." - Roy Tennant (Quote from theshiftedlibrarian.com) (I roared!)

Mary Kennedy
Theme: Getting Personal “It’s all about me!”

The personal experience is the most important!
Space is a community space (That’s what I’m sayin’ - MS)

Instant Messenger – incredible growth in organizations
IM in Libraries:
• Immediate access to knowledge
• Builds a trusted network of expertise
• In a meeting…immediate access to ask a question

IM for Online reference
• Training at point of need
• Information delivery at point of need
• Increase credibility & trust

Organization must accept this method of communication
What level of service do you provide
Does the audience understand what it can be used for?

(Can SJCPL use the power of IMs for quick "need to know" data etc?)

Personal portals:
SmartStreet (nice)
My Site

Customize their access
Power of a personal portal

Content Integration:
Just in time content
Ability to delivery just in time info in the context of workflow
Smart Tags in Word

Stephen Abram
Theme: It’s PEOPLE PEOPLE PEOPLE - not technology!

(Abrams always rocks my world with his insight and humor. He gets it!)

Workflow integration
IM is the future not “letters” via email
5% of people over 30 have an IM account
DB info linked via Smart Tags in MS Office docs
Federated search..not having to know where to search anymore

Massive Archives
We will store everything, our IMs etc

Nomadic Use with multiple devices (wifi equipped PDA anyone?) (How are we serving our users who come in via WAP?)

Delivering content at lesson level
Visual Displays – we are graphical now, visual not text
Personality and searching

It’s an information ocean not a highway!

Posted by Michael at 03:08 PM | Comments (0)

Federated Searching Session: Federated Searching & OpenURL

Frank Cervone, Assistant University Librarian, Northwestern University

Our users don’t know what DB the results came from, journal title is important…they just want the info.

What can you link to:

What is federated searching?
“Squishy at this point”

Metasearch: searches that use metadata to make decisions
Megasearch: Dogpile, AlltheWeb, etc.

Can be combined into a superset of federated searching

Why is this so complicated? Not all protocols are supported by vendors: Z39.50

Tips for implementation:

Select software
Select hardware
Gather provider info
Gather holdings info
Input the two (lightweight cataloging of the resources)
Configure the connection information

Posted by Michael at 02:37 PM | Comments (0)

March 16, 2004

CIL Photo Gallery

I am home with a cold-like thing but I wanted to get these up and out for everyone...

What a GREAT conference...

Computers in Libraries 2004 Gallery

(and to Steven, be well...enjoy some rest. Peace.)

Posted by Michael at 11:06 AM | Comments (0)

March 15, 2004

Visit Open Stacks for some well written congrunts...

I was tickled to meet Mr. Greg Schwartz. I had followed his blog since I discovered it and always found it fascinating.

Here, he congrunts with the best of em!

Posted by Michael at 07:54 PM | Comments (0)

Quicker than a Ray of Light

Bob and I went out to CIL to present in the Learning Track on motivating and celebrating staff with technology. We wanted to show off the work we did on RAY OF LIGHT the SJCPL staff day video. I blogged about it here. ROL is a fast motion day in the life of our library system which illustrates how EVERYONE plays a role in the library's mission!

The presentation was a success and the audience seemed to really like the video! There were some whoops and hollars! Then we did questions and of course the discussion turned to copyright. Yes, we used ROL by Madonna with no clearance but it was as much fair use as it could be: not sold, distributed, or copied.

I told them we tried last year to reach out to Madonna's people and never got anywhere. I think this is a great idea for libraries to internally and externally market themselves -- hey Madonna... can you give me a minute of your time to chat about it?

Posted by Michael at 03:23 PM | Comments (0)

Greetings from the Washington Hilton

I really enjoy this hotel! This week at CIL was most enjoyable: a nice view, clean room every afternoon, good products, fast access ($), and a quick trip downstairs to the conference.

Aaron, however, scored a 10th floor Tower Room, including free access to a lounge with complimentary soft drinks, flat TVS, FREE WiFI, and snacks... Sweet...

Posted by Michael at 12:54 PM | Comments (0)