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.
University of Manitoba
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.
Poitiers University 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
IFLA New Professionals Special Interest Group (NPSIG)
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.
Dept. of Information Studies, UCLA
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.
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.
Diaconia University of Applied Sciences
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?
Stockholm University Library
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?
Minnesota State Library Agency
First of all, a great professional challenge for me will be communication in English, because I do not feel free yet to communicate in English. However, there is one issue I am very interested in – it is bibliotherapy. I would like to listen to colleague’s view on it. Do other colleagues have experience in this field? Is this method used in practice in libraries? Are professional psychologists involved in bibliotherapy? I would like to establish personal contact with colleagues who use bibliotherapy in practice.
“Sunny Days Library” Service Point of the Riga Central Library
at the Children’s Clinical University Hospital
My 26 years of work in libraries has been very inspiring and it has given me much to think about. Not least about libraries themselves. Over the years my experience has increasingly confirmed the view that libraries compete with each other too much and cooperate too little, and this will lead ultimately to the detriment of the entire library field. That’s not all bad news. At the same time library education is losing touch with the everyday work in libraries – supply and demand are not balanced, or there are different opinions about the needs and areas of development. Library work is very pragmatic, but where are the creative new people who manage the development of library work? Our creativity and our visions have proved to be quite modest despite the wide range of great things we have produced.
The mission of our field is also lost. When asked, we do not know how to fit the traditional role of “organizer of information” together with the needs of experienced users of new technology. I would say that we have lost touch with our customers while we are increasingly intertwined with technology, formats and standards. Many players of the field have also become competitors and enemies to libraries, and this can be seen for example in copyright legislation.
We are missing an overview of the nature of the problems we face, but we still dive into the depths of more specialized technical expertise and deeper knowledge of cataloguing and classification. We are some sort of curious and incompatible factor in the current publishing world. I just cannot believe that the core of the problem can be found in either direction. We have already tried these and we can clearly see that they are insufficient to keep us alive for another two centuries, if even two decades.
These are strong statements, but I believe they are true. However, my homework is to find at least one completely new and different task or role which allows libraries to respond to current change while maintaining functional ability and being able to take advantage of the centuries old tradition. In short, I would like to try to find an answer to a question whether libraries really can act as producers and publishers on a larger scale. At least the role must be somehow connected to the traditional role of libraries and deploy it and at the same time give us access from the current impasse.
The National Library of Finland / The Finnish Library Association (2004-08, 2010, 2011-12)
I am Yulia from Russia. I am librarian and the teacher of the librarian higher school. I teach courses: bibliographies, data bases, information resources and so on. I am bibliographer too. I work with databases and prepare bibliographic indexes, especially about person.
I study problems of digital divide, of the information of the future, of the information security. I think about such humanitarian problems as psychology of perception information.
I see that me and my students need to know the English language. And I am happy that I can hear the English language and I will try to speak English. In Russia such a possibility little.
I want to find the answers to the following questions:
- Our professional future in the networked world.
- Open access journals in college library collection.
- Information policy, it content and challenges for an effective knowledge society.
- E-metrics and library assessment in action.
- Metadata practices
And I’ll be happy to invite all to Southern Urals where there are lakes, mountains, mountain bikes, rafting on fast rivers and I ;-))))
The Chelyabinsk State Academy of Culture and Arts
Section of New Professionals in Latvia is implementing three main objectives:
- Library advocacy and support of new professionals on a national and international level;
- Organization of seminars, conferences and exchange trips;
- Networking and international collaboration.
My aim is to ascertain how new professionals (LIS students and recently qualified professionals) can be involved in activities of national library associations, and whether national library associations support new professionals movement in their countries.
The main question is: What can be done to encourage recruitment and active involvement of new professionals in the library field and activities of national library associations?
Library Association of Latvia, Section of New Professionals
Cycling for Libraries via Dace: http://udrite.wordpress.com/
I do software development for libraries. I help them getting on the web, to become part of this great, global virtual library and be usable for people on the net.
Over the years I have built up a broad knowledge on technology, data formats, processes, work flows etc. in libraries. But sometimes I feel, I still don’t understand how libraries really work and what they really do 🙂 (beyond the obvious, like lending books, giving reference, helping to find knowledge resources etc.). How do libraries “see” themselves? What is their spirit, what drives them? In my daily work at a service centre of a library consortium I only get a limited and filtered view of libraries. So understanding libraries better, will help me making better software for libraries.
I think, cycling for libraries will be a great opportunity to get more insight into these questions.
Gemeinsamer Bibliotheksverbund (GBV)
Questions for the library world. Here are some that I like to think about:
- Since I work for a library software company that is vigorously trying to emulate the google experience in their primary discovery tool: Primo, why not just let Google purchase Ex Libris and let Google develop a library app? Call it GoogleLibrary: All content, all the time, in an interface that works! Google knows how to index, Google knows hardware and software, why should Ex Libris be doing this task? I would not mind a few adds. The only possible downside would be the supremacy of google.com. But, why couldn’t google.com become google.gov?
- We all live in a democracy. The basis for democracy is the freedom of access to information. Why not install a wikileaks app on all library home pages. An automatic feed of all the information that we should know about, the hidden agendas of the corporate world, the secrets of governments, the power of lobbyists, whatever the military doing? etc, etc.
- How can libraries be agents of change? Especially, at this time of global environmental change. Can libraries be a grassroots groundswell demanding the end of the corporate dominance of our existence? End advertizing, (adverse teasing), consumerism, single stream consumption, and our present environmental disasters?
- Libraries are dying. What is the future of the library?
- Libraries are single modal: primarily addressing the needs of the rich, educated, mobile, northern white society. Maybe at best addressing a small percentage of the global population which by September will hit 7 billion people. So, what about the non library user? Those people who do not even know that a library exists but are perhaps the most in need in terms of access and knowledge. We’ll pass non-library users on our ride. What can we do for them?
I don’t have any answers. Looking forward to sharing some ideas.
The Finnish National Digital Library public interface will offer a uniform view to digital content in libraries, museums and archives. Custom views for various purposes can also be created. On a wider scale, Europeana provides access to content on European level. This offers great new possibilities for collaboration between participating organizations.
I am interested for example in the following questions:
- Which challenges (especially related to digital content) are common between libraries, museums and archives, and which are unique to libraries?
- What can libraries give to museums and archives and vice versa?
- How can we best take advantage of the new user interface? What kind of custom views could be useful?
- What kind of new experiences can we offer to customers by combining the content and knowledge of libraries, museums and archives?
CSC — IT Center for Science Ltd
I am a law librarian and as a solo librarian it is very important to network with other colleagues. For the last 9 years or so I’ve been quite involved with SFIS, The Swedish Association of Information Specialists which has been a great way of networking with colleagues. But my goal is to interact more with colleagues from other libraries, like public libraries, and as my homework for Cycling for libraries, I’ve chosen to try identify 3 ways of reaching this goal. Obviously just participating in cyc4lib will count as a big step towards my goal so I’m not counting that 🙂 Also have recently joined the Swedish Library Association.
In december I attended an interesting session at Online 2010, Helping The Hybrid: Leveraging Personal Networks to Support Changing Roles. Sara Batts, Senior Research Librarian, Reed Smith LLP, UK and Olwen Walker, Information Services Manager, Kirkland & Ellis International, discussed among other things the importance of externa networks and being open to new ideas and new challenges. I think that cyc4lib encompasses both in a great way.
You can download the paper here.
Please connect with me through linkedin and let’s discuss more ways of networking and breaking donw the barriers between different types of libraries during our ride towards Berlin.
Advokatfirman Vinge KB
Mace looking for game-mechanics
As my homework for Cycling for libraries, I’ve chosen to try identify four (4) game-mechanics that operate in the library. I think people are challenge-oriented and reward-driven, and all sorts of games are great tools for thinking about this.
I am strongly inspired by Jane McGonigal’s work, her book Reality is Broken: using games to improve the world – Boing Boing, her presentation at TED Gaming can make a better world, and by the critique she is receiving.
In an earlier conversation on Facebook i have said the following (edited):
I’ve tried to look at the library user regulations as a sort of a game… how we give feedback to users via fines, anxiety etc. I would love to spar this thinking with somebody, i’ve done some comparison on the rhetorics of the user regulations and i think at least many finnish libraries could do a whole lot better!
I’m not sure what i’m talking about but, but i’m spitting this out anyway: are students “gaming the system” when they are borrowing out books for their exams? The sooner they get their books, more likely the books will have reservations and they start running a fee (which they propably want to pay off) before te exam. On the other hand, if they hesitate too long, the books might run out if the libraries they use don’t have enough copies for everybody.
One other thing i’ve notied that library cataloguers delay cataloguing of materials in the hope that somebody else in the library consortia catalogues them first, and then they can just copy them. I’ve witnessed this in especially materials that are “annoying” to catalogue… “The best of Frank Zappa (20 cds, two leaflets, a book, DVD, a popup-book, accesscode to a website plus a poster… you know what i mean). The “damage” from an individual cataloguers point of view is the boss, who nags if library patrons have reservations for the material.
Here are some game mechanics i’ve seen at libraries. What else? I want to look at libraries with a gamer’s mindset?
Turku City library, Cycling for libraries etc.