26 January 2006

this blog has moved

Go to http://www.newrambler.net/lisdom if you want to read the latest.


24 January 2006

on the move: lis.dom, carnivals, and possibly me

Lots of things are happening, and these are just a few of them:

First (though not exactly foremost), I'm happy to announce that lis.dom is bidding farewell to Blogger and moving to my web site and to WordPress! With some much-appreciated help from my friend Mitchell, lis.dom will henceforth be residing at http://www.newrambler.net/lisdom. [Feeds: RSS, atom] There are still a few bugs in the system--I'm working on categorizing all the old posts (and at some point I may even do the Technorati-meme, CW!) and at picking out, modifying as necessary, and installling a new theme--but, in the meantime, in the spirit of living in beta, I'm just going to move the main posting over there. I will leave these Blogger posts up, though, so old permalinks will still go somewhere.

The Carnival of the Infosciences has made a couple of stops in the past two weeks. Check them out (if you haven't already): Carnival #20 at TangognaT and Carnival #21 at Infomancy.

And finally, as for the "possibly me"--well, that's just one of those awful blogging teasers. More will be revealed, soon.

11 January 2006

Read Roger!

Did you know that Roger Sutton (editor of The Horn Book) has a blog?

We children's lit people are not so far behind the times after all. (And if you like children's literature--as I hope you do--and are a reader of blogs--as I assume you are if you are reading this--I hope you're reading Your Fairy Bookmother. Thanks to Rochelle for pointing that one out to me.)

Sutton (I just don't quite feel right calling him Roger, even if he does use it in his blog's name) points out a nifty little article in the most recent issue, complete with a very cool demonstration of what a digital picture book could be. And he points to a little bit of flawed logic coming out of ALA (you're shocked, I'm sure):
ALA has inserted itself into Audible.com's "Don't Read" ad campaign. For the wrong reasons, I think: "trademark violation," which is a bit obnoxious given that the ad is a parody and the ALA is allegedly in the business of protecting intellectual freedom.
Good stuff, and worth reading, if you're so inclined.

communities, suburban and virtual, then and now

Rick, my blogosphere friend and neighboring librarian (I live one suburb over from the Thomas Ford Memorial Library) has a wonderful post about reading through old local newspapers on microfilm.
I sometimes hear that people today feel a little threatened by the amount of personal information on the Internet. In 1956 there was a tremendous amount of such information in the weekly newspaper. Of course, there were announcements of births, engagements, marriages, and deaths, as you might find in today's paper, but to a greater degree. One wedding story listed everyone who came. . . .

How did the Citizen get so much news? Did it have a large team of reporters? I think the answer to the last question is "no" and "yes." No, the newspaper did not have many reporters on its payroll. Yes, many people in the community called the newspaper with every bit of news they had. They participated in the making of the newspaper. It really belonged spiritually to the community.
It sounds kind of like the blogosphere, does it not? Or like a suburban Wikipedia--if you can imagine subversive gardening in the suburbs.

09 January 2006

carnival #19

Hear ye, hear ye (how I love to use archaic language in a digital environment): the first Carnival of the Infosciences (#19!) of 2006 is up and running over at Wanderings of a Student Librarian.

Among its many gems are someobvious to some but good nonetheless interview tips from Grumpator. Heidi Dolamore, who writes the wonderfully named quiddle (and is running for ALA Council!) has also been posting on the topic of the great librarian job hunt. If you're looking for a job yourself, definitely check out her blog--she's been giving great run-downs on different kinds of interviews and what kinds of questions they ask.

I have, in fact, embarked upon the Great Job Hunt myself and may have more to say about it in the coming weeks and months--although it's also entirely possible that I'll be extremely busy with said job hunt plus the usual jobs and school and thus not posting much at all.

In the meantime, enjoy the Carnival and consider signing up to host one yourself!

04 January 2006

low tech library 2.0: the picture

Originally uploaded by newrambler.
See the entry below for more. . . the picture upload from Blogger doesn't seem to have worked, at least not from what I can see. Apologies if it worked in your browser and you're getting this twice.

low tech library 2.0

Michael Stephens reiterates that library 2.0 is more than technology, to which, I imagine, some of us are saying, "Well, thank goodness!" Not all of us have us have huge budgets to send people to conferences or the space/time/staff support/equipment to holdDDR nights or coworkers who are hip to (or interested in being hip to) the latest hot tags on del.icio.us. Many of us are still operating in .98 beta.

But does that mean we can't use any of the principles of library 2.0? (Which, as many others have pointed out, are not so different from the principles of Ranganathan). No. This, then, is my inaugural post for a series on low tech library 2.0. I've been trying to come up with more ways for YA patrons to contact me. Since we don't have a YA space in the library--just some bookshelves and a bulletin board--and since I work in the children's room, out of sight from the YA shelves, I don't see them very often. Since my library doesn't allow IM, they can't IM me. Since many of our patrons don't have home internet access, IM and e-mail wouldn't be an option for them anyway. So I went with a very old-fashioned idea. Pictured above (at least if the Blogger photo upload worked) are some of the most recent suggestions that have come into the suggestion envelope I put on an empty slot near the YA magazines as another way for the YA patrons to communicate with me. How is this L2.0?
What other low tech library 2.0 (or whatever you want to call it) is out there? Feel free to comment below, write about it on your own blog, e-mail me at lauracrossett at hailmail dot net, or IM me (at home) at theblackmolly on AIM.

lost and found @ apple

lost and found @ apple
Originally uploaded by newrambler.
On Monday my computer (an iBook, circa 2003) had a complete meltdown--weird static on the screen, followed by more static, followed by the computer refusing to show anything on the screen at all, or for that matter do much of anything else.

So yesterday morning I drove it over to the Apple store. I got there about five minutes before it opened, and there were already 12 people waiting outside. I got an appointment for about forty minutes later, which I figured was pretty good, considering. The guy at the Genius Bar confirmed what I had suspected--my computer was the victim of the faulty logic board problem (see http://www.apple.com/support/ibook/faq/). The bad news was that the computer had to be sent off for a week to ten days; the good news is that the repair would be covered. Whew.

So off I went to walk dogs for a few hours, and then I came home to shower and rest for a little bit before going to work at the library--and it was then that I realized that I no longer had the book I was reading, which I'd last had at the Apple store. I called up, and they said yes, they had it. Thus I got to drive back to Oakbrook, where, happily, the book was waiting for me, topped with the lovely blue sticker you see here. Trust Apple to make even their lost and found signs look pretty.

22 December 2005

privacy: a preface

I have a long, thoughtful post that's still mostly in my head about online presence and privacy, and someday I'll get it all down in print (or pixels, or what have you)--probably about the same time I catch up on reading Cites & Insights (Walt, it's not even 2006 yet! Slow down! :-)). In the meantime, though, I offer these prefatory remarks.

I just added some old pictures to Flickr. The quality is not that great--many of them were originally Polaroids, and then I scanned them--but they have a certain sentimental value, and it's kind of neat to be able to see them out on the web. When I was uploading them, though, it occurred to me that being around and available online is not for everyone. Not everyone wants to put themselves out there, and I feel some responsibility for not forcing them on to a stage they didn't want to be on.

It's true that almost no one can avoid being online somewhere--if not through Google, then through ZabaSearch or one of the other online white pages. But there's a difference between that and having snapshots of yourself with bad hair out in the world. Maybe that will change--but for some of my friends and family, it hasn't changed yet.

So while I have no problem letting you see one of my poor '80s fashion choices or letting you know who I voted for in 2000, or explaining how I got arrested, or even telling you about the time they couldn't find my cervix, I know that's not for everyone.

All this, really, is by way of explaining why, if you're one of my Flickr contacts, you've been upgraded from "contact" to "friend." Everyone can see pictures of me; I've made the ones with other people in them friend only, which lets my online community see them but keeps them at least a little bit private. If you're not listed as a friend or contact, it's not because I don't like you; it's just because I haven't gotten around to it (or I don't know who you are). But feel free to add me, and I'll reciprocate--and then you too can see poor-quality photos of my friends and family in front of my tree. Oh, the excitement!

18 December 2005

book notes

Jessamyn West pointed the other day to a piece about lifehacking books by writing in them, with apologies to librarians. It brought to mind a bit from Roger Tory Peterson that I quoted in a paper I wrote about DRM and e-books last spring:
Roger Tory Peterson, author of the classic A Field Guide to the Birds wrote, when the book's second edition came out, that he was always happy when people showed him their copies of his book.
"It is gratifying to see a copy marked on nearly every page, for I know that it has been well used. Although the cover is waterproofed, I have seen many copies with home-made oilcloth jackets; I have seeen copies torn apart, reorganized and rebound to suit the owners taste; others have been tabbed with index tabs, or fitted with flaps or envelopes to hold daily check-lists."*
Nothing new under the sun. (And if you really like reading about how to lifehack your books, if you haven't picked up a copy of Anne Fadiman's Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader, do so soon!)

And on a final note, you can now comment on librarian.net. Apres moi le deluge.

*Roger Tory Peterson, A Field Guide to the Birds (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1934): xviii.

this past week. . .

I finished up a collection development project for LIS 721, Library Materials for Children and discovered the existence of phantom reviews. I used Baker & Taylor's Title Source II to help locate some books and reviews, and my partner used Follett's Titlewave, and then we'd go look up the full citations for the reviews we found. . . or at least we tried. Let's say that for one title, B&T said it was reviewed in the July 2000 issue of Booklist. I would dutifully go to Dominican's databases and start searching for the review. I couldn't find it by author, title, keyword, or date. I then tried going more directly to the source and looking through the Booklist indexes (which exist somewhere on the ALA website, though naturally now I can't find them). No luck there either. It was time to get serious. I hit the stacks. I grabbed the microfilm and spent half an hour or so scrolling through Booklist from July 2000 and from November 2000, when Follett claimed it was reviewed. No cigar. And this happened again and again, not just with Booklist, but also with School Library Journal, VOYA, and others. My partner, meanwhile, was having a similar experience with Books in Print, Book Review Index, et al. I wrote my professor. Were we going crazy? Apparently not. She said she'd noticed this problem before. We did the best we could. A few days later, I mentioned this to my professor for LIS 745, Searching Electronic Databases, who pointed out that Baker & Taylor and Follett are, after all, in the bookselling business, not the bibliographic verification business. Still, it's maddening. My adventures in bibliography were not over, though.

I turned in my final project for LIS 745, Searching Electronic Databases, which was a 25 item annotated bibliography on the subject of state guardianship programs for adults, prepared for my client, the Iowa Substitute Decision Maker Task Force, a group of people (including my mother) who are trying to establish such a program in Iowa. The week before, I did my final presentation on the project. I found many beautiful pictures with which to illustrate my presentation via the Creative Commons search on Flickr. I'm a big believer in giving people things to look at when presenting, but it does make for a monster-sized PowerPoint, which convinced once again that I really need to learn the S5 and/or Jessamyn West version of slides. . . I thought about doing it for this presentation, but as time was beginning to get short, I thought perhaps that would be an untenable exercise in procrastination.

I began the morning of my 30th birthday by oversleeping. I am hoping that this was the last gasp of the past decade rather than a sign of the decade to come. I finished up and turned in the paper on virtual readers' advisory for LIS 763, Readers' Advisory Services. Thanks to everyone who commented on my previous post on the topic, and thanks to all the biblioblogosphere folks who've created, written about, or fantasized about how we could make OPACs more useful and interesting. Not surprisingly, I found much more material for this paper by searching blogs than I did by searching professional journals. "Folksonom*" as a search term in one of the LIS databases turns up one citation ("Metadatering door de massa: Folksonomy," by Sybilla Poortman and Gerard Bierens), which looks really cool, but unfortunately it's in Dutch, which I can't read. Partly, of course, this is because I was writing about stuff so new that it simply hasn't made it in to professional literature. In fact, the very afternoon at work before I turned the paper in, I read a couple of new things I wanted to add. But I stopped, went to class, turned in the paper, listened to some cool book talks, and so completed my third semester of library school. One more to go!

And now it's winter break, which I plan to spend a) reading, b) working some extra hours at my dog-walking job, c) sleeping, and d) getting serious about the job hunt. Expect more on the first and last of those in future entries--I'm also planning to a bit more blogging, now that I have a few weeks free from one of my obligations.

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