Archive for the 'social software' Category

Lyrics:
song: hi-fi-sci-fi Library

Here-in contains collected thoughts from our brains
when it comes to the subject of: wow!
Like: Wow, it’s amazing that for thousands of years
libraries have survived at all
The razing, book blazing, techno staff crazing
fighting competition new tech and how
to emerge like a rocketship, speedy and fast
that is demanded in our world right NOW!!!

Chorus:
Hi-fi, sci-fi, library!
Hi-fi, sci-fi, library!
S. R. Ran-ga-na-than ‘long with Benjamin Franklin,
Dewey, Kilgour and good people like YOU
Learnt that Mashed up with currents and a whole bunch of circuits
info went to many not just the few.
Now we wrestle with techno, money and limitations,
that might sometimes make a good man go “ewww”
But we’re telling you brothers, sisters, ladies and others
that we’re near a massive “Wow!” breakthrough.
it is your:
Chorus

To prepare our libraries we must be informed, explore lots
and have fun learning how to evolve.
Learn about things like gaming, social software and being
just where our users are: that brings us HUGE Wows.
Look at open-source software and the creative commons,
look at netfilx and itunes and learn how
We can take competition, turn it into fruition:
THE LIBRARY FOR TOMORROW AND NOW!
It will be:

hi-fi-sci-fi-libraries!
hi-fi-sci-fi-libraries!

Now we sometimes might wonder how to succeed not blunder
since we’re underneath the specter of “how?”
It’s a do or die sea change and we cannot just remain, what we
were before or we’ll just sink down.
Take time daily, read lib blogs, build community, and
slog the through the learning, practice, wisdom and “pow!”
It will be fun we promise, you’ll work hard but will harness
and endow your libs tomorrow with “WoW!”
The wow of:

Chorus repeated

spoken over the chorus

We can do it.
We just need to be wise
and explain the situation
in a way that’s fun and savvy

Be informed
and connect with our communities.
We must engage with em all
from the kids to my mammy

banter over chorus
*fade*”

hi-fi sci-fi librarians:

Kathryn Greenhill
Murdoch University
Fremantle, Western Australia.
librariansmatter.com

Steven Lawson
http://stevelawson.name/seealso/
Tutt Library, Colorado College

Michelle Boule and Gideon Smith
wanderingeyre.com (Michelle’s site, not Gideon’s;)

John Blyberg – Darien Library
blyberg.net

Jessamyn West
librarian.net

Nebraska Library Commission Staff:
Michael Sauers
(as himself AND an alien and sock puppet)
Allana Novotny
Susan Knisely
Christa Burns

Joanna Axelrod – Escondido Public Library
Donna Feddern – Escondido Public Library

Cindy Hickey – State Library of Kansas
webjunctionworks.org/ks/blog/

WebJunction Staff (l to r):
top:
Chrystie Hill
Michael Shapiro
Allison Severinghaus
Laura Staley
bottom:
Emily Inlow-Hood
Jennifer Peterson
Emily Warren
Laura Zingg

Chadwick Seagraves
InfoSciPhi.info

Steve Miller
Allen County Public Library

http://goateedlibrarian.blogspot.com/

Jason Griffey
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Eliza Griffey
Future hi-fi sci-fi librarian?
jasongriffey.net

Katie Dunneback
younglibrarian.net

Blake Carver
lisnews.org

Christopher Parent

Cindi Trainor
And her two lovely and talented girls. 
Thank you very much, ladies!

Images:

Circuits:
Oliver Ingrouille

http://www.flickr.com/photos/82705724@N00/119490271/

Zombie37

circuit board

quapan

labyrinthine circuit board lines

lungstruck

Red Circuit Board

Todd Cliff

Urban Nightscape

maury.mccown

Custom Boost PCB

MarkyBonn

Electric Piano

diluvienne

I ♥ techno

BotheredByBees

green circuit board II

green circuit board I

oskay

Cylon circuit close up

geerlingguy

Circuit Board

PAUL

http://www.flickr.com/photos/marxalot/378898700/

uLe@Dortmund

mnsc

HDDDetail (Art)

MathiasM

Electric city :) - TTL graveyard

endolith

Top of the keyboard PCB

Dano

Quantum IC

oskay

555 LED flasher 1

Classic

Synthesis Studio

iPod Sport Kit Receiver Unclad - Front

social software:
b d solis (via flickr)

ear buds:
aloshbennett

radio debian

kitty cat cowbell
Chicken Stock

I Gets You More Cowbell

creative commons:

http://creativecommons.org/presskit

drm:

http://www.eff.org/

Thank you all so much for being a part of this project!

-Michael & David

Michael Porter
libraryman.com

David Lee King
davidleeking.com

—————-
Now playing: David Lee King & Michael Porter – hifi scifi library

This still is taken from a promotional video about facebook*:
built by the people...for FACEBOOK

REALLY?
Well…maybe not so much.
You see, as things continue to evolve in relation to social networking and information access online, this premise starts to become something startlingly close to propaganda. And it is a premise I am beginning to disagree with more strongly. Why? Simply because facebook is a for-profit company. Their motivation as a business both officially and in practice is to make money. While I am positive there are many lovely people working there that are generous, kind and philanthropically minded, the bottom line is that facebook is a company that is very simply most interested in getting people to use their product; not so they can be useful to society, but so they can make money. And they will use they information they get from you to do just that. With no obligation beyond laws (largely constructed to facilitate money making in business) to guard your privacy. And they are under absolutely no obligation to return anything back to the community. Even if the *say* they are nice and want to do good, they are, in fact not formally bound to taking any actions in this regard.

Now, it is very true that facebook is an amazing service that many of us use, appreciate and are grateful to have access to (myself included). But society needs the opportunity to use these sorts of tools and features in a venue that both understands and guards privacy while at the same time protects information access rather then sells information paths of choice (through ads). An institution that is designed to build up the community it nurtures…you know, like libraries and schools.

And it goes beyond facebook-like tools (for community futures). I would suggest that Google-like tools (for search/basic information discovery) should have the same non-profit, ad-free (for the most part), purely motivated capacity as well for the greatest public benefit.

Problem is, when it comes to the future of libraries, and modern/connected civilization’s access to electronic (and physical) community and information access this is blatantly missing from the too dominant tools in electronic search (arguably, Google) and electronic community building (arguably, facebook). And what is missing is starting to feel more dramatic and chasm-like with each passing month.

Libraries need to continue (and significantly grow) their work as professional guardians of community access to information. This means we (libraries and library professionals) need to be the most highly trained facilitators the world has when it comes to information access, community connections, community interactions, privacy protection and electronic tools. You know, the things at the root of the popularity of tools like facebook and Google. The things libraries have been best at for decades (sans the electronic tools part, which is our only real achilles heel in this scenario).

I wish both information professionals and society at large would really seriously think about this. And then act on it in an organized fashion. College professors, primary school teachers, parents, politicians, students and anyone else concerned about the positive growth of humanity should think about this. The “market” does not always dictate what works best for society and this is an instance that requires larger forces than “the market” to intercede. If that doesn’t happen, because of Google-ish and facebook-like tools, our free, unbiased access to information and community stands at risk. There is a potential crisis brewing here and there are not enough people talking about solutions to this crisis in the context mentioned in this post.

It becomes more clear to me with every passing month: some amalgam of social networking tools (like facebook) and for profit search tools (like Google) should be a non-profit that helps people along in their community and information access journeys. All the while guarding their privacy in ways facebook and Google would never dare. Perhaps opt-in’s for users to accept ads could be built into that system to generate revenue to support the system, but in a less integrated way that didn’t affect workforce in the manner it currently does, particularly on facebook at the moment.

So far, facebook has been thumped on here, but Google is in the same boat. Like almost all of you, I use Google almost every day as well. And I am grateful for Google. But words like “Don’t be evil” as a corporate “Code of Conduct” legally means NOTHING (as opposed to a library’s mission statement and governance structure) If you do believe Google cares about ideals more than money, ask who controls their purse strings. Or look at the official Google URL the describes their code: http://investor.google.com/conduct.html. investor.google.com tells us quite clearly where their corportae priorities exist. And what their official mission and business plan entails. Compare Google’s “Code of Conduct” to ANY mission statement** at a Public Library and ask yourself: “Who do YOU want to control and steer you along as you seek information?” Which point of view would most people choose to support given this information?

Misleading content like that in the facebook video above and things like the Google Librarian Librarian projects hold more potential threat than it would first seem. At recent ALA conferences the Google booth was a very popular stop. Many librarians eagerly made videos about how great Google was for libraries…and then *poof* Google disappears from Libraryland for almost a year on their project blog and are nowhere to be found at this years ALA conference. It is that we aren’t importnat enough customers to get Google to stick with us? Did they get what they wanted from us (support) until they didn’t need it anymore? Each side has it’s perspective, but I assure you, Google attends the conferences it feels it needs to. They certainly aren’t staying away because they are short on funds. It most certainly is, at the very least a curious case of unexplained absence. Not the thing to do in the electronic information and community access environment we find ourselves today. It seems that if Google clearly understood this and did have their mission at the front of their minds, they would have thought this through more carefully and acted accordingly.

To this information professional and electronic community activist, it comes down to this: Google and facebook are both businesses, out to make money. Libraries exist to serve their community with information access and community connection opportunities. If individuals or corporations like Google, facebook, etc, really want to get good things done with community, and if you truly care about community and information access, I would implore you to work with library and information professionals, library schools and organizations like OCLC and ALA. Give them resources, support their work with what you are good at, bind yourselves intimately to their success. THAT would do no evil! Most importantly I would ask you to support your local library. And do so in a way that guarantees that participation as long as your company thrives. THEN I will think about giving you wider support and endorsement and not just think of you as a case study in what Libraryland needs to do to succeed without being taken advantage of and potentially usurped by you. Technology is a tool, and we simply mustn’t allow libraries to become a tool that gets less and less useful as it is usurped by a tool that is guided simply by money, with no permanent obligation to give back. That is one of the deepest societal tragedies I can imagine and its consequences would truly be severe and horrible.

*facebook image taken from this video. It appears you are required to be a registered user to view this video.

**Yep, that is a Google search result link.

—————
Now playing: Beck – Youthless

Libraryman

You Got Your WorldCat In My facebook?

I try hard to keep work separate from this blog. Very rarely though, there is some spill over beyond me saying “I did this at work”. And now is one of those happy times. Actually, it’s more of a “I know these great folks from OCLC who shared a sneak peak and now I am allowed to share a bit of the juicy stuff as well”. At this point it is mostly informative and less participatory. And it is very beta. A test. What is it?

It is the WorldCat application for facebook! It is NOT listed in the application directory on Facebook so you have to receive an invite to get it. It may change, it may stick, it may not. Regradless, as a dutiful beta tester, I’ve included a couple of screen shots here for the curious. Click any image to got to it’s flickr page and be able to see it much larger:

Logged in view of the facebook WorldCat app:
facebook WorldCat app

If you get an invitation to beta test it will show up looking like this once you are logged in to facebook (I circled it in red so it would stand out):
facebook worldcat invitation

When you click the invite, you get something like this explaining the app:
facebook worldcat invitation details

This bug has gone bye bye (I was an early beta tester, lol). You really likely won’t ever see this, but it was funny:
facebook worldcat error

And again, a view logged in to the app. I know, I know, it gets cut off, but this time its bigger (Go away giant MONK ad!:):
facebook WorldCat app

I am very grateful to be looped into the testing and am also happy to share that I generously told:

If you want to, you could blog it. But your readers will need an invite to get the app so that could create some overhead for you.

Ok. I can handle that. I think. :) How about this, if you have a facebook account and want to give this a beta run, drop me a line. Email or on facebook is fine. Feel free to friend me on facebook while your at it. :) If possible, you will get an invite to test based on speed of response. I’ll pass the info along as quickly as possible given the holiday weekend. Assume though at this point that you’ll be put on a list of potential beta folks and that if you get an invite then you get to test. This is a very informal get the word out a little bit of community sharing, not an official work initiative by any means. I am doing this ’cause I like it and it is pretty darn neat in theory. Not really for work (though from work I know) Ahhh.. overhead reduced (and level of my tertiary involvement revealed).

Does the title of this post make anyone wonder about our information creation and consumption environment? Wouldn’t it be good to be able to have a WorldCat that would allow us to flip it and say “You got your facebook in my WorldCat?”

PS-If you look at the pics and ask yourself “Who is Bob Robertson Boyd?”, I would guess you might expect to ask yourself that question a bit more in the future. Bob works with a team of folks on “social stuff” at OCLC in Dublin, Ohio and does some fine work. And just to clarify, I work on the team at WebJunction in Seattle that works on “social stuff” and, as most of you know, WebJunction has some nifty connections to OCLC.

I usually spend a good 30-60 minutes making an intro slide for each presentation I do. I figure that the intro slide will be up there on the screen for 15 minutes or so before the session starts and people seeing it can start to get a sense of the session and the presenter and how they fit in as an attendee. And frankly, it’s just fun to try and take something that is not intrinsically beautiful (PowerPoint) and make something pretty or interesting to look that is appropriately evocative. Sometimes it works better than others, and themes tend to run in stretches, but the effort is always made. Most times, I’ll post a screen shot of the slide to flickr and often use it here on the blog as well. Well imagine my happy surprise a couple of weeks back when I saw the web site the folks from Inland Northwest Council of Libraries (INCOL) that had done the work for me. Check this out!:

The INCOL Workshop 2007 Banner

It’s a little silly and a little funny and says what we’ll cover and shows them who’s gonna be yapping at them for two hours. Fun! Thanks to who(m)ever whipped this little number up at INCOL. Nice work.

Oh, and btw, if you are in Coeur D’Alene this Friday, I still think you can get a ticket. If you’ll be there, pop in and say howdy!

Libraryman

One Laptop Per Child: Give One Get One

One Laptop Per Child
These are the fabled “$100 laptops” we’ve been hearing about for some time now. While they do cost more than $100 (twice that in fact) the concept is no less fascinating. Now, for two weeks only, you can buy one and give one in a sort of “donation bundle”. Not saying to plop down your $$$ here, but at the very least it’s an interesting initiative. Lots of potential for library reach here. At the very least a nifty gadget, right?
One Laptop Per Child: Give One Get One

Libraryman

Big Announcement

It is party time ‘round Libraryman way my friends! And it’s a community party, which means that you are invited (see the next to last paragraph of this blog post for you invitation details). At this party, you get to tell me a story or two…..and I get to write. A book. For ALA Editions!
Libraryman Celebrates
While I’m bursting to tell you about my first book deal ever, Jenni Fry, Editor at ALA Editions tells the story in a much calmer and more reasonable voice:
“At Midwinter (2007) in Seattle, no fewer than three people sought me out, one even stopping me on the street, to tell me that “Michael Porter’s got an idea” for a book. Never one to be too slow on the uptake, I made sure to talk with him at a reception we were both attending. Several conversations and one contract later, I’m thrilled to say that Michael (aka Libraryman) will be writing for us.

Just what is this big idea, you say? Michael will be interviewing and gathering stories from individuals and institutions that have become leaders in successful electronic community engagement. He will use these stories as the basis for real-world lessons that libraries can use to more effectively engage the communities they serve. The work will be many things: part historical snapshot of this transition period in library service, part motivational storytelling, part benchmarking, and part practical handbook.”

Of course, Jenni is being a generous friend and editor because as I remember the story, it was I who tracked her down, two minute book pitch/elevator speech on the tip of my eager tongue. Regardless of how it happened, they did actually sign the contract so it is now legal and everything. In fact, I’ve taken a couple of stabs at an intro. Here’s one that is close:

“This is a book about effective and practical electronic community engagement. It is a book bursting with valuable, moving, entertaining, exciting and often times unusual stories and ideas. The stories all have lessons that center on people engaging with electronic community in ways that make the players more human. Each centrally themed collection of stories concludes with lessons learned, ideas and action items you can put to use in your library, business or personal life.”

I hope you like it, ‘cause unless the ALA folks say no, that’s how the book will go.
Now I get to thank a few folks that made this happen and then I’ll give you the official Michael Porter invitation to the party. Here goes:
Thanks to Jenni Fry and Patrick Hogan at ALA Editions for making this happen.
A whole slew of thank you’s to Chrystie Hill, who has a book coming out very soon herself and who also really helped align the stars that spelled out Y E S to this book proposal.
Also, thanks to Janie Hermann, who unbeknownst to me, also smiled upon this project.

The biggest thanks however go to the audience for and major subject matter of the book, that is, the inspirational and motivational colleagues I am blessed to know and work with. Does it crack anybody else up that simply thanking all the Jennifers’, Davids’, Michaels’ and Karens’ out there in Libraryland covers half of us?  Seriously though, thank you for helping to make this the most exciting time ever to work in libraries. This project will succeed because of you. Which leads me to your invitation to the party!

Your invitation:
This is my first public request for both library and NON-LIBRARY stories of community engagement. If you have had a story the has sprung to life from a single, or series of electronic community building tools and would be willing to share, please let me know so others can learn from it in this book! The more dramatic, intense, moving, informative, useful, practical and entertaining are obviously desirable. However, the beauty of subtlety is appreciated here as well. Even sending a one or two paragraph summary of a noteworthy community engagement story in your life could be a genuinely helpful inclusion in the book. So please think about your stories and consider sharing them with this book’s future audience. You can e-mail them to me at: michael.libraryman at sign gmail.com

I have some good content, substantial ideas and leads already, BUT we really need lots of stories like the ones described above from all over. In fact, they do not have to come from just library staffers. Non-library stories of electronic community engagement will make up the majority of those exemplified and examined in this book. That means if you have friends or family with stories that could enhance this book, I would LOVE to hear them!

Finally, this is my first book deal, so I am especially excited. I believe there is real benefit for Libraryland in the subject matter and approach here, which makes the project really pop for me as a librarian, practical tech advocate and author. But frankly, I don’t plan on trying to write a huge number of books. That means I truly believe in the idea and will work hard to make this useful, practical and helpful for us all. So for me, it is a big deal. And while it is a very happy project with lots of interesting work in store, I would like to end this announcement by thanking my dear grandma, Irene Porter-Baer. Grandma passed a way a few years ago but she was always one of my best friends, closest allies and strongest champions. I wouldn’t have been able to attend college or grad school without her help, so this opportunity would not have come to pass without her. I miss her and think of her often. I also try my best to make a proud legacy for her with my work. It is just another motivation to make this book be the best I can make it for us all. So either in the books’ introduction or conclusion I will thank you folks in Libraryland, and I will also thank my inspirational grandma that I owe a huge part of this current opportunity to.

Now please send me your stories of electronic community engagement, people! 

ALA Editions Book Deal Blog Post
PS-I’ll bet my editors are quaking in fear the the entire book will be as turgid as this blog post. Hey, at least I used the word “turgid”! :) <–Note to self, no emoticons in the book.

What an amazing day for the Libraries and Librarians Group on flickr! Today we passed both the 1,500 member mark and also now have more than 10,000 images in the pool. It’s all authentic and It’s all you, libraries, librarians and library lovers! Link:
http://www.flickr.com/groups/librariesandlibrarians/

The screenshots below document the happy events, both of which happened today:

1,500 Members:
1500+ Members In The flickr Libraries and Librarians Group Today!

10,000+ Images:
10,000+ Images In The flickr Libraries and Librarians Group 10000 images

Thanks to everyone that has joined and contributed to this amazing global community

Libraryman

facebook Fixes IT?

Ah ha!!
The facebook “story types adjustment “equalizer”” solves a problem and demonstrates that the cluttering problems that many have complained about (with just about every successful social networking tool out there) are actually quite fixable. And fixable in a way that can be intuitive. Wow! Don’t you love big brains in action? This isn’t the ultimate solution to be sure, but it shows that there are rock solid legitimate solutions to this problem that are readily accessible and understandable to general users of social software. This stuff is going to drive how we use the internet for a long, long while, and that is GOOD.

facebook Fixes IT?
facebook is on top right now for quite a few reasons and this is yet another example of why. Good on ya’ facebook!

*update*
Some wondered if this “equalizer” really worked, so I took a screenshot showing that after it was launched (yesterday or today) my feed was sparse and text. Shortly after I adjust my settings, you can see the more dynamic content returning to my home page (these are the posts towards the top with pictures, etc). Please note the typo that says “storytimes” instead of story types. It was ten years ago that I was a Children’s Librarian, but those days happily never really leave you.
facebook fixes it and here is a demo of it working