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Custom Zen: Enlightened Information Retrieval

Submitted by Teresa Koltzenburg on December 13, 2006 - 11:44am

Last week, you may have read about some new collaborative efforts (check out the District Dispatch's second podcast, intro music and all!) and Web 2.0 tech tools launched by some creative ALA staffers and the ALA Library. One of them is the Librarian's E-Library, "selected resources on Libraries and Librarianship from the American Library Association (ALA) Library and a growing list of volunteers."
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Microsoft's Live Search Books

Submitted by Tom Peters on December 12, 2006 - 11:14am

After playing around for an hour or so with the recently released public beta version of Microsoft's Live Search Books (LSB), I have to admit—against some vague sense that my better judgment is failing me—that I like it.

Sure, others have reported that LSB does not work well—or at all—when using browser software other than Internet Explorer, but if you stick to the straight-and-narrow Microsoft path, the service works and shows potential.
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Save the Date! Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium

Submitted by Teresa Koltzenburg on December 6, 2006 - 11:19am

ALA TechSource is proud to present the “Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium,” July 22–24, 2007.

Developed by ALA TechSource and Jenny Levine, author of “Gaming and Libraries: Intersection of Services,” the September/October 2006 issue of Library Technology Reports and The Shifted Librarian blog.
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YALSA to Host Teen Gaming Discussion Group at Midwinter '07

Submitted by Teresa Koltzenburg on December 5, 2006 - 7:08pm

Kelly Czarnecki, on the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) blog, recently posted about a really cool event happening in Seattle next month. Gamers and those interested in gaming and libraries will definitely want to check out:
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  • YALSA's Teen Gaming Discussion Group

  • W Hotel Seattle, 1112 4th Ave., Studio 8

Unsucking the OPAC: One Man's Noble Efforts

Submitted by Karen G. Schneider on December 5, 2006 - 9:34am

For better or worse, I'm usually quite prolix on TechSource, but this is a day when I woke up early feeling the need for a wee happy post. It's a day when I flung open the curtains and shouted to the world, "World, the OPAC doesn't always have to suck!"

That's particularly true because of the work of Casey Bisson, inventor/developer/creator/instigator/leader of WPOPAC, built "inside the framework of WordPress, the hugely popular blog-management application."
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Have Laptop, Will Learn?

Submitted by Tom Peters on December 4, 2006 - 2:53pm

Last Thursday's New York Times contained an article (a no-cost subscription is required) that provides a progress report on the $100 laptop initiative, officially known as One Laptop per Child (OLPC). The project is based at MIT's Media Lab and was first announced in January 2005. Led by Nicholas Negroponte, the OLPC project proclaims its main outcome goal thus: “a unique harmony of form and function; a flexible, ultra low-cost, power-efficient, responsive, and durable machine with which nations of the emerging world can leapfrog decades of development—immediately transforming the content and quality of their children's learning.”
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The Hyperlinked Organization: Radical Transparency, Crummy Meetings & Micromanagement

Submitted by Michael Stephens on November 30, 2006 - 10:00pm

The Cluetrain Manifesto “Org charts are pyramids. The ancient pharaohs built their pyramids out of the fear of human mortality. Today's business pharaohs build their pyramidal organizations out of fear of human fallibility; they're afraid of being exposed as frightened little boys, fallible and uncertain. To be human is to be imperfect. We die. We make mistakes.”
David Weinberger, The Cluetrain Manifesto, Chapter 5: "The Hyperlinked Organization"
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Santa Does Maslow

Submitted by Karen G. Schneider on November 15, 2006 - 1:51am

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Remember Maslow's hierarchy? At the bottom of the pyramid were the most basic needs… at the top, self-actualization. In between were concepts such as self-esteem, respect, family, and security.
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My Avatar Wears Tight Jeans and 4 Other Things I Learned from Internet Librarian 2006

Submitted by Michael Stephens on October 31, 2006 - 11:36pm

It has been a whirlwind two weeks. In the space of 14 days, I spoke at 4 library meetings, flew on 12 planes, traveled to Stonehenge, met some incredible information professionals from all over the world, caught a nasty cold, sat on the runway for 8 hours in Nebraska while George W. flew in and out of O'Hare and, yes, learned some wonderful things.
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Feeling the Curb in Monterey

Submitted by Tom Peters on October 26, 2006 - 1:04am

Last Sunday I traveled out to California to attend the Internet Librarian Conference—ITI's tenth, my first. I managed to fly to San Jose with nary a directional question, then took a shuttle bus past fields of artichokes and garlic, and dry brown hills mad in the October sun, down to Monterey on the coast.
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