30 December 2006


From Steve Matthews of the Vancouver Law Librarian Blog:

Best Canadian Law Blogger: Michael Geist, http://www.michaelgeist.ca/
Best Practitioner Support Blog: Canadian Privacy Law, http://www.privacylawyer.ca/blog/
Legal Culture Award: Precedent: The New Rules of Law and Style, http://www.lawandstyle.ca/
Practice Management Award: The Lawyer Coach Blog, http://www.thelawyercoach.com/
Law Librarian Blog Award: Library Boy, http://micheladrien.blogspot.com/
Best Legal Technology Blog: Slaw, http://www.slaw.ca/
Best New Law Blog Award: Atlanteknology, http://www.atlanteknology.blogs.com/; Chaire en droit de la securite et des affaires electroniques, http://www.gautrais.com/; Precedent: The New Rules of Law and Style, http://www.lawandstyle.ca/; Canadian Trademark Blog, http://www.trademarkblog.ca/
Law Professor Blog Award: University of Toronto Law School Faculty Blog, http://utorontolaw.typepad.com/faculty_blog/



Kimbooktu is a great site with short articles about and links to all sorts of library merchandise. The two I just loved were:
Furry and Soft reading gadget, 23 December 2006
The Bibliophile Chair (especially the second one), 21 December 2006

URL: http://kimbooktu.wordpress.com

29 December 2006


First, from St. Louis lawyer Dennis Kennedy:
1. Best Overall Law-Related Blog: The Trademark Blog (http://www.schwimmerlegal.com/) and also was a Blawg Review Award winner for Best Legal Specialty Blog.
2. Best Overall Law Practice Management Blog: More Partner Income (http://www.morepartnerincome.com/blog/).
3. The Marty Schwimmer Best Practice-Specific Legal Blog: The Illinois Trial Lawyer Weblog (http://www.illinoistrialpractice.com/). Schaeffer also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Blawg Review.

4. Best Legal Blog Digest: (tie) Stark County (Ohio) Law Library Blog (http://temp.starklawlibrary.org/blog/)—by a law librarian!—and Law.com Inside Opinions (http://legalblogwatch.typepad.com/legal_blog_watch/) which was also recognized by Blawg Review for Blog Journalism.

5. Best Blawg About Legal Blawgging: Real Lawyers Have Blogs (http://kevin.lexblog.com/).

6. Best Legal Podcast: Coast to Coast Podcast (http://www.legaltalknetwork.com/modules.php?name=News&new_topic=15) which received the same award from Blawg Review.

7. The Sherry Fowler Best Writing on a Legal Blog Award: That Lawyer Dude (http://thatlawyerdude.blogspot.com).

8. Best Law Professor Blog: The Yin Blog (http://yin.typepad.com/the_yin_blog/).

9. Best New Law-related Blog: (tie) WSJ.com Law Blog (http://blogs.wsj.com/law/) and I Heart Tech (http://www.ihearttech.com/).

And these others from Blawg Review:
Best Law Blog Design and Best Blog by a Practicing Attorney: May It Please the Court (http://www.mayitpleasethecourt.com/journal.asp?).
Best New Law Blog: Above the Law (http://www.abovethelaw.com/).
Best Blawg Theme: Overlawyered (http://www.overlawyered.com/), chronicling the high cost of our legal system.
Best Group Blog by Lawyers in a Law Firm: (tie) Antitrust Review (http://www.antitrustreview.com/)and PHOSITA (http://www.okpatents.com/phosita/).
Best Blog by a Law Professor: Mauled Again (http://mauledagain.blogspot.com/).
Best Group Blog by Law Professors: Concurring Opinions (http://www.concurringopinions.com/)
Best Blog by a Law Student: Lawyerlike (http://lawyerlike.blogspot.com/)
Best Group Blog by Law Students: De Novo (http://www.blogdenovo.org/)
Best Blawg By A Paralegal: nearlylegal (http://nearlylegal.co.uk/blog/).
Best Practice Management Blog: Adam Smith, Esq. (http://www.bmacewen.com/blog/).
Best Blogging by a Judge: Becker-Posner Blog (http://www.becker-posner-blog.com/) for the second year in a row.
Best Law Blog In The Public Interest: SHLEP: the Self-Help Law ExPress (http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/shlep/).
Best Legal Consultant Blog: the [non] billable hour (http://thenonbillablehour.typepad.com/).
Best Legal Support Blog: Connie Crosby (http://conniecrosby.blogspot.com/)—a Canadian law librarian!
Best New Legal Podcast: This Week in Law (http://www.twit.tv/twil).
Best British Law Blog: Human Law (http://humanlaw.typepad.com/).
Best Canadian Law Blog: Rob Hyndman (http://www.robhyndman.com/).
Best Australian Blawg: Freedom to Differ (http://www.freedomtodiffer.typepad.com/).
Global Perspective Award: What About Clients? (http://www.whataboutclients.com/).
Best Law Blog By In-House Counsel: The Patry Copyright Blog (http://williampatry.blogspot.com/).


The 2006 Blawggies: Dennis Kennedy’s Best Law-related Blogging Awards


Blawg Review Awards 2006, http://blawgreview.blogspot.com/2006/12/blawg-review-awards-2006.html

28 December 2006


In LISNews, 15 December 2006, John Hubbard [University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee] listed ten stories that he thinks were the most important for the year. I don’t particularly agree with them, but they’re interesting to recall.

The titles are his, the explanations are mine.

10. New UCLA Slogan: "Get Tasered @ your library"

Police used tasers on a problem student. Interesting note: the story was first reported on YouTube.
9. Ding Dong, Gorman Tenure Ends

ALA’s new president is a blogger.
8. Library Weblog Explosion, ReduxNew blogs: Library Juice, one from John Berry, and custom search engines LISZEN and LibWorm.
7. EPA Library Closure
Many hope the new Democratic Congress will stop the closing of these Federal libraries.
6. Library 2.0 Meme
Everyone’s talking about Library 2.0, Web 2.0, and Librarian 2.0. (Look for an issue of The One-Person Library on this soon.)
5. More Elephants in the Room
Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo! are working on scanning/digital library initiatives. Microsoft also introduced Live Academic and Live Book Search.
4. Censorship
Everything from Harry Potter to MySpace has been challenged this year.
3. 'Net Neutrality
This and digital rights management are becoming big issues.
2. P is for Privacy
The Patriot Act and drug testing for Florida library volunteers—strange world.
1. The James Frey Fallout
Authors such as James Frey found to be untruthful do not help the book’s image. (Why this is number one is beyond me…JAS)

URL: http://features.lisnews.org/article.pl?sid=06/12/15/137213

25 December 2006


Librarian: Executive Summary

by Marty Nemko, US News & World Report Best Careers 2007, 18 December 2006, http://www.usnews.com/usnews/biztech/articles/061218/18librarian.summary.htm

Forget about that image of librarian as a mousy bookworm. Librarians these days must be high-tech information sleuths, helping researchers plumb the oceans of information available in books and digital records. It’s an underrated career. Most librarians love helping patrons dig up information and, in the process, learning new things. Librarians may also go on shopping sprees, deciding which books and online resources to buy. They even get to put on performances, like children’s puppet shows, and run other programs, like book discussion groups for elders. On top of it all, librarians’ work hours are reasonable, and the work environment, needless to say, is placid.

Median Salary: $49,708
The Librarian’s Career Guidebook by Priscilla Shontz
Straight from the Stacks: A First Hand Guide to Careers in Library and Information Science by Laura Townsend Kane

Librarian: A Day in the Life

by Marty Nemko, US News & World Report Best Careers 2007, 18 December 2006, http://www.usnews.com/usnews/biztech/articles/061218/18librarian.life.htm

You work in a small municipal library, where you have to do a little of everything. You start your day by leafing through catalogs from online database publishers and book reviews in Library Journal to decide which titles to add to your collection. Next, it’s out to the reference desk, where visitors regularly ask how to find something. Sometimes it’s esoteric; often it’s the bathroom. Later, you teach a class: an advanced lesson in Googling.

Next, it’s back to the reference desk, but you’re soon interrupted by a group of boisterous kids, so you have to turn into schoolmarm: “You’ll have to be quiet, or I’ll have to ask you to leave.”

You end your day reading about “automated librarianship”: data storage systems that let the public get needed resources without the help of a live librarian. Tomorrow, you decide, you’ll start writing a grant proposal to develop a computer kiosk that will help patrons find health information.

Smart Specialty

Special Librarian. All sorts of organizations need librarians, not just universities and local governments. They work for law firms, prisons, corporations, and nonprofit agencies. In fact, special librarianship is the field’s fastest-growing job market. Unlike public and university jobs, which require night and weekend hours, these jobs are mostly 9 to 5.

The Other Hot Jobs
Actuary, Architect, Audiologist, Clergy, Dentist, Editor, Engineer, Fundraiser, Higher Education Administrator, Landscape Architect, Management Consultant, Medical Scientist, Occupational Therapist, Optometrist, Pharmacist, Physician, Physician Assistant, Politician/elected official, Professor, Registered Nurse. School Psychologist, Speech-Lang Therapist, Systems Analyst, Urban/Regional Planner

24 December 2006


Michael Stephens has posted the most popular posts on his blog, Tame the Web, for 2006. If you haven’t already seen them, they are well worth a read. There are also a few by others that he (and I) really like.

Most of the list:
Five Factors for User-Centered Service, http://tametheweb.com/2006/01/5_factors_for_user_centered_se.html
Ten Techie Things for Librarians 2006, Selling RSS to Medical Librarians,
en Ways to Lose Your Techie Librarians, http://tametheweb.com/2006/03/ten_ways_to_lose_your_techie_l.html
Weblogs & Libraries: Notes from a SirsiDynix Webinar, http://tametheweb.com/2006/03/sirsisdynix_weblogs_libraries.html
Five Phrases I Hope I Never Hear in Libraries Again, http://tametheweb.com/2006/04/ten_phrases_i_hope_i_never_hea.html
Ten Rules for New Librarians, http://tametheweb.com/2006/06/ten_rules_for_the_new_libraria_1.html
Ten Signs I Hope I Never See in Libraries Again, http://tametheweb.com/2006/07/ten_signs_i_hope_i_never_see_i.html
Ten Things I Know About Libraries,http://tametheweb.com/2006/10/ten_things_i_know_about_librar_1.html
The User is Not Broken, Karen Schneider, http://freerangelibrarian.com/2006/06/the_user_is_not_broken_a_meme.php
Six Trends Driving the Future of Libraries, Helene Blowers, http://librarybytes.com/2006/07/six-trends-driving-future-of-libraries.html
Making Time for Web 2.0, David King, http://www.davidleeking.com/2006/09/19/making-time-for-web-20/
The A List (on Bibliobloggers Ethics), Jessamyn West, http://www.librarian.net/stax/1653

21 December 2006


There was a post on the Solo Librarians Division electronic list with links to some interesting job descriptions. Here they are.

There was also a job description in the post included the following. I have bolded some of the more “interesting” passages, along with my comments.

Time spent on tasks:
Information Access/Management – 78 percent (includes “leverage Internet and database services, in-house resources, e-mail lists, telephone research and research outsourcer to accomplish effective due diligence and company/industry research; assess, procure, implement, and manage services for end-users’ desktops; provide instruction to end-users resulting in effective customization and utilization of resources--who will determine if it is effective?; proactively expand professional knowledge of information resources, trends, and electronic information services through continuing education)
Develop and Maintain Information Resources – 10 percent (selection and negotiation of resources and “manage compliance and copyright policies”)
Marketing – 7 percent (webmaster responsibilities, “develop and disseminate marketing materials as part of marketing team--who's on the team? how much input from the librarian? are they marketing anything besides the website?)
Supervision – 3 percent (of shared research assistant)
Administer Research Budget – 1 percent (“assess/conduct research requests using cost-effective resource management”)
Manage Archives – 1 percent (“responsible for supervising creation and maintenance of records of offsite material and coordinating access; responsible for quarterly inventories of all archives materials and bi-annual physical inventory of all boxes”—all this in 20 hours per year???)

Software Experience/Proficiency Required: Working knowledge of LexisNexis, Dialog, Factiva, Reuters Research, Securities Data Corporation, Capital IQ, and Bloomberg. Knowledge of HTML, Dreamweaver and advanced web searching techniques required. This sounds like it was tailored for a specific individual...

Experience, Skill Level Required: Minimum of two years experience in business/special libraries as a solo librarian. Incumbent must have Internet and on-line searching skills, website management skills, and general knowledge of library operations relating to reference, online services, contract management, acquisitions, and budgeting. Individual must have ability to assess and analyze current information needs and industry trends, provide relevant research, and anticipate future information needs. Excellent communication skills and ability to work effectively in a fast paced investment environment is required. Walking on water and turning water into wine highly preferred.

Comments anyone?


The UK Statute Law Database
From the Department for Constitutional Affairs, this is “the official revised edition of the primary legislation of the UK.” You can see how the legislation has changed/been amended over time.

Top 100 Education Blogs
The Online Education Database has created this list. Nineteen library-related one are listed, including these that I follow: David Lee King, Free Range Librarian, Information Wants to be Free, librarian.net, LibraryBytes, Library Stuff, Panlibus, Rambling Librarian, Research Buzz, and Resource Shelf (see the site for their addresses). Other categories include tips for college students, e-learning, education news, education policy, Internet culture, learning theory, teaching, and technology.

15 December 2006


While evaluating NationMaster, a neat statistics graphing tool, I found the following statistics.

Users within a country that access the Internet, per capita
1. New Zealand (79.3 per 100,000 people)
2. Iceland (76.0)
3. Sweden (75.5)
8. Australia (64.7)
10. UK (62.2)
11. Canada (61.0)
18. USA (54.7)
24. Japan (50.4)
And dead last……Tajikistan (0.07)
Weighted average: 18.4

Cost of Internet access for 40 hours at evening times at discounted rates, September 2002
1. Belgium (US$62)
2. Netherlands ($53)
3. Norway ($52)
4. Italy ($50)
5. Japan ($49)
11. New Zealand ($41)
12. Australia ($39)
15. USA ($36)
17. UK ($33)
18. Canada ($31)
Weighted average: $43.56

Websites per 1000 population
1. Germany (84.7)
2. Denmark (71.7)
3. Norway (66.4)
4. UK (64.2)
5. USA (63.7)
7. Canada (32.9)
11. New Zealand (15.3)
12. Australia (13.3)
18. Japan (2.9)
Weighted average: 32.8

URL: http://www.nationmaster.com


How about changing 14 February, normally St. Valentine’s Day, into Library Lovers Day? The idea originated with librarians in New South Wales (the state in which Sydney lies) and was described by Sue Hutley, Executive Director of the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA), in her editorial in the December issue of the ALIA magazine, inCite. ALIA is taking it national in 2007 and even is creating a website for it (http://www.librarylovers.org.au) although it is not working yet.

Promotional ideas include wrapping a book for a blind date with a customer, Valentine postcards for readers to complete with why they love their library, flowers for customers, or red heart stickers [I my library, perhaps?]. I’m sure you can think of many more ideas. This should work in ANY type of library and will certainly bring your customers’ attention to you and your library.


Here you’ll find tips on keeping your PDF files from getting so bid that they take too long to download. A good thing to read and keep in mind.

Taking Passwords to the Grave
What will happen to what’s on your computer when you die? Will someone be able to access your data? You don’t want your passwords out where just anyone can read them, but you do need to this about this issue. Read this article.

Do you have trouble visualizing how statistics compare? Use this program to find and graph (pie or bar) the data. There’s lots of neat stuff here, too. See my next post for some examples.

Do You Need Information from Intergovernmental Organizations?
The Indiana University Libraries have put up “an experimental web search that you can use to find information from intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) such as the United Nations, World Bank, IMF, and related organizations.” It looks to unlock information otherwise very difficult to find. Try it! (Thanks IU!)

Find Blawgcasts
Blawgcast.com has a directory of blawgcasts (podcasts on law-related subjects), resources for blawgcasters, and links to the most popular blawgcasts. I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a blawgcast, let alone a website devoted to them. If you’re in the law field, this is for you.


Avinash Kausnik [Intuit, Inc., Mountain View, California, USA] has a great post on things he has learned as a blogger. Here are the ten tips, but go to the post to read the details and some comments.
. Nobody cares about you, they care about what you can do for them.
2. Have a personality, reflect your core beliefs, be honest, have fun.
3. Blogging is a very serious time commitment.
4. Pick a subject matter you are passionate about and that you are good at.
5. Respect the intelligence of your audience.
6. Blogs need constant promotion, participation and evangelism.
7. Being “digg’ed” is great exposure but traffic builds gradually over time, one person at a time.
8. Have goals, whatever you want them to be.
9. Be nice, save your hidden agendas for other uses.
10. Nobody will read my blog.

URL: http://www.kaushik.net/avinash/2006/10/top-ten-blogging-tips-


The Idea Sandbox (“we add value to your business by helping you creatively solve branding, customer service and sales growth problems”) has a post on MiniCards, a neat idea for marketing your library. MiniCards are photo-cards 2-3/4” wide and 1-1/8” tall (70 x 28 mm)—about half the size of a business card. They can be ordered in batches of 100, with whatever image or images you want. You upload the images from Flickr or Skype. They are printed by a company called Moo and cost US$19.99 for 100 cards.

These would be a great handout at library events, as bookmarks, or even to use as mini-business cards.

The original post: http://www.idea-sandbox.com/blog/2006/11/minicards_think_small_share_bi.html
Moo: http://www.moo.com/faqs/


If you’re like me and you love mysteries (which, unlike my life, have nice neat endings), you’ll love the Mystery reader. It contains long, signed reviews and features such as new faces, an author address book, mystery news, and author freebies. Reviews are in the following categories: police/detective, thrillers, suspense, romantic suspense, cozies, and historical and are rated from one star (don’t bother) to five stars (outstanding) and have violence ratings. A real treasure for mystery lovers!

URL: http://www.themysteryreader.com/

14 December 2006


Lorely Ambriz, Library Assistant at the Northwest Community Library, El Paso, Texas, has posted a ESL (English as a Second Language) Research Guide. It contains books and AV materials, reading series, instructional support materials, online databases, and websites.

URL: http://www.epcc.edu/nwlibrary/esl_research_guide.htm


Gartner, Inc. released today 10 key predictions that showcase the trends and events that will change the nature of business and IT in 2007 and beyond. These predictions are for general technology areas rather than specific to industries or roles within an organization.

Here are the ones I think will impact librarians most.

Blogging and community contributors will peak in the first half of 2007. Given the trend in the average life span of a blogger and the current growth rate of blogs, there are already more than 200 million ex-bloggers. Consequently, the peak number of bloggers will be around 100 million at some point in the first half of 2007.

By the end of 2007, 75% of enterprises will be infected with undetected, financially motivated, targeted malware that evaded their traditional perimeter and host defenses.

By 2010, the average total cost of ownership (TCO) of new PCs will fall by 50%.

URL: Press release: http://www.gartner.com/it/page.jsp?id=499323


You can now search over 7 million US patents via Google Patent Search. Images include the abstract, text, claims, and drawings. You can search by patent number, inventor, assignee, classification, issue or filing date. Check out patent number 1, or all those by Thomas Edison, or input “martini” and see what you get. The searches are very quick and, most importantly, free.

URL: http://www.google.com/patents/

13 December 2006


In this post on Stephen’s Lighthouse, Stephen Abram reports on a survey by AP and AOL on how teens—and adults—use instant messaging.

Some of the findings that may impact us:
* 72 percent of teens who use IM send more IMs than emails; the figure for adults is 26 percent (54 percent of adults surveyed IM every day)
* teens share photos, music and videos; adults audio chat more
* 30 percent of teens couldn’t imagine life without IM; 17 percent of the adults agree
* many multitask online—IM, checking email, searching
* 63 percent of teens research homework assignments online and 53 percent use IM to get help (though only 9 percent from a teacher)
* 27 percent of adults IM at work; 41 percent say that it makes them more productive

The impact on libraries? Since Abram notes that the average IM user is 32, we cannot dismiss this as a “teen” thing. Offering reference, reader’s advisory, reserve book notifications, and other services via IM (and other “non-traditional” means) is fast leaving the realm of “techie” or “cutting edge” and moving to “must-do” and “standard.” Abram reminds us that IM, like any other library service, must be promoted to be adopted.

Are you using IM? Why not? What are the implications for your future if you don’t? Think about it!

Abram’s post: http://stephenslighthouse.sirsidynix.com/archives/2006/12/teens_and_im.html
The survey: http://press.aol.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=1138&section_id=15


Librarians’ Rx describes itself as containing “items of possible interest to Canadian Health Sciences Librarians.” From librarians at the University of Alberta, this site has many good posts and links. Take a look.

URL: http://www.library.ualberta.ca/mt/blog/librariansrx/

12 December 2006


Here are some neat sites that I’ve found recently. Enjoy!

Free Lookups
Look up almost anything with this list of links. Arranged in categories: address and street data, everything ZIP codes, business and professional, maps and aerial views, radius searches, statistics and averages, locations and demographics, and federal resources (USA).

ALA Professional Tips Wiki
From the huge list of resources the ALA Library staff have accumulated over 80 years. Everything from Intellectual freedom to user services to types of libraries—and more.

Librarian’s E-Library
(URL too long to write here, Google it)
“Selected resources on Libraries and librarianship from the American Library Association Library and a growing list of volunteers.” (A Google Co-op Custom Search Engine product)

The Australian Index
“Exploring Australian Blogs.” You can search for a blog, see “recently updated” ones, and “interesting posts.”

“Inspiring Visions of Earth.” Photo of the day and an archive. The photos are magnificent.

“The Asian Legal Information Institute is a non-profit and free access website for legal information from all 27 countries and territories in Asia located from Japan in the east to Pakistan in the west, and from Mongolia in the north to Timor Leste in the south. AsianLII provides for searching and browsing databases of legislation, case-law, law reform reports, law journals and other legal information, where available.” A joint project of the Law Faculties of the University of Technology, Sydney, and the University of New South Wales, Australia, partner institutions in Asian countries, and other legal information institutes.

11 December 2006


Chris Phoenix posted the following on the Responsible Nanotechnology blog:

Does rewinding a movie have anything to do with winding a wristwatch?

Why is a screen saver called a screen saver?

Why do people talk about “dialing” a phone number?

How do you “load” a camera?

Why might you need white-out while typing?

Why would a needle scratch a record?”

On his blog, Stephen’s Lighthouse, Stephen Abram added:

OK, how does this apply to libraries?

Have most kids ever seen a book pocket?

Have most kids ever gotten their book stamped?

Does anyone ever see catalogues any more?

Does anyone ever touch a catalogue "card"?

What’s a record? (vinyl!)

What’s the video in videogame?

Will we need to continue much longer to ask folks to rewind things when returning them?

I am sure you can think of more...

Abram: http://stephenslighthouse.sirsidynix.com/archives/2006/12/new_language_re.html


The Intranet Leadership Forum has been established to help all staff, provide a model for implementing blogs and RSS feeds, to help understand how wikis can be used, and “find better ways to manage the balance between day to day operational tasks and the bigger picture strategic thinking for your intranet.”

This sounds like a wonderful idea. Why isn’t there something like this in the USA? (Or is there?)

URL: http://www.intranetleadership.com.au/


The Shifted Librarian (Jenny Levine) has a great post on this subject, including a wonderful comment on Tame the Web. I especially like the poster. Read the post and Levine’s comments!

URL: http://tametheweb.com/2006/11/faiure_to_innovate.html


The Cancer Services Collaborative Improvement Partnership has developed and produced national electronic patient information pathways that bring together a vast range of national cancer resources under one roof. For the first time, people can see at a glance what is currently available for each tumour at different stages in the patient pathway.

URL: http://www.cancerimprovement.nhs.uk/patinfopath


Researchers and discovery services: Behaviour, perceptions and needs: A study commissioned by the Research Information Network (November 2006)

Key Findings
1.3.1 General satisfaction with discovery services
1.3.2 Users cannot always access the resources they have discovered
1.3.3 Means and ends are not clearly delineated
1.3.4 One size doesn’t fit all
1.3.5 There is a very long tail of discovery services used by researchers
1.3.6 Researchers use discovery services to find a wide range of resources
1.3.7 Peers and networks of colleagues are extremely important. Research colleagues are one of the most important sources for virtually every type of enquiry.
1.3.8 Researchers see searching as an integral part of the research process, and they tend to refine down from a large set of results possibly over-constrained, initial search.
1.3.9 Researchers are concerned about irrelevant search results, but they are more concerned that they might miss important information
1.3.10 Push is popular but blogs hardly feature
1.3.11 Library support is largely via portals, rather than personal contact
1.3.12 Librarians and researchers are generally in agreement, but there are some important differences
1.3.13 Lack of formal training is not seen as a problem
1.3.14 Specific gaps in provision: A number of specific gaps were identified. Researchers working on the intersection of fields and those in very new fields also felt the difficulty of searching multiple overlapping sources.

Thanks to Stephen Abram for calling this to attention on his blog, Stephen’s Lighthouse.

Download this report at http://www.rin.ac.uk/files/Report%20-%20final.pdf
Read about this report on Stephen’s Lighthouse:


Communications in Information Literacy will debut with the Spring 2007 issue (1 February). It is described as “a new, independent, professional, refereed electronic journal dedicated to advancing knowledge, theory, and research in the area of information literacy. CIL seeks manuscripts on subject matter of interest to professionals in the area of higher education who are committed to advancing information literacy. Manuscripts may be theoretical, research-based, or of a practical nature. Some suggested topics include, but are by no means limited to definitions and standards for IL, pedagogies and learning theories, assessment, developing an IL strategy within your institution, designing an IL program, lesson planning, classroom instruction, online instruction, and instructional competencies.

Check with Chris Hollister (cbh2@buffalo.edu), Editor-in-Chief, before submitting a manuscript or look at the website.

URL: http://www.comminfolit.org/index.php/cil


The site called “I want a Freeware Utility to...450+ common problems solved” has a long list of extremely useful free utilities that do specific jobs really well and save time and money. Categories include: anti-spyware, anti-virus, audio, music, mp3, business, office, MS Office, communication, desktop, editors, files and folders, financial, graphics, fun, keyboard, performance, productivity, programming, uninstallers, and video.

This is from eConsultant, an IT expert, who makes other good stuff available at his website, http://www.econsultant.com/index.html

Open Source: http://www.econsultant.com/i-want-open-source-software/index.html


In an article titled, Will Web resources be the death of the Library? (by Polina Aksamentova, Pipe Dream, 14 November 2006), Susan Currie, associate director of the library at Binghamton University [Binghamton, New York, USA], said, “Ever since 1988 the death of the library has been predicted [and] greatly exaggerated.” BU is actually seeing a resurgence in the use of library facilities, Currie added. Last year alone there was a 15 percent increase in the number of questions asked at the reference desk. “A lot of people who end up using electronic resources are not aware that the library has funded [them]. Currie said. “Every time someone uses electronic journals, comes to a database [or] our Web site—that’s using the library."

Students agree: “People will continue coming here because of the environment,” said Ingie Lee, a senior nursing major. “People are too loud in the dorms.” Joseph Jones, a senior political science and English major, said that libraries will not become extinct because professors prefer peer-review articles and books.

URL: http://www.bupipedream.com/pipeline_web/display_article.php?id=3461

01 December 2006

The “Missing Piece” of the Library Netflix Model

David Lee King [Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library, Kansas, USA] reports on his blog that his library mails all holds to customers. This includes books, videos, and music. It is budgeted for (US$360,000 for 2006).

“Why in the world do we do this? Because our patrons absolutely love the service. In fact, Gina Millsap, our director, has spoken with patrons who have stated ‘this is one of the most important’ library services and have also said that if we didn’t have this service, they’d ‘just use Amazon.’” They ran the numbers and found that when figuring the cost of staff, space, calling customers, etc., they would not save much by discontinuing the service. He concludes, “This is the ‘missing piece’ of a library Netflix model. We already have the content. This proves that, in some cases, libraries do have the ability and the funding to get content to patrons—in their space, on their timetable, just like they’re used to with other cool services.”

Respondents from the Orange County Library System in Orlando, Florida and an unnamed academic library reported that they also deliver holds. OCLS delivered 600,000 holds in 2005 and used to use the postal service, but now use a small local courier company that was formed with the OCLS home delivery service in mind. Several respondents felt that having return postage paid would be desirable. This final comment sums up the issue well. “With a mailing service, if I had a choice between the library and Amazon used books, I’d use the library. This service is a good example of how older services are 2.0 as well.”

URL: http://www.davidleeking.com/2006/10/12/the-missing-piece-of-the-library-netflix-model/

26 November 2006


Check out Michael Stephens's website, Tame The Web: Libraries and Technology, for some very good warning signs. Here's the text, but go to the site to see the signs.

WARNING: Failure to innovate while overthinking & underplanning library services may cause loss of library users & library staff.

THINK. Banning cell phones in your library may send many users to Starbucks, Panera, or similar.

Read, and think, and learn from these!

URL: http://tametheweb.com/2006/11/faiure_to_innovate.html


Bob Molyneux, Chief Statistician at SirsiDynix, has published a preliminary comparison of comparable data from the two countries’ libraries that shows differences in how each country provisions library service and how the citizens of each use their libraries. The data are based on a set of 1000 US libraries serving populations of 50,000 to 2.5 million and data on similar Canadian libraries compiled by Don Mills, director of the Mississauga Library System in Ontario for 2003. (This is a part of the Normative Data Project for Libraries.)

Here are a few of the findings:

Mean population served: Canadian libraries, 244,000; US libraries, 183,000.
Number of volumes: Canadian libraries, 729,000; US libraries, 453,000.
Average full time equivalent staff: Canadian libraries, 133; US libraries, 83.
Total staff per capita; Canadian libraries, 12.71; US libraries, 11.69.
Volumes per capita: Canadian libraries, 2.9; US libraries, 2.5.
Current serials per 1000 population: Canadian libraries, 22.9; US libraries, 6.3.
Interlibrary loans per 1,000 population: Canadian libraries, 34.9; U.S. libraries, 71.1. Canadians visiting their libraries would be more likely to find a periodical (and book for that matter, as we see) than a U.S. citizen and, hence, less likely to need to borrow something on ILL.
Visits per capita: Canadian libraries, 5.6; US libraries, 4.4.
Circulations per capita: Canadian libraries, 9.2; US libraries, 6.9.
Public use terminals per 5000 population: Canadian libraries, 2.1; US libraries, served 2.5.
U.S. public libraries spend more than Canadian libraries on all of the financial ratios used most commonly in the United States. A few of the differences are substantial.

There will be further work on this topic ahead.

Source and URL:
SirsiDynix One Source, 9 January 2006

25 November 2006


Totally Wired is a blog published by Anastasia Goodstein. It is designed to be a “resource for parents, aunts, uncles, teachers, librarians youth workers or any adult trying to decode what teens are doing online and with technology.”

Goodstein is a journalist who has worked in youth media, both online and in print. Her first book, Totally Wired: What Teens and Tweens Are Really Doing Online, is due in March of 2007 (St. Martin’s Griffin, ISBN 0-31236012-6, US$13.95).

If you work with young people, this is a good blog to follow and the book should be a great

URL: http://totallywired.ypulse.com/

22 November 2006


FreeTechBooks.com lists over 400 free computer science and engineering books, plus lecture notes. They are hosted on websites that belong to the authors or the publishers. What's the Catch. They say "none." I didn't find much of help, and it is far from complete, but the site may be of some use.

URL: http://www.freetechbooks.com


JournalJunkie.com “provides medical professionals with immediate audio access to abstracts from the latest medical journals.” It is free, but you must register. You can even download the abstracts as MP3 files for listening at another time or sign up for podcasts. The site is the creation of three Australian health professionals: Dr. Craig Dalton [School of Medical Practice and Population Health, University of Newcastle], Walter Kaan, R.N. [New South Wales Rural Doctors Network, Newcastle], and Jane Gray [New South Wales Health, North Sydney].

Journals included are: Annals of Internal Medicine, Archives of Internal Medicine, British Medical Journal, Circulation, Journal of the American Medical Association, New England Journal of Medicine, Public Library of Science-Medicine, The Lancet, The Lancet Infectious Diseases, and The Lancet-Neurology. The abstracts seem to be very current, with the exception of Circulation and Archives of Internal Medicine, which are three months behind.

This looks like a wonderful resource to make available to your physician customers.

URL: http://www.journaljunkie.com/

21 November 2006


Communications in Information Literacy will debut with the Spring 2007 issue (1 February) and will publish two issues per year. It is described as “a new, independent, professional, refereed electronic journal dedicated to advancing knowledge, theory, and research in the area of information literacy. The journal is committed to the principles of information literacy as set forth by the Association of College and Research Libraries. Additionally, CIL is committed to the principles of open access for academic research.”

CIL seeks manuscripts on subject matter of interest to professionals in the area of higher education who are committed to advancing information literacy. Manuscripts may be theoretical, research-based, or of a practical nature. Some suggested topics include, but are by no means limited to definitions and standards for IL, pedagogies and learning theories, assessment, developing an IL strategy within your institution, designing an IL program, lesson planning, classroom instruction, online instruction, and instructional competencies. It is advisable but not required to check with the Editors-in-Chief, Chris Hollister and Stewart Brower [University at Buffalo, New York] at before submitting a manuscript.

URL: http://www.comminfolit.org/index.php/cil


The site called “I want a Freeware Utility to...450+ common problems solved” has a long list of extremely useful free utilities that do specific jobs really well and save time and money. Categories include: anti-spyware, anti-virus, audio, music, mp3, business, office, MS Office, communication, desktop, editors, files and folders, financial, graphics, fun, keyboard, performance, productivity, programming, uninstallers, and video. Open Source software is available at a sister site. Both are from eConsultant, an IT expert, who makes other good stuff available from the homepage.

Open Source: http://www.econsultant.com/i-want-open-source-software/index.html


In an article titled, Will Web resources be the death of the Library? (by Polina Aksamentova, Pipe Dream, 14 November 2006), Susan Currie, associate director of the library at Binghamton University [Binghamton, New York, USA], said, “Ever since 1988 the death of the library has been predicted [and] greatly exaggerated.” BU is actually seeing a resurgence in the use of library facilities, Currie added. Last year alone there was a 15 percent increase in the number of questions asked at the reference desk. “A lot of people who end up using electronic resources are not aware that the library has funded [them]. Currie said. “Every time someone uses electronic journals, comes to a database [or] our Web site—that’s using the library.

Students agee: “People will continue coming here because of the environment,” said Ingie Lee, a senior nursing major. “People are too loud in the dorms.” Joseph Jones, a senior political science and English major, said that libraries will not become extinct because professors prefer peer-review articles and books.

URL: http://www.bupipedream.com/pipeline_web/display_article.php?id=3461

18 November 2006


This “portal designed for librarians to locate Internet resources related to their profession,” has several links that appear to be very useful. There is a list of library-related electronic lists and newsgroups devoted to cataloging. There is a list of products for privacy protection and online security. The Librarian’s Toolbox links to things like Label Maker, ShelveIt!, Link Checker, Internet Library for Librarians, QuickBib!, and a couple of library-specific spell checkers. Their information for advertisers says that the site received 200,000 hits and 26,000 user sessions per month. The site is provided by InfoWorks Technology Company, Sewickley, Pennsylvania and is maintained by Internet Library for Librarians Editorial Team. a leader in developing network and PC security software and appliances; an innovator in developing library application tools for improving productivity and quality control; and a full service provider for label design and printing solutions.

URL: http://www.itcompany.com/inforetriever/emailcat.htm

17 November 2006


“This Wiki is dedicated to helping information professionals (librarians, LMIS students, and others) learn more about available web technologies. It was originally created for LIS 5433, Design and Implementation of Web-Based Information Services, at the School of Library and Information Studies of the University of Oklahoma” taught by Dr. Betsy Van der Veer Martens. Included are: How can Web 2.0 technologies be added to library services? Blogs, Cool Tools, Digital Libraries, Glossary, Online Communities, Tech Reading, Web Design and Usability, and Wikis. There’s not a whole lot there (yet), but it is a good beginning.

URL: http://www.ambientlibrarian.org/

16 November 2006


I just ran into this blog by Aaron Schmidt [Thomas Ford Memorial Library, Western Springs, Illinois]. Walking paper deals with "new(ish) information technologies. He explains the blog title, "things like IM and text messaging are like active, animated paper to me." Some of his categories are: audio eBooks, phones in libraries, future libraries, gaming in libraries, teenagers and the library, wifi, and of course instant messaging and information technology.

By the way, Aaron is also a member of the 2005 class of Library Journal Movers and Shakers.

URL: http://www.walkingpaper.org/


New Deal Network

If you are interested in the social programs of US President Franklin D. Roosevelt or in the Great Depressions of the 1930s, this is the site for you. It is sponsored by the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute. There are articles, speeches, letters, over 5000 photographs, lesson plans, web projects, and bibliographic materials, and a moderated discussion list for teachers and historians. There are also family documents, four lesson plans on the Depression and the arts, a photo-documentary of the effect of the Depression on one small Southern town, student poems, articles and short stories from a New York high school in the 1930s, and more.

Interactive Health Tutorials

This is a long list of interactive programs on diseases, conditions, tests, diagnostic procedures, surgeries, treatments, and prevention and wellness. The site is from the US National Library of Medicine, but the tutorials come from everywhere. Some look very good.


VHS, 30, dies of loneliness: The home-entertainment format lived a fruitful life

by Diane Garrett, Variety, 15 November 2006.

After a long illness, the groundbreaking home-entertainment format VHS has died of natural causes in the United States. The format was 30 years old. No services are planned.
The format had been expected to survive until January, but high-def formats and next-generation vidgame consoles hastened its final decline. "It's pretty much over," concurred Buena Vista Home Entertainment general manager North America Lori MacPherson on Tuesday.

VHS is survived by a child, DVD, and by Tivo, VOD and DirecTV. It was preceded in death by Betamax, Divx, mini-discs and laserdiscs.

Although it had been ailing, the format's death became official in this, the video biz's all-important fourth quarter. Retailers decided to pull the plug, saying there was no longer shelf space.

As a tribute to the late, great VHS, Toys 'R' Us will continue to carry a few titles like "Barney," and some dollar video chains will still handle cassettes for those who cannot deal with the death of the format.

Born Vertical Helical Scan to parent JVC of Japan, the tape had a difficult childhood as it was forced to compete with Sony's Betamax format.

URL for the complete article: http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117953955.html?categoryid=20&cs=1

13 November 2006


Should you blog or not? Here are two differing opinions: one advocating blogging by executives and the other warning job seekers not to blog (and aren’t we all job seekers at some time?).

Schwartz, Jonathan, If You Want to Lead, Blog, Harvard Business Review Reprint FO511J, 1 November 2005. (available for US$6.00 at http://harvardbusinessonline.hbsp.harvard.edu/b01/en/common/
) Schwartz is President and CEO of Sun Microsystems and blogs at http://www.blogs.sun.com/jonathan.
Excerpt: “For executives, having a blog is not going to be a matter of choice…. If you’re not part of the conversation, others will speak on your behalf—and I’m not talking about your employees.”

Tribble, Ivan (pseud.), Bloggers Need Not Apply, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 8 July 2005, p. C3, http://chronicle.com/jobs/2005/07/2005070801c.htm
Excerpt: “Our blogger applicants came off reasonably well at the initial interviews, but once we hung up the phone and called up their blogs, we got to know ‘the real them’—better than we wanted, enough to conclude we didn’t want to know more.”


TechXtra searches 25 databases covering engineering, math and computing, some full-text and some covering the “deep” web. You can search just articles, websites, books, industry news, job announcement, technical reports, ePrint archives, learning and teaching resources, or latest research—or any or all of the above. Content of the databases that are not engineering, math or computing, are not retrieved, so relevance should be high. TechXtra is a product of Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland, but includes databases from the UK, USA, and Australia.

URL: http://www.techxtra.ac.uk

09 November 2006


The website of the Insurance Information Institute provides news and information for the customer, the media, and the industry. There are questions and answers on various types of insurance (auto,home,life, health, long-term care, disability, business, and other) that cover nearly everything one needs to know, albeit from a somewhat biased perspective. For example, he question "Do I really need long-term health care insurance?" receives a "yes" answer--but that does not diminish the quality of the information. Highly recommended.

URL: http://www.iii.org

08 November 2006


Reference & User Services Quarterly is the official journal of the Reference and User Services Association of the American Library Association. Its purpose is to disseminate information of interest to reference librarians, information specialists, and other professionals involved in user-oriented library services. This Web site serves as an online companion to the print edition. The blog includes a link to the print version in .pdf format. You can look at the entries by issue, department, column, or article. The blog is searchable, too.

A great addition to this great journal and wonderful for those of us who aren’t members of RUSA or ALA.

URL: http://www.rusq.org/


One of my favorite people, Stephen Abram, has been named the Chief Strategist of the SirsiDynix Institute, a forum for professional development in the (mainly public) library world. Stephen is already the Vice-president of Innovation at SirsiDynix and President-elect of the Special Libraries Association. Congratulations!

Shameless plug: In January 2007, ALA Press will publish my newest work, Out Front with Stephen Abram: A Guide for Information Leaders. Some of Stephen’s best writings have been compiled by Jonathan Lorig and me. It is especially strong on his musings on the effects of technology and the millennials on libraries.

07 November 2006


LIS Café is “a Web gathering created on 22nd, September, 2005 for LIS graduates, students, and teachers.” It comes from the Dept. of Library and Information Sciences, University of Kuwait, now celebrating its 10th anniversary. Thirty-six percent of the subscribers are from Kuwait and 22 percent from the USA. The rest are mostly from the Near East and Africa.

The blog offers links to library-related resources, a wonderful photo gallery (there are also great photos in some of the posts and even a video of opening day at the Kuwaiti Library School), and a chat room. Also on the blog are announcements from the Special Libraries Association-Arabian Gulf Chapter.

URL: http://mlis-kw.blogspot.com


Brian Kelly [UKOLN, University of Bath, Bath, UK] has started the UK Web Focus blog on the occasion of his tenth anniversary as UK Web Focus at the UK Online Network.

He writes, “This Blog will focus on matters related to the Web, in particular Web standards, innovations and areas related to Web 2.0.

As a Web adviser to the UK higher and further education communities and the cultural heritage sector, there is a clear need for me to be better informed on Blog issues (both technological and non-technological areas). In addition a Blog can help me to better inform and engage with my communities. Use of a Blog will also support my professional development.”

URL: http://ukwebfocus.wordpress.com/

05 November 2006

Favourite Consumer Health Sites from HELP

What's HELP? It's the impressive new Health Education Library for People from Mumbai (Bombay), India. Be sure you have your sound on before going to their website. http://healthlibrary.com/seminar/favourites.html


Three resources from HELP:
How to Get the Best Medical Care: A Guide for the Intelligent Patient: an online book from to help patients to get the best medical care, http://www.thebestmedicalcare.com
The Intelligent Doctor’s Guide to the Internet: from Drs. Anjali and Aniruddha Malpani, Medical Director of HELP, http://www.thebestmedicalcare.com/doctors/doctorsguide.htm
The Intelligent Patient’s Guide to the Internet: also from Dr. Malpani, http://www.thebestmedicalcare.com/patients/patientguide.htm

Heart Disease Online: information on heart disease, written so that even your child can understand it—a very readable resource from Dr Mani in India, http://www.chdinfo.com/articles/congenital.shtml

Nutrition Foundation of India: a wealth of original information on nutrition in India, http://www.nutritionfoundationofindia.res.in/index.asp

Dentalindia.com: All about Dentistry in India, http://www.dentalindia.com/

Directory of Indian Medical Sites: A guide to other websites on health and medicine in India from QMed Services, Mumbai, http://www.qmedin.com/medsites/index.htm

King Edward Memorial Hospital, Mumbai: One of India's premier hospitals, http://www.kem.edu/

Indiaparenting.com: Everything you want to know about bringing up your child, from IndiaParenting, a private not-for-profit company, http://www.indiaparenting.com/


About Kids Health: Designed to help children and their families learn about the conditions that affect them, keep informed about current research, and learn how to fit disease management seamlessly into an active, healthy lifestyle. Check out the Just for Kids section too, from the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, http://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/

The People’s Medical Society: a US advocacy group in Allentown, PA. They “will arm you with information which can help you to look after yourself during your passage through the medical system,” http://www.peoplesmed.org/

My Virtual Reference Desk: Health and Nutrition. A good starting point for searching the Web for health topics, designed for the layperson from Bob Drudge, family therapist and father of the author of The Drudge Report, http://www.refdesk.com/health.html

03 November 2006


International Lyrics Playground has lyrics of “songs from Europe, North American and Around the World!” It is a bare bones site, with most lyrics contributed by users. I had limited success finding what I was looking for, but it does have a lot of songs listed. (http://lyricsplayground.com)

Zamzar provides “free online file conversion” to and from a wide variety of formats (.doc to .PDF, .gif to .jpg, etc. You can upload a maximum of 100 MB in up to 5 files, but this may increase in the future. Looks very useful. (http://www.zamzar.com)

When your file is too large to email, upload it to MediaFire—for free—and then email a link to it. (http://www.mediafire.com)


Breeding, Marshall, Technology for the Next Generation, Computers in Libraries 26(10):18-20, November/December 2006.
Selection: “Although millennials approach things differently, I don’t necessarily believe that we must create interfaces just for them. The progress required in the library Web presence to satisfy the millennials will be well-appreciated by all. We do need to understand that millennials have less of a tolerance for slow, nonintuitive, and unattractive Web sites and will quickly turn to other sources if the library’s doesn’t meet their expectations.”

McAlister, Moyra, Gen Y, inCite (Australian Library and Information Association) 27(10):16, October 2006.
Selection: “For a number of reasons we need to understand and attract Gen Y [millennials]. As managers, we need to attract Gen y because of the shrinking available pool of workers and the ageing population. As employers we are looking for a more complex skill set—because of their varied experience, Gen Y often has this skill set. As service providers, we need to appeal to Gen Y because what is attractive to Gen Y today is attractive to everyone tomorrow.”

Abram, Stephen, Books! Are They Still Important in Special Libraries? Information Outlook (Special Libraries Association) 10(10):40-42, October 2006.
Selection: “The episodic mode of learning is great, especially for adult learners who have a foundation of knowledge on which to build further depth. However, trying to learn a complex topic or new professional competency doesn’t lend itself to this … mode of learning. There are times when we need to learn things in order. So, when one of our clients needs to approach a topic from scratch, we start to think in terms of a format that guides and selects the content in a rational order: a book.” Abram goes on to list new modes of creating booklists—recommenders.

Wilson, Alane, 10 Hot Trends, It’s all good, 3 November 2006, http://scanblog.blogspot.com/2006/11/10-hot-trends.html
Selection: 1. Customer made, 2. Geo-awareness, 3. Thing connection (anytime, anywhere), 4. Virtual worlds—and more.