Tuesday, May 30, 2006

social networking......new orleans style

Rick Roche's interesting blog, and what New Orleans is doing. They have started something called Metroblogging. Rick describes it as thus :-
'Metroblogging New Orleans is a cooperative effort, as a variety of citizens with varying viewpoints are posting their observations about living in their city. New today is a two minute video from Editor B of B.Rox showing a strip mall that is as it was right after Katrina. In a clothing store the muck of the high water line cuts right across dresses still on display.'

Sounds well cool.

How can I get my library to blog????

Still trying to get this idea of the online blogging at the library I work at. It seems to be getting some interest, but still the usual main concerns of allowing users access to it seems a concern to some of the staff. Therefore, the idea is being 'talked about'. Thing is if I'm to be true to my library 2.0 principles, which are:-

'With Library 2.0, library services are frequently evaluated and updated to meet the changing needs of library users. Library 2.0 also calls for libraries to encourage user participation and feedback in the development and maintaining of library services. The active and empowered library user is a significant component of Library 2.0.'

How can it be empowering it we don't hear the voices of our clients? I can understand some people being weary of users, but as the cluetrain says 'markets are conversations'. Anyhow, if I can just give a presentation I'm sure I could get it on board.

In support of my idea I read Darlene Fichter article, which points some of the reasons for libraries blogging being:-

1.Support Your Dedicated Users: An obvious hit with most library visitors is finding out what new books, videos, CDs, or DVDs have been added to the collection. Think about setting up topics on your blog for each genre: mysteries, horror, science fiction, romance, and so on. In an academic library, prepare special alerts about new resources and Web sites for particular departments or colleges.

2.Engage Your Community: Post new book reviews and book award lists. Invite comments and suggestions. Create an online book discussion area by asking readers to recommend books to others.

3.Support Your Community: Librarians are always looking for ways to offer value-added services. Can you offer a special service with the blog and reach a new audience? A local election news blog that posts announcements about candidate Web sites, nominations, and meetings might be a natural project for libraries that are mandated to make local council minutes and agendas available to the public.

4.Building New Ties: Are you trying to reach a new area of your community? What about offering a blog in another language to provide short entries on upcoming programs and new resources? Perhaps you are trying to reach out to teachers in order to market library services and to make sure that school visits work effectively for the library and the schools. What about starting a blog-style newsletter that's just for teachers? You can focus on special services for teachers, programs for schools, new research resources, book lists, and seasonal Web sites of interest. Some blogs allow you to have extended entries and include feature articles.

Well, here's to hoping I can do a presentation to get the library on board.

Book Review : Publishing a Blog with Blogger

Publishing a Blog with Blogger By Elizabeth Castro, is a small and ineffective book. Having used blogger, i'm pretty embarrassed I bought this book. Blogger is really so simple to use, that I am still wondering why I wasted £10.00 on this book. As this book is published by Peachpit is easy to understand and well written, but it hardly tell's you anything about how to write and how to obtain an audience. Like I've said before, I much more prefer Rebecca Blood's The Weblog Handbook: Practical Advice on Creating and Maintaining Your Blog. 3 out of 10.

Monday, May 29, 2006

social networking, public libraries and forms

Whilst reading Nicole Engard's what i learnt today, I was pointed in the direction of another blog. The blog is by Rick Roche, and the article was called 'Improving the Model for Interactive Readers' Advisory Service by Neil Hollands in Reference & User Services Quarterly'. Its a great read, in that it discusses how Williamsburg Regional Library in Virginia has introduced a system, where on filling a questionaire, they'll provided you with a personalised recommendation list of books. How cool is that? What a really somple idea.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Can anyone own "Web 2.0?" ....Cory's response

Since I previously wrote about Oreilly sending a cease and desist to a non profit organisation in Ireland, the blogosphere has been attacking and defending him in equal measure. Now, Cory Doctorow has entered to defend the O'reilly name (or is it the 2.0 moniker?). Anyway its an interesting insight by Cory.
As an aside, I see that there are some talk about whether library 2.0 could suffer the same fate as Web 2.0.. Check here and here for these interesting blogs.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Content 2.0......london

On tuesday. 6th of june, Content 2.0 opens. I was fortunate to get to go, even though it is a bit to dear in my opinion. Then again, it would be wrong to support freeloaders......just a joke.
Anyhow, seems a pretty full day, but will report on proceedings. Looking forward to hearing Marc Canter, who's blog is usually very insightful. Also. the talk called FOLKSONOMIES - WHAT ARE THEY GOOD FOR? looks good too. Anyhow, will inform you how it goes in a later blog.

O’Reilly trademarks “Web 2.0″ and sets lawyers on IT@Cork!.....perhaps

Web 2.0 is bubbling up a storm in Ireland. For all the wrong reasons. It seems Tim O'reilly, who coined the concept web 2.0, seems to have caused some grievous offence, in suing not for profit organisation IT@Cork. Seems that O'reilly has sent a cease and desist order claiming web 2.0 for what the writer describes as :-
'Apparantly use of the term “Web 2.0″ is a “flagrant violation” of their trademark rights!'
I think the use of O'reilly's name may have also annoyed the lawyers. I think the best way to show our disfavour could be to write to Tim Blog as one blogger responding to this story wrote.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

library fine's continued

Following on from an earlier Blog entry on fines , Its all Good has pointed out that Christian Science Monitor is running a poll on whether to fine or not fine. Fine's are presently winning.

What I've learnt as a blogger......part.1

I'm fairly new as a blogger, and wanted to write a few blogs on how I started and what I have done as a blogger. This is in no way the 'definitive way'.
To begin with I read Rebecca Blood's excellent book on blogging called The weblog handbook. The book underline's many obvious points, like research when you write a blog, check spelling, and make sure you write what you enjoy. She also discusses that you should not get to concerned about how many people are reading you and also blogging etiquette. This is a book I will also review at a later date.

I also read another two blogs about blogging. Firstly, Guy Kawasaki's The 120 Day Wonder: How to Evangelize a Blog. I certainly would recommend reading this to even long-term bloggers. Kawasaki's idea's are simple and basic. Things like answering other people's enquiries may seem obvious, but they do need underlining. Also, his idea on making your blog easy to join through feedburner or feedblitz
, are simple idea's too.

A second blog of interest is AMY GAHRAN: The Right Conversation: Strategic Commenting: No blog is an island. This has some idea's such as :-


After you've gotten familiar with these complementary blogs, watch for a new posting that inspires you to respond. Ideally, you'll have a unique, valuable angle or new bit of information or context to offer on that topic.'

And also her idea of responding to other bloggers comments certainly rings true. I still feel flattered whenever anyone responds to my posts. I feel I need to respond to any person or persons who have taken to to post me. It also links back to myself, aiding other users if they wish to read my blog.

This is just an introductory blog on blogging. In the next few days i'll be adding to this blog, looking at how I set up my blog and what I do to obtain news stories.

Reflective librarian article

The Reflective Librarian has an interesting article on whether patrons should pay. One of the most ineffiecent things when working is asking clients for money. And the most confrontational.
Steve's article indicates that the library experience is enhanced by clients, when they are not fearful of overdue fines. Netflix has a policy of no over due fines and has risen to become the world's leading DVD rental business. Obviously, choice has assisted in making them no.1, but the no fine's policy obviously assists.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Rory Litwin's blog

Read a great post on Rory Litwin's blog, called The Central Problem with Library 2.0. I was forwarded by a friend, and discusses how the more early uptakers of the Library 2.0 are sometimes forgetting a central tenet of librarians and librarianship, privacy. Litwin discuss' how many of the social networking site's although useful tools are not without there problems when it come's to privacy. He underline's this point in that Rupert Murdoch has access to content users information when using myspace. Litwin reminds us that some people's evangelism can be them from seeing other problems. But check it. Its a very good read.

Book Review : Copyfight: The Future of Intellectual Property in the Information Age

Copy Fights: The Future of Intellectual Property in the Information Age was a book I required on a paper for my degree. The book has a selection of writers, both pro and anti on digital copyright. With such a large selection of writers, the book can be confusing. Don't get me wrong, its even handed etc, but very American based. I prefer Lessig Future of Idea's or Siva Vaidhyanathan The Anarchist in the Library. But then, I think this underlines my left wing slance rather than Copyfights.
If you want a good read on copyright issue's in the USA, then this is your book. If you wanna read something for digital rights essay, then this is it. 7 out 0f 10.

Web 2.0. future or bust?

With the blogosphere incredibly full of talk of web 2.0,library 2.0 and education 2.0, to name just a few, there has been more than a few rumblings. Some pro (like myself to a degree) and many more preferring to say its bubble 2.0. I just wanted to comment on this.
Put simply, in my opinion the 2.0 phenemona is its a label. Often an annoying one, but one that sits well in our mind.
My description of web 2.0 I like comes from techsoup. Techsoup points out the importance of web 2.0 criteria:-
1.Blogging - online diaries with companies such as Blogger

2. RSS Feeds - Regular updates on your computer from your favourite websites and blogs, caught and sent to you by an aggregator. Such software companies as Bloglines have great aggregators.
3.Tagging and Social Bookmark, include sites such as Delicous, which hold your bookmarks on a personalised web page.

These are just a few instances of what 2.0 is supposed to be. The idea of sharing information with similar networks and groups. These groups can be to discuss libraries such as this blog). They allow a voice and are predominantly free, unless you want the improved product. Web 2.0 that provide standard and 'porsche' products could be seen to be something like 37 signals, which provides products like basecamp which 'Turns project management and collaboration on its head. Instead of Gantt charts, fancy graphs, and stats-heavy spreadsheets, Basecamp offers message boards, to-do lists, simple scheduling, collaborative writing, and file sharing. Tens of thousands agree it's a better way.'

Unlike web 1.0, individuals and not large organisations are empowered (by tools as well inflated IPO's). I'm not saying 'blogging saved my soul' or anything so evangelical. But web 2.0 applications are allowing small groups of individuals to talk to each other.

As for the bubble 2.0, I'm sure it will happen to some companies. The blog red eye, made a recent comment that :-
As more and more entrepreneurs start building what Fred Wilson referred to as second derivative companies, I think they run a big risk of designing a product/service that is targeted at too small of an audience. Too many companies are targeting an audience of 53,651. That’s how many people subscribe to Michael Arrington’s TechCrunch blog feed. I’m a big fan of Techcrunch – and read it every day. However, the Techcrunch audience is NOT a mainstream America audience.'

This is true. It's not totally mainstream. Yet. But, uptake of all new technologies do take time. I mean in 1996 when jeff Bezos introduced us to buying books online, who thought it would ever take off.

Also, many web 1.0 companies such as Yahoo in buying Flickr and Delicous may have paid premium prices for them, but they are looking at a more social networking form of searching. This can be seen with there social search engine of My web.

Anyhow, if there is a crash, I would like to believe some framework will still be left in tact, in which some excellent tools can help end users. But perhaps i'm like John Lennon when he sang:-
'Perhaps i'm a dreamer. But i'm not the only one. I hope some day you can join us. And the world can live as one.'

Monday, May 22, 2006

More than just faith: Radical trust......great blogging

I was reading Blyberg's blog today, entitled More than just faith: Radical trust. Although he apologised for not being able to write much, with quality like this who cares? Blyberg was discussing idea of opening social software to users/patrons and clients (choose which you prefer). Blyberg says:-
'if you have a social software system that allows users to tag OPAC items, you may want to put a lot of consideration in to what the users experience is like. By making this process both fun, connecting and obviously open (not interfered with) you send a clear message that “yes, we trust you to handle this responsibility”.'
This is so true. Users can feel empowered by being allowed access. In the world of library 2.0 or web 2.0, we need our clients to feel they are adding something to the system, not just taking. of course there are problems with the social software approach as Blyberg points out. These being 'With social software, comes social interaction. With that, come the tin-foil hats and assholes. Over time, you’ll get to know who these people are and where they troll for trouble. So will your other users. Anyone who has used the internet much knows what these people are like and how they can stir up a tempest. You can trust your other users to come to the conclusion that these individuals do not speak for your organization.'
I wholehearted agree with him. I recently proposed on this blog about setting up a blog at the library I work at. I have put this forward formally, but in doing so have pointed out there are problems with it (the same one's Blyberg mentions). But, if we are to make libraries part of the 21st century, we need to empower our users. If not we may be seen as an outdated institution, which is far from the case.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

creative commons and the best of open source.....

Creative Commons which is 'licenses provide a flexible range of protections and freedoms for authors, artists, and educators. We have built upon the "all rights reserved" concept of traditional copyright to offer a voluntary "some rights reserved" approach. We're a nonprofit organization.' Ok, i know you know that.......Anyhow, was checking a OCLC Blog, whom pointed out the first OPEN SOURCE BEER.......thats just amazing........social networking at its best......

LIS course in Social Software......coooooooooolio

Amanda Etches-Johnson has announced details of the LIS course in Social Software she will be teaching this Fall at The University of Western Ontario's Faculty of Information and Media Studies.......looks really cool, wish I could be there to do it.........


Lisfeeds is described as an:-

'aggregator that scrapes feeds from librarian oriented sites from around the world. Essentailly we just repackage content from a few hundred sites and make it easy to browse and search them all in one place.'

An excellent use of a web 2.0 as this is an great RSS aggregator. Oreilly describes aggregators as follows:-
'Therefore, Web 2.0 companies set inclusive defaults for aggregating user data and building value as a side-effect of ordinary use of the application. As noted above, they build systems that get better the more people use them.'

Anyhow, try it out, i've added my link.

Dreaming of a new tomorrow?

I work as a volunteer in an inner city library in london, and really am pro library 2.0. I was wondering if this could be entered into the library or borough of libraries I work at. I reckon a great way would be each department (childrens,fiction, non-fiction, genre specific etc) having a blog that our clients could see and comment on. This could keep people up to date on whats happening at the library. You could have an FAQ'S how to use the computers and other queries. I mean, what seems weird is that staff are constantly being introduced to computers in our workplace, but we're not using them for our most important component of the library......the end user. I also feel this may enpower our staff. You could have recommendation lists on books etc.......I really wonder why they don't do it.......I might even suggest it to them.......

Cilip or Cluetrain?

Library and Information Gazette, the free magazine for all cilip members provided 10 top tips for librarians. It was provided by Catherine Dhanjal and Sarah Walton from a workshop at LIS 2006. The 10 tips are as follows:-

1.Agree your key objectives.
2.List what services you offer.
3.Talk to 10 customers about how they rate those services.
4.Ask 10 different customers about how much they know about the range of services you offer.
5.Talk to 10 non customers about why they don’t use you.
6.Write down 3 benefits of your service - which you can back up with evidence.
7.Add those 3 benefits to all promotion tools and communication channels.
8.List how/where in the last year you’ve communicated with your customers.
9.List how/where in the last year you’ve communicated with your non-customers.
10.Whenever you write a promotional piece for your service, read it through and ask - ‘so what?’.

How Cluetrain is this…….is totally reads like ‘markets are conversations’. I think this really is a pretty good idea libraries should look into.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Banning Social Networks in the USA.......well thinking about it

It seems that House Republicans Target Social Networking Sites With Bill. Seem's that there's talk that sites like myspace may not be allowed to be used at schools. Will Richardsons blog has pointed out that IF this act goes through, kid's will not be able to enter wiki's, blogs online gaming sites in the USA. The reason for this is so as to stop online predactors being able to gain access to childrens social network files at whilst at school.As yet this has NOT been entered onto the statue books (and is pretty far from it). Obviously, this would be worrying if it was to enter the statue books,as social networking sites are instrumental in people communicating on the web. Anyhow, its interesting how the republicans seem to want to quiten the kids down. I think THE WHO tune comes to mind, THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Book Review : Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut

Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut By James Marcus looks at employee number 55 of Amazon.com. Marcus is a writer answering a job interview for an internet site in 1996. One forgets how weird this was back then, but Marcus come's over as really enthralled by his new job as a book editor on this site (but not always enamoured with the technology). Marcus gets shares as part of his job (which he sell's when really low....whoops), works late hours packing over the holiday period for Amazon and talks with his boss Jeff Bezos. Slowly, as the technology and the reviews from users come's in Marcus become's more despondent in his role, but always with a smile. This even leads to Marcus penning his own reviews on the site as a joke (which back fires when he wins the Amazon prize). This book is a MUST read. Marcus comes over as a nice guy, stuck in the headlights of the biggest internet store, and laughing at the stupidity of the internal politics.
I also sent him an email saying how good his book was and got a very nice response. 9 out of 10.

Google Notebook Screen Shots

Google Notebook Screen Shots. Google is finally joining us on the the librarytwopointzero: Social searching and my wikipedia entry">social searching idea . Although Yahoo has stolen a march on Google, this looks very exciting. Here's some more screenshots and interesting blog from ZDNET.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

bloglines....it so rox

Bloglines is described as a way to 'track your favorite news, blogs, weather, and classifieds so that you don't have to.'. Its a fantastics site for RSS blogs. Jenny Levine was recently discussing it on her Shifted Librarian blog. Check it.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Social searching and my wikipedia entry

I have recently been reading a lot of Helene Blowers blog Lib tech bytes, and especially her articles on social searching. I therefore did some research on social searching and added a wikipedia entry. Anyhow, please check this out and change it if you feel my view is incorrect.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Book Review :Search Me : The Surprising success of Google

Search Me : the surprising success of Google by Neil Taylor. What a book. Well actually, this is not that good. Its ok, and when I first read it I thought it was good. Taylor looks into Google, its importance as a 'label' and its quick rise and IPO. But his continually pointing out his own job, is both tiresome and irksome. Neil, I am not reading about you, but the most important search engine thanks. This is totally an abortive for the main course of John Battelle's The Search : How Google and its rival rewrote the rules of business and transformed our culture. I will review this at a later date.

But this book is just to flimsy and at £8.00 that is just not on. Also, the company that prints this book, Cyan Books website is a joke. The basic idea of a commercial website is to show what you sell and produce......This site is just a front page...How 1998?

4 out of 10

Monday, May 08, 2006

The Google Scholar & Book Search Question

Read a really interesting blog by Helene Blowers called library techbytes. She was discussing the relevance of google books and scholar. I still feel citeulike is just as good, and made a comment discussing this.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Blogs making their impact felt

As ever, reading through the BBC website I came across this articleBlogs making their impact felt. The article looked at Jeff Jarvis blog,which totally criticised Dell,and there bad customer services. The uptake in broadband and social software such as myspace, Flickr and Blogger has increased people producing the news. This is obviously being covered in Dan Gillmor's book We the Media, but it seems a good article to look at.

Things to do.........Blogs and Social Media Forum

On the 17th of May this year, a show is on called 'Blogs & Social Media Forum' in the Metropole,London. This is a show dealing with folksonomies.
The show looks at Wiki's, RSS feeds and Blogs. Head honcho's from IBM, BBC and The Guardian will be guest speakers. Although tickets are sold out (and at £350 per head for one day, I wonder who could afford it), it looks a really interesting Gig. If anyone goes and does see this forum, I would be interested to see how it was.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Serendipity.......the petrol of web 2.0 and Library 2.0

Serendipity? I love the word. The idea that you can make fortunate discoveries. Web 2.0 productions are continually amazing me how they do this.

An interesting idea of this was in a blog I was reading the other day. The article was by Elizabeth Lane, and described how she put up some photo's on Flickr. When she Tagged some pictures of her grandfather with his brothers, she was emailed inform her that the grandsomeone had looked under their family name on flickr and discovered there grandfather on their. Therefore Elizabeth Lane has now discovered a new family. That's amazing to me.

But how can it affect library 2.0? well, i think we all wanna make more 'surprise discoveries......I really think sites like flickr and Delicious can surprise us what we find......I feel that Opac systems in public libraries should be opened up, so people could see what other users look at after looking at a book......Or even a recommendation list like one finds on Amazon.

Web 2.0 products like I mentioned can really assist the end user. This is what libraries and Library 2.0 are there for end users.

As Picard says 'Make it so'.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Recommended podcast for library and web 2.0

These are a few I listen to. I like them. There fairly informative and only range from 10 to 40 minutes.

1. Web 2.0 show
2. Talkcrunch
3.Talking with Talis
4. ALA Library 2.0

The Web 2.0 is highly recommended as they've had some great Discussion with some large web 2.0 websites, like 37 signals and people from Google amongst many others. If you wanna hear about the new web 2.0 companies EITHER side of the atlantic, this is it.

Talis is more Library 2.0 specific, and very interesting, but there output is less regular.

Anyhow, happy listening.

Why Can't they social bookmark Podcast?

This is my main gripe at the moment. I can social bookmark my photo's with Flickr , I can bookmark my web pages on Delicious and I can bookmark academic papers on Citeulike. So why can't i do it with podcasts?

I mean the three mentioned previously mean I can check on any other computer or PDA etc. But for my Podcasts, i have to use only Macintosh (which ain't that bad). It's a real bind though, as I love a Podcast to listen to. Ok, perhaps i should get out more.

Anyone hear of any new software please inform me. It could cut down on my anxiety attacks.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

This weeks Book Review: The Cluetrain Manifesto

The Cluetrain Manifesto is a book that was written in 2000. Although its only six years ago, this book seems ahead of its time. quite simply, Cluetrain talks the politics and ethos of web 2.0 and library 2.0.

Why I hear you ask? Or perhaps you don't. Well the Cluetrain manifesto discusses the importance of the web as a form of social networking. The four different writers of the book set up a 95 point theses, and number 9 goes as follows:-

'Networked conversations are enabling powerful new forms of social organisation and knowledge exchange to emerge.'

The Cluetrain manifesto is a very good read. Some of it is a bit 'pie in the sky' (who remembers 95 different principles?). But it does point out that social networking in bussiness is good and the new way of aiding business and end users.

I got this for an amazing £2.76 on Amazon
This was second hand as well. But i would highly recommend the book.

8 out of 10.

By the way, there is a great critique of this book to. Well worth a read too.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

the importance of films

The best thing about blogging is?

Informing people of anything of interest to others. So here goes…This film is out very soon, and looks well interesting. Its called IN SEARCH OF THE VALLEY. Its about Silicon Valley and follows a film crew from Britain, interviewing head honcho’s in ‘the valley’. It includes Steve Wozniak and Captain Crunch…

I’m hoping to get an interview with a member of the crew, but it’s been difficult…

I’ll keep you informed…but this film looks better than Mission Impossible 3

Library 2.0 and what it is......lets keep this brief

What is library 2.0? Just an update of a library with a VDU screen?

Well, not quite. Let me explain in more detail.
Library 2.0 comes from the idea instigated by Tim O’Reilly. O’Reilly has a wonderful article dealing with this on his own site, entitles What is web 2.0. Web 2.0 is described as:-
‘Generally refers to a second generation of services available on the World Wide Web that lets people collaborate and share information online. In contrast to the first generation, Web 2.0 gives users an experience closer to desktop applications than the traditional static Web pages… They often allow for mass publishing (web-based social software). The term may include blogs and wikis. To some extent Web 2.0 is a buzzword, incorporating whatever is newly popular on the Web (such as tags and podcasts), and its meaning is still in flux.’

Or so says WIKIPEDIA. Website that web 2.0 are based around are flickr and Delicious (both social book marking sites for photo’s and websites respectively).

So, what is library 2.0? Library 2.0 is a model for library service that reflects a transition within the library world in the way that services are delivered to library users.

Library 2.0 as I see it, is to empower users. Using Podcast for e-books for example. Using Blogs for reading groups. Using libraries for what they should be used for…To bring about divergent groups together. At the moment there is a load of stuff on library 2.0. Which I’ll discuss or debate. But for know here’s some library 2.0 links for you.
Libraries and the Long Tail
the new library - can it provide new technology-based services

11 reasons why Library 2.0 exists and matters

The new Divide between libraries and librarians
The Digital Natives don't think like us
Library 2.0 Movement Sees Benefits in Collaboration with Patrons
Do Libraries Matter: On Library & Librarian 2.0
Introducing the Library 2.0 Gang

These are just a few. If you want more check my Delicous account

Anyhow, will write more on this subject soon.