Saturday, January 31, 2009

Great new book

YAY!  It has finally arrived!  I ordered this book through work and it came in this week.  The one chapter I have read so far has been great, and has a very similar feel to his blog posts.  I know that I talk about - and think about even more - libraries promoting themselves in digital spaces, user centred experiences and customer service.  In the one chapter I have read so far David makes note of all three things, so I can't wait to keep reading.

The book is available at our library (sorry, can't link you to the exact book) and so far is definitely worth the read!

On a slightly different aside, I read this quote on my twitter stream and was very taken by it:
The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and then relearn.      Alvin Toffer
That quote reminded me of what I have above my desk at work and at home, and is of a very similar theme:
#know how to find information
#know how to validate it
#know how to synthesize it
#know how to leverage it
#know how to communicate it
#know how to collaborate with it
#know how to problem solve with it.
#that's the 21st century set of literacies!
May literacy in all its many shapes and forms be promoted as part of our life long learning journey, and try and borrow David's book from a library - it is so worth a read!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

On holidays - or how not to have a relaxing week off

I am having my first week off work in over a year.  Last year I needed to take all my annual leave to attend my prac in Brisbane and a conference in Melbourne.  I envisioned myself relaxing, hanging out with the kids, watching some tennis and being able to get some stuff done online that I needed to do.  The reality has not been this at all!  It has been very hot, our poodle is still not well (more vet trips and $$$), my kids are at the end of 8 weeks holiday and are going stir crazy - fighting with each other -and more importantly I cannot get them off our two computers.  Normally I am ok with this, as we encourage digital literacy in our house, but not when it means I cannot get to my computer.  I have changed passwords etc, and today I will resort to taking keyboards (again) when I go out of the house.  I so need a laptop that is just for me. Sigh.

When I have been able to get to a computer, I was able to download Stanza to my iphone and to my desktop.  What a wonderful piece of software.  I have downloaded books onto my iphone and can now read at leisure in a font that suits me best whenever I am out.  I really think the two outstanding features for me is Stanza's ability to change font size, and the inclusion of books from Project Gutenberg.

I also was able to download the DCPL app and road test it.  What an amazing application.  I was able to show it to a few staff where I work, and was excited by the people who actually 'got' what is was all about(we still don't have a website that is current or relevant).  A catalogue that is user friendly and available in a medium that is relevant.  I loved the simple look of the app and have had a great time putting the search interface through its paces!  I now know where all the DC Public Libraries are, along with their opening hours and phone numbers.  So if I ever get to the States, I can find my way around all the DCPL because of my iphone library catalogue application!

I stated previously in my blog the need for us to promote ourselves in digital spaces, but as I am not yet employed as a libarian where I work, these decisions and actions are not up to me to try to be involved in.  Quite frustrating really.  As there are no projects in our library, there is not any way to even get onto a project team that can be looking into these things.  And even if there was a project team, I would not be able to be part of it because I am employed as a library assistant and not a librarian.  So all that makes me less employable in the future as I have no experience in even being part of a team!  Another sigh.

So enough of me feeling sorry for myself.  Once school goes back I can start my volunteer work and hopefully start learning new things that can and will make me more employable.

Thanks for stopping by :)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

7 things you may not know about me meme

I was tagged by Kathryn Greenhill last week for the 7 things meme.  So here are 7 things that you may not know about me!

1. English is my only language, but I have always wanted to learn another.  I did exceptionally well in Year 8 and 9 french but moved schools and could not continue learning.

2. I didn't get my licence until I was older, so my first car was my boyfriend/husband's orange kombe volkswagon.  It was all back to front and very confusing!  My dream car is either a black hummer or a yellow jazz!

3. Anyone that knows me would be able to answer this for me.  My addictions are chocolate and coffee.  We only drink Zentveld's coffee in our house, and I will never drink instant.  I have been told that I am a coffee snob, and I take that as a compliment!

4. My achievements as a pimply teenager were that I actually passed my senior year!  I grew up on the Gold Coast and often did not go to school as the beach was a much better option.  I really wasn't into study (unlike Kathryn), and consider myself a late bloomer when it comes to education.

5. I am not the best at singing (just ask my kids) but enjoy it.  I sing along to many of the DVD's that we watch - especially Mumma Mia.  My kids are forever telling me not to keep singing Abba!

6. My Star sign is Taurus the bull.  I am not really into astrology but once read that Taureans(?) were stubborn, and this is very true!

7. I love getting up early in the morning!  I am truly a morning person and do my best thinking, planning, creating early in the morning.  I walk at 5am every morning, and use this time to think and just enjoy the beauty of the morning.

There you go.  I have decided that anyone who is reading my blog can consider themselves tagged!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

To promote or not to promote, that is the question...

I have been thinking about this topic alot lately, and my conclusion inevitabley ends up the same.  Our library needs to promote who we are and what we do.  And not only to our physical customers but to our potential virtual customers also. 

I read with interest David Lee King's post Ask a Librarian service needs a reboot, and the 41 - at time of writing - comments that were inspired by his post.  The notion of digital vs physical customer, and how our libraries serve, or fail to do so is at the heart of his post.

I then followed a link posted on my facebook this morning to a blog post from a digital initiatives librarian from the states:  DCPL iPhone application ready for download.  WOW.  How amazingly cool is that.  I am going to download the application (when I get my itunes back up and running as it crashed when I was trying to install stanza a new ebook reader app) and give it a workout.  I loved the very clean interface.  I will post more about this after I've tried it!)  So congratulations to DCPL for creating an application that can and will meet the needs of the very mobile, digital natives whose technological expectations/expertise are often mind blowing to a Gen X'er!

So, all this leads me back to the promotion of our services and resources, and in particular starting to promote our library online.  I have found a few local websites, and am going to put together some info and then email it to the powers that be.  If you have suggestions, or ideas that have worked well for you please feel free to comment.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


It is New Years Day and I am thinking about all that has happened in the last year, and my goals and aspirations for this new year. 

  • I finshed my grad dip and am now a qualified librarian. I am taking a year off to try and gain some experience, and am planning on re enrolling for 2010.
  • I have attended conferences, unconferences, seminars and webinars on library 2.0/web 2.0, a subject I am passionate about.  I have learnt heaps!
  • I have been humbled by the generosity of library bloggers from around the world who so freely share their thoughts and knowledge.  I have learnt so much!
  • Blogging opens doors.  I have been truly amazed at the opportunities that have opened for me because of this, and the friendships and relationships that I have developed online.
  • Technology is a tool that can only enhance our library services (to some this sounds like a given, but in some work environments this idea is not embraced).
  • Social Networking has etiquette and regardless of age/experience/qualifications libraries must be involved in teaching this as part of their information/digital literacy programs (I am going to blog about this in a seperate post).
  • The best learning occurs when it is self directed, and then it often becomes a joyous experience.
  • To thyself be true.


Proactive participation is my goal for all things this year.
  • I have been accepted to be part of the Australian ePortfolios Project and I can't wait. 
  • I have written some proposals for future projects so will see if they are successful. 
  • I will be volunteering in a high school library and in a public library in another town for one day a week, hopefully learning lots about all aspects of the industry.
  • I have a list of 'tech' things I have read about but want to learn more about.  Maybe try for one a month?
  • To keep talking and blogging about all the ways that technology can enhance workplaces and spaces.  
  •  To create another digital photo story on the amalgamation of our library services, and in doing so meet and spend time with the staff who run these libraries. 
  • To keep learning and growing.  We have at the heart of our profession the notion of life long learning.  May I truly embrace this and always be open to hearing about, and learning about new things.
  • To thyself be true.
May this new year bring you joy, peace and happiness.