Computers in Libraries 2005 – David’s Wrap Up

This has been a great conference! My two presentations went extremely well, and I have learned stuff. Both good things!

Just off the top of my head, here are some buzzwords and phrases I heard practically everywhere, everyday:

  • IM
  • podcasting
  • collaboration
  • community
  • RSS
  • Wiki
  • institutional repository
  • content management

Computers in Libraries 2005 Day 3

I attended Chris Sherman’s morning session on search engines coolness… some neat things I heard:

He suggested that libraries purchase ad words on Google. Not for general words like, say, “libraries” – but on more specific words (see my stuff on topic driven content!). Very interesting idea.

He demonstrated Keyhole (, I think). It’s a visual map that starts up high (like, seeing the whole continent) and then narrows down to a street when you enter an address. Very hip.

Gary Price mentioned some general stuff he’d heard from Google people: 99% of searchers don’t use simple advanced techniques like putting phrases in quotes, and that most searchers only look at the first 3-4 hits in a search… Wow!

Another IM sesssion was next – it was great. The coolest thing they did was IM’d students on their “buddy list” – think virtual roving reference and good PR to boot.

Computers in Libraries 2005 Day 2 (Afternoon sessions)

1:45pm – Collaboration & IM: Breaking Down Boundaries (Michael Stephens and Aaron Schmidt)


  • 7 billion IM messages sent each day!
  • 60% of big businesses will be IMing by the end of this year… wow.
  • Conversation instead of sending letters
  • Interesting comment – a patron who he met through IM seemed one way online (vivacious) but in reality was timid.
  • Duke’s reference department is doing IM
  • Cool – reference librarian on a buddy list – you’re already in their sphere of influence
  • Trillian – stores chat transactions by default. Privacy concerns abound.


  • Internal IM
  • IM is replacing VR at his library
  • If you do log chats, let customers know you’re doing that
  • Utilize the nuances of IM.
  • Use the tool – create useful away messages

Michael’s Best Practices for IM (I didn’t catch all of them…)

  • make IM part of your technology plan
  • promote it! Put IM name on a card
  • Administration should be IMing
  • Train and encourage staff to do this
  • Add your IM name to your business cards

Aaron’s Best Practices:

  • Use multi-protocol IM software
  • Use away messages
  • speed over perfection in typing – communication is key, not the spell checker
  • use abbrev.
  • use online sources only if the best answer can be given from them
  • don’t panic

I also learned more about converging mobile handheld devices, how they’re changing, and how librarians can use them to their advantage, and I learned about LISNews (very cool setup).

For Friday’s sessions, I probably won’t post as much – my laptop’s heavy, and my shoulder’s getting sore (because I’m carrying it all day). That’s one bad thing about not being at the conference hotel – you have to lug around everything you want to keep with you (ie., laptop) ALL DAY and ALL NIGHT (if you plan on eating dinner around the Hilton, anyway).

Computers in Libraries 2005, Day 2 (morning sessions)

10:30am – Beyond Virtual Libraries (Dr. Laverna Saunders)\

All about tech changes in academic libraries.

Good quote that really sums up the whole conference so far (she quoted someone else): “our world is about to change in a big, big way.”

She mentioned some useful trend trackers – OCLC (Environmental scan), Gartner, Pew Research Center, CIL, etc.

Millenials:Good stuff here – some points whe mentioned:

  • Tools of millenials – IM, email, cell phones, mp3s, ipods, broadband, multitasking
  • Students learn by trial and error – more like Nintendo than logic. They file share, keyboard, cut & paste. 73% more likely to use the internet than go to the library (me – not really a bad thing, if you put your stuff online and make it easily accessible – I need to post about this)
  • Students expect: 24/7, everything digital, mobility, group spaces, promptness. So libraries need: portals, IM, chat ref, electronic resources, CMS + resource links, and group study areas.
  • Question asked of students: “Do you read books outside of class?” Students pretty much said “no.” Me – So what? They still read. (another future post for me?)

The library is slowly becoming more of an extension of the classroom or lab. Librarians are teaching more. Active learning zones. More support of elearning and course management systems.

Supporting multimedia is becoming more of a trend (classroom lecture supported by sound, video, etc.).

11:30am – Academic Libraries & Technology: Future Directions (Marshall Breeding)

Current concerns:

  • Rampant computing – concern to contain management costs
  • Enterprise resource planning is essential
  • Departmental computing is moving to consolidated enterprise systems
  • Strong interest in integrating all business systems on campus
  • Enterprise content management – courseware and Institutional Repositories

Organization Context:

  • Academic libraries are part of a whole – not a separate, independent entity
  • Library automation should not be an independent endeavor
  • Integration with larger business and content systems essential for libraries to be relevant
  • Example: Distributing course content through a library portal

Other Nice Tidbits:

  • There’s a need to focus technical talent on activities that have more of an impact on the mission of the library
  • Libraries need technologies to help them maximize the value of their collections
  • Automation systems need to integrate well with other campus systems (institutional portals, etc.)
  • Libraries must develop strategies for integration – deliver library-provides services to users even when they start with Google
  • Lots of stuff yesterday and today complaining about current library catalogs.
  • Look to XML based standards for integration with other systems. Library specific standards don’t do much to help integrate with non-library standards – need to use industry standards
  • Service Oriented Architecture – (SOA). Emerging as the preferred framework for system-to-system communications for diverse systems.
  • Wants to see a different federated search model – have everything dump into a centralized federated product on the back-end, and allow users to pull from that. Google has been able to do this – harvesting other organizations data, and representing it.

Computers in Libraries 2005, Day 1, Afternoon Sessions

1:45pm – Stephen Abrams: Technologies and innovations related to the future of library services

Next massive wave of innovation and demand for it will start in 2005/2006, similar to what happened at the turn of the last century (cars, phones, tv, electricity, etc)

Things to watch for in the next few years:
– secure broadband wireless will be huge
– low-power batteries on many things
– real-time infrastructure… emerging
– service-oriented architecture – perfect compliment for how libraries actually run

Hardware innovations in the next decade:
– “Living in a video game” – life might seem like this
– A bridge for physical and electronic worlds
– Smart pills, nanotechnology, etc.
– RFID – interesting challenge
– Trusted computing

Mobile and wireless in the next decade:
– continued integration between phones and PDAs
– mesh network – your wireless thing will know where you are
– mobile commerce – being able to buy articles online

computer human interactionin the next decade:
– biometrics, speech, handwriting, eye position
– head-mounted displays
– natural language, taxonomies, etc – search logic
– GIS – so your device can tell you where something is

Data Analytics in the next decade:
– advanced functionality
– comment – librarians are text based learners. That’s why only 20% of the population uses libraries. It’s a design thing…
– libraries need to figure out streaming media (CDs and DVDs will go away soon)
– sending a picture of someone to Google to find information about them… wow!

System development in the next decade:
– XML will get big
– Integration with other systems will become more commonplace

Other things mentioned:

  • People will spend more time interacting with people in the electronic world
  • 93% of kids 19 or younger currently have at least two IM addresses…
  • Connected society – wearable tech. smart phones – outsell laptops, phones, PDA, etc.
  • Location-based services – like wireless grabs your screen and puts you on a hotel’s webpage – libraries should be able to do that, too.
  • Handsets will get huge – focus on applications
  • e-learning and distance education will get huge… some usiversities already have 60% of students as distance students
  • every university will have federated search and open url technology within 2 years, public libs within 4 years – they’ll need to have them to survive.
  • shared ideas (intranets) shared creation – workflow content management, web conferencing shared presence – IM, video conferencing


3:15pm – Institutional Digital Repositories, Frank Cervone

It’s changing the nature of scholarly communication

5 aims of a repository:
1. research – self archiving research output
2. management
3. preservation
4. teaching – even online teaching materials… (syllabi)
5. electronic publishing

Local history collections are a type of repository

Commercial vs Open Source – there are both

Open Source:
– EPrints – focuses on traditional text-based scholarship – pre-and post-prints
– DSpace – created as a general – purpose repository to hold more than just text.
– Fedora – doesn’t come with a ready-to-use user interface out of the box!!! Allows for a wide range of material types.
– Greenstone – suite of software for building and distributing digital library collections.

– DigitoolEncompass
– Hyperion (SIRSI)

And the Dead Technologies session in the evening was hilarious, as usual!