Homework 2011

Category Archives

Merja Marjamäki: share and learn best best practices about childrens and teenagers services


In my recent work I’m responsible about children and teenagers services – so I’m going to listen your experiments and practices in that area very carefully during the Cyc4lib.

To think about this homework almost everything in the list has something to do with my daily work:

  • communicating to customers – very important – always
  • I know, we need so much extending the knowledge and skills – and now I’m thinking about those yongsters again
  • what the library can offer to the society, especially for those young ones – I want to talk about this with you
  • childrens and teenages areas are literally out of “hushing and silence” – anyhow in Turku – and it’s accepted
  • in my opinion a public library is and it must be a  place for everyone – for children, their parents and teenagers as well
  • thinking about library staff – I’m eager to start co-operating with volunteers and want to hear your experiments

SoI’m eagerly waiting for Cyc4lib to hear (Library Lovers’ … everyone) Best Practices and to share
opinionswith you.

And maybe, maybe, I can cycle as fast as the slowest of you.

Seeyou soon

Merja Marjamäki
Turku City Library

Hal Loewen: find the most effective ways to teach students and patrons to be life-long learners by selecting the best resources and methods for searching those resources

My homework is to find the most effective ways to teach students and patrons to be life-long learners by selecting the best resources and methods for searching those resources.

Most of my students and many of the patrons I deal with will only search Google and WIkipedia to find their answers. Both are great for finding information but it is important for them to know that there are many other great and specialized databases out there that are better at finding the information they need. They need to be shown how to understand what they are looking for, that is, how to properly define a question. Then they need to be shown how to  select the best databases to answer those questions – the trick is to teach them to be successful at using those databases so they know how and when to use something other than Google and Wikipedia.

Here is hoping the volcanic ash does not keep from making the start of the ride.

Hal Loewen
University of Manitoba

Anne Guegan: learn about library website redesign projects

I am part of a working group which is preparing a new website for the  library of the University of Poitiers (25 000 students). The current  website adress is http://scd.univ-poitiers.fr it’s quite old-style. We are working on a complete redesign. More  specifically I work on the query interfaces, metadata harvesting,  valorisation of the digital production of the University, Web 2.0  functionalities. I have many issues and will appreciate to exchange on  Library websites and to get feedbacks on successful re-design projects.

I would like to hear more about the 23 Ting project which has been  experienced in Denmark according to  a newspaper report in  “Bibliothèque(s)”, the journal of the “Association des bibliothécaires  de France”.

And finally, I was at a meeting last week in Montpellier (France) where  Poul Erlandsen from the Royal Library of Copenhague gave a presentation.  His conference was about sharing resources and delivering books to your  doorstep. I would appreciate to collect some information on this service.

Anne Guegan
Poitiers University Library

Dierk Eichel: how to make a green library?

Libraries have always been the keeper of the cultural heritage of mankind. But with the advent of the industrial era mankind threatens the very foundation of our existence, nature. Now, libraries as keeper of knowledge and educators of society can play a key role in saving the environment and allow for technical advance at the same time. What can, what has to be done by libraries and librarians to reach that goal? Is there room for exchange of ideas regarding the green libraries at cyclingforlibraries? Can this be the starting point of a global green library movement?

I’m looking forward to this adventure

Dierk Eichel
IFLA New Professionals Special Interest Group (NPSIG)

Amelia Acker: mobile apps for libraries

Mobile devices and their applications are transforming the landscape of personal computing and information access. I want to start thinking about how we can incorporate mobile apps into the information services that libraries provide to users. What are the tools, skills, and resources that librarians need to build mobile applications for our libraries? How should we teach ourselves new practices for tool building? How can we preserve what we learn, circulate new ideas, and document our failures? What apps do our users need? What apps do they already use?

These are some of the questions I would like to answer during our time together.

Amelia Acker
Dept. of Information Studies, UCLA

Michael Rathai: How to make library software more independent?

A big concern for me as head of the digital library department in the GBV library consortium is to support my colleagues to make better software for OUR libraries and we quite often feel kind of hindered by existing software solutions, partly quite monolithic old-fashioned systems we are bound to use. And the companies providing this software in fact react quite often only very slowly to our demands.

So I am happy that in the last 5 years we have build up our own development group using open source sw (vufind, solr, lucene, shibboleth). It is a good start, but there is still a long way to go and cyc4lib I’d like to use to think and talk about how we can improve this process, how we can become much more independent from the big providers and what can I do to help make both libraries and ourselves more brave to dare to use these open source solutions. Some libraries already are doing that by their own, some don’t dare and some simply don’t have the resources to do so. One chance with cyc4lib for me is to meet a lot of people from libraries worldwide and I hope to get a lot of stimuli from you and a better understanding of the libraries situation wrt. to my questions mentioned here.

Michael Rathai

Irina Briede: services without border

Adult education center and Lifelong learning offered in the library.

What and how much librarians can do and know-how. What services should the library offer or services (courses, …) that are available in the library.

Irina Briede
Limbazi Main Library

Hanna Saario: good collections or good reference services?

I think this homework is quite demanding ’cause there are so many multifaceted problems here … ; ) But thinking my perfect library – university or polytechnic library that offers access to vast collections of relevant printed and e-resources but still can provide expert personal information service – rises the question of resources. In practice we generally have either: Good collections or good professional service, how to have both? Questions of open access are my fav’ too.

Hanna Saario
Diaconia University of Applied Sciences

Sara Lind: How do we communicate in a digital library?

I work with communication at a University Library in Sweden. Mostly there’s communication in an external point of view, to our end users, but to have a good communication to users there’s also got to be good communication within the organization.

I have several key questions I would like to discuss. How do you get “everybody” on the train with new ideas (within the organization)? Just the other day I got the comment “But we’ve already tried that, it didn’t work..”.

As more and more communication goes on via text we have to start talking about what good communication is in digital text messages. Our end users today is living “their whole life” on the web and taking care of their business online – but we still have to be there to support and help. How do we do that when we lack eye contact, voice, tone, gestures and body language? I’ve held a small seminar on my workplace in this subject but I would be glad to discuss it further. Is it different between different libraries? How can you express “more” than just facts when you communicate with text? How important is it?

I work a lot with social media and find it to be a very good way of communicating with users. I want to hear your experiences and ideas! I also like the way social media brings the work place together – the staff is talking about what’s going on on Facebook on their coffee break. Can we develop this even further? Can we use these channels to create a creative spot for the staff to share about their daily work and thoughts (that I’m very curious about – I work in such a big library that it can be hard to keep track of all the people who work there.)?

I’m also interested in strategic communication planning. Have any of you done a plan and a follow-up in strategic communication? What was it about? Did it work?

Sara Lind
Stockholm University Library

Bruce Pomerantz: Find the balance between an open floodgate and a gatekeeper

When I attended library school and the first twenty years of my career through the early 1990s, I adhered to the principle–as did my colleagues–of providing resources to a library user and let the individual decide which materials were best suited for the intended purpose. I did not and would not indicate which materials were best or prioritize them in any way. During that interim, the amount of information I could provide was finite.  More than likely, the information in all of the resources I provided had been vetted by the publisher and then reviewers.  I could be assured of the validity of the information I provided, no matter which resource the individual chose.

Now, with the World Wide Web, I can assist an individual by accessing any number of online catalogs and almost an infinity of additional resources which have been vetted in varying degrees from maximum to not at all. I have the extreme options of acting as an open flood gate that overwhelms an individual with materials or a gate keeper who, perhaps inadvertently, withholds information the individual could use. How do I balance these two functions?

Bruce Pomerantz
Minnesota State Library Agency

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