Wednesday, April 18, 2007 - A Case Study

"No amount of sophistication is going to allay the fact that all your knowledge is about the past and all your decisions are about the future." - Ian Wilson

How a traditional library website became an interactive community portal
Case study of Cuyahoga County Public Library web revamp

What is Cuyahoga County Public Library? A suburban library system serving about 100,000 people in 28 towns outside Cleveland Ohio, with 28 branches and about 1,000 employees.

What the web site was: a static, information rich site with about 2500 pages, not easily navigable - "just grew"

The redesign process:

The library decided it needed to make media available in many formats and give greater presence to 27 branches on the website.

Library staff made a "laundry list" of desirable features and functions

  • a portal, with customizable user experience, yahoo style
  • more community partners, reaching new user groups
  • web content and catalog
  • wikis, blogs reviews, comments, discussions, rss, email , enhanced search, toolbar, widgets, audio podcasts, video podcasts, e-commerce, news, events
  • branch info

An rfp was issued, seeking a fresh view of how to analyze and deliver what customers wanted. A contract was awarded to Optien, a Cleveland marketing firm that traditionally worked with corporate customers:


  • discovery - focus groups for different demographic groups in the community, and also for staff constituent groups; research into "gold standard" web sites, best practices analysis, etc. followed by "wire frame" design of web pages.
  • outcomes - recommended "mini portals" for subject areas, demographic groups and branches; CMS (150 non-tech users, blogs, RSS, Mobile CSS, ADA 508 Compliance, Multi-Language capability, scaleability, interactive events calendars, search capability, etc.

Content management system - build or buy? The library decided finally to contract with Ektron for CMS software that integrates with the catalog, text and email messaging, online store, federated search using a customized version of WebFeat, etc.

Some nice features - branch pages, subject area pages, event sign-up, online store for logo-branded gifts, email communications segmented by age, interest, or location of audience, text message reminder service, (now sending 90,000 messages per month) online donations. There is also focus on things that people can "join" and contribute to - blogs, wikis, forums, book clubs, etc.

Additional features from ektron - dublin core, microformats, federated search, geomapping, data portability, since the platform is entirely xml and very useable, memberships capability, directionality of content, creation of online community, Q&A, digital content managment

The site is managed by one full time and two half time people, with additional help from programmers as needed - 200 staff members are trained to contribute content, and about 50 regularly do so.

Cost - about $150,ooo over four years of development, about $6,000 last year in maintenance.

Promotion - supported by well budgeted advertising campaign coordinated by Optiem, and including radio and television spots was key to the successful launch. The site was also Ektron's "site of the year." Presenters feel that marketing was absolutely key to the site's success.

Interesting Bits and pieces

  • The library is looking to future enhancement that would allow a "my library" personalized site, but the Innovative Interfaces OPAC does not yet have that functionality
  • Content is totally separate from form, with totally locked-down style sheets and page templates maintaining the site's look. This allows content providers with all levels of experience to successfully update.
  • Text messaging has been very successful with people in their 30s - new features have been most popular with people in their 30s and seniors - teens are still an illusive audience. The text messaging function is provided by a 3rd party enhancement to the iii OPAC
  • Much of the promotion is through the branches
  • The new site has an "alias" feature - people can create an easily remembered user name and password instead of using library bar code to access site features
  • There are now about 800 web pages total

.mobi - The Wave of the Future

Trends in Mobile Tools and Applications for Libraries
Megan Fox, Simmons College,

"Email is for old people" - Megan Fox's message is that mobile electronic devices like cell phones, PDAs, and even Playstations, are rapidly replacing computers as a preferred reference and research tool - library customers want information on the spot, where they are, not in the library building. And they probably want to request and receive the information by text message. Instant gratification is the word of the day.

Size of Mobile Market

75% of adults and 90% of college students have cell phones; 1 in 8 households no longer have landlines. 95% of mobile phones support text messaging, and in 2007 an estimated 350 billion text messages are sent permonth, a 95% increase in one year. And it's not just teens - 20% of cell phone users over 65 also text message.

Latest Devices include everything from the Apple iphone to the Playstation and UMPC, or "ultramobile personal computer" - most are capable of receiving broadband, texting, calendaring, etc. Most can record and play video, and have outstanding audio quality. In Asia, 90% of music downloads are to smartphones.

The Mobile Web/The TranscodedWeb

Libraries are beginning to develop content that can be delivered to mobile devices - the new internet domain ".mobi" is for sites compatible with mobile devices, including the sites below: - see "video" for downloadable ILL instructions

Vendors are also developing research content for mobile devices:

Bloggers and rss addicts are also in on it:

As are search services

What does it mean for libraries?

We need to consider making our OPAC and databases accessible to mobile devices, introducing text-message and IM reference, text and IM notices of holds, overdue books, events, etc. Possibly even producing mobile guides to the collection, directions to the library, mobile readers advisory, etc.

We also need to be careful how we ban cell phone use - banning audible conversations, but welcoming other research uses of PDAs and cell phones.

Looking to the future:

  • publishers are marketing books by sending excerpts by free subscription to phones and IM
  • mobicontent - 100s of libraries are circulating electronic books for mobile devices
  • Teleflip - send an email message to any telephone number and have it translated to text
  • Mobile devices in classrooms for realtime interactions and feedback between students and instructors - ie live polling
  • Mobile devices for library instruction?
  • itunes U - audio recordings of courses
  • advertising - nike, espn, hilton, pepsi, are working on placing text ads for cell phones
  • visa and mastercard are developing on-phone credit cards (loose your credit card - use your phone instead) could library cards also be embedded in phones?
  • search formats adapted to the small screen through intuitive "drill down" interfaces
  • mobile visual interactions - begin a query from an image - ie take a picture of a book and get info about circ status, reviews, ext.
  • GPS point and click devices to provide information about buildings, etc. your phone is pointed at
  • point and click metadata recognition and bar code scanning
  • tools for library staff, including wireless workstations, wireless bar code readers, real time shelf lists

Paper ????

The World Digital Library Initiative

John Van Oudenaren, Senior Advisor, World Digital Library,,

The 2005 Press Release:

2005 - Librarian of Congress proposes initiative to UNESCO, recieves $3 million from Google for planning
2006 - Agreements with partner institutions in Brazil, Russia, and Egypt, draft proposal to UNESCO
October 2007 - World Digital Library Initiative unveiled at UNESCO General Conference
September 2008 - projected full-scale launch of project

Vision - "To create a digital library of significant original materials representing all of the major cultures from across the globe and make it accessible to students, ecucators, and the general public."

Description: Not a book digitization project! Rather, a repository of cultural materials of unique value, in order to promote intercultural understanding and awareness, provide a resource for educators that matches the needs of a globalized, wireless world, and acquire rare and unique content. With some focus on utility to k-12 educators in particular, and on acquiring original content of value to scholars and the general public.

American Memory Project - the original project, provided experience for others
Global Gateway Project - six bilateral international projects started in late 1990s -

Current Partners -
UNESCO - 6 National Libraries and othre cultural institutions, mainly the six bilateral partners from the Global Gateway
Technology Partners - Google, Yahoo, Apple, Stanford University

Pillars - content acquisition, construction of sustainable international network for production and distribution of content

Content Acquisition:

  • Digitize content in places where little or no scanning is being done, bringing to light "hidden treasures."
  • Maintain and build on existing scanning operations in Russia, Egypt, and elsewhere.
  • Make existing scanned content accessible through the World Digital Library.
Multilingual Translation
  • Creation of Network Nodes for digitization, cataloging, translation, development of editorial and educational content, and distribution. With central and mirror sites around the world.
  • Content will be in the language of translation, with ultimately translations in English, Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Design: Present cultural content in a way that appeals to a new gneration of internet users in the US and internationaly - fast, seamless, user experience, searchable and browsable.


  • Multiformat, with manuscripts, maps, photos and pictures, rare books, sound and video, 3-D presentation of architectural monuments
  • Special features with experts scholars and curators
  • Educational content for teachers and students
  • Social networking features, including blogs, chat rooms, tagging features
  • Adaptations for developing countries, like low-bandwidth and mobile device solutions

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

InfoTubeys 2007 - Congratulations, Nancy Dowd!

Award-winning library promotional videos:

New Jersey State Library - Trenton -
What Are Your Three Reasons

Arlington Heights Memorial Library - one of 57 videos from this library on youtube: What's Up

McCracken County Library - Dr. Duck
McCracken County Library - Super Librarian

Seneca Library - Holiday Song

Williams College Library - The L-Team

My Own Cafe - Sitting in for Angela

Interactive Teen web portal - My Own Cafe
login name: guest
password: daffodil

How a western Massachusetts regional library system developed and marketed a website for teens for all the local libraries in the consortium. School libraries were included, but have not been active, possibly because of the greater security on their computers

Goals: Increase teen participation in libraries by offering an interactive one-stop interface for library electronic resources as well as interactive features popular with teens.

How My Own Cafe was developed
  • The library hired a web development consultant, Pixel Bridge to assist in setting up the site.
  • Pixel Bridge recommended message boards as a medium for teen interaction, downloadable music (local bands submitted their own music for download), community information, college and job information,
  • The project started with LSTA $50,000 grant.
  • A Teen Advisory Council was created and scheduled face-to-face meetings, as well as chat, blogs, etc. The face-to-face meetings proved to be vitally important.
  • The Teen Advisory Council developed guidelines, including choosing a domain name and logo, seting age limits, defining rules for message boards and moderating message boards, etc.
Questions that came up during development:
  • Access? Asking for a library card might present a barrier to teens using the website, but in the end, a library card was required to register on the site. Once registered, a teen was not asked to present the card again, or to register separately for databases, catalog, message boards, music downloads, etc..
  • Selecting music? "Clean Music" guidelines were developed by Teen Council members.
  • Would message boards be moderated? Teen Council members volunteered to work as moderators, paying attention to language and content and dealing with inappropriate materials.
  • Who will have administrative access to site? Did not get the answer here.
  • Site name? Teen input was sought within the parameters of available and legal choices. - "my own cafe" was a compromise source.
  • Logo?- there was a clear division between what librarians liked and what teens liked - the teen choice was selected
  • Appearance? - The developers wanted easy one-click access to all library resources, but did not want it to look like a library page. Final choice was made by teens - the home page is heavy on content, and requires scrolling, which bothers librarians but not teens
  • Technical stuff - Windows 2003 server, DotNetNuke - open source content management system using asp.
  • Age Range? over 12, to comply with COPPA - Children's Online Protection Act.
  • Development and use policies? A written website policy was created and includes an agreement with terms including basic code of conduct developed by teen moderators Code of Conduct. Teens also collaborated with librarians to create a letter to parents explainng the website to parents.

Site kickoff at mall, promoted by teens, teen jazz band performed, was very successful
kids got the opportunity to win an ipod

Statistics - 326 teens registered as of April 16 - 76 users, teen and library staff, logged in 702 times during March 200u, nearly 11,700 posts since Oct. 2005 - Message boards are most popular

Challenges -
  • How to get kids to use electronic databases? Create a survey with questions that could be answered in electronic databases, and award prizes for best answers
  • Message Board and website content - created by teens, who also discuss acceptable content and set standards for posting; but librarians do also edit content
  • Marketing budget - it's vital to have a good budget, but depend on teens for marketing ideas
  • There have not been too many problems on the website with bullying, vulgarity, other issues.
Future plans: librarians are about to implement a "Creativity Center" with an opportunity for musicians to upload music , artists to post artwork, writers to post work, etc. Maybe even a chance for kids to do podcasts. Librarians hope the Creativity Center may increase level of participation - teens without library cards will be able to contribute to the Creativity Center.

Introducing the Book

Gutenberg's Tech Support

Comments in the Catalog

Microsoft, Eat Your Heart Out!

Rhumba with Joomla - Using CMS to Build Community
Catherine Morgan and Tao Gao from South Carolina State Library

A case study on how South Carolina State Library built a new interactive web site using the open source software Joomla

Why Joomla?

  • Information is the fastest growing product in the world - Joomla is a free, open source content management system that is easy to install and use and reliable.
  • It offers separation of Content and Form, is portable, estendable, and has strong support communities.
  • Other systems considered, with their drawbacks, included Drupal and blogging software.

About Joomla

  • The main difference between Joomla and a blog is how content is managed - separation of content and form enables posting by many users without danger to form.
  • Joomla also has over 1000 extensions allowing many different types of appllications
  • But...Joomla does not yet integrate with an OPAC - one alternative is to link to catalog on another website

Who is using Joomla ?

Compare content management systems: CMS Matrix - compare up to 10 content management tools.

Trends in open source content management software Google Trends

The Process:

The old web site included more than 1000 static web pages, no navigation structure, inconsistent style, graphically unappealing, table-based layout, no interactivity.

Goals for new web site included:

  • standards compliant site
  • intuitive navigation
  • separation of content and form
  • staff collaboration
  • site-wide search
  • on-line job submissions
  • community oriented
  • rss feeds and other interactive stuff

Web design team included

  • project manager
  • graphic designer
  • web developer with css experience
  • content manager

Phase 1 - 2004 - analysis: conducted online user surveys with survey monkey, and reviewed content in light of the 227 responses - lessons learned: survey monkey worked - open-ended questions were most useful. Assigned rigorous content review for each page to a staff member who had not been responsible for that page's development.

Phase 2 - design: initiated an interface design and review process that stalled for several years. A new library director disbanded with all committees, fired the ineffective graphic designer, and reduced the web design team to two people.

Phase 3 - content audit: CMS (content management system) options explored. Free open source software Joomla was selected in spite of a fairly difficult learning curve. A new graphical interface was designed for Joomia templates, and content migration was completed while the old web site continued to be maintained and updated

Phase 4 -Interactive features: Priority given to developing interactive features including an RSS feed and software for online collaboration

Phase 5 - Deployment and Evolution - the new website content was reviewed, the site went live, the old website was killed, and the new website was moved to an inhouse server, evaluated, and expanded.

Lessons learned - few staff reviewed site, many kudos received after migration, content management system made it much easier to evaluate and improve the site.

Joomla came through! New site:

The site is entirely built with CSS, and has interactive calendars, an automatically updated home page, and many interactive features.

Staffing - old web site: Homepage Committee, PR Committee, Web Administrator
new web site - 2 web managers, 25 authors, 326 registered members of web site - librarians from all over South Carolina and outside the state

mentioned in passing - the Assistant Director of the Atlantic City Free Public Library is active in the Joomla community

"The People Formerly Known as Audience"

Using Social Media for Community Engagement

Andy Garvin - NPR -blog on internet education tools

Andy Garvin created his first blog in 1994 - he now directs NPR's web strategy for using social networks to enhance viewer/listener experience.

Brief recent history of the news media:

Traditional media - to be a player you had to be a stakeholder - a publisher or broadcaster, or you had to rely on a stakeholder's media to get your message out.

Web 1.0 - to produce content you needed to have or hire skills like html authoring and promotion

Web 2.0 - offers tools for anyone to organize and create media and publish content
"Read-Write Web" and "We Media" are other terms for web 2.0 - the mass democratization of content - examples include, , - all online communities where people are encouraged to use and share each other's ideas.

Eric Ginsberg was ahead of me on this one - he shared - is a similar site popular in libraryland.

Internet tools can have a powerful effect

How powerful is this new democratized news media?


Data from Pew Internet and American .Life Project - 48 million Americans post online, 1 in 12 blog, 1 in 4 share original content - young people are more likely to post content - Latinos and African Americans are a little more likely than whites to share content. Educated well-to-do young white males no longer predominate - it's a big shift of power to a more real-world demographic

A brief history of blogs

  • From early 1990s to present, the progression has been from linear to interactive format, and from bland to interesting presentation.
  • Pew estimates 60-100 million blogs online, Garvin suggests there are probably an additional 60 - 80 million Chinese blogs, or more Chinese blogs than there are English speaking people.
  • Bloggers have been critical of the media for bias, pandering, etc.; the traditional media has in the past criticized the credibility and trustworthiness of bloggers.
  • But Garvin says no - war is over - media/blog collaboration and "networked journalism" is becoming the norm - see Jeff Jarvis ( or Jay Rosen ( on"ways for the media to work with "The people formerly known as the audience."
  • Mainstream media is embracing web 2.0 to improve transparency, create public dialogue , tapping into public knowledge and creativity, increase profit - but "people are not always willing to share how they make their sausage"

Some examples of media/blogger cooperation:
"Every citizen is a reporter"

  • NPR now does open piloting - invite the public to help create new broadcast programming, or comment on proposed programming, like a focus group open to the pubic - examples Rough Cuts and Bryant Park - "opening the kimono" -
  • Open Source:
    Opens editorial process to the public, and invites users to submit and comment on programming ideas - public radio show "blog" with community members pitching an idea, supporting and debating it, eventually seeing it produced.
  • Talk of the Nation has a similar concept -
  • BBC Have Your Say is an uncensored bulletin board - comments can be rated by other users, allowing BBC to see what resonate most with the community - the actual news stories on the site incorporate quotes from the public.
  • CNN Ireport citizen journalism report with - the best news clips are aired.
  • USA today embeds social networking across the site syndicating blogs from around the internet -
  • DC World Have Your Say - helps create a community of people who feel like they have a vested interest in the news site.
  • OhMyNews - Korean online news service that dedicates 20% of site to citizen journalism - invites public content from volunteers, who if they do well, will be paid as stringers and correspondents.

Examples of networking news sites

  • Harvard global voices - now being acquired by Reuters - uses volunteers and paid bloggers all over the world who summarize a local blogosphere on a daily bases -
The last word, from Dan Gillmor: I take it for granted, for example, that my readers know more than I do—and this is a liberating, not threatening, fact of journalistic life.

Gadgets, Gadgets, Gadgets

60 gadgets in 60 minutes - fast and funny!

Presenters: Barbara Fullerton, Sabrina Pacifici, Aaron Schmidt - gadget list from infotoday blog:

Renee and attended this one together - three panelists, one minute per gadget - some news to me, some familiar - here was my favorite, perfect for the Reference Desk:

Ssshhh....or else

Even better than the missile launcher....
Ninja Librarian

Building an Online Virtual Community

Millennials and the Library

Marshall Breeding -

Who are you?
1925-1945 - silent generation
1946-1964 - baby boomer
1965-1980 - gen x
1981-2000 - millennial generation

Characteristics of the Millennial Generation

  • They have an innate ability for technology, frenetic multitasking, comfortable with diverse types of digital media, highly interactive style of working
  • They are not particular as to the source of information - paper, digital, text,media - always highly collaborative
  • They are creative, organized, independent, open to innovation, but impatient, skeptical, arrogant (Forrester Research, Inc. A Contrast of Generations- good study on different generational styles
  • Key questions - Millennials want pictures first, are more collaborative, more "learner" than "teacher" centered. They are very impatient, want instant access, at all times of the day and night
  • Millennial needs may be things that will make library use better for all of us - faster, more interactive, more collaborative, more "timeless" is good for everyone
  • Millennials will move on quickly to non-library sources if not satisfied - older generations will stick with us as we adapt - if we can't adapt, we are irrelevant
  • Key characteristic - Millennials work with content across diverse media - and like to remix info from various types of file sources - we need to work with this preference - mashups are the wave of the future.
  • Collection possibilities - ejournals, ebooks, podcasts, video libraries online, news archives, datasets
  • Millennial expectations are heightened by their experiences with sophisticated commercial websites - they are used to using well established conventions for exploring the web
  • Millennials are confidant of their information seeking experience, and are reluctant to ask for help and impatient with unsophisticated web sites
  • Problems with library websites - amateur look, too many interfaces, overly complex and not intuitive, millennials want to go to one place to find OPAC, database, and other resources

Conclusion - Millennials want to see an interesting, fast, intuitive library web site or they will move on. Most library sites are highly disintegrated, non-seamless environment - finding aids, opac, etc. are not adequate for millennials short on patience - they need simple and seamless - federated search may not actually work, because the technology is not there.

Final word - real time search of the Penn State Library web site for Time Magazine took about 15 steps and 2 minutes - only to find that the resource was on microfilm.

"Me, My Space and Eye"

Alane Wilson, OCLC
Privacy, Security, Social Networks and Library

from a study of security in online networking sites by OCLC to be released in June - 6100 participants from 6 countries, plus a separate survey of 380 UA librarians. Statistics not available until June, but this session gave an overview of the conclusions.

"we must live and work in a tapestry of privacy" - A Tapestry of Privacy: a Metadiscussion" by Richard Mason -

I expected this session to be about preserving privacy online - instead it was about how expectations of privacy are changing in the social networking environment.

First about us - librarians belong to the "culture of paper" - we read from print sources far more than the general population - we also use our own Q&A service much more than the general population - we are much less likely to chat, blog, IM, etc. - our tribe is not in sync with the young population.

Librarians over 50 are much less likely to use social networking tools.

Public libraries are far more heavily used than any other type - publics need to to be creating social networking communities. MySpace is the primary teen hangout in the US, YouTube is ubiquitous, the "annotation of everything" is in progress, and networking is central to 21st century education.

Howard Reingold - guru of communities and smart mobs -

Privacy - myspace, flickr, all the networking sites leaves "digital footprints" that will not go away - Privacy issues are important for librarians because our perception of privacy may not be as nuanced and complex for us as for younger internet users - most librarians would prefer not to leave a "digital trail" - younger internet users may not feel this way.

The survey found huge cultural differences in need for privacy - for instance, Japanese say they would never share religous beliefs or sexual preferences - librarians pretty much are more conservative than Japanese, are very adverse to giving out information on social networking sites. But - libraries have a high level of community trust, which gives libraries a good opportunity to acheive community credibility through a commitment to privacy.

The survey asked - is it the library's role to build a social networking site? - in the US, 60% of US respondants said "NO" - in Europe the percentage is higher. On respondant said - "libraries are in the business of providing access to books not access to other people" - - comments of librarians are even more negative- but is this because this is early days in the social networking scene - will we be obsolete unless we can get on board with new technology?


Nasty weather, 2400 people, 1 restaurant and 1 Starbucks - next time we'll bring power bars!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Social Networking Software in the Library

How social networking software is changing the way library services are delivered

Presenter: Meredith Farkas, Distance Learning Librarian at Norwich University and author of Social Software in Libraries. Blogger -, and, author of best practices wiki.

Lots of interesting examples in this talk - I have tried to link some of them below.

Software facilitates "democratization of information" and "online collaboration" through tools like Google Documents - , and wikis, "online conversation" with blogs, networking with blogosphere "trackbacks" that enable a blogger to track a conversation across the blogosphere - Blogs to put a human face on business, like GM's FastLane - Sites like Flickr allow photo sharing - , or video sharing -

Wikis allow the knowledge of groups of people to be collectively validated -

Instant messaging is a tool for sharing information easily and informally - Meredith introduced IM as a quick and friendly "live ref" tool that students are willing to use, and offers a "text a librarian" text message reference service - University of Florida uses IM to provide all reference services to remote users. She cites these as examples of using tools students are familiar and comfortable with, rather than struggling to introduce more cumbersome unfamiliar live reference software.

What can social software do for libraries?


  • avoid technolust - look at needs, not tools
  • involve staff at all levels, and IT in all planning
  • consider maintenance and sustainability
  • consider written policy statements
  • trust the patrons - social networking software requires radical trust

Check it out - Second Life Library - virtual reality in libraryland

Communities and Collaboration - Building Communities

"Thank goodness the leak is on the other side of the boat."

The first morning program in the "Communities and Collaboration" track was presented by Ken Roberts - a former children's librarian, his title is not "Library Director" but "CEO" of Hamilton Public Library in Hamilton, Ontario, pop. 450,000. Over the last four years, Hamilton has developed a "community portal" - a single website for the library, town, community organizations, schools, colleges. Each section of the portal is a tab on a single site and all can be searched at the same time from a single search box.

For example - someone looking for "swimming lessons" can type those words into a search box, and get not only the town and the parks but also the ymca and the boys and girls club - the library is now working on also offering web access to a list of library resources in response to a search term.

Ken Roberts talked about the challenges of integrating people from all parts of the town, with all levels of web experience, into the creation of a simple, workable web portal - he also talked about the value of the community connections created in the process. "start small - think big"

Interesting bits:
  • the library trains all web authors contributing to the portal - the town provides software and servers.
  • because they have the portal, Hamilton has received grant funds to implement community-wide wi-fi.
  • the library runs 70 online book clubs through the portal, and issues 70-80 library cards a week by web-form to community residents who never enter a library building, but use the digital resources. Library card applications and database use increased dramatically with online registration.
  • "finding guides" on the library website have been designed so new acquisitions are automatically added as soon as they are catalogued. Materials are shipped and shelved with the aid of automatic sorting by RFID tag.
  • the library has an "online branch" with a branch manager that handles all the databases, internet and telephone reference, virtual book discussions, etc. After the portal was implemented, librarians' job descriptions were rewritten and upgraded.
  • there is a unified events database with thousands of events from block parties to museum openings - events can be entered by any community contributor.
  • the portal is now receiving "sponsorship" funding from the local football team, and the library has agreed to use the team logo on future library cards in return for funding. The team has also donated 2200 tickets to the summer reading program.

Advice from Ken Roberts - Libraries spend too much on resources that are basically unavailable because community members don't know of their existence - it might help if money was reallocated from the materials budget to the advertising and PR budget.

Keynote address - Web 2.0

Monday am - Starbucks coffee at the registration table - a good start.

The keynote address was by Lee Rainie, Director, Pew Internet and American Life Project. Topic - web 2.0 - the "second generation" internet - instead of the web as a repository of information, web 2.0 sees the internet as a platform for collaboration and a tool for harnessing the "collective intelligence."

Example - AskANinja - What is podcasting? - takes a minute to download, pretty funny.

The hallmark of web 2.0 - people no longer have "computers" - they have "internet" - the reason for having computers is to access the internet.

Random trivia from the Pew Internet and Library Project surveys:

  • 89% of US teens are online at home, 50% are online at libraries.

  • 85% of teens watch internet video, 62% use youtube

  • 67% of teens share files and videos and 55% have myspace or facebook identities

  • 40% of teens have websites where they post artwork, writing, video, other creative work

  • 33% of teens share opinions on interactive sites like

  • 27% of teens have websites, 28% have blogs - 40% of teenage girls are blogging

Teens who use the internet to gather information from wikis and other user-generated content sites turn to their online social networks to discuss and validate information.

In a survey released yesterday, Pew Internet and American Life found the highest awareness of current events among Daily Show fans, not newspaper readers

Challenges for kids using the internet in interactive ways - learning to see things in context, learning to focus, learning to be skeptical, learning ethical internet behavior, learning that material published online today can be viewed by parents, prospective employers, etc. and that it will still be accessible years from now.

The final word:

Missed the Cherry Blossoms

Renee and I made it to Washington through the downpour on Sunday, but the wind and rain have pretty much finished off the cherry blossoms, and it's too cold to do much sightseeing - fortunately the hotel has a hot tub!