Our space?

LITA Blog and Wiki Interest Group Social Software Showcase
Sat., 6/23, 1:30-3:00
Renaissance Mayflower Cabinet Room

Part II of the Social Software Showcase. It’s tres cool that the Showcase is via a wiki.

A group of library 2.0 users sat at different tables and discussed and demo-ed different software. It was hard to take it all in. I spent most of my time at the LibraryThing table.

LibraryThing for Libraries uses JavaScript. It grabs ISBN, title and author, and links to an outside page. Pages generated are more accessible than the usual OPAC pages, which suck on so many levels.

There was a table for Meebo which interested me, but no one seemed to be addressing it. Here’s the link about it on the page–looks interesting.

There was also a table about the Facebook developer’s platform, which didn’t interest me much.

The Twitter group got the largest crowd. Twitter with David Free and David Lee King. There were “too many daves” jokes. I did not join the table, but found the videos and web links very interesting afterwards.

Some of the presenters couldn’t be there due to other obligations. The Showcase was set-up in such a way that you did not need to be a “meat attendee”, but could participate virtually, from any distance. I thought it was really great I could watch videos on the site, such as one about LOCKSS by Karen Schneider.

This group of presenters presupposed some experience with Web 2.0 or Library 2.0. There was kind of an “in crowd” feeling, which I didn’t share. All of the attendees I spoke to were from academic libraries, which was rather disappointing to me. The issues around Web 2.0 seem very different at public libraries. I am going to explore some of the links to public libraries more thoroughly.

I think some of the most interesting ideas around Web 2.0 are reaching nontraditional library users in new ways. I like the idea that the physical library provides a third space for its users. I would like to see Web 2.0 create a virtual third space. I think the various interactive social softwares are leading the way. We need to explore all of them, and coopt the best for library uses. I am not at all sure about Twitter feeds for events, but I love the idea of libraries being part of something fun.

Buzz buzz buzz

RUSA MAR–Chair’s Program

Harnessing the Hive: Social Networks and Libraries

Sunday, 6/24 10:30 am-12:00 pm Convention Center Room 144 A-C

A standing room only crowd (300+) greeted what was definitely a hot topic (ubiquitous, too :D). The meeting included the RUSA MARS business meeting, which was brief. The Rethinking Reference preconference was sold out, and will be offered again next June. MARS is offering virtual poster sessions via their web site. I tried to find it. The announcement is here: I hope I can find the actual posters some time.

Matthew M. Bejune from Purdue started the program. mbejune@purdue.edu He started with examples of social networking, some very well known (MySpace, Blogger, LiveJournal, AIM), to newer, less well-known such as couch surfing, webkinz (for children). Malene Charlotte Larsen has posted on 25 Perspectives on Social Networking. She has since added another ten perspectives.

Doing research last fall, Matthew found 35 library wikis.. He categorized them in four types:

  1. Collaboration between libraries–45% of total
  2. Collaboration between library staff–31%
  3. Collaboration between staff and patrons–14%
  4. Collaboration between library patrons–8%

Most of the “comfort zone” is with the first two categories. Gave examples: St. Joseph County Subject Guides. Librarian created.,; can update quickly and easily. OCLC Worldcat wiki–people can add reviews, cover art, comments, etc. and relate these to bibliographic records. Matthew’s research will be published in Information Technology and Libraries, Sept. 2007. Companion wiki to article. Members of the library community are invited to contribute to by editing or creating new pages. Instructions are on the page.

Meredith Farkas, maintains Library Success: A Best Practices Wiki and her presentation can be accessed on her presentation wiki.

Meredith’s current area of concern is with knowledge management. All organizations want to make the best use of institutional knowledge. All librarians have different areas of expertise. Customers have a lot of knowledge. Information is shared via one-to-one conversations staff meetings, IM, Twitter, email, scraps of paper on the reference desk, blogs–Last In First Out. All of this is not very searchable Different libraries trying different things. Ann Arbor is doing “customers who borrowed…” You need very broad base of data for user-generated tags.

Examples: Ann Arbor District Library Website

Hennepin County Public Library’s Bookspace Readers can create lists, annotate, and comment.

Roc Wiki Non-library–community gathering data to support access for community

Ohio University Biz Wiki. Provides structure and searchability

PennTags. Let’s users create content

Wikis can also serve as an intranet–to share policies and procedures, basic info, knowledge about reference resources. Info for work study students, volunteers.

Antioch University New England Library Staff Training and Support Wiki

It takes time to build knowledge management behavior into an organizational workflow–a wiki is not at instant fix. Patience and persistence are necessary.

Break to switch from PC to Mac…second time in two programs where this was an issue. I guess we need to find and tap MacBooks that can run Windows to avoid these problems in the future…

Tim Spalding from LibraryThing–talk about ubiquitous! See http://www.librarything.com/thingology/ Started with a quote from Michael Gorman on the Britannica Blog on “Web 2.0: The Sleep of Reason”: “Human beings learn, essentially, in only two ways. They learn from experience—the oldest and earliest type of learning—and they learn from people who know more than they do.” Spalding felt this was a false construct–that people learn from conversations, as equals. “The education of scholar is an ascent through this conversation. We start with encyclopedias and straightforward books of facts—books that talk at us; certain books. We move to monographs, which seem at first like books of facts, but which we soon learn are really “arguments.” We learn to write papers that are arguments too—”Don’t just say what you know, have a thesis!” At some point we discover academic journals, and our eyes are opened to just how complex and contentious and uncertain this certain thing is. And, if we go on long enough, we graduate to conferences, and we learn that knowledge is an actual conversation, usually with alcohol.”

LibraryThing users have tagged 50 million catalog records–a form of social cataloging. The tags represent shared tastes and interests. Knowledge is a conversation. “Conversations work because, at their best, they know more and produce more than their members. They work because the knowledge is in the conversation. It happens in the very interplay of ideas—asserting, contesting, extending, simplifying and complexifying the dizzying whirl of fact and opinion, creative and synthetic, smart and dumb, right and wrong, from this angle and that. Literature works like this too, but can be even more meaningless without “conversational” context—genre, alusion and immitation and so forth. So, quiet or not, the library is a buzzing cocktail party—better and better the more people are there and the more they interact. It is already “hive” this session promises. It is, in point of fact, very much like the web.”

Library catalogs are like encyclopedias–general starting points. They bring titles together (can you spell concatenation?). LibraryThing brings together genres and identity groups not covered by LCSH. Even when a new subject heading is added, such as “chick lit”, no cataloguer goes back and applies it to existing records–it is only applied to materials that come out after the heading is accepted. LibraryThing users do apply new tags to previously existing records, so Jane Austen works will be listed under “chick lit” in LibraryThing. LibraryThingbrings together editions–FRBRizing records.

Some uses are outside authority files—in LibraryThing, there are differences between titles tagged GLBT and LGBT. Synonyms can be different. There are 5,000 tags associated with The Diary of a Young Girl. None are anti-semitic. When data has a large mass, errors wash out, become insignificant. Tags are not hierarchical. Flickr uses algorithms to create clusters. LibraryThing now allows customers to mash tags–France, WWII, minus fiction. Danbury Public is using LibraryThing on their Innovative web catalog. I will cover this more in my notes on the session on the LITA Blog and Wiki Interest Group, Sat., 6/23, 1:30-3:00.

I only stayed for the beginning of the Q&A.

The library is open.

The Boyfriend and I arrived in DC Thursday night. We’re staying at the Holiday Inn on Thomas Circle. It is posh by our standards: we have two bathrooms, a fridge, a microwave, iron, blowdryer, coffeemaker, etc. I have been sick most of the last week with a stomach bug. I can finally eat again, but it’s not exactly enjoyable. Last night, we got in too late for the hotel restaurant, so we wandered about until we found something called Logan’s Tavern. Turned out to be a wine bar–zero beer on tap.

This morning we slept late–jet lag kept us awake until around 1:30 am, so we slept until 10:00. Then we hopped on one of the free shuttle buses (if anything from Gale is ever free) and went to the convention center, which seems like a particularly uninspired exmple of civic architecture. I had never received my all-important conference badge in the mail, so I had to go to “will call.” I was expecting it to take an hour. It took under ten minutes–a huge improvement over previous experiences! Kudos to ALA.

Then we went to the Renaissance, one of the main conference hotels. Unfortunately, the highly anticipated OCLC Symposium was being held at the other main conference hotel, the Grand Hyatt. I can’t believe my ability to end up at the wrong hotel for something every single conference. These were of course several blocks apart. So we hoofed it. Fortunately, the weather was so nice it was impossible to believe we were in the mid-Atlantic region. Sunny, breezy–not even slightly humid.

The subject of the OCLC Symposium was “Is the Library Open?” In part, it was a panel on some of the subjects in a forthcoming OCLC membership report on “Sharing, Privacy, and Trust in Our Networked World.”

Cathy De Rosa, Vice President, OCLC, started us off with some of the same questions the survey had asked. We all got one of those audience response gizmos when we entered. We were quickly able to see that our group was more paranoid/cynical/informed than the general public or most library directors. We don’t want anyone saving our search records with or without personally identifying data.

The first speaker was Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center. http://www.epic.org/
Rotenberg detailed concerns about Google’s purchase of DoubleClick Inc. His main complaint about Google is they maintain too much info for too long, and they refuse to provide transparency. He feels we have the right to see the search algorithms that are used to describe us. He hopes that Google will respond to EPIC’s requests by developing into a better company. Coming up with new methods for online anonymity would be a great step.
Q: Is privacy a right? A: Yes. In particular, the First Amendment guarantees anonymity.

Next up: Siva Vaidhyanathan, currently NYU. Moving to UVA. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siva_Vaidhyanathan

“What’s so bad about a surveillance society?” We need to delineate the virtues and vices of each instance, and the role of the state. Privacy and security are not a dichotomy. You don’t trade one for the other. Too much surveillance erodes privacy and generates a culture of mistrust–East Germany. No one can say what is enough, setting up the vice of unlimited funding. With data mining, when government uses corporate info. Corporations ask you not to conform–niches are where the money is. You are free to be a freak. Hazards include: false positives, insecure systems–data dumps, lack of transparency, lack of due process or appeals. False negatives. Data, and errors, persist.

Digital rights management=copyright as surveillance. RIAA is pressuring universities; trying to develop content-scanning bots.

Web 2.0–user-generated content is massive corporate data collection, for mining and profiling. We need “cosmopolitan librarianship”. Privacy is not a national issue, but global. Libraries are nodes in the global flow of information and culture.

“Technofundamentalism” seeks simple interventions that can’t address complex issues–filtering. Inventing something to fix problems that last invention created. Trust versus “trust systems”. Systems don’t create trust. Transparency creates trust.

Had to leave before hearing Mary Minow. www.librarylaw.com. Assume she was also excellent.

Some Thumbs Up

ALA RUSA MARS–Hot Topics
Libraries2Go: Library Services for Handhelds
Sat., 6/23 10:30 am-12:00 pm
J W Marriott Salon IV

Moderator, Mark Dehmlow of Notre Dame University joined via Skype. Home (Indiana?) awaiting birth of child.
GRE word for the day is ubiquity. 95% of students have cell phones. Libraries need to portal their services to where the users are (except when driving :D). Services for handhelds are user-centered.

First panelist, Bradley Faust from Ball State University.

http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/lits/mobileproject/project_summary.html

The Mobile Computing Project at Ball State began in 2004 with LSTA/IMLS grant.

Better, faster higher capacity networks & handheld devices, now integrating with course management systems. Users want:

  • Audio, ebooks, podcasts
  • Mobile search
  • Quick facts
  • Directional tours of facilities, services
  • Video tutorials, instructional videos
  • Texting

Regular web sites are unfriendly to small screens. Need short pages, easy to navigate, minimal images, anywhere access.

BSU developed a new gateway to their catalog using data from their Z39.50 server.
Developed searchable index of journals
Streaming instructional videos via Windows Media
Using Google Co-op search

Markus Wurst–MobiLIB at NCSU

https://www.lib.ncsu.edu/dli/projects/mobilib/

Commercial content providers going to phones–Yahoo, Google, MSN, Flickr, MySpace. Eric Schmidt, Google, “Mobile, mobile, mobile.”

Libraries need to think about what users are doing.

Design considerations–variety of browsers, platforms, small screens, need precise language.

NCSU offering:
1) cat search based on catalog web service using xml data 2) library computer availability 3) Library hours today and tomorrow 4) Campus directory 5) Contact us. 6) Links to external sources 7)University bus status

Just started this spring. No stats. Only staff time being used so far. Markus does not own a cell phone.

Michelle Jacobs–Univ. of Calif Merced mjacobs@ucmerced.edu

Text = short message service (SMS)

Merced is cell only library–no desk phones–they are always at work!
Started text reference with very little advertising. Instruction sessions and word of mouth. 2 faculty have used.
Likes Agile Messenger to access various IM clients. Allows video messaging as well.
YouTube ad with students. Pretty much everything free or at very little cost

Q&A

Response time? Text etiquette/culture does not expect instant responses. Generally 3 hours or next day.
All of these were side projects.
Megan Fox at Simmons is doing some research/gathering stats. http://web.simmons.edu/~fox/pda/

This was interesting. I would have liked to see some examples from non-academic libraries.

Who Do You Trust?

6/25/2005

RUSA/MARS User Access to Services Committee

Do You Trust Your IT Staff? Do They Trust you?

Talk about a topic close to my heart! Though somehow, in thinking about it before the conference, in my mind it morphed into “Does Your It Staff Hate You?” In fact, around Wednesday, I had to talk to someone in IT via phone, and I asked him if he hated me. He said no. Do I trust him enough to believe him? /humor

This program was held on the fourth floor of McCormick, which had had a power failure. No elevators or escaltors, few lights, no A/C. I felt like I was in a Gibson novel as I traveled long, seemingly endless, dark service corridors and stairs. Maybe it was Stephenson? Heinlein? When my friend and I finally encountered humans, I said, “Our kind!”

There were four panelists. If you want the names, see Genny’s post. Two were from Chicago Public—their IT director and a public services person. They pretty much love each other. Basically, they feel they are entering a much more comfortable period, where the pace of library technology change is not as overwhelming as it was just a few years ago. Kareem, the IT guy, talked about how IT must service needs, like a utility. He talked about taking out the human element when it doesn’t add value; but when the human element does add value (i.e., reference work), honoring, respecting, and supporting that. <3

The next speaker was an IT director from an academic library in WV. He felt the tension between IT and public services is improving, in part because newer technology is more reliable.

The A/C started working–hurray! I still haven’t gotten over the trek up, though.

The last panelist was from an academic library. She was a techie before she went into public service, which has been useful, as she can translate between the two languages/cultures. She said that the PCs belong to the users–the users are the focus. The relationship with IT has a push me-pull me quality. The tension between security and access; standardization vs. creativity. The planning process needs to be intertwined. Active partnership. However, there does need to be work around IT accepting anecdotal information from librarians. The reference interview as a usability test.

There were good questions and comments. The topic obviously resonated. Librarians still primarily deal with users F2F. It’s not as sexy as digitzation, or chat, or RSS. But IT needs to be reminded to treat public service staff as important customers.

I loved some of the ideas: librarians as translators; user needs as primary focus; bulletin boards for public service staff to discuss technology.

I still feel the “tension”, such a nice word, dealing with IT. My feelings were a bit hurt by Kareem saying that librarians shouldn’t do any troubleshooting or anything on PCs. I have years of experience. I can take apart a CPU, a printer, I have little screwdrivers, tweezers and needle nose pliers; I know what proportional versus fixed means in a variety of settings. These aren’t my primary skills, but still. Now you don’t need or want me involved?

Our staff PCs are so locked down–as much as the public–seems like someone doesn’t trust me. I have come a long way since I threatened an PC/LAN technician with a paring knife if he tried to touch “my” PC (long ago in a distant land; believe me, I had my reasons.) I’ve learned that the best way to deal with IT is to bake them brownies and offer personal interest. I do not hate IT staff–they are among my work friends. But can I tell you about the last IT committee I was on? No, I won’t, but trust me; I do not trust IT. Do you?

ALCTS PARS Reformatting Committee: Analog Digital Hat Dance

ALCTS PARS Reformatting Committee

Sunday, June 26, 2005
8:00-10:00 a.m.

Analog and Digital Preservation Technology

Apologies for the lateness and the brevity of this post. I was both late for this session and had to leave early—the very worst kind of guest. However, I determined that I still really wanted to blog it. I went for the brief time allotted in part because I’ve been to good PARS sessions in the past. Even more, I went because this was the only session at ALA that came up in the event planner on a keyword search for microfilm. My day job is as a newspapers and microform librarian.

This was held in one of the smaller conference rooms on the first floor of McCormick. Fairly well attended, i.e., someone in almost every third seat.

When I arrived, the first speaker, whose name I did not get, was discussing video preservation strategies. He mentioned film widths I’ve never even heard of.

The next speaker was Priscilla Caplan, Assistant Director for Digital Library Services, Florida Center for Library Automation. Her talk was on Digital Preservation & Trusted Repositories. She described preservation strategies, standards & frameworks, tools, and applications and initiatives for CRL certification.

Priscilla cited a Trusted Digital Repository (TDR) report from RLG/OCLC working group. [Must look up!]

Her main thrust was Trust But Verify!

Dean Michele Cloonan from Simmons College followed. I had to (reluctantly) leave during her talk.

Dean Cloonan spoke about we have to consider copyright issues with every single copy we make, any format, any reason. Fair uses is evolving—who wants to be the test case?

In digitization projects, there are always human, financial, and technical expertise needs. Social issues are key—mission, copyright, etc.

Analog preservation has been reactive—deterioration has prompted. However, digital preservation must be proactive—build it in.

An observation: “Vietnam is a country, not a war,” i.e., ongoing, never done. Build, create, constituency. Collaboration!

Time to dash, very unfortunately! I guess I missed whatever discussion there was of microfilm….

ALCTS Newspaper Users Discussion Group

ALCTS Newspaper Users Discussion Group

Sat., 06/25/2005
2:00-4:00 p.m.
Palmer House Private Dining Room 5

Smallish room, approx. 25 attendees tops. I recognize most from previous NUDG sessions at midwinter and annual.

OCLC Terminologies Project and the Newspaper Genre List.

Eric Childress and Diane Vizine-Goetz, both from OCLC
The mapping of fields from the U.S. Newspaper Project (circa 1970-1990) to MARC fields should be useful for those projects still working with the old data.

Attendees described OCLC’s efforts to convert USNP LDRs to MARC 21 MFHD later this summer. Mark Sweeney, not present, has been involved in efforts.

Microfilm and Digital Newspaper Projects in Pennsylvania
Sue Kellerman, Penn State University Libraries

Overview of progress on the PA Newspaper Project, which went on hiatus for 15 years due to lack of funding. Old data, rechecking, cooperation among repositories, filming, next steps. Plus very successful project to digitize Penn State student newspaper. See http://www.collegian.psu.edu/.

Civil War newspaper digitization project using which has a thematic approach. Using Active Paper from Olive http://www.olivesoftware.com/–now Israeli.

Some discussion of National Digital Newspaper Project, funding, etc. People present from Berkeley, Tennessee, and Utah (all first round grant recipients) discussed progress, issues, etc. Technical and program information is on the web at http://www.loc.gov/ndnp/.

Jessica from UWash described an interesting, rich thematic approach to a collection on 1919 including newspapers, pictures, and other formats. The Seattle General Strike Project: http://faculty.washington.edu/gregoryj/strike/

Sue Kellerman will be the new chair of NUDG. We have to standardize our meeting times for Midwinter.

“We will all be out of our comfort zone for a while.”

“We will all be out of our comfort zone for a while.”

Googling the Better Mousetrap: Cyber Resources on the Front Line of Reference

RUSA 2005 President’s Program

Monday, 06/27/2005
Sheraton Chicago Ballroom VI/VII

[Mere minutes late! Getting better at timing leaving the McCormick wifi teat and busing to a hotel. In my next life, I’m staying at the Sheraton. It’s right on the river, and I found the ballroom easily! Large ballroom, not quite full but crowded.]

Most complicated evaluation form ever seen. Eek—forgot to fill out! Will mail…

Panelists:

John Dove, President, Xrefer
Chris Nasso, Gale Group
Bill Pardue, Arlington Heights Memorial Library
Marilyn Parr, Library of Congress
J. L. Needham, Google
Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia/Wikimedia

Abstract: How do information/reference sources live and grow on the web? A panel of librarians, publishers, and search engine designers will discuss:

  • Design issues for online information resources: past, present, and future
    Patterns of user behavior that affect resource design
    Information quality control in distributed production environments (content vs. containers)
    The development of finding tools for online resources
  • I don’t think the panelists managed to cover all the points in the abstract, but it was a really good discussion.

    Marilyn started things off nicely with a short discussion of LOC’s history with computing since 1960. I was interested that she mentioned how digitization of photographs led to LOC’s entry into electronic resource creation. Now, LOC pages are accessed 1 million times a day, many times through referrals from Google. She hears increasingly from the public that “the Library of Congress should use Google for search.” (Well, American Memory results can be daunting.)

    J.L. started off by noting that the program title was an example of improper use of the Google brand. He also admitted to only 6 months of exposure to library land at Google. (We must be gentle?)

    He noted that previously e-books have been mostly invisible on the web to users and search engines. He said it is time to up the ante with publishers—for both cataloging and search engine optimization (not his term). He said publishers need to reallocate resources to provide access to the document itself rather than to their home page.

    Bill described how NorthStarNet uses distributed content creation—it is a reference resource created and maintained by its users—mostly reference librarians. It is a directory, a calendar. Provides contributors with a blogging interface, forums, and a possible “community in a box”.

    Chris described how as a regular public library user, he has observed patrons searching online for information he knows the library owns (doesn’t he mean rents?), but they are looking in a place where he knows they won’t find it. Jokes that guards are finding his behavior suspicious—kinda have concerns there myself—privacy anyone? Anyway, he sees a big evolution in the industry. Gale/Google “accessmylibrary.com” aims to improve the content of the internet, and that users will get the “going through their library” concept.

    Jimmy gave a precise explanation of Wikipedia’s history, philosophy, and process. He spoke a little about the influence of the four freedoms of free software. He considers Wikipedia’s strength to be its strong, passionate community.

    John had recorded comments from Terry Winograd and Amy someone, a reference librarian. Terry said we need to get to a mind reader—and for that to happen, a search engine needs to know you. John said that if a search engine tried to know him via his shared home PC, it would go crazy. Amazon’s “people who purchase…” feature already gets pretty weird trying to reconcile him, wife, and son. Amy said we don’t need a mind reader machine; we have reference librarians. John talked about reference needs moving to 24/7 and self service. Content + librarians + users need another business model, not advertising based and not F2F. Google Print is fabulous, but how will users make sense of the retrievals of the Bodleian’s 18th century results? The librarian role in this has not yet been invented. Someday in the future, a 5th grade grandchild will ask him, “what’s a results list?” So we need a good online self-service reference platform.

    Highlights of the extremely lively Q & A:

    How will Google do the ranking of hits from Google Print?
    J.L.: already working with different algorithms for different formats.

    What if a librarian who wants to teach evaluation plants bad info in Wikipedia?
    Jimmy: in his experience, librarians are more ethical than that. [Laughter.] Described how new posts are the most scrutinized. The constant review process has made bad behavior rare.

    Wikipedia and controversial posts, i.e, George Bush entry during election?
    Jimmy: media reports were completely wrong. The Bush and Kerry entries were not controversial—it was just vandalism from outside the community that made them lock the entries. They are about to go live with new software that will allow a time delay mode to keep vandalism at bay.

    What do Google and Wikipedia know that the library community does not? (wow, this spark ignited things!)
    Bill: Rely on the community to generate reputation and usefulness. Marilyn: LOC uses Google to find LOC stuff. The LOC’s own metadata doesn’t talk to each other, leading to incomprehensible results. J.L.: Currently the open web has no competition. Libraries are walled gardens. Speed drives decisions (milliseconds matter.) Comprehensiveness is key. He used Wikipedia to get info on a Chinese province recently. Search engine indexing of our walled gardens is key. John: Google speaks to Ranganathan’s Fourth Law. Speed, yes. But relevance and authority need context. Chris: Search engines have such sheer breadth of coverage. Individuals information needs morph so quickly—within one search session even.

    Lowered expectations—Google gives sufficient answers. Students going for full text convenience of lesser source rather than go for better print resource one floor away.
    Jimmy: Funny line about regular emails from college students getting Fs for citing Wikipedia. He says, “You are in college! Learn to use sources!” [laughter.] It’s a problem that wider digitization efforts may solve. Marilyn: Google draws students into things they wouldn’t have found.

    Which product is fun? Which offers community? It has upped the burden of scholarly resources. Chris: new name for Thomson-Gale? [laughter.] John: new name for Xrefer that does not include “Thomson”! [much laughter]. Then gave example of how Xrefer content map on Armageddon led to paper on Pink Floyd.

    Users don’t care about the container! LIS schools spend so much time on encyclopdediae, almanacs, gazetteers, etc.
    Chris: we want to be fun for the user, but we must offer authority to the librarian customer. We will all be out of our comfort zone for a while.

    LIS educator: we are trapped! Cri de couer; we don’t know what is going to happen, butwe have to keep all segments happy.

    This started devolving into a wonderful conversation between vendors, publishers and audience–impossible to credit who said what, plus questioners would amplify, translate, perform! Ideas:
    Jimmy: Wikipedians (my term) get to be quiz show winners—exercise serendipity by following links.
    John: we can’t prejudge what users need. Publishers need to present hundreds if not thousands of results on one page to show context. J.L.: Serendipity abounds on Google. Now using format icons to present context.

    Expanding John’s comment that “ads aren’t it; free isn’t it”?
    John: don’t libraries need more than one encyclopedia? Need best thoughts of best thinkers. Need editors. What is the business model? Look at extrapolations. Ads don’t meet academic approbation. But academic journals often have ads. And open access publishers are using AdSense to generate some revenue.

    Google Scholar is looking to aggregate all emanations of an article. Thomson Gale wants any content of value. Expansive search vs. focused search. Learning styles. 8 modalities of reference inquiry. Sometimes source matters but sometimes it doesn’t. Creating content is a form of service. The classics were gatekept. Librarian’s role is getting to the right question. How is 24/7 reference mediated? We need to build bridges. Need diversity of sources and contexts.

    I think this session might have gone on happily until all were completely exhausted. But someone else needed the room. The moderator mentioned the panelists had a lively lunch beforehand. The give-and-take on the panel and with the audience was wonderful to see. Information=conversation indeed! There was agreement and disagreement but there was listening on all sides. Hmm. How can the range of conversation, including the front-line librarians, LIS educators, info literacy, etc., continue? Maybe a wiki? Kudos to panelists and questioners!

    Top trends in translation

    LITA top trends

    [Note: I keep editing this on shuttle buses–hotel room does not have chair, back is killing me, and related issues. But still…]

    7th floor historic tower of Hotel Inter-Continental

    Just little late this time—like 5 minutes while searching for Grand Ballroom. 7th floor not intuitive. Not as grand as Hilton grand ballroom (or GB in conference parlance—very heavy on acronyms—librarianese). But very nice for a wedding. No chairs left, so sat on balcony floor. Two other bloggers in site. Amend—nine laptops in sight and one person really fast on a PDA of some type. And that’s just what boyfriend and I can see on the balcony.

    [Kind of interesting to compare what I heard to what had been posted in advance on LITA blog…they changed some, and I heard different emphasis. It makes the value of attending ALA clearer. I have been trying desperately not to read other’s takes. Not that I think it would be pollution, per se. But I’m trying to report what I heard, FWIW.]

    Missed intro.
    First speaker Tom Wilson

    Digital preservation issues

    Andrew Pace
    The OPAC sucks.
    Dis-integrated library systems. Aside—vision of crumbling bits, servers, wire spaghetti.
    Four stools—start doing simple things well.
    1.Working with vendor for new discovery tool for catalog
    2. Electronic Resource Management—take Electectronic Resources and serials out; make access better, make OPAC better
    3.Digital repositories—horizon of basements rather than silos, tunneling.
    4.Metasearch.
    Next challenge for ILS—managing the context of the user. Maybe systems or even standards.

    Roy Tennant
    Open URL NISO standards.
    1. Web services to build tunnels between basements
    AJAX suites—vs. web 1.0. Web 2.0 takes data streams i.e., Google maps of Chicago crime statistics.
    2. silo systems suck.. librarians demanding systems expose date—apis,
    3. Organizations getting into our business. Cough-gle. Can’t let it distract us. Google Library may dampen library digitization efforts. Scope and scale may bring copyright down upon us all.

    Karen G. Schneider

    1. ILS sucking. ILS=Citation database—metadata w/o architect like canary without song
    2. Gates study—wifi not being planned by 60% of public (?) libraries?
    3. Info is becoming conversation more and more.

    Citadel networking. The wifi at ALA—different authenticating process in every other building. (Sucks!)

    Laptop sales exceeded desktops last year.
    Big peeve—bewildering Digital Rights Management stuff. Look at Overdrive: un-readable via Treo.
    IM vs. expensive fat clients. (cite Sarah Houghton)

    Eric Morgan

    Says he is nervous.
    1. Massive cpus/usbs. Going to get huge-er. Can save lots.
    2. Live cds (may have term wrong). Bootable. Can use operating system and environment of choice and carry it around on key fob. Renders privacy into non-issue.
    3. Web services. XML screens of data.
    4. Commercial and noncommercial info side by side. Open source next to commercial—we have to play with both.
    5. Preservation of digital materials.
    6. Decreasing people coming to your web site or physical location. XUL for Mozilla—get your stuff in their space.
    7. Customization not going away. Doesn’t depend on personalization. Pre- and post- filtering information. Evaluation.

    Marshall Breeding

    Suddenly changed business landscape. Sirsi and Dynix. Business decisions have a big effect on us.

    Enterprise systems; silos, going away. Lib auto needs to get in enterprise system mindset. Global enterprise—google, yahoo part of that—web services as way to expose lib. Data.

    Wireless proliferation. Security & tech issues—being resolved.
    Limitations being overcome.

    Milton Wolf

    Abe L—future comes up one day at a time. Joke about multithile driving.

    Boomers—won’t retire passively—want involvement. Library host more older adults than senior citizens. Coming to tech—fastest growing segment is 85+

    Adaptive tech? Intergenerational tutoring?ADULTS ARE community minded. They can take us where we want to go.

    Joan Frye Williams

    Mass collaboration—wikis, Howard Dean, Craig’s List. Virtual markets. Attract large numbers. Interact directly. People love it. The network is becoming the locus of innovation.

    The network is the new home of trust. Command and control is no longer the trust structure. Peers trust each other—trust trickles up. We need to allow users to add information. Personalization. Good peer recommendations.

    Do less & get more if we harness power of patrons.

    Clifford Lynch

    1. Data curation. “The Data Deluge” article. Data scientists—connection to LIS world.
    2. Migration from creation to manipulation—digital photography and related technology creating data sets. Manipulatable (wc? On an never before imagined level.
    3. text corpora (sp.?) Enormous—text mining, indexing, computable. Will change scholarship and science. Plagiasphere? Turnitin kind of stuff. Where does it end?
    4. Michelangelo David project—high end data sets. How do we protect high-resolution data sets from being exploited? 500 year old object! Controlling access to things well outside copyright. Libraries have used many two-dimensional copy technologies. What about 3-d?

    Q&A:

    Q: Journalist from some LIS pub looking for content? Submissions? Wordy.
    Q: Folksonomies? Clifford Lynch—not really new. He’s uneasy. Distributed computing environment. Karen Schneider–Civilians (non-librarians) think they have invented metadata. Wait until they discover authority control. [Laughter.]
    Q: Influence of blogosphere exaggerated. Using for economic or political gain. Less enthusiastic. Joan says she didn’t say blogs would replace other information sources. Thinks engagement with participation can enhance our whuffie (well, that wasn’t her word, ok?)
    Tom—still our job to teach people evaluation.
    Q: Eli Edwards (! almost fell off balcony trying to identify)—municipal wifi. No User Left Behind. Missed response—sorry!
    Q: GIS services—link to ILS? Clifford Lynch —geo-referencing big. Some difficulties. Ripe for being used more broadly. Andrew Pace—geospatial study of libraries—middle shelf most popular. Better OPACs, less browsing.

    At the OCLC Symposium

    At OCLC Symposium (arrived 40 minutes late. came directly from airport. traffic, etc.).

    These are pretty rough notes. Overall, it was a very interesting program on the role of libraries in the long tail, with a variety of viewpoints. Wish I hadn’t been late. I tend to be kind of worried about this issue. One questioner at the end asked about why can’t public libraries have the same depth of video holdings as Netflix. I’ve never considered that as a goal. But it was a clarion call from a user.

    The old truism that popularity has a lock on markets is over. Libraries can be guardians of the long tail, look at ways to provide access for our patrons, use it ourselves…so many ideas!

    Chicago Hilton Grand Ballroom—very grand. Lacy gold balconies, chandeliers everywhere. Great orange OCLC tote bags swag. Scream beach bag.

    Chris Anderson—Mining the Long Tail. Thin, very short military cut. I can’t help it—he seems very wired :). He is Wired’s chief editor.

    Tail end of talk. Man, can he talk fast. PowerPoint slides just crammed with ideas. No way I can keep up. However, there is an excellent 4-color glossy handout, that I am hoping will be up via OCLC somehow.

    “Now playing, every movie ever made.”

    “Forget squeezing millions from a few megahits at the top of the charts. The future of entertainment is in the millions of niche markets at the shallow end of the bitstream.”

    Exponential curves all over the place.

    Where I came in, comparing the “water cooler effect” in the 50s to now.

    Water cooler effect–#1 show today wouldn’t make top 10 in 1950.

    Radio influence on music is over. Radio used to make the hits. Ipod = customized, personal radio station.

    Presumptions of markets=wrong.

    Different incentives—different hopes. Bands for fun; not to be Madonna or U2. Money is not driving incentive. Pro-ams—mix of pros and amateurs.

    Less concern with Intellectual Property issues at bottom of curve—creative commons.

    Economics vs. reputation or psychological incentives

    “Our children will never know the meaning of “out of print”.

    BookSurge—print on demand

    Expansion of virtual inventory

    Used books classic secondary market; how will increasing liquidity affect primary market?

    GreaseMonkey plugin for Firefox—credit Jon Udell

    LibraryLookup reminders via RSS/B-lines
    The tragically understudied economics of abundance?

    Implications of Moore’s Law –waste storage, bandwidth

    Waste transistors made Apples, PCs, made computers cheep & fun

    Next Speaker: John Blossom. Seems older, more mainstream corporate, a little rotund. Golf shirt.

    President—Shore Communications

    Intro: Content Management System at Reuters

    John loves libraries. Grandma was librarian. (Apparently Chris Anderson opened his remarks saying he knows nothing about libraries? No experience?)

    What makes content valuable?

    Content+tech+people=Vcontent i.e., valuable content

    Long tail=content that finds value in highly contextual circumstances

    Libraries=long tail experts

    Content—from rare to raining

    Need to create useful buckets

    Distribution: the new aggregation.

    Points of value more evenly distributed.

    “Good content is where you find it.”

    The most value is in personal contacts.

    Content wants to be valued.

    Ratings, recommendations=applause.

    Value is meeting needs where they are.

    All content value is local.

    . Concentrate on contextualization, not collection ownership.
    . Concentrate on digital objects—the it-ness, XML, web applications
    . Concentrate on higher levels of service for base content!

    Moving from hierarchical control to distributed context control.

    Broad view of a community’s value is key.

    Develop partnerships with local online content developers.

    Be source agnostic.

    Maximize “findability”.

    Libraries can’t out-search search engines. We need to be masters of the finite, not the infinite.

    Integrate user input. Community-vetted local content.

    Use usage information to drive economics.

    2:55 pm 15 minute break. Water. Milky Way Midnights! Twix. Tootsie Rolls. My kind of spread.

    Chuck Richard, VP and Lead Analyst, Outsell
    Golf shirt, khakis, PhD.

    Deep experience with libraries during PhD

    Brings up Chris’ earlier analogy of filters & noise.

    Long Tail messages:

    “That damned, elusive Pimpernel.”

    Search engines not so great—disconnect between image and reality. Popularity no longer has a lock on profitability, but it does have a lock on search engines.

    Blogs are a fabulous referral system.

    Chart showing that management is spending more time on gathering information than on analyzing it.

    There was a bunch in here that I did not get at all basically.

    At OCLC Symposium 2

    I could type in my notes, but they don’t make much sense, and are interspersed with huhs. Oh well. I think his overriding point was that the signal to noise ratio is very high for our clients (his term). The library’s role is to be the Automated Long Tail Sweeper (ALTS).

    Ah, finally caught the moderator’s name: Phyllis Spies. OCLC?

    Next up: Nancy Davenport, CLIR president

    Following Chris’ set up, goes way back with libraries J

    Last couple of years, has become an Ebay habitué, trying to understand it. Started searching for a handbag of her mother’s from the 1940s. Talked about becoming a smart finder as compared to a good searcher. Using common misspellings.
    Libraries are in the business of satisfying users over time. We use little bits from taxes or tuition to build collections—all about scarcity.
    With monthly leases on electronic resources, the most used items become the cheapest. The least used become pricey.
    Long tail ramifications for libraries:
    .findability
    .discards
    .preservation/stewardship
    .geography disappears in terms of searchability, but not for access.
    .last copy status/negotiation
    .impact on collection development budgets
    .peer review value to academic community

    Cost of electronic resource distribution is marginal—needs to be better reflected.

    “Place as library.”
    Need for visionary leadership.
    Library skills to discipline explosion of choice.
    Deep digital scholarship.

    Q&A—couldn’t catch most names or affiliations—sorry!

    Arthur from OCLC Middle East?
    Comment on value of long tail in libraries where it is not monetized (unlike Ebay).
    Chris—long tail is on a continuum between commercial and noncommercial, i.e., New York Times coexists with blogs.
    John—it’s all about what value is provided to the community
    Nancy—cooperation; intra-institutional collaboration—scholar’s email messages most important repositories.
    John—due to new regulations, commerce must now archive.
    Chris—Conde Nast deletes all email after 90 days (me–think of Edmund Wilson’s correspondence!)
    John—special libraries really looking at and questioning usage

    Karen Schneider, www.lii.org
    Role for open access journals in long tail?
    Nancy—yes, just different because missing peer review (?)
    Open ownership presents questions re: preservation and maintenance

    Norman from Library Journal:
    Implications of Netflix—on ILL, or popular item funds
    Nancy—Ill growing. ARL are net borrowers. OCLC role.
    Chris—used book stores provide the long tail for Amazon
    John—is the collection “right” enough (versus big enough)

    Karen Kaplan (Cornell)
    Implications of making more systematic ontologies of people?
    Described Cornell project to use social networks to create content system
    Chris—previous attempts such as Friendster didn’t work because they don’t cover work.
    John—powerful colleague networks vs. Patriot Act issues
    Nancy—Cornell not being source agnostic—looking for best sources
    Chuck—only attempts in commerce world minor
    John—source agnostic doesn’t mean not about quality.

    Bob ?
    Internet doesn’t preserve—esp. Federal Deposit Library Program
    Nancy—no argument. Digital just present new preservation challenges
    Chris—Google cache, Internet Archive. Permalink, which is why blogosphere works.
    John—yeah Brewster—Internet Archive