Crafting the User-Centered Library
presented by Cliff Landis
Why use emerging tech?
It’s not enough to shove your bad services (such as our crappy OPACs) into new things.
Don’t do it because everyone else is.
We don’t need things designed FOR the user, we need things designed BY the user.
Planning – it takes too long. Too man hoops to jump through, eventually good ideas can just fade away.
The committee approach – can take any good idea and destroy it. Exploits the negative aspects. To many times people ask “what if…” Cliff then showed us a funny YouTube video, Association Professionals Through the Ages, that illustrates how good ideas can be destroyed in such a manner.
I recently discovered a wonderful website for anyone interested in astronomy and space: NASA Images.
In addition to the huge collection of images and multimedia of the universe, our solar system, the Earth, aeronautics and astronauts, it’s also got a nice time line from the late 1950’s until the present day.
High resolution versions of the images are available for download.
Rolling Stone was the first adult magazine I subscribed to. I’ve been getting it delivered to my home for over twenty years now. But I let my subscription expire this month, and I’m a little nostalgic about it.
Its musical focus was what first got me reading Rolling Stone — especially the music reviews. Over the years though, they’ve added more features on pop-culture things like fashion, television, and video games. Lately a good deal of their random notes section looks like it came from a sleazy tabloid. Often the music news in the bi-weekly magazine was not news to me. I had already heard about it online. I became less and less interested, and issues would pile up, unread. Over the past few years I wondered why I was paying for a subscription, but I couldn’t quite bring myself to stop.
I recently discovered an outstanding resource at T.U.B.E.: The Ultimate Bootleg Experience. Featuring both live and studio recordings (outtakes, rarities, etc.), T.U.B.E. is veritable goldmine. Some of the more interesting things I found there include:
Joe Strummer – Solos, Soundtracks, & Rarities
Van Morrison – Gypsy Soul (Studio Demos)
Peter Tosh – Equal Rights Demos 1977
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – 1969-08-26 – Los Angeles
(the earliest completely recorded CSNY concert)
Talking Heads – CBS Demos (1975)
U2 – Pulled The Covers (1979-2006)
The one minor downside of T.U.B.E. is the slightly complicated downloading process. It usually is worth it however. The files are well documented, and often include cover art. The bootlegs I’ve downloaded have been of very good quality. Every time I check out T.U.B.E., I’m just amazed at the variety and sheer number of bootlegs posted on the site.
I really don’t like to write “complaint posts” but there is a good part to this story, so I’m going to indulge myself.
I’ve had this cold for three weeks now, and boy am I getting sick of it (pun intended). That’s three weeks of coughing, blocked up sinuses, and a runny nose. Several other people I know have had the same virus (they’ve been sick for a long time too). When it got to be three weeks for me I contacted my doctor’s office, to ask if I should come in and get it checked out. After the on-call nurse assessed me, she didn’t think I needed to come in (no fever or any disgusting symptoms I’d rather not mention here). But the good part of the story is I decided to go online and email my doctor about it.
I recently added some excellent photography websites to my links page, and I thought it would be worth mentioning them here as well. Most of the following sites have tips & techniques, and a few just show great pictures.
Way back in the fall of 2000, I bought this domain name so I could have some web space to play around with. About a year after that I installed some blogging software because blogging was becoming popular and I wanted to try it out. Blogging and messing around with my domain has been fun for me. I cringe when I look back and read a few of my older posts, but I’m still having fun with it.
Earlier this week I attended this year’s Computers in Libraries conference. While I wasn’t all that enamored with the hotel location, the conference itself was excellent. I got excited about, and learned a LOT of interesting things. Below are a few highlights.
The folks at the South Carolina State Library recently redesigned their site using Joomla, the open source content management system. This was a very inspirational session for me, as I’m looking at adding a CMS to my library’s website. More info is available at Joomla in Libraries.