Friday, June 4, 2010

Hacking the Academy - Crowdsourcing a Book

Want to know if you can write an edited non-fiction book in 10 days?

Dan Cohen and Tom Scheinfeldt are are trying to find out. They have "crowdsourced" 'Hacking the Academy'. The electronic version will be the basis for the final printed book.

The current "book" comprises nominated entries, mostly from blogs.

See what you think - there is a good section on Hacking the Academic Library.

There's more on the project on the editors blogs Dan Cohen and Tom Scheinfeldt.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

You Tube Search Stories - A New Genre

Well new to me anyway...

YouTube/searchstories combines Google searches with music into a very short search video. It's like sitting over someones shoulder watching them search.

Some are very clever

Here's my go - they are very quick to make.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Rebecca McDuff - Social Media in Libraries

When it all comes down to it librarianship is about connecting an audience with content.
That was the central message of the presentation. If librarians are connectors then they have to be in the same space as the audience. Social media and library 2.0 might have created new spaces where the audience hangs out; but that just means the librarian needs to get into that space. Once we are in the space we need to give our audience a chance to interact with the content and with us.

The presentation covered the ways in which U.S. libraries are getting into these spaces and rounded off with a discussion of how to implement Library 2.0. McDuff sees staff training as the key and recommended 23 Things to all staff in the Library. If you're having trouble convincing the systems team or senior management about what you're doing then get them doing 23 Things too. We need to show our colleagues in the rest of the organisation what we are doing with library 2.0.

Librarians need to become comfortable with a range of different literacies, including visual literacy. One example given was the ability to interpret tag clouds.

Chicago Public Library's You Media has done some work on transliteracy, including the use of mentors - what could we take from this?

Rebecca McDuff is a regional Public Affairs Information Resource Officer (IRO) in the U.S. Department of State.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Library mashup's : Exploring new ways to deliver library data - new book

This book has just arrived and I looked it over this weekend. After a good summary of what mashups are there's coverage of a range of different mashups; most involve Google Maps, Flikr and other social networking sites. There's also enough of interest for academic libraries, including a chapter by the NZ librarian Stuart Lewis on repositories and a section on mashing catalogue data.

Of particular interest are - Piping Out Data (using Yahoo Pipes to mash data); Mashups @ Libraries Interact (about sharing mash-ups in the Library community); Mashups with WorldCat Affiliate Services; The LibraryThing API and Libraries and a chapter by LibraryThing's founder, Tim Spalding, on Breaking into the OPAC. Tim has 9 suggestions for things you could do once you've "reached into" a Library OPAC. They are

1. Add alerts to the catalogue so patrons can learn about upcoming events and downtimes

2. Add links to Amazon, Google Book Search or Wikipedia

3. Give users permanent links to catalogue pages

4. Track user actions for statistical purposes

5. Add "did you mean..." spell check functionality

6. Show a Librarian chat widget when a search turns up no results

7. Add dynamic location maps to item pages so that patrons know where on the shelf a book can be found

8. Add dynamic content on item pages, such as recommendations or links to other editions

9. Let users tag, rate or review items in your catalogue

Some of these we do already, some like a chat widget on failed searches might be worth thinking about?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Awful Library Books - Friday moment

It's always fun to look at some of the hideously outdated books that we used to think were so up to the moment. The scary thing is all the books on this blog are sitting on public library shelves. This was a bit of test to see if I could blog from the social bookmarking site


Awful Library Books

Show this site to anyone who want to know why public libraries should weed books

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    Thursday, March 25, 2010

    RSS Following and Feeding

    I love RSS feeds. I set up a Bloglines reader account a few years ago and dutifully looked at it every day. I tried to keep up with ever growing list of unread posts. It became depressing as the number of unread posts got larger and larger.

    That's when I discovered how I could use Firefox to view RSS feeds. I can create the feeds as drop-down menus on the browser. No more going to a separate reader and no more growing numbers of unread posts. Simplicity is the key advantage of using the browser to follow RSS feeds but you do lose functionality. So I'm keen to explore what Google Reader has to offer.

    What about feeding the users from RSS? I'm interested in seeing what can be done with RSS feeds from saved searches and journals. How can we present that information to students and staff - will they find it useful? Some work has been done with Early Childhood journals can that be extended? What is the best place to put the feeds? Could we use the subject guides? What are the alternatives?

    Lots of questions