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Posts by Cindi Trainor

Creating Privacy Online

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on December 6, 2010 - 10:31am

One of the books I read last year was Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother, about a band of high-school hackers who take down the seriously-overstepping, bad-guy Homeland Security Department.   Read More »


FAIL Fail

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on November 2, 2010 - 9:31am

EmpathyThere is a lot of talk of FAIL these days; two-thirds of the “Innovation, Risk & Failure” track of last week’s Internet Librarian 2010 conference was dedicated to failure. Afterward, attendees put together a website dedicated to sharing library failures. I agree it’s very important to learn from our mistakes in libraries, but I also think that failure that we really learn from can’t be captured in a snapshot or without the context of the risk in which it took place. There is a human dimension that can be left out in those snapshots. Read More »


Again with the Slide Decks?!

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on October 6, 2010 - 9:04am

The primary argument that I was going to make in this post was that the content of one’s slide decks depends on the delivery method of the accompanying talk.  After seeing Eli Neiburger’s talk at last week’s Ebook Summit, I think I was wrong.  Slides that contain photos are excellent accompaniment to a talk, no matter if that talk is delivered face-to-face or remotely, a point that Eli slam-dunked.  Slides that contain nothing but bullet points are deadly, even if the speaker is scintillating.  At best, they add nothing. At worst, they are (ant)agonizing.
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Slide Decks: Dazzling or Drowsy?

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on September 2, 2010 - 8:44am

Death by Powerpoint.  You’ve seen it; we’ve all been there. You saunter into a conference session, drawn in by the succinct abstract, the scintillating topic.  It only takes a scant few minutes to decide you’ve made a terrible mistake, that it does not matter what words come out of the speaker’s mouth: if you don’t leave immediately, snoozing will ensue.

Here are some tips to transform your slides from a crutch into what they’re supposed to be: a visual aid.
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Take Pictures, Tell Stories: Creative Commons and You

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on July 20, 2010 - 10:15am

Creative Commons 101

Where U.S. Copyright law dictates how creative work cannot be used, Creative Commons licensing makes it clear how a work may or may not be used.  Creative Commons licensing has several attributes, or conditions, each of which can be assigned independently:  Attribution, Non-Commercial, No Derivatives, and Sharealike.  Attribution is just that: if you use a work, its creator must be credited.  Works that use the Non-Commercial stipulation may not be used for any commercial purpose.  No Derivatives means that the work must be used exactly as it's provided.  Sharealike requires users to license any derivative works the same way that the original was licensed. Read More »


Lessons from ALA 2010

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on July 2, 2010 - 8:27am

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Three years ago, at the ALA Annual Conference in DC, I wrote this blog post. I was a month into a new job and trying to find my way into the impenetrable depths of the seemingly endless ALA.  My past experience in other associations told me that Woody Allen was right when he said that eighty percent of success is showing up: associations like ALA and its chapters and divisions depend on volunteers to get business and planning done, and there are never enough volunteers.  So, looking back, what have I learned?

Take Pictures, Tell Stories: Flickr Extras

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on June 3, 2010 - 9:53am

Libraries, as explored by SnapdragonI use Flickr all the time personally, and my library has two accounts, a general library account and a University Archives account. Flickr has been around for a few years now, and librarians all over the world use it to share images from their personal and professional lives.  Flickr is more than a great place to post and share photos with your community; it's a community in itself, and a starting place for all sorts of activities. Read More »


Take Pictures, Tell Stories: Stay on Top of the Chaos

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on May 27, 2010 - 9:22am

'Photo Paper' courtesy Orin Zebest

In sitting down to write Part 5 of this series, "Turning Images into Objects," I realized I'd gotten ahead of myself. If you've been keeping up with this series, you'll know that we've covered photography basics, what the modes on your camera mean, and ideas for using your camera creatively in the library. Before we can think about prints, greeting cards, business cards, stickers and other interesting and practical things that you can make from photos, you have to get them off the camera and onto the web. Simple, right? Well.... It can be, if you plan ahead a bit. Here are some tips that may help. Read More »


Take Pictures, Tell Stories Part 4: Fun with Photos at Library Events

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on May 5, 2010 - 11:36am
Now that you've learned how to take better photos, what should you take photos of? The obvious answer is to document events and activities in your library, but libraries everywhere are getting creative with their digital cameras and to inspiring users to get creative with theirs.  Here is a sampling of library photo sets on flickr:

A photo booth can accompany any event, whether a summer-reading costume party or library staff day. Use paper or fabric to create a backdrop, which you can accessorize with paper cutouts or printed signs. Read More »


Take Pictures, Tell Stories Part 3: A la Mode

Submitted by Cindi Trainor on April 21, 2010 - 12:35pm

Modern digital cameras, whether small hand-held models or digital SLRs, often have more modes and options than the average picture-taker needs, but knowing a bit about how modes work can improve photos.

As explained in the previous post, three measurements work together to ensure a properly-exposed photo: ISO, shutter speed and aperture. Most cameras have various modes that enable photographers to give weight to either shutter speed or aperture, while allowing the camera to dictate the other measurements. If you aren't yet comfortable experimenting with aperture or shutter speed, you can try using some of the automatic modes. Ever wonder what those little icons on the settings dial mean? Read More »