Category Archives

Molly Schwartz: The Role of the User in Digital Libraries

I am proposing to explore the ways that digital libraries can or should adopt crowdsourcing techniques in the creation, curation, organization, and access of content. Specific issues I plan to explore are the benefits and dangers of de-professionalization, the possibilities for integrating social data into digital library functions, and ways that the public can build their own digital library experience regardless of where the materials come from.
I think it would be very beneficial for participants to share their personal experiences using crowdsourcing for library functions. It would be particularly interesting to look at platforms such as Wikipedia, Kickstarter, and others to see if their success could be replicated in the library world.
I would also like to relate this topic back to user-focused services, usability and user experience, and the concept that users can build their own experiences for how they receive their information.
Molly Schwartz (TwitterLinkedIn)

Olga Lachenmeier: what’s precious and what’s just old?


The academic libraries often get older (scientific) books as a gift, but it’s clear – we cannot take them all. Each book needs time and a place, but can we invest our time in something, what’s outdated and not interesting for the most of our users?

Clearly – there are rules. For example: the prints older than 1850 have to be catalogued, but what can we do with one, printed after 1851, already in our library and just plain text? The decision is often not easy.
Must we take each book just as a thing, or a part of our history? As a silent witness of a person’s life? Is a short handwritten sentence on the site edge worth to be mentioned then? An underlining, a drawing, a bullet hole?

What’s precious and what’s just old? And how can you explain your decision to others?

Olga Lachenmeier

Vitaliy Datsenko: do we need a radical reform in the library?

There is much talk about the changing mission of the library. If the library was previously science center, but now it’s more like an entertaining place. Is this correct? Perhaps a healthy conservatism is needed for the library, otherwise this place should be called differently?

In any case it is necessary to preserve the best traditions of the past for the library? Or not?

Vitaliy Datsenko

Eve Vahtra: conservatism vs. innovations


My question is not how to use all new ways and tools (e.g. social media etc.) in work and in communication both with customers and with colleagues. My question is: how to get out of ones comfort zone in the first place and still plan and implement the changes and innovations in the professional field when your colleagues and clients are satisfied and happy with the current situation and solutions? How to overcome ones conservatism, both of librarians and of their clients? Maybe also a question how to keep the balance between “old” and “new”?

Eve Vahtra

Sonia Kirkaldy Nielsen: digital communication

How does Information professionals use Google +, QR codes and other digital forms of communication to share knowledge? What kind of new opportunities does these forms of communication give us, and how can it be used in a creative way? I am sure that Librarians from so many countries will have loads of ideas and ways of using digital communication. No doubt we will have some interesting discussions along the way, and we will all return home inspired.
On the photo I am reading a text hanging from a tree. I made people answer different kinds of questions. I hung all the answers in a tree, so everybody could share the different answers. This is also a way of sharing knowledge. But are we also building a digital tree of knowledge?
Sonia Kirkaldy Nielsen


Mace Ojala: find out why libraries are not Open Data

The Open Data -idea and the movement have been active now for several years. Libraries, and their bibliographical metadata seem like the perfect data to make available in a wider variety of ways; it’s systematically created and maintained, (supposedly) coherent and high quality, well documented, the concept of Open Data is quite easy to understand, the data is propably outside of copyright or the copyrights belong to libraries, it’s creation is typically tax-funded and is of wide interest, Open Data is politically endorsed, there are step-by-step guides how to do it, most if not all of the data is already available online via OPACs and possibly Z39.50 APIs too, libraries claim they are an “open platform” and easily accessible, technological innovation in libraries seems to be quite low… and finally, very few people seem to outright oppose libraries going Open Data.

A handful of libraries have taken the initiative to go their own way and go Open Data. However most libraries haven’t. During the Cycling for libraries -unconference I intend to find out why not.

I believe i can identify top 5 reason why libraries are still not Open Data. Also i hope i can figure out some counterarguments, and perhaps formulate counter-counterarguments to them, together with some other participants of Cycling for libraries.

Mace Ojala