Collaborative librarianship - working smarter
Tomorrow, I will travel to Peru for the third BSLA review meeting. I’m looking forward to hearing what they’ve been up to (a lot!) and sharing what’s already come out of Botswana and Cameroon. One of the best things about this project has been how enthusiastically everyone has embraced working with colleagues in their own region, and across the world when we meet. I’m sorry to say it, but far, far too often at home I encounter that all-too-familiar syndrome: Not Invented Here.
Metadata and trust
Journalism.co.uk (Via ACM TechNews) is reporting that Sir Tim Berners-Lee and the Media Standards Trust in the UK have won a major grant to develop a metadata system to improve search and trust in news information -
It received its award for plans to design a way for content creators to add information about sources and context to their reports in the form of additional meta data.
This sounds like an incredibly useful project, not only for people who search for news articles, but for journalists themselves.
One protocol to rule them all?
Data seems to be the hot topic right now. It’s all about how we store it, share it, and make it play nice with other data. There is an enthusiasm for openness and a move towards standardisation of data and the ways we share it, but there’s a also a worrying trend - competing standards and protocols.
Ross Singer at Panlibus discusses a draft recommendation from the Digital Library Federation ILS and Discovery System Task Force and notes that while it’s certainly a welcome move, that -
My interest in the Semantic Web and Libraries
If you are finding your way to the blog via the Talking with Talis podcast, hello! I wanted to expand on why I am interested in the Semantic Web as I only briefly touched on this in the podcast.
eResearch and Data A couple of years ago, I attended a conference where the theme was eResearch. Librarians described how they have responded to the challenges of managing datasets, ever-increasing amounts of raw information and data, as well as grey literature, preprints, and other publications.
2009 Predictions and Trends
e’re well into 2009 now, but there’s always time for trends!
Kathryn Greenhill at Librarians Matter recently compiled a few of the trends that have been making the rounds on library blogs last month.
Cloud, Semantic Web, and Linked Data abound in predictions and in posts emerging through the first two months of the year. It’s looking to be a big year for the Semantic Web in libraries. Add this to the growth in data curation, digital preservation, and eResearch in libraries and there are interesting times ahead.
A database of data
Last week there was a flurry of comments around a post by Bret Taylor, We need a Wikipedia for data. Taylor describes a model for a wiki that would aggregate common data in one database that could be cross-searched. Great idea.
One interesting thing about the types of datasets he mentions are that they are all copyrighted - stations own TV schedules, exchanges own market data (the free stuff is usually 20 minutes delayed) and a variety of companies own publishing rights over telephone numbers.
Ada Lovelace Day
Today is Ada Lovelace Day, a day to celebrate women in computing. Hooray! Read more about great women in computing at ACM-W.
One of the things I love about librarianship is that there are so many opportunities to do amazing things with computers, from social networking, to blogging, to sysadmin’ing, to programming. And I’ve been inspired by so many others, irrespective of gender. Some people who inspire me right now are on the list at Shovers and Makers doing wonderful things every day.
Advocacy - Using Social Media to Make the Case for Supporting Library Services
Last month I participated in an online webinar for Webjunction co- hosted by REFORMA. In it, I gave a short presentation looking at strategy for the use of social media for advocacy and the need to consider all kinds of tools including photo, video, microblogging, and community sites along with email and mobile services depending on the audience you are targeting. The need to measure the impact and communicate the difference the use of such tools makes to your stakeholders is important.
Beyond the surface
Monday in Nairobi brought an opportunity to visit the University of Nairobi library, where I was reminded that ALP began in that city in 1984. Many people in Kenya have been associated with ALP at various points in time, and it’s always great to talk about how things are now, and to hear more about its history.
I didn’t have a chance to visit TechHub, Frontline SMS, Ushahidi or any number of other incredible ICT and development projects that were founded or based in Nairobi, that will have to be next time.