The Book is Printed!

The book is printed!

I’m still in Spain, getting ready to speak at SEDIC. But I thought I’d pass this along for those interested… my book has been printed! Found out a few days ago. This pic is of my kids showing me what came in the mail while I was away from home (and yes, we’re video chatting with Apple’s iChat).

So those of you that have pre-ordered it – I’m guessing they’ll start shipping soon. Yippie!

Web 2.0 in Spanish Libraries

Two days ago, I spoke at the IV Congreso Nacional de Bibliotecas Publicas, or the 4th National Congress of Public Libraries, a conference put on by the Spanish government in La Coruna, Spain. I was in the “web accessibility” track, and each of the speakers discussed using 2.0 tools and services to make the web more accessible to library patrons. It was pretty cool hearing about 2.0 and libraries in Spain!

Jordi Graells, who works at the Department of Justice in Catalunya, spoke first. For those who are interested, his slides are up on Slideshare, in Spanish and in English. Here are some snippets from his talk (realize these snippets came from him via a translator who I was listening to through a headset, so it’s probably not exact!):

  • He’s not a librarian (I don’t think), but works for the local government. How cool that government employees are talking about web 2.0 uses!
  • His local government is doing some neat 2.0 things, including using wikis (I think for staff), flickr, delicious, Facebook, and YouTube.
  • Yes, you heard that right – his Department of Justice has a Facebook page. Neat. Why? Because “our customers can get to know us better.” I wish more government organizations had this same viewpoint.
  • He also talked a bit about organizational improvement. Apparently, they decided to improve how they do things, so they held a set of brainstorming sessions (that over 500 employees participated in) to figure out how to improve their organization.

Didac Margaix, who works at (sorry, this is in Spanish) Biblioteca Central de la Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, spoke next about the Social OPAC. Points that stood out to me:

– What is a social opac?

  • we make use of collective intelligence
  • through user participation

– Why do we buy books that users like?

  • Because the user is right
  • We can go further and let patrons participate, too

– We standardize way too much (showed a bunch of standards manuals)

– How does Google organize results?

  • popularity
  • what’s important isn’t the document you find, but what people THINK about the document
  • the point was that libraries need to treat search the same way

– Social networks

  • what’s a social network? Didac gave an example of friends recommending books to each other to read
  • that’s a type of social network

– Open OPAC – should include these things:

  • RSS
  • the ability to save bookmarks or links in another product – i.e., saving a link to a book record in the catalog in my delicious account (some catalog URLs don’t work this way)
  • ability to create and use OPAC apps in other services, like Facebook
  • Allow users the ability to publish lists of books on their blogs, in their MySpace or Facebook accounts, etc – let the user control their content and their privacy levels, instead of having the library control it for them

Remember that we’re speaking to humans. Speak as humans do, not as an institution.

If we let our patrons participate, we need to accept what they do!

Final quote from Thomas Edison (he wasn’t sure of this) – “Those who think something’s impossible shouldn’t bother those who are trying.” Nice quote!

Finally, Ibon Idoiaga from Biblioteca Municipal de Leioa spoke:

Great point: a 2.0 attitude is different from a 1.0 attitude:

  • 1.0 – find content
  • 2.0 – change content

Then he spoke about goal setting, and how to get there.

[and then I did my shtick on 2.0 and transformation [link to slideshare pres]]

I was amazed seeing what these librarians are working towards, while realizing their library websites have to be bi-lingual: there are 4-5 official languages in Spain. So participation and community and conversation – all great things… but for them, there are a few extra steps than I’m used to.

Designing the Digital Experience: the Foreword

Designing the Digital ExperienceDavid Armano, the guy who writes the Logic + Emotion blog, was kind enough to write the foreword to my new book, Designing the Digital Experience: How to Use Experience Design Tools & Techniques to Build Websites Customers Love.

Want to see a sample of it? Here’s one paragraph: “So if you went out and bought this book, you’re heading in the right direction. The reason why social networks are such a big deal these days is that they act as both the great equalizer and amplifier. Customers who have a crappy experience with a company’s products or services now have a virtual arsenal of communication methods to be heard.  Often times the search engine’s powerful algorithms (Google) finds their content and links to their complaints.  When a certain “power consumer” couldn’t cancel his AOL account despite several pleas with the voice on the other end of the phone, he decided to take matters into his own hands and record the horrendous experience.  What resulted was a PR nightmare for AOL that started online, gained momentum and was quickly reported on several national news stations. What starts digital becomes something much bigger, and it all starts with an experience.”

David has a bit more on his blog … so this is still a teaser – you’ll need to get the book to read the rest!

ACPL Library Camp Presentation Links

I spoke at the Allen County Public Library’s Library Camp 2008 on Tuesday – what a blast! It was a good day – full of learning, speaking, and great ideas being discussed.

I also enjoyed hanging out with some cool people – a mix of Allen County staff and some people I know from other conferences.

Want to get a feel for what happened? Check out the ACPLLibraryCamp twitter feed or photos tagged acpllibrarycamp08 in flickr.

Here are the two presentations I did (and also the first two presentations I’ve dumped into SlideShare):

and my second presentation – this was a shorter presentation followed by a group project / discussion:

Thanks, Allen County, for a great day!

My New Book: Designing the Digital Experience

Designing the Digital ExperienceI wrote a book! The title is: Designing the Digital Experience: How to Use Experience Design Tools & Techniques to Build Websites Customers Love. It should be out this October.

What’s the book about? Here’s a snippet from the Introduction:

“Visitors to an organization’s digital space don’t want to think about interacting with its website. They want to — quickly and easily — make a purchase, find information, or do research. It helps if they can be engaged and enchanted in the process. How can we facilitate this excellent experience? It’s all about intentional design.

Consider the concept of “experience design.” Nathan Shedroff describes it as designing the “sensation of interaction with a product, service, or event, through all of our senses, over time, and on both physical and cognitive levels.”1 Simply stated, experience design is “an approach to creating successful experiences for people in any medium.”2

Designing digital experience is similar, yet unique. That’s because in a digital space, experience designers have to “compensate for the absence of a sales professional who stands ready to greet customers as they arrive [and] to cheerfully help them accomplish their goal.”3

This book introduces digital experience design for websites. I have seen great information on parts and pieces of experience design. For example, B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore’s book, The Experience Economy: Work Is Theatre & Every Business a Stage, does a great job of exploring experience generally but really doesn’t focus on digital experiences. Other books are great at helping improve the user experience on websites but miss the broader picture of designing digital experiences. This book connects the dots. It explains how website structure, community, and customers are all parts of the total digital experience.” (Read the rest of the introduction).

Want more? There are a couple of places you can follow along with book happenings and thoughts related to the book:

Bear with me – I’ll be posting book-related updates (along with my usual posts) for the next couple of months. I’m excited about it! More later…