Wednesday, May 25, 2011

library school, examined

My first post is up at Hack Library School. It is part of the "Hack Your Program" series, with all of the contributing writers (and some guest writers) sharing their experiences in library school. Please click on over, and after reading it feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you think!

Speaking of library school, I can't wait for it to be over so I can read this book:

Watch the full episode. See more PBS NewsHour.

Hack Library School

I've been waiting for a few days to make this announcement as I wanted to make sure it was official.

Along with maintaining my personal blog here, I will be joining Hack Library School as a contributing writer!

(where is a confetti cannon when you need one?)

Hack Library School started with Micah Vandegrift's post on In the Library with the Lead Pipe. It has grown into a blog run by a group of current library students and recent graduates. Hack Library School is a space for us to add our own voice to the MLIS curriculum, to create a collaborative effort to redefine library school and to participate in shaping the path that librarianship is taking. Pretty badass, right?

While I haven't posted anything there yet, if you click over you can see my smiling face at the bottom of their list of contributors, and read my short blurb under "Hackers."

Over the next few weeks we're doing a"Hack Your Program" series, in which each contributor will write about their program - offering descriptions, insights and even possible improvements. It will great to read about different MLIS programs. As a student, you don't often hear about what your peers at other institutions are going through.

My first post, describing my experience with Emporia, will be up on the 31st - be sure to check it out!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Prom Photos!

Here are a few of my photo-booth photo's from Librarian Prom - as you can tell we has an amazing time! More photos from Prom can be found on our Flickr Page.

Friday, May 13, 2011

As seen online

There have been lots of fun tidbits floating around the internet the past week. Here are some that have caught my interest:

The first is from the public library in Troy, Michigan. In 1971 construction of the new library was finished, and the children's librarian wrote to hundreds of celebrities, authors and notable public officials asking them to wrote the children of Troy about their new library. She collected 97 of them and they are now up on their website. Some of my favorite's include Issac Asimov, Dr. Seuss, Saul Alinsky, Pearl Bailey, and Vincent Price. Even Ronald Reagan and Pat Nixon wrote some very sweet letters!

Here's an article on how the University of Chicago has built an underground book storage facility that is powered by robots. While this has the potential to cut down on the potential for browsing, I think that this still awesome for an academic library. It creates more space for studying and creates a protected space for valuable materials and archives. Plus, robots are cool.

The Chronicle published another great article looking at innovative academic libraries. This one describes embedded librarians at Johns Hopkins and reworking space to match students needs.

I love working in a medical library and I love learning about new (and free resources). This interactive 3D Human Anatomy Search Engine is pretty rad, and I feel would be an excellent resource for a more general academic or even public library.

I've posted about Snooki before, and I will probably post about her some more. Here is a great article about two academic librarians who use MTV's The Jersey Shore to their advantage.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

MLK, Osama and a global game of telephone

On May 2nd, the day after Osama was assassinated, I saw this quote on the Facebook wall of a good friend:

I will mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that. MLK Jr.

I liked it. It matched the sentiment I was feeling, so I shared it. A lot of other people did, too. A lot of other people.

Apparently, the first line of the quote went viral on twitter. The only problem was that the first line of the quote wasn't Martin Luther Kings words. The rest of the quote is from MLK's book Strength to Love but that first line seemed to have gotten picked up and passed along as part of the quote.

There is a lot to be said about this situation. About citing your sources, about inspiration, even about appropriate reactions to global events.

What I find most interesting about this (semi)fake quote is how social media highlights one of the most basic rules of information science: The most trusted source for information is someone you already know. Those of us who saw the quote on a friend's Facebook wall or in a twitter feed trusted that person. I know I didn't think to confirm the validity of the quote, and obviously neither did others. This is a prime example of how Facebook, and social media as a whole, has become such a major player in the past five years. In the digital age, it's a way of building networks with those we already know and trust.

I think that this is an important reminder for librarians, especially in terms of the customer service that we offer our library users. Not that we have to be on Facebook (which I feel anyways) but that it is important to be seen as active and prominent members of our community. Whether it be a college campus, a corporate office or even just a local community, the days of hiding in the library are over. Our patrons need to know who we are.

David Shumaker
has been doing some great research into the concept on embedded librarianship - worth checking out.

To see the original Facebook post the caused the misquote to go viral, click here.

Monday, May 9, 2011


I'm excited to see my program director/adviser and library school alumni receive recognition for the amazing work that they do. Here is a description of their accomplishments.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Voices in the library

The libraries' most powerful asset is the conversation they provide – between books and readers, between children and parents, between individuals and the collective world. Take them away and those voices turn inwards or vanish. Turns out that libraries have nothing at all to do with silence.
- Bella Bathurst, The Secret Life of Libraries, The Guardian

Photo Credit: 'National Libraries in Singapore' by Inju