or, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Fear and Loathing at a Public Library Reference Desk

OLC Cancels 2009 Conference

   July 23rd, 2009 Brian Herzog

OLC 2009 not-conferenceSadly, the Ohio Library Council announced Monday that it was canceling its 2009 annual conference. The reason:

OLC staff learned last week in a survey of library directors that very few libraries will have the funds to send library staff to this event. In light of the recent developments in the state’s public library funding and the drastic adjustments that all libraries have been making to their operations, the OLC made the most fiscally-responsible route for both members and the organization.

Considering Ohio's financial situation, cancellation does seem the most sensible course. But it is still unfortunate, because meeting and learning from other librarians is very valuable in our profession.

But also unfortunate is that the "mainstream" library world still hasn't adopted an alternative to the large conference. The OLC announcement states they are "exploring several different education alternatives, including regional and electronic options," and this situation illustrates why these avenues are important.

Librarycamps and unconferences can be every bit as practical and valuable as big conferences - and far less expensive. RUSA has been investigating e-participation, and I hope it catches on.

I was slated to be part of a library blogger panel at the conference, and I'm sorry to miss an opportunity to spend time with Ohio librarians. The state's budget is finally settled, but they're still facing a challenging year.

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LibCamp Boston

   July 24th, 2007 Brian Herzog

LibCamp Boston Logo
Sorry for the late notice, but all are welcome at Library 2.0 Camp Boston this Saturday, July 28th, from 10-4pm in the McKim Conference Room of the Boston Public Library (map).

A group of area librarians will be gathering to talk about new media and libraries. The point is really to meet each other, share our stuff, and answer the question: What are you doing in your library...?

It'll be unconference style, so very relaxed and everyone can participate as much or as little as you feel appropriate. For more information, check out http://libcamp.pbwiki.com/.
boston, libcamp, libcamp boston, libraries, library, library 2.0, library 2.0 camp, unconference, unconferences

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MashupCamp 2007

   January 2nd, 2007 Brian Herzog

Mashup Camp logoA coworker just made me aware of MashupCamp 2007, being held at MIT on Jan 17-18. I've been to a few unconferences before, and enjoy the format, so I might attend for that reason alone.

I am interested in mashups, but am probably not as hard-core as the other attendees will be. I'm sure there are ways to make our library catalog more useful by combining it with tools like Baker & Taylor, Amazon, Delicious Library, LibraryThing, Library Elf, and more, if I just had the time to sit and think and experiment. We'll see.

Another nice feature of MashupCamp 2007 is Mashup University, which is "specifically geared towards hands-on training whereby new and experienced mashup developers can get classroom style instruction on how to build mashups." Now that's for me.

boston, libraries, library, m.i.t., mashup, mashup camp, mashupcamp, mashups, mit, unconference, unconferences

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