Submitted by Kate Sheehan on February 1, 2013 - 10:26am
Every teacher I know dreads being asked “When are we going to use this in real life?” The question is frustrating because the answer is often “Well, you might not, but I have no way of knowing, and yes, this will be on the test, and spelling most certainly counts.” We may never use algebra proper after high school (unless you count those Facebook memes that assume we’ve forgotten PEMDAS), but I think an argument can be made that we use algebraic thinking regularly. For librarians, there’s an obvious utility of being able to talk about books (and by extension, movies, and television shows), but surely those English class discussions help even those who would never join a book club as adults. The high school class I’ve been revisiting frequently is one where nobody asked how we’d use it in real life: a logic class I took junior year. Read More »
Submitted by Patrick Hogan on January 31, 2013 - 12:50pm
On Thursday, February 7, 2013, Beth Tumbleson and John Burke will present the ALA TechSource workshop Embedding Librarianship in Learning Management Systems. Their book on the topic is schedule for publication in May. The prospect of rolling out a new program dependent on faculty buy-in might seem daunting. Like many new projects, running a pilot makes sense. To get started, you only need one or two faculty with whom you have a good working relationship. Below is a how-to excerpt from the forthcoming book. Read it, share it, and join us on Thursday for the workshop. Read More »
Submitted by Mary Minow on January 30, 2013 - 10:22am
Mary Minow is a lawyer and librarian. She will present the workshop Copyright, Licensing, and the Law of E-Books on February 6, 2013.
A controversial e-book bill in Connecticut proposes that publishers of electronic books be required to offer such books for sale to public and academic libraries at the same rates as offered to the general public.
I give a hearty congratulations to the visionaries in Connecticut to take this issue head on, whether or not a legislative solution is feasible. The bill shines a badly needed light on the problem that librarians know about, but that the public, by and large, does not: e-book publishers are not making their wares available to library users on fair terms, if at all.
Yet the irony here is in the bill’s use of the words “for sale” rather than “for license” to libraries. Read More »
Submitted by Patrick Hogan on January 24, 2013 - 5:02pm
Earlier this month, a good old fashioned blogosphere discussion broke out, complete with active comment logs and trackbacks.
Hugh Rundle started the conversation with “Mission creep -- a 3D printer will not save your library.” He argues public libraries lack a business case for 3D printing. Rather, technolust and fear of missing out are instead the drivers. “Yes, libraries provide access to information sources and creation tools that can be expensive to individuals, but that doesn’t mean that loaning or providing access to things that are expensive is what libraries are for,” Hugh writes. He highlights a number of projects and opportunities for libraries to support and curate patrons creative efforts in more appropriate ways. Read More »
Submitted by Daniel A. Freeman on January 7, 2013 - 9:39am
We just wrapped up the final part of our new webinar series Makerspaces: A New Wave of Library Service. Today, we heard from Corey Wittig, LeeAnn Anna and Emily Fear from the Carnegie Public Library in Pittsburgh, who gave us a fantastic presentation. If you didn't have a chance to attend in person, the archive is at: https://alapublishing.webex.com/alapublishing/lsr.php?AT=pb&SP=EC&rID=6222412&rKey=0950be42f1d57e55 .
The slides and biblipgraphy are posted below!
Submitted by Caitlin A. Bagley on January 7, 2013 - 9:11am
As I do preliminary research for my book on library makerspaces, I’m inspired by the spaces, programming, and collaboration that I’m seeing. I sense many more projects are out there and others in the works. If your library has a makerspace or is planning for one, I’d love to talk to you about it, and perhaps even include you in my book, Makers in the Library: Fostering Creativity and Invention (working title), to be published by the American Library Association in collaboration with the Library and Information Technology Association.
I have created a short survey learn about the technology and uses of makerspaces in all types of libraries. I hope the responses will reveal the common approaches and challenges. The book will feature profiles of selected library makerspace projects from a range of libraries. I recognize that projects are in various phases of development, but I’m eager to hear from each of you.
Read More »
Submitted by Patrick Hogan on January 4, 2013 - 12:42pm
On December 31, Douglas County Libraries (DCL) acquired 10,000 e-book titles from the world’s largest distributor of self-published works, Smashwords, bringing the total number of e-book files that DCL owns to 21,000. All of the content purchased from Smashwords, including books in popular genres such as fiction, romance, mystery, and science fiction, is available for borrowing by library patrons. Read More »
Submitted by Sarah Ludwig on January 3, 2013 - 11:00am
“Stop being so click-happy!” a teacher at my school sometimes tells her students. She is referring to their habit of clicking the mouse, rapid-fire, while waiting for a page to load or a program to open. It’s a good habit to break, that’s for sure. But I’m “click happy” in a different way: with bookmarklets and extensions.
For me, it all started with Diigo, which I’ll admit I was reluctant to try as a devoted Delicious user. But the bookmarklet sold me. Clicking a button on the toolbar is so much easier than copying and pasting a link somewhere. (Delicious has since developed a bookmarklet.) Lately, I’ve been adding these buttons like a mad woman. Each one serves a separate but equally great purpose.
Note: I use Google Chrome exclusively on a MacBook. Your mileage may vary slightly depending on the browser and operating system you use. Read More »
Submitted by Caitlin A. Bagley on December 20, 2012 - 11:06am
Editor's Note: This is the first in a series of posts by Caitlin A. Bagley. Learn about the makerspace at Carnegie Public Library (Pittsburgh) in our free webinar Monday, January 7, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. Eastern. Register.
I first heard of makerspaces when, as I sat in my office, a colleague called me over to see if I wanted to join a webinar on makerspaces. Listening over her shoulder, I heard phrases like DIY, and tools kept popping up. Not the usual web-based tools talked about in webinars, physical tools... y’know, wrenches and pliers? Real tools. I’ve always seen libraries as community centers for people to gather and work together, but this? It stretched my imagination. Read More »
Submitted by Patrick Hogan on December 18, 2012 - 4:56pm
ALA TechSource is happy to introduce Caitlin A. Bagley, who will write a series of posts on libraries and makerspaces. Associate professor and instruction librarian at Gonzaga University, Caitlin is writing a LITA Guide with the working title "Makers in the Library: Fostering Creativity and Innovation." As she researches for the book, learning about library projects, she'll post here. Caitlin is planning to interview a leader in the maker movement for an outside perspective on where libraries fit in. She's also talking about getting to a makerspace herself and documenting her project as she builds it.
Watch this space for posts, and be sure to register for the final webinar of our makerspace series, January 7, 2013, with Carnegie Public Library in Pittsburgh.