Professional Development

During December 2010...

ArchiveIT 4.0 training

Friday, December 17, 2010 3:18 pm

Today Erik and Audra attended a webex session from the Internet Archive on new features in ArchiveIT 4.0. They had me from the first few minutes when they announced that this year had been named the ‘year of metadata’ at the Internet Archive!

They focused on new features including metadata searching, crawl date limiting, and improved video crawling and streaming.

They also have enhanced their reporting features, specifically introducing a URL report that shows exactly what URLs got archived during a given crawl. They also introduced a number of automatic metadata harvesting features during the seed assignment process and some new features to scope-it that helps you set constraints on specific hosts.

One interesting metadata feature they introduced was the ability to export metadata records for archived items to both MARC and MODS. I thought this was an interesting concept as a way to leverage archived content in local indexes or webservices. They also introduced a third party tool called ProxyToggle, a Firefox plug-in that helps do quality control testing on archived content.

ACRL/NY: Innovation by Design–Re-Visioning the Library

Wednesday, December 15, 2010 10:11 am

Last Friday I had the fortune to attend the 2010 ACRL/NY Annual Symposium at Baruch College, Vertical Campus Conference Center in New York. The theme of the symposium was “Innovation by Design: Re-Visioning the Library.”

The symposium was a really well run event. ACRL/NY is an excellent organization, and they know how to put on a one-day conference. I’ve been eyeing them for the past few years and was really thankful to be able to participate in one. These events have been taking place since the 1980s and themes haveincluded: emerging leadership, 21st century libraries, and assessment. This year’s theme, as you can tell, was design.

The first speaker of the day was Bill Mayer of American University. As University Librarian, he’s implementing a number of changes that will be familiar to us at ZSR: moving materials off site, bringing in other service providers, rethinking services, putting library people in the community, etc. He was an engaging speaker and it was really good to see the message out there and getting a good reception. If you’re interested in more, here’s an article about his thoughts on next steps at American.

Aaron Schmidt, of Walking Paper fame, spoke on designing the user experience. He covered both designing the physical experience as well as the virtual, and clearly came at his topic from a designer’s angle. Aaron is a dynamic speaker, with I’m guessing no less than 100 high-impact slides while walking around and interacting with the audience. He’s really interested in getting libraries to identify a few things they can do really well (and generate enthusiastic supporters) rather than trying to do everything decently (and having lukewarm supporters).

Finally, Leah Buley from Adaptive Path, spoke. Leah came from a different angle, as she doesn’t work in a library. She did get an MLIS, but decided to work in helping design how people interact with information in the corporate world, and now works with a consulting firm that helps develop user experiences, interfaces, and product strategies. Leah’s might have been the most practical presentation as she gave a number of methods for how to involve users in the design process for both physical and web services. I have a lot to bring back to the web committee from this one!

My talk, as you might have guessed, was on instructional design in libraries. I started with a brief story of how I got into it and what I do, talked about how libraries are changing, how higher education is changing, and how instructional design can help (and how librarians can help with instructional design).

You can see Tweets here, read another blog post about it here, and the ACRL/NY site should have both recordings and bibliographies up soon, if you’re interested in more!

(Sorry this post is a bit late, I wanted to wait to get permission to post my slides before publishing the post!)

LOST Week: One Fine Morning

Saturday, December 11, 2010 10:32 am

This past week was the first “production” week at Z. Smith Reynolds Library’s new offsite storage (LOST) facility. This time-lapse movie demonstrates the sort of work that is being done to accession over 100,000 books from the old storage facility and from the stacks in ZSR Library. This first week was a learning experience for all the the crew: Scott Adair (new offsite storage manager), Mary Beth Lock (Director of Access Services), and the week’s crew: Susan Smith, Molly Keener, Jean Paul Bessou and Erik Mitchell. This crew managed to accession over 10,200 books in the week! We left with new organizational and motion efficiency skills, along with a new appreciation for this ambitious project (and sore but stronger muscles)!


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