Thursday, January 25, 2007

RSS Digest #1 : Cons, Connectivity, and Cataloging...

Anybody else have this problem? you're skimming through your bloglines, and see a interesting post or link. You think, "ooh! I want to blog that!" So you tag it for future reference and move along to the next feed. Before you know it you've posted on a few articles, but mostly you have a backlog of tagged posts, your viewer is a mess, and you know that by the time you catch up nobody will even remember the original post, and a half-dozen other bloggers will have posted far better responses to it already. So you clear your saved posts and swear to "keep up better", skim through the new posts, see an interesting item, tag it...

You get where I'm going, right?

I've gotten to the realization that I do not have enough hours in the day to write profound commentaries on every issue of the day AND have a life. Trying to accomplish that leads to writer's block, which is counter-productive to my goal of keeping this blog updated on a regular basis. Long story short (WAY too late :-) ), I'm going to stop trying to do it all. Thursdays from now on are my "roundup" days, where I post links to all the nifty posts or resources I've run into in the past week, with a few lines of commentary.* I hope you find this new digest useful!

RSS digest for 1/17-25/2006

Library Posts and articles:

LibraryLaw Blog: When good librarians and bad policies collide…
An excellent example of how NOT to write your community room policy--at least if you don't want to get sued...

My Top-ten Library 2.0 “No-brainers” for Public Libraries « The Other Librarian
Some other folks have blogged on this already, but I think it deserves a second mention. For those of you suffering "information overload" regarding tools, projects, implementations, and all the other stuff that gets babbled about in our wacky corner of the web, this is an EXCELLENT primer on picking the best tools and implementing them in your library.

Eliminating Series Authority Records and Series Title Control: Improving Efficiency or Creating Waste? Or, 12 Reasons Why the Library of Congress Should Reconsider Its SARs Decision AND More on What is Going on at the Library of Congress
Brought to my attention by David Bigwood over at Catalogablog, these are two well-thought our papers on the LC series cataloging issue, as well as the broader changes going on in DC, both in-depth yet in coherent language for non-catalogers. I don't care if you couldn't tell MARC from the michelin man, these changes affect everyone in US librarianship (and beyond). READ.

Information Wants To Be Free » Does distance learning have to be like this?
Both the post that inspired this and Meredith's response are great discussions on the state of distance learning. As a MLIS graduate who attended a satellite campus (who took almost half her classes online), and in my current role as a DL librarian, I've got some strong opinions on the state of distance ed myself, and I'm glad to see the benefits and drawbacks being discussed by so many folks in more depth than "OMG izn't tech kewl!1!!!". This post is a must for all academic librarians--if you campus doesn't have distance learners yet, you WILL. I can guarantee it.

ResourceShelf » Law Professor Predicts Wikipedia’s Demise
Eric Goldman's--shall we say-- pessimistic analysis of Wikipedia in December 5's Information Week is an interesting summary is a great summary of the threats facing the elephant in our reference sections. I'm not sure Wikipedia's future is as grim as Goldman suggests, but finding a way to deal with spammers (as well as companies attempting to buy favorable edits) is a critical issue facing the folks at Wikimedia.

Library 2.0: An Academic's Perspective: ALA Midwinter Meeting: I'm Not There
I'm not the only one who can't afford midwinter--phew! I'll be honest here, the requirements to attend conference for many of the various leadership roles within roundtables and committees is why I haven't yet gotten as involved in ALA as I'd like to be. Laura has quite a lot to say about our organizations' conferences, and delivers familiar criticisms and suggestions in a potent way.

a long-overdue update on the special library 2.0 survey
What a concept! Amanda Etches-Johnson has put together a survey to find out what 2.0 tools are actually being used by special libraries. Click on to see her results and analysis.

Productivity posts and articles:

7 Ways to Track Internet’s Trends and Popular News -
I don't subscribe to every feed in the LIS and Time management worlds, but some days it feels like it... Here are some tips to help you sort the wheat from the chaff. I've recently unsubbed from digg and slashdot as they contributed to my overload rather than helping it. (I might feel differently if I was in IT or software development) However, some of the other tips and tools look handy.

Kewl Reference website of the week
Every week (or at least every week I find something nifty), I'm going to post the most interesting or useful reference resource I run across. Today's is...

Encyclopedia of Death and Dying
Title says it all, really....there are some truly fascinating and useful articles here on things like the black plague and advance directives , but I still wouldn't suggest surfing over while you've got insomnia...

and that's it! see you soon...

* on a semi-related note, does anyone more than I know a way I could auto post a list of bookmarks marked with a particular tag? I see how to do daily posts of everything I tag, but I doubt people here are terribly interested in research for my nonprofit board or my ongoing attempts to learn Mandarin :-)