Fri - March 5, 2004

Wired Article: Blogs & Attribution or Mapping Blogs

Take a look at this via WIRED:,1284,62537,00.html?tw=rss.TEK

The article states that a lot of the big name bloggers are actually reading and borrowing from lesser-known blogs, without attribution. They in turn pick up on something hot or interesting and link to it...

""What we're finding is that the important people on the Web are not necessarily the people with the most explicit links (back to their sites), but the people who cause epidemics in blog networks," said researcher Eytan Adar.

These infectious people can be hard to find because they do not always receive attribution for being the first to point to an interesting idea or news item."


"Blogs are helping us get a better understanding of how things happen on the Internet," said Adar. "We're hopeful that in being able to do this research, we can apply the technology to other information, like e-mail, to improve productivity."

Interesting! Can you already feel the shift in the way we use communication tools online? has your use of e-mail changed? How about IMing? Text messaging?

Posted at 08:38 AM     Read More  

Sun - February 15, 2004

A Bit Blue in the Tooth

Via WIRED:,1382,62305,00.html?tw=rss.TOP

I have bluetooth built in to my Macs and on my Sony Ericsson phone. I can transfer files between them all effortlessly! I'd like to see Bluetooth really catch on as a short-range companion to standard 802.11g. I had a Sony PDA but the laptop usurped it... it had bluetooth and I used it a lot to transfer image files. Maybe in digital cameras to quickly share a snap with bluetooth-enabled friends? I know some Video cameras have bluetooth capability but to transfer video...ouch! That would take awhile.

Posted at 04:49 PM     Read More  

Fri - January 30, 2004

Blogging makes Connections in Surprising Ways (Or Bloomingdale's Flat Screens)

I use the SightBlog for my favorite images. I've also noticed it accounts for a lot of hits because my photo descriptions become page titles in iBlog for publishing. For example if you Google "Spider Lake MI" you get links to my image blog and the TC blog in the top 10. One of the most popular referrals I get is for "Bloomingdale's Home Store Chicago." This was how writer Dawn Allcot found my image of the flat screens at Bloomingdale's . She e-mailed me and asked if Sound & Communications magazine could use this image for a story she was writing about the renovation of the Medinah Temple in Chicago into the audio/visual enhanced shopping experience it has become. I said yes. And today I received my copy of the magazine in the mail with my photo on the cover!! I also provided a shot of the dome as well that they used. All I wanted was a photocredit with the URL for .... :-)

How cool is that to have met a writer virtually and getting a picture in a magazine through posting images to a blog?

Posted at 09:02 AM     Read More  

Wed - January 28, 2004

KFOG to iTunes

I read with glee this post at Jenny's site, then today MacMinute has this:

The exclusive digital EP "From KFOG to iPod" by The Thrills was released today on Apple's iTunes Music Store, less than 48 hours after the band recorded the tracks at a KFOG-FM Emerging Artist Concert in San Francisco on Sunday, January 25.

If music can move to the people that fast why bother with all the hoopla of packaging, markups and rolling out to the music shop to buy. Of course, I will for some releases, like the upcoming Fleetwood Mac Remasters, but if I can get darn cool tracks downloaded on my Mac, iPods and on a CD for the car... I'm set...

Jenny mentions that libraries should be aware of this shift... yes indeed. We certainly don't want to be left behind trying to circulate an outdated format... but when do CDs actually become outdated? People still check out the fast aging VHS tape (uhhhhh...I disconnected my VCR last year and have never looked back...) but DVD circs are way past those of the tape. When digital-file devices are in the majority of homes and the last CD Walkman gives up the ghost, libraries can junk their CDs. But what about all that expensive furniture to hold the CDs???

Posted at 11:27 AM     Read More  

Thu - January 22, 2004

iTunes has RSS feeds!

Via MacMinute! (And The Shifted Librarian )

How very cool is this... Jenny has been waiting for it. .. and I have I. I just set up feeds in NetNewsWire for New Releases, Just Added and top songs, etc...

Take a look at my aggregator in action, displaying one of my favorite albums of all times... The Indigo Girls! How cool is it to have the full text of the album notes shot into my aggregator for more info, easy access, etc. If I want a song or album I can click and it loads right up...

Posted at 10:57 AM     Read More  

Sun - January 11, 2004

TTW's Top LRTT List for 2003 (UPDATED Again!)

As part of the year's end, I wanted to take a look back and note the Top Library-related Technology Things (LRTT) that most rocked my world in 2003 and what it means for 2004.

Here's the link for my Top Tech Trends category.

Here's the list:

1. Blogging: I'll say it again, who knew in March 2003 when I trotted off to DC for CIL 2003 that I would come back fired up to blog. I attended Steven Cohen's talk on blogging, accosted him in the hallway of the Hilton while he was gathering himself for another talk, and started reading all of the library-related blogs I could find. Darlene Fichter wrote about libraries and blogs here.

Here is my first ever blog post -- about CIL actually.

Blogging has helped me put thoughts together, remember things, archive cool links to other articles and posts and stay informed about the big things happening in our profession. I also branched off into separate areas for my life away from libraries, my Mac and my iPod . The Sightblog rolls on as well. The blog devoted to my time spent in Traverse City is probably may favorite non-library work, summing up my feelings about time away from work and sharing experiences which received some press coverage!

Will there be a blog backlash? I think blog-style Web pages will become so ubiquitous in 2004 that they'll be as accepted and "second nature" to Web surfers and the name will become less important.

2. Space is important and Space must meet Technology when planning buildings. Libraries are striving to be meeting places now. ..or they should be. Or our users will go to Starbucks, B&N, Panera, etc and connect with wireless or chat or read or whatever. I'm still taken by libraries that utilize space in new, innovative ways. At IL2003, someone in the crowd pointed out that 20,000 people lined up to go through the new San Jose library when it opened. Green? yes please. Sustainable? Undoubtedly. Cerritos PL has become the Experience library for the 21st Century.

3. It's all about People. Wait, isn't it about Technology? No... silly... it's about People and how they use technology to work, play, live, learn and advance. Customer service drives libraries, not the latest coolest gadget.In 2003, I discovered that Apple Stores have got great customer service!

It's also about library staff. I have read so much lately that says "keep your library staff happy, informed and excited about your organization and you will go far!" ">Aaron even shoveled snow from the front of his building! (And I wrote about Customer Service and employees here. ..) If you have an informed, comfortable staff they'll definitely help sell your message. Message?

4. Marketing Libraries for the 21st Century -- From : "Marketing needs to include some basics. The panel agreed that it is more important today for outreach communications to be in the user's language and approachable. A message something like, "Yes, you can really do this," needs to be included when guiding users to library solutions, especially to remote access tools, where a physical librarian is not available to help out. Messaging needs to elucidate benefits—better content and better decisions—rather than a list of URLs and functions." Yes!

Jenny wrote this about being photographed for the Sun-Times article: "The photographer was a gadget guy, so he was particularly interested in hearing about ListenIllinois and wireless access. He was thrilled to learn that the TFML offered free WiFi, and he was even knowledgeable enough to ask why there were no signs highlighting the service, specifically any warchalking symbols. In fact, he said he was willing to sit in his car in the parking lot when the Library is closed to use it because it would save him a trip downtown. "

We need to make sure the services we offer are promoted. A virtual librarian can sit in front of a terminal for hours but if no one in the community knows the librarian is there... what's the use? Same with WiFi... Let's give the coffee shops, hotel lobbies and so many other cool wifi places a run for their money. In my book, Library = wifi access is a good thing...

But we also need to make sure we are doing the right things...and not too much!

Hal Niedzviecki on 10/27/03 wrote this in the Globe and Mail about Canadian libraries doing too much: "By trying to compete with everything from bookstores to community centres to literary awards, public libraries in Canada are in danger of losing their focus at a time when we need them more than ever. The library, and only the library, is in a unique position to help us become citizens capable of grappling with the media-sphere that dominates life in the 21st century. When libraries consolidate their position as free storehouses of information and places where we can learn how to interpret and dispense information in a way that empowers us as a citizenry, we will surely sit up and take notice."

5. RSS: Remember the Kalakala? RSS has become a staple in my daily life: reading all the library-related news and posts every morning, having access to multiple feeds about Apple and the Mac , and news in general... Life is sweet...RSS makes it sweeter.

6. Networking at Conferences: I have been very lucky in my career so far to have the opportunity to attend various library technology conferences. I would recommend this highly for any IT-related library person or, really, anyone whose job it is to be "up" on things tech to attend a conference like CIL or IL ...and chat with people! Not just in the sessions, possibly asking questions, but at the breaks, in the exhibit halls, at the mixers. Don't be shy -- rub some elbows! It's a great way to learn about stuff. "What are you doing at your library about Technology X? Y? Z?" You may be pleased to find other librarians are in the same boat.

I try to be accessible after doing a presentation in case anyone has other questions or points and that carries all the way to the lobby of the hotel, the hotel bar, the health club (or the pier at Fisherman's Wharf!) or wherever you happen to see me.

7. WIFI BABY! How could I forget one of the biggest changes to my digital/tech life. I have become untethered but home, at Panera Bread, at SJCPL , on the road, and anywhere work or leisure takes me! IL2003 really illustrated how far wifi had come when I realized confernce attendees were IMing and blogging INSIDE the Steinbeck Forum during a presentation by Greg Notess.

Posted at 11:07 AM     Read More  

Wed - January 7, 2004

Oh Jenny! Bless You and Your Tech Resolutions (UPDATED)

The Shifted Librarian offers some Tech resolutions:

The cool thing is that SJCPL is doing all of these things: blogging, databases from home, WiFi and Virtual ref... ROCK ON. The missing piece of the puzzle is PROMOTION for us and probably many other libraries like mine.

AND CONGRATS to Jenny on a great article!

Posted at 01:54 PM     Read More  

Sun - January 4, 2004

Future of E-Mail

Via Yahoo News (Via RSS!):

"In the next five years, e-mail will encompass everything from brawnier publishing skills and rights management to compliance tools and identity management. Mailing lists, for example, which have been around for years--albeit typically run as separate applications on servers--will give way to services that better resemble Web publishing. "Clients will include richer subscription management tools," he predicted, and offer ways to move e-mail content, including attached files, to Web logs--known as blogs--for up-to-date posting of internal enterprise information."

I have seen the shift in my own news and info gathering from mailing lists for library stuff to blog environments (like Library Stuff, Jenny's Shifted blog and the Free Range Librarian) as well as the shift to more chat based conversations or messaging. I've fired off an IM to Steven or Blake and know they'll see it when they get back or have time respond. Pretty cool.

Future thoughts: I'd like to see SJCPL use IM for some types of communication -- maybe to support staff in IT or to my office and software support/training issues from various public desks and offices.I'll let you know.

Posted at 11:04 AM     Read More  

Fri - December 26, 2003

The Top Word of the Year is.... (but the 2nd Word is....)

CNN reports that has listed the Top Words of 2003

Take a look:

1. Embedded
News correspondents embedded in military units suggested to many that news correspondents were in bed with the military.

2. Blog

Web logs have come of age and, regrettably, this lexical mutation with them.

WooHoo! Number 2 is BLOG... not their favorite word, I see, but indeed very popular in 2003. Was it Liz Lawley at IL that said " blog " is a rather unfortunate name? I've come to agree...Will there be a blog backlash and a new term? Or will blogs just became a regular part of the web and not actually named differently...

What a year! I didn't know in January 2003 that I would be fact, blogging on 6 different topics ...

And look at this:

Top Internet Words Moving into Widespread Use

1. Ping
Send a reminder, as in 'Ping me about that!'

2. Multitask
To perform several tasks at the same time.

3. 10X
In high tech jargon, the competitive advantage that separates a company from its competition.

4. Off line
The replacement for "out of it," as 'Are you listening or are you off line?'

5. Bandwidth
Capacity, as 'We'll have to increase our bandwidth to handle the order.'

I love it!! Right now, it is the 26th of December 2003, I'm at my Mobile Office in Mishawaka, multitasking this entry, some galleries for , buying tickets to see Hairspray in Chicago , pondering if I need more bandwidth in my brain for all the cool stuff I learned about in 2003 and what I want to do with it in 2004, working on the recruiting PPT that may place SJCPL in the 10X, and feeling pretty good because I was offline for two days this week. Ping me with comments!

Posted at 10:31 AM     Read More  

Wed - December 24, 2003

Eight Mega Pixels.... Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh (Digital Cameras in Libraries)

Interest in Digital Photography is huge right now. Are you teaching a Digital Camera clas s as part of your technology Program at your library? Have you made a camera available to the librarians? If you haven't done it yet, a digicam is a great Holiday gift for you, your library or a love done! Maybe not such an extravagant one as this Sony but cameras are available for all price ranges.

I was at Best Buy this week (like a fool...the lines were crazy) and I spoke with some fellows at the digital camera kiosk. They asked me what to look for to make a decision. I quoted my class on digicams:

Bells & Whistles?

Decide what you want for each of those -- research them (or here too) -- and make your informed decision.

Digital pictures ROCK!

Posted at 09:21 PM     Read More  

Sat - December 13, 2003

Cell Phones with Cameras and all the Fixins.... (WAP, access, kitchen sink)

Now I understand what all the hoopla is about... Unwired...untethered.. a small device that commuinicates via 2 way voice interaction, that captures digital images, records sounds OR brings up current news and Web sites... oh yeah! You got it.... I got a new cell phone this week and have started to learn all of its features. It's a Sony Ericsson T610.

So far I've synced it with iSync to my Powerbook , downloading all contact info including phone numbers and e-mail addresses.

Apple's iSync knew the phone was there without a hitch!

The camera part is coolness incarnate. I have followed Aaron's Lazyitis since I met him at IL 2003 and Jenny's more recent moblog as well. There may be one in my future...

I'm in Chicago -- the suburbs actually -- this weekend for an IKEA trip to furnish renovated space in my house so I'm testing the phone out: AIM, e-mailing pics, voice recording, etc...

Posted at 08:04 AM     Read More  

Wed - December 10, 2003

Oprah's Favorite Tech Things

Is Oprah taping into what the Top Tech Trends are with her Favorite Things? The Blackberry does -- we will be untethered yet connected.... She also likes the Sony DVD camera... uhhhhhh...Sony

Posted at 08:52 AM     Read More  

Sat - December 6, 2003

The Power of RSS and the Future *or* A Ferry called Kalakala

I took notice when Steven Cohen blogged about the Seattle PI offering RSS feeds an immediately subscribed in my version of NetNewsWire . Steven didn't even know I have a great love for all things Seattle and Northwest (PLA anyone? I'll be there....). When my Steve and I were out in Seattle in September of 2001 , I snapped a shot of the old art deco ferry Kalakala in its berth on Lake Washington. Always interested in historic preservation, Steve inquired about it then and the last time we were there. No one really had good info... and it had actually slipped my mind to do some searching....

Last night, this little article rolls into my aggregator:

WooHoo! This is the song Steven Cohen taught me: RSS is pretty darn cool and will make some serious changes in the way we get our news. I think SJCPL needs an RSS feed... Monday, I'll look into it.

Posted at 09:18 AM     Read More  

Thu - November 20, 2003

The Information Industry Revolution: Implications for Librarians

Take a look at:

George Plosker writes up a panel discussion at Online. LOADS of cool stuff to take in here: aggregators, vendors, marketing...

Posted at 10:05 AM     Read More  

Sun - November 16, 2003

RSS Synchronicity

Okay -- when something like this happens it says a lot to me:

After a great handful of days in Monterey at Internet Librarian hanging with some very cool people, including Steven Cohen, who is my number one proponent of the power of RSS, I am reading my morning Seattle Times at my favorite breakfast place in the Pike Place Market, when I come across this:

RSS explained for the masses! In the Seattle paper.... Okay, Seattle is pretty wired, but this means RSS is making inroads beyond the techie types...This means that soon people will be hooking up to aggregators and sending our RSS on their sites! Too cool!

Posted at 10:13 AM     Read More  

Tue - October 28, 2003

Amazon Search

Take a look:
(Via Bibliofuture and LISNEWS)

"Search inside" could be the perfect solution to this common problem. Instead of staring at the bookshelves for an hour, pulling out volumes, and flipping randomly through the pages, you'd log onto Amazon and "search inside your library." Of course, you'd have to describe the contents of your library to Amazon, but unless your library is of Jeffersonian proportions, that's no more than an afternoon's work. (For some of us who buy almost exclusively from Amazon, you could get a jump-start by having Amazon automatically populate your "search inside" library with books you've already bought.) For the biblio-extroverts among us, Amazon could let you publish your library for the world to see, just as it allows users to create reading lists on various topics today.

Note: "your library" = your personal collection of books.... but what are the future implications for libraries?

Posted at 06:23 PM     Read More  

Wed - October 1, 2003

RFID: Saviour or Threat?

I didn't realize how up in arms so many people were about RFID. There's a lot to sort out there... (!)

But this morning, there's a great column in USAToday about RFID:

Kevin Maney writes: "....contrary to many press reports, RFID hasn't suffered setbacks from privacy concerns or anything else. Events of the past couple of weeks show that RFID is on course to become a profound part of everyday life, more common than socks, or even For Dummies books.

A RFID tag is a small strip of plastic containing a computer chip and a radio antenna. The chip can hold 96 characters of information that can identify whatever the tag is stuck to. The antenna can wirelessly send that information to a receiver, which then dumps it into computers for tracking and analysis.

The tags are, in essence, super-intelligent bar codes with tiny cell phones. ..."

Posted at 07:27 PM     Read More