Archive for September, 2008

It looks like Pandora (and their amazing Music Genome Project) might be in trouble. The “Where the heck did my internet radio go?!” kind of trouble. And it’s not just Pandora in very immediate danger, it is internet radio at large (including my second favorite internet radio station, Radio Nigel). You really do care about Pandora and internet radio, really you do. Here are a few reasons why and an ask as well:
Community Connecting, Pandora Style

I’ve been fascinated with Pandora and their content delivery model for years now. Pandora tries to demo a new kind of service model to libraries. If they go bye-bye they’ll never be able to work with us. Work with us? What am I talking about? While I haven’t blogged about it before, I know for a fact that Pandora loves and supports libraries. I personally know a group of librarians and libraries that Pandora folks help in a pretty significant way. I’d be happy to talk to you about it in person if you have questions. In the meantime, let me offer my Pandora shirt as an inkling that I am being honest about this. :)
So geeked out.  Thank you!

So here’s the ask. And it doesn’t come from me:

“From: tim.westergren@pandora.com
To: ***************
Subject: PANDORA urgently needs your help: Bill Just Introduced to Save
Date: Sat, 27 Sep 2008 07:18:21 -0700

Hi, it’s Tim from Pandora;

After a yearlong negotiation, Pandora, SoundExchange and the RIAA are finally optimistic about reaching an agreement on royalties that would save Pandora and Internet radio. But just as we’ve gotten close, large traditional broadcast radio companies have launched a covert lobbying campaign to sabotage our progress.

Yesterday, Congressman Jay Inslee, and several co-sponsors, introduced legislation to give us the extra time we need but the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), which represents radio broadcasters such as Clear Channel, has begun intensively pressuring lawmakers to kill the bill. We have just days to keep this from collapsing.

This is a blatant attempt by large radio companies to suffocate the webcasting industry that is just beginning to offer an alternative to their monopoly of the airwaves.

Please call your Congressperson right now and ask them to support H.R. 7084, the Webcaster Settlement Act of 2008 – and to not capitulate to pressure from the NAB. Congress is currently working extended hours, so even calls this evening and over the weekend should get answered.

If the phone is busy, please try again until you get through. These calls really do make a difference.

Representative Joe Baca: 202-225-6161

Thanks so much for you ongoing support.

Tim”

Initial response to the above looks positive (today anyway), we’ve all seen tables like these turn on a dime. Please don’t let smart but very, very sneaky lawyers from gigantic corporations take away one of the best things going on the internet!

—————-
Now playing:
Dean Gray – St Jimmy The Prankster
&
Dean Gray – Novocaine Rhapsody

Libraryman

hi-fi sci-fi library: The Presentation

(Maybe) You’ve heard the song and seen the video. Now you can see the presentation that inspired them both!

-Hi-Fi-Sci-Fi-Library: Technology, Convergence, Content, Community, Ubiquity and Library Futures.
LITA National Forum – keynote – October 18, Cincinnati, OH

Description:
So you think its an interesting time to be a librarian now? Just wait! Through an examination of past trends, current tech, emerging tech, academic futurism and a dash of pop culture, well take a realistic peek at where library technology is headed. Well then take this information and start planning what we can do now to ensure that libraries not only continue to offer our vital service, but that our role and positive contributions to society increase – perhaps quite dramatically.

The presentation is stuffed full of multi media, special effects and lots of realistic, yet fun and thought provoking surprises designed to get your mind chugging along as is contemplates the future of Libraryland. A future populated with hi-fi sci-fi libraries!

These two intro slides will be running at as people are filtering into the room (they are slightly clipped here, click to see the whole slide):
hi-fi sci-fi library: LITA 08 Intro Slide #1

hi-fi sci-fi library: LITA 08 Intro Slide #2

Hope to see some of you there!

Libraryman

LJ Mover & Shaker Nominations Are Open

Today over on friendfeed, Greg Schwartz (of Uncontrolled Vocabulary fame), posted this:
Oh boy, it’s LJ Movers and Shakers nomination season again. Where does the time go?”
And within seven hours there were almost 50 comments. Some are typically irreverent and fun, but others are more pointed. So what is this award really about?

Well, the Library Journal Mover & Shaker Award recognizes “emerging leaders in the library world.” This is the eighth year for the award (and special print supplement to the regular magazine). Each year LJ “profile(s) 50-plus up-and-coming individuals from across the United States and Canada who are innovative, creative, and making a difference. From librarians to vendors to others who work in the library field”.

In my conversations and observations, the general consensus out there in Libraryland is that this is a very good thing to have happen each year and that it is a valuable “thing” to receive. There are some exceptions to this more general opinion though which are interesting to note.

In Greg’s friendfeed discussion thread on the subject some folks put forth the idea that this whole “Mover & Shaker” business is mostly just a marketing tool. I wouldn’t disagree, but it isn’t just a marketing for LJ in my opinion. I think Libraryland should honor their own more than they do. This recognition tool is for a specific segment of our profession. And I think it is important. I would also say that I think we need a couple other awards of this size that embrace the folks that don’t fit into the category of this award. Wouldn’t be a total blast to work on coming up with those award criteria?

But *this* is the award that the largest number of my closest Libraryland colleagues are involved with. And I have personally seen the positive impact receiving it has had on several careers. So the award get my vote of support. And I don’t say this lightly either. I have had lengthy conversations with more than one very high profile winner of this award that really thought it was mostly bunk. I respect their opinion on this, but also know that they have the luxury of not really caring about this. Besides, I believe that even if they didn’t care about getting it, that the award provided more attention to their work. And their work is just magnificent in my opinion. So, I still say this is a valuable event/award/honor to hold.

A couple folks observed that there have been cases where people became more isolated in their library after receiving this award. I’ve heard that too, and know it a real concern for some. From my observations this is a more rare exception. An exception that is amazingly frustrating and intolerable, but an important thing to note.

So I’m here to encourage you to vote for the next round of LJ Movers & Shakers.

I can think of several folks just right off the top of my head that would be fine Libraryland reps for this award. I know there really are hundreds of others. In fact, I’d LOVE for you to list other names in the comments! Here are a few I wold love to see get this award:

Jason Griffey
Cindi Trainor
Greg Schwartz
Bobbi Newman
Josh Neff

And, I have to confess that I posted this to the discussion we had today about the award:
“So is there a way to try to get nominated without coming across like an egocentric jerk? *ahem*” So, no, I haven’t ever been selected as a Library Journal Mover & Shaker award winner.

So who do you think should be on the list this year??

Libraryman

Immediate Software Job Openings @ OCLC!

Straight from the OCLC HR dept today: “We have regional openings that need to be filled immediately and we need your help!”. So, even though I don’t often mix business with the pleasure of blogging, today it will happen. Here goes:

If you are a software engineer or Web/User Interface Designer, if you are talented, hard working and motivated, AND if you would like a good job, with good pay and benefits in a very livable city, well then you may be reading the perfect blog post.

The following jobs are open right now. Perhaps one of them is just the thing you have been looking for?:
Sr. Software Engineer – Job ID 1614 (Seattle, WA)
Consulting Software Engineer – Job ID 1613 (Seattle, WA)
Consulting Software Engineer NL – Job ID 1612 (Boulder, CO)
Associate Product Manager – Job ID 1590 (Boulder, CO)
Sr. Software Engineer NL – Job ID 1577 (Boulder, CO)
Sr. Web and User Interface Designer – Job ID 1524 (Open Location/Remote)
Sr. Software Engineer – Job ID 1511 (Seattle, WA)
Sr. Software Engineer – Job ID 1343 (San Mateo, CA)

You can find details about these, and other jobs at OCLC, here:
www.oclc.jobs

So if you have mad skills and are interested you might drop me (or another person with an OCLC connection) a line. OCLC is motivated to find the right people to fill these roles quickly!

Libraryman

PAX 2008

Yesterday was a glorious geek out day for me here is Seattle as I took most of the day to attend the Penny Arcade Expo (aka PAX). Here’s what PAX is:
“PAX is a three-day game festival for tabletop, videogame, and PC gamers. We call it a festival because in addition to dedicated tournaments and freeplay areas we’ve got nerdcore concerts, panel discussions, the weekend-long Omegathon event, and an exhibitor hall filled with booths displaying the latest from top game publishers and developers. Even with all this amazing content the best part of PAX is hanging out with other people who know their shit when it comes to games.”

Along with a growing chorus of library professionals and educators, I believe the connections between gaming, community, technology, learning and libraries are gearing up for even more convergence and practical application. So besides just general geeking out and feeling completely comfortable (even at the X-Box presentation) all day, I attended a few sessions and I met some very brilliant, happy, informed and sometimes extravagantly decorated people.

So if you were of the ilk that enjoys these sorts of activities then you were in hog heaven. In know Chad from Hidden Peanuts was there too and I imagine he’ll be talking about it quite a bit. For now, here are some pictures to show you what my Sunday at PAX was like (click on them for larger images if you like):
Eeep! Zombies! PAX08

PAX Gaming and Community Panel
(l to r) Nelson Rodriguez – Gamerscore Blog, Nick Pulee – EvilAvatar.com, Christa Phillips – XBL Community Manager (Gamerchix is part of her scene), Flynn DeMarco – GayGamer.net, David Abram – CheapAssGamer.com.
This panel was my favorite event at the conference. Community is what makes it work, gaming, libraries or otherwise. It was great to hear people doing the same type of work, confirming ideas and sharing. Very good stuff.

Everybody Loves Wil Wheaton @ PAX08
To say Wil Wheaton was a big draw is an understatement. Most folks just know him this way, but he is not really that. He’s more like this.

What else would you expect to see at an event like this?
PAX08 SW Happens

She said something about wanting to steal my soul, but I was all, “Nah, let’s just take a picture together.”
PAX08 whitey

If you like Xbox, you may know this guy as Major Nelson:
PAX08 Major Nelson 2

WoW folks will dig this sneak peek shot:
PAX08 WoW Preview
(You can join our Libraries and Librarians guild btw, WoWing lib peeps!)

Party on, PAX!
PAX08 1
See you next year. :)

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Now playing: Dean Gray – Greenday Massacre