Happy Blog Day!!!

For this year’s 3rd annual salute to bloggers, I thought I’d post a few new voices that I've discovered over the last few months who seem to be relatively new to the biblioblogging scene (roughly defined as just under or over a year). And since I enjoy discovering new voices who make me think, I thought I give a shout out to these 5 'newish' excellent blogs:

  • The Other Librarian - What I like about Ryan’s is that he’s not afraid to tackle subjects straight and his writing has a depth of clarity that is always thought provoking.
  • Leapin Librarian – I just love Teresa’s writing style. She doesn’t post often enough, but when she does it’s always enjoyable.
  • Uncontrolled Vocabulary - Although Greg isn’t new to the blogging scene, this latest project is. And though I’ve yet to participate in a live discussion, it's become my Friday afternoon routine this past month to listen to the weekly podcast while wrapping up office work.
  • Self Check – It’s not the writing I enjoy in this blog, but rather it's the images. Emily creates a great little cartoon from Toondoo, which is accessible via RSS from here.
  • The Cronicles of Bean- Even though I believe that Cindi is a pretty seasoned blogger, it’s just been within the last few months that I’ve discovered her. The name comes from her “mommy-blogging” days, but her recent posts add lots of thoughts to the ever-changing library landscape.
Happy Blog Day everyone!


Jumping in with 2.0 feet first :)

Ok, just because I'm always in for some good dialogue, I decided to post my response to David King's call for some examples or definitions of Library 2.0 newness here, instead of in his comments.

David, This is what I enjoy about reading you- you’re always interested in creating dialogue.

For me the root of the moniker of 2.0 (whether it be Library 2.0, Museum 2.0, Business 2.0, etc) has nothing to do with the tools, embracing change or being user-focused. The root of 2.0 is merely an acknowledgement that a fundamental shift is occurring in the information-power landscape and that our customers are no longer largely just “consumers of information” whose consumption needs we provide services for; they now have the power to equally (& extremely easily I might add) “contribute” and be “actively engaged” in the creation of information and add “value” to the global knowledge database.

This acknowledgement affects everything, especially the way we develop and deliver library services. And if we don’t position ourselves (and our services) well to adjust to this information evolution, we’ll soon loose our value to our ever-changing communities.

So to answer your question about "newness", I don't think that it's as easy as identifying qualifiers like "user-centered" and "embracing change". Instead I'd have to say that the "newness" is found in how we evolve and redefine our services to reflect and accomondate this shift.


More Neat Summer Reading Photo Finds

One of the best things about Flickr is how easily it can accommodate the sharing of great ideas. Case in point, this stumbled upon item tonight. Mill Valley Library in conjunction with their Summer Reading program encouraged kids who traveled this summer (& may have missed the “best of summer reading”) to send a postcard to the library. Here’s a slide show of the results:

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

If you’re wondering how I created this slideshow from the Mill Valley Flickr set, it was easy. I just used FlickrSlidr to generate the code.

On a related note: I also love this idea from NY State’s Summer Reading. They encouraged folks not only to upload their summer reading photos, but also provided the embed-able code for anyone else to grab and help them showcase the program’s success. Great idea Polly!


RSS Widgets & Related Thoughts

RSS widgets have been around for some time now. But what I like about RSS Mixer is that not only can you roll several RSS feeds into one, the utility also provides the code to embed it as HTML, widget or iPhone format.

I added a widget to my blog’s side bar today (look far down on the right) that pulls in just one feed from PLCMC’s Readersclub, but I could have rolled several feeds into one. I think the the most powerful use of a utility like this may be in sharing the code for widgets themselves (already created and formatted, of course) with users. This way they can easily grab it and embed a bit of the library in their own online spaces.

There’s so much potential for libraries to unshackle our content and make it available in “syndicatable” (don’t think that’s a word, but I can’t at the moment think of a better description) formats. Widgets seem like a natural way to engage users in promoting libraries' online services.

On a related note, both HCL & PLCMC now offer catalog widgets and I just noticed that there are ten libraries in Facebook with catalog apps.

PULISDO presentation

I’m at the airport right now and heading back home after a quick turnaround trip to upstate NY to speak to library system directors at the PULISDO gathering in Utica. Driving over from Syracuse I phoned my hubby, who is from this area. “How’s it look?” he asked. “Nice & green” I responded with a smile.

Indeed, this area of the country is beautiful with it's lazy rolling hills and miles of green pastures. Compared to NC which is currently looking very brown, dry, and brittle, it was a very pleasant sight.

Anyway, enough on the color commentary. For those in attendance today for my talk here are my slides from my program.

Thanks for the lively conversation and comments. It’s always nice to have so many people add their thoughts and views to the presentation. Dialogue is good... not to mention it's also nice indication that I (or the topic) didn't bore you to death. :)

PULISDO: Library & Learning 2.0: It's about ... Play! (.pdf)


Everything is Misc "Sloppy Copy" Quote

Everything is Misc quote
Originally uploaded by hblowers
In my daughter's 3rd grade class they call this a "sloppy copy" - a first draft of something you plan to rewrite.

Anyway, I found this note that I had written back in May or June when I was reading David Weinberger's latest book and had planned to blog it.

"To get as good at browsing as we are at finding - and take advantage of the digital opportunity - we have to get rid of the idea that there's a best way of organizing the world."

- David Weinberger, Everything is Miscellaneous

There's a lot to think about in that statement, especially related libraries.


Sad Day

A colleague, library leader and mentor died yesterday, poignantly reminding me of the power that a legacy can leave behind.

During Carol Myers' tenure at PLCMC, the last several of which she served as Interium Library Director and Assistant Director, she built a lasting legacy that is viewable in almost every single one of PLCMC's twenty-four locations. For nearly two decades, she was not only instramental in designing almost every new or remodeled branch (roughly 1.2 new locations/year), but also had a hand in hiring almost every branch manager in our system.

Carol retired early just this past May to spend more time on personal passions. But to those of us that had worked with her over the last 33 years here at PLCMC (myself, for 12) we also knew that PLCMC and public library services hovered high at the top of that list.

As you might guess we are still in shock here at PLCMC, but are grateful for her leadership and legacy.


Filed under Brilliant Library Marketing!

Originally uploaded by hblowers
At ALA this year, I was honored to share the podium with Michael Stephens and Steven Bell at a session on hot marketing techniques & things 2.0

My part of the presentation centered on this one thought ... the best way to market your library is to allow your customers to use your brand to market themselves.

Anyway, I don't know if anyone was in the audience then from the Louisville Free Public Library and already had this idea cooking up, but it's a perfect example of this idea in practice!

Exceptional!!! And, one H-E-double-toothpick (I sound like my mother saying this) of an idea worth copying too!! I especially love how LFPL has dedicated the prime real estate on their website to allow their community to celebrate themselves.

Well done LFPL! What a wonderful way to engage the community. Need I go one more? ... Now THIS is what libraries are all about!!!

UPDATE: Don't miss reading Craig Buthod's (LFPL Library Director) comment on this post - it provides a lot of background about this fabulous project and marketing effort!!!

Also see Iris Shreve Garrott over at Checking In & Checking Out for her photo and post.

PS: Thanks Tony for the heads up.

Missed July's event ? ...

If you were like me and missed the ALA Gaming Syposium last month, it's not too late to catch-up on all the action.

Jenny Levine has been busy posting the audio from many of the programs up on the ALA TechSource Blog this week -- as well as updating the conference wiki site. What a perfect opportunity to listen up on how on how libraries are engaging customers with gaming. And if you're like me, it also provides an opportunity to catch-up on the some of the talks given by your own colleagues.

And if you have any doubt about the popularity of gaming, just check out Jenny's post today - Online Gaming is More Popular than FaceBook & YouTube.


Library Genius 2.0 T-shirts

ACPL T-shirts!!!
Originally uploaded by hblowers
Thanks to Sean and the folks at ACPL, this great T-shirt arrived via the postman this week.

I truly love the icons, but the RSS (aka spoon fed) is my personal favorite. What a natural choice.

Anyway, by popular demand, ACPL has also made these great shirts available to anyone. Get yours -- in 31 colors, no less -- here
or also in other options here.


Just a few MustBlogThis items

Since the MustBlogThis tag in my has been building up over the last two weeks, I thought I’d just do a list of quick items that have caught or peaked my interest:

  • AIM anonymous chat widget - a nice addition to any IM reference service and since AIM is one of the biggest chat clients out there ( and most likely if you’re doing IM, you offer it to AIM accounts) this seems like a no-brainer.

  • On Crowd Sourcing & Sourcing Crowds - “They are getting more entertainment value out of being amateur producers of this stuff than they would purely as consumers” Isn’t that was it’s all about… having an active part in the process, rather then just being on the passive receiving end.

  • Innovation @ Google – Marissa Mayer, Vice President of Search Products and User Experience, talks about the top 9 things that Google has learned about innovation. Great presentation with lots of good thoughts - well worth the watch or listen.

  • We asked for 2.0 Libraries, we got 2.0 Librarians - Ryan Deschamps “In short, the library 2.0 movement was not really about changing libraries, but changing librarians.

  • Tank Books – Filed under clever advertising pitch, but lousy idea.

    And this last one is my favorite which fell by surprise into my RSS feeds for ImaginOn…

  • Behind Blue Eyes - a video created by a teen in Studio I. Be sure to check out the extended notes for the video - “Created at Studio I, took about 4 to 5 visits of 2-4 hours Created using downshooting animation, drawn using a whiteboard.” I luv this --- totally

OK, That’s all… at least for now. Be back later. :)

BTW: Just noticed in my blog stats that this post marks a milestone -- my 500th entry on LibraryBytes. :)


L2.1 - Thing 35: Micro Blogging

Note: If an effort to keep with all the learning happening over at Learning 2.1, I've decided to include my thoughts on the discovery excercises here as well. What I love L2.1, is that it allows us all to be learners and discovery guides together.

Mary always adds great little tidbits to her blog posts and from following her latest entry on Learning 2.1, I've learned about a few other services in the Twitter vein. I’ve had a Twitter account for a few months now and although I don’t “twit” regularly, I have definitely experienced how this 140 character medium can come in handy.

Example: In Australia last month when I couldn’t get access to my email remotely to retrieve an address and send word to friend about my arrival time in Melbourne, I used Twitter to send a short message to her and 15 minutes later she sent a twit back (including her email). And at ALA, I used Twitter to connect with friends in both the exhibit hall and across the DC landscape. Since twits can be received via cell phones, it allows for easy communication and messaging with multiple friends.

Anyway, I need to look more into Pownce and others. I received a Pownce invite from someone (Mary was it you?) about two weeks ago, but now can’t seem to find it. So if anyone has a spare, please send it to me. WOW! That didn't take long. Thanks M! If anyone else wants one, I have 6 to now send :)

BTW: Twittervision 3D is just too entertaining. It makes me feel like I'm a member of the Space Shuttle.


A year of Learning 2.0

When I realized the date today was August 3rd, I knew I needed to interrupt my sablogical to share this insight ... today marks the one year anniversary of Learning 2.0

Honestly it seems like ages since Michael Stephens and Michael Casey joined our staff for our Technology Summit where the program was launched. And had I know then what I know now, I would spent some time developing some type of FAQ guide to help answer the hundreds of emails I've responded over the past year about the logistics, etc. of how to setup and run the program.

After over 200 inquiries from other libraries & non-profits -- I've got a folder in Outlook that I saved them in. In makes it easy to cut and paste responses to previous inquiries, so I guess that's my personal faq guide :) -- Learning 2.0 seems to have circumvented the globe. They're doing it in Norway, in Denmark, in Germany and all over Australia. (see Minerva Shelved's google map)

Anyway, it's been a fantastic year and the grassroots success of this program has surpassed my wildest dreams. Funny, when I set out to design and develop the program for PLCMC staff, my initial goal was to reach 125 employees. Never did I imagine that in less than a year later, the program would have been adapted or duplicated by nearly 125 different libraries. :)

So... Thanks all, for not only seeing the potential that these tools have to bring individuals and communities together, but for actually seizing the opportunity. It's been amazing to see the library community connecting all over the globe this past year on a similar mission. And I am truly honored to work in a profession that is so generous, collaborative and sharing.

[Note: Heading back to my sablogical now. Will return shortly.]



I've been think about taking a short sablogical for a while now and given my travel schedule this summer and the fact that my youngest is entering kindergarten in a few short weeks (Pah... I can't believe my baby's so grown-up), I think I'm overdue...
Sablogical (sa-blôg-î-kel) n: a planned leave from blogging usually taken every second year. :)

Don't worry, I'll be back by the end of the month. I'm just feeling a bit overloaded at the moment and am wanting to spend sometime on a few "house projects", a long overdue book proposal and with my family. In the meantime, if you're looking for some "library, learning and 2.0 goodness", try catching a few new posts over at Learning 2.1