KLA 2011 Wrapup post

At the KLA 2011 conference this year, “Share the Vision”, I stayed sane, and only presented once. And I plan to act accordingly at KLA conference in years to come. Last year’s insane presentation schedule was fun to do (I ended up doing 4 separate sessions with panels of people, plus taught a pre-conference), but I didn’t get to enjoy the conference at all — I’d crash between presentations in my hotel room.

I won’t do that again. And I don’t recommend this at all (friends don’t let friends do crazy presentation slates — remember that!). Conferences are meant to be enjoyed and a time to visit with your colleagues and peers, and also attend sessions (yes, I advocate the priority of talking to people above attending conference sessions; conferences are a great way to meet new people and learn from one another)

This year I only gave a presentation with the fabulous Liz Rea, on online security tips, “Naked in the Library: Keeping Your Private Information Private, Online“.

Side note: Previously the funniest (and most useful) presentation had been the Cloud Computing presentation Sharon, Liz, and I presented together as a team at different times in 2009 (which reminds me, after TEDxOKC and hearing from a member of the Chrome OS team, I think we should resurrect the cloud computing presentation again; it’s even more relevant today). End Side Note

I didn’t think we could have more fun than using silly cat pictures to describe the wonder and perils of cloud computing and what it can mean for libraries. But Liz and I managed to do just that with “Naked in the Library“. People get bored or overwhelmed or confused or lose interest in security presentations or conversations; we’d both experienced this. So how to get people’s attention when security is more important than ever, especially as cloud computing is an exploding trend? With a combination of live simulated hacking, videos, and the Keep Calm and Channel Han mantra, we had our audience participating, laughing, engaged, and appearing to remember what we’d discussed over about 40 minutes. I have a feeling we’ll be doing this one again. [Presentation info: Slides, Handout, Resources]

I spent time at the conference helping produce and moderate two virtual track sessions — great fun to hear from Susan, Leah, and Gail in their sessions, and I just realized I have another set of notes to type now from their sessions to share (another day). I thought the sessions went well and we have fantastic archives of information that I hope people listen to post-conference. (For fun, here’s the Xtranormal video promoting the track and the Xtranormal video thanks).

Note: If you registered for the conference or the virtual track only, you have access to these sessions; see Cindi Hickey’s message reminder on KANLIB for more info. If you haven’t seen the message or are interested in getting the archives to the sessions, contact Cindi directly; her contact information is on the virtual track page.

I attended a few other sessions, including Heidi’s Silent LIbrary: Using MTV as library outreach programming, library advocacy in Kansas update (notes coming), one of Maribeth’s sessions on computer security (notes coming), In Pursuit of Library Elegance, and Placing a Hold on the Love of Reading.

All in all it was a great couple of days in Topeka. Royce, Mickey, and the other conference organizers did a great job bringing the conference together. I had a wonderful time connecting with good friends (had a bit of fun in downtown Lawrence and laughed way too much; thanks Kate, Heidi, and Rachel — SLIM will forever connect us 🙂 ), talked to many other library colleagues, and continued to find intersecting threads of thought that were still in the process of being pulled together. Some had been present for months, some came at CiL, some came at PLAVSS, and some came at KLA.

Then I left Topeka and drove to OKC for TEDxOKC on Friday. The drive down to OKC went by quickly thanks to phone conversations. Between a conversation with a college roommate and a marathon phone conversation with Buffy Hamilton (I think we talked 3 hours!), the 4.5 hour drive went by quickly. I stayed with Kirsten, talked library shop as always, and headed to bed. I knew Friday would be exciting thanks to knowing a lot about the TED and TEDx concepts, but I had no clue how exciting and life-changing it would be. The threads I’ve been seeing merged, exploded, and came to life. Stay tuned for those notes and reflections over the next few days.

Ebooks: Landscape & Implications

Bobbi Newman, Brian Hulsey, Jason Griffey

Brian Hulsey


“We change whether we like it or not” –Ralph Waldo Emerson

Why is this change important to us? We have to be there for our patrons. Back of Wall Street journals. Airports had eReaders all over the place during Brian’s travels. Library conference is being held online.

Relevance: photo of old Apple computer. Have to examine your area and determine what will work for you. Have to figure out how the patron base and what they are wanting. Many are wanting

Cost: replacing physical books costs lots of money. Digital content can’t be lost, destroyed, ruined. Maximizing budgets for what you get for the library.

Impact: look at how it will affect the community & affect the library & its staff. Training will have to take place. Don’t just implement something just because you read about it. Thought has to go into it.

Implementation: eservices get implemented because its cool; be careful. Kindle loaning — tied to library’s credit card. Patrons started buying more books, using library’s credit card. Be careful — know what you’re getting into.

Policies: what type of service will you use at your library; policies on the loaning of the devices must be created.

Cataloging: if you don’t add econtent into your catalog — how are patrons going to find it, locate it, if it’s not in your catalog and online services?

Vendor Advice: Make the vendor rep your best friend; that person knows the system in and out; find out how to best maximize the use of the e-content service you implement.

Problems: training all staff first so all questions can be answered by anyone at any time, not call back later; helping patrons when questions come up; when you don’t help the patron, library isn’t relevant to the patron any longer.

Constantly changing: vendor situation constantly changing & devices constantly changing; Ebrary; Kindle; Sony Reader; iPad. Story time with Cat in the Hat on the iPad. These services aren’t just going to fall into your lap and you can use them. Must learn & constantly change with the services to stay relevant.

Bobbi Newman

Will be talking about devices.

“Everything I say will be outdated by the time you leave this room.”

iPad — didn’t get it when it was announced, then saw one and her mind was changed.

Kindle: easy to use; most popular device right now, still; buy the book, download it to the device.

Lending Library eBooks, complicated process.

Sony eReader

Nook: can loan books to 1 friend and only one time.

Who owns electronic content, from eBooks? Severe restrictions on these files. Physical books can be given to others; eBooks, not so much.

iPhone/iPod Touch: people are reading on these devices; not made for it.

iPad: its brand new; but going to greatly change the future of devices.

Watching video from Jason Griffey now, who couldn’t be at the conference. If it’s online, will post a link to it later.

His Predictions

  • eBooks will stop being tied to specific devices
  • iPad: Kindle, iBooks;
  • Amazon: has a Kindle app for iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch, has desktop software for all platforms, and for the Kindle, of course, trying to be there for all devices.
  • Software platforms for eBooks up & coming: Copia, http://thecopia.com/ & Blio, http://blioreader.com/
  • Black & White eInk readers, will be commodity devices by the end of 2010. Prices will drop considerably, maybe even as low as $50. What will libraries do at that point?
  • eBook DRM: initially goal with music was to tie it up with DRM; eventually the publishers will realize that it’s not in the best interest of the consumer to have DRM. DRM keeps honest people honest.
  • jasongriffey.net/wp is his blog.

Comments at the end

  • ease of use matters most to patrons
  • iPod/iPhone took off because it was the easiest to use.
  • people aren’t going to use those devices that are difficult to use.
  • these devices can be hacked; but that isn’t easy.
  • Database eBrary can’t be used on eReader devices.

From Podcasts to Blogs and Beyond! Session

Scherelene Schatz, New Jersey State Library

JerseyCat ILL training online. What is it? It’s the statewide virtual catalog and ILL system. 700 multi-type libraries (school, special, academic, public; 95% of public libraries use JerseyCat).

Target audience? 2,000 people trained on the system. Webinars are really good way to quickly update & reach more people, because they can’t leave the library to go to training. Training reference librarians who deal with customers. Training of catalogers — who want to download the MARC records from the system.

In the past what was used? Went to hands-on lab in the state in person, and went through the particular lesson that day.

Now, using webinars. JerseyCat listserv.

Also, using Blog for the project. Slides shared there for presentations. Archiving webinars to view webinar later. Registration links provided there.

Why are webinars a viable option? Started with searching; workflow; tweaking search screen’s default settings; attaching journal articles to the ILL requests; vendor upgrades.

How do you set up, prepare, and conduct a webinar?

  • choose a vendor & platform — Scherlene used GoToWebinar
  • schedule the webinar: title, description, date, start & end time
  • how to provide audio? conference call on phone — provide a 1-800 number; OR VOIP
  • set up registration form that participants’ will fill out
  • evaluation form setup as well, to pop up on the screen at the end of the webinar or emailed to participants to ask for feedback for the session.
  • after setting up registration form, email & link generated for participants; also sends out reminders about the session, so no one forgets

How are the webinars going?

  • compared hands-on training to webinar training: very comparable; not much difference.

Performance reports, post-webinar?

  • shows participant info
  • polling questions answered
  • post-session survey responses

Final Tips

  • mark your calendar for the sessions that you as the trainer set up; you need to be at those sessions.
  • nothing substitutes for good preparation
  • have session participants mute their phones, etc.
  • send handouts to participants ahead of time; some people need pieces of paper in front of them.
  • use your polling questions (if you notice people wandering away, esp)

Jason Puckett & Rachel Borchardt Section

Podcasting for instruction librarians

Adventures in Library Instruction podcast

What’s a podcast? RSS + MP3

Like a radio show; it’s free to produce, create, and share, through the Internet.

Blog that has attached media files, almost always MP3s (but also PDFs, video files)

Don’t need a portable media player to listen to podcasts. Many podcast listeners view through a computer; more starting to listen on their smartphones or other devices.

RSS feed: if you just put the file up on a blog without RSS it’s like a monograph, no subscriptions. If you have RSS, it becomes like a serial and you can subscribe. People get this analogy.

Gearing up. A lot of money can be put into the equipment. If your campus has a media production lab already, take a look at those labs–you might be able to use those labs. But there’s also much cheapers way to do this.

Blue Snowball microphone (about $100) — records in 360 degrees + laptop + audacity. Great for portable podcasts. If you have a Mac, use GarageBand to record & edit; software comes with Macs. For music, use creative commons-licensed music to not spend much money.

Once you record and edit the file, you post the file.

WordPress has a plugin called PodPress. Other ways to get the files online.

Jason & Rachel’s first podcast: Library Survival Guide Podcast (original one; Jason & Rachel no longer at Emory; at different universities now). Did short episodes. Best practices: short episodes (5-10mins); never read from a script — sounds like you’re reading from a script; one person talking is a lot less interesting than 2 people talking; conversation instead of lecture; kept re-iterating why important.

Instructional Design & Marketing

Students not necessarily going to subscribe to the podcasts. Supplemental material during in-class instruction sessions. Put on library website; libguides.

How a podcast can succeed or fail is in the marketing. Let the students know about it, but also let the instructors know about it. Partner with the marketing department. Podcasts can be used for teaching and also for advertising what’s going on at the library.

Evidence of success

iTunesU shot the podcast into success, getting it to a broader audience. Podcasts can be difficult to assess. Can get the number of times the files have been downloaded, but don’t know who downloads. Always ask for feedback, but don’t get any.

Moving onto other jobs

Jason: “Library Insider” @GSU — learned you have to do this with others. Hasn’t been able to do one since August 2009. Hoping to revive it again.

Podcasts are free like kittens, not like beer. Have to feed podcasts, and take care of them.

Third podcast effort: ALI: Adventures in Library Instruction. Kept informal. Conversational style. Anna is the third person in the podcast. The podcast was started because Jason wanted to listen to an instruction librarian podcast — none out there, so that’s why the podcast started. T is for Training is another library podcast out there.

Tools to collaborate produce — no budget; all tools free

  • Skype
  • SkypeCall Recorder — or supposedly Audacity will record Skype calls (not sure if this true — heard this)
  • Audacity
  • Blogspot (publish)
  • FeedBurner
  • DropBox — to share files — ESSENTIAL — music shared there; interviews
  • Archive.org (file put there)
  • iTunes


  • 300 subscribers to the podcast
  • Facebook presence
  • Never get enough feedback
  • No one isn’t necessarily responding

Other libraries out there using podcasts

  • Arizona State has great podcasts (video included); model podcast
  • Public Libraries doing this, as well, on various topics
  • University of Toronto used to archive events that occurred at the university; not doing this any more.
  • DeKalb County Public Library archives events.
  • Hopkinton HIgh School, Isinglass Teen Read Award BookTalks
  • Tours at Ohio University Libraries

The 24th Thing: What’s Next?

Helene Blowers was unable to be at this session, so a panel will be taking her place.

Sean Robinson (Allen County Public Library)

43 Things — Stephen Abrams idea originally

23 Things — Helene Blowers idea originally

What is your vision with these tools that have been learned in 23 Things programs?

  • engage
  • enrich
  • empower

Enrichment: message to resonate. Blogging, want people to read it that isn’t your relatives.

Empower: fight for what you love.

What is your strategy, then, to use all of these tools? Why are blogging? Using social media?

3 Questions

  1. How are people finding us? Crack dealers go out and find customers; where are people coming to your library’s website? Looking at Google Analytics statistics. Piggyback on other events or situations. Other way to connect? Visitors Center; Schools/Media Centers; City Government; Convention Bureau;
  2. What are their interests?
  3. What are they saying?
  1. you have to be useful to people in new and interesting ways.
    1. Columbus Public Library collaborating with convention bureau.
    2. Chattanooga collaborating with the City on Facebook.
    3. Look at what other libraries are doing and make the connection; don’t reinvent the wheel.
  2. Engagement is not an idea it is a practice.
  3. Grow some bigger ears. Twitter Search; Google Alerts.

Slides on Slideshare (link coming later)

Michael Sauers & Christa Burns

Learning 2.0 @ the nebraska library commission

Nebraska learns 2.0 (statewide program)

50 % completion rate (due to 15 ce credits at the state level, they think)

What’s next for Nebraska? Participants asked for more learning after the program ended.

Nebraska is now doing an ongoing 23 Things program. New thing posted every month. Been doing this for a year now.

What not to do…

  • Didn’t promote the program, except for when they first started the “next thing”
  • Must continue to promote the program
  • Don’t drop the ball.
  • The participants want to continue to learn, but need continual reminders.
  • Leaders have to also participate AND weren’t participating.

Sidenote: Google Wave dropped the ball initially — no reminders.

Lori Reed

23 Things program originally was going to be 43 Things.

How are libraries supposed to innovate in a time of “change”, of budget cuts? Charlotte’s situation and many other libraries’ budgets situations.

Charlotte’s closings & budget cuts & staff layoffs. Horrible to watch it happen. Go through the stages of grief. Anger. Denial. Acceptance.

“In calm weather, all ships have good captains.” –Swedish proverb, often attributed to Adam Smith.

Personally, to get through this, SaveLibraries.org created the next day.

  1. Innovation is more than technology. Are meetings necessary? “Death by Meeting” book recommended. Business model. Services reviewed.
  2. Be willing to do what’s right for the organization and profession, even if it means losing your job. Can’t have libraries for just libraries’ sake. Be what our users need and want. We can’t fight for services that people don’t want.
  3. You can’t communicate too much. Twitter has become the new communication tool for staff during meetings, posting to online news sites. Staff have projector with live twitter stream during board meetings.
  4. Accept the fact that libraries are going to look very different in the future. The medium of a paper book is on its way out. Kids want to be a part of the story — have a computer, an iPod, an iPhone, an iPad.
  5. This is an opportunity. To learn. To grow. To adapt. To improve. Let go of what’s not working. We must do so to show why we’re relevant. We should never have to say why libraries are important.

Rebecca Jones — what are other libraries doing/further conversation…

  • Comment: Many people think that they aren’t going to close. But it happens.
  • Comment: CiL & Internet Librarian are only conferences where libraries of all types get together and learn from one another.
  • Nebraska’s program, were the new things a review of those covered in 23 Things? Right now, all the things have been new. But there has been discussion to revisit the old things.

Virtual Learning and Training

Teaching and Learning with Drupal
Meredith Farkas, Norwich University

Transferring face-to-face classes straight to online classes doesn’t work. They are boring. Something is lost in translation?

What gets lost is the before- & after-class interaction; the in-class interaction; this hasn’t always been transferred to online learning.

Web 2.0 ideas for the classroom.

  • age of participation
  • the wisdom of crowds
  • social constructivism
  • instructor is facilitator; everyone learns, even the instructor

Meredith used Drupal, an OS CMS, in her instruction, instead of the school’s current learning management system.

  • multiple blogs
  • wikis
  • forums
  • static html
  • lots of options available in Drupal

She has taught three semesters of classes online so far. The important part has been the class participation, and the commenting that has gone on in the class.

Why blogs?

  • faculty communication with students — “housekeeping” category posts
  • familiar medium
  • builds student sense of ownership over the medium (with forums, you don’t own the space; you just post there; with own blog, it’s your space)
  • community-building: students interacted and connected online, much more human medium where they be themselves, informal.
    • “this was probably the most engaging class i’ve taken because were were required to interact with each other every week…” –comment from student
  • Reflective learning: reflect on the experience of reading, process it, and write about how it affects you. Reflect on other discussions.
  • Discussion and debate: when you have to critique or justify your ideas, you are able to start to clarify your own ideas better and own them.
  • Writing in public: gain experience writing for an outside audience, while in school, not just your class reading your stuff; professional blogging beginning already
  • Everyone is teacher and learner: reading and teaching not as important as the conversations that went on in the class, so everyone learns and teaches.

Blogs can:

  • promote critical and reflective thinking
  • enable collaboration and knowledge-saharing
  • create an informal environment for student discussion and community-building
  • encourage dialogue and debate
  • encourage students to teach as well as learn and co-construct their learning experience

Using blogs for teaching brings in much more real-world experience.

Blogging at the American University in Cairo
Joan Petit, Portland State University

Worked at the American University in Cairo for two years.

It’s a US-accredited institution; has a required info lit class; mostly Egyptians; English as 2nd or 3rd language; no libraries there; no critical thinking taught in high school; no research papers in class before college. This situation presents challenges for the information literacy course that’s required.

OLD LALT 101 class

  • research project
  • Quizzes — graded automatically
  • WebCT
  • PowerPoints — instructor would read through the slides
  • 20% increase from pre- to post-test
  • Light workload for librarians; not much prepwork

New LALT 101: class wiki

  • Strict attendence — if you came to class & did the assignments, you’d pass.
  • Easier to pass
  • All students had to blog
    • weekly posts
    • assigned topics
    • political blogging in Egypt
    • Final project in blog — just a blog entry
    • Student Blog #1
    • Student Blog #2
      • Students could have public or private blogs

WordPress blogs resulted in for staff:

  • near-disaster
  • platform is not-so-simple
  • technology issues
  • instructors thought the students hated it

Student feedback

  • they loved the blogging.
  • the instructors couldn’t back off the blogging approach because the students hated taking the rest of the class. Since they bought into the blogging portion of the class, it had to remain.

The Lessons

  • Looking good on paper isn’t enough
  • Take advantage of key moments
  • Own your disasters
  • Define success
  • The most exciting technology isn’t always the best for users
  • Ill-considered hastily implemented can be a great success: if this had gone before a committee, it wouldn’t have happened.

Comments at the End

Meredith: students felt ownership of their classroom through the online structure of the class.

Joan: you find the technology that works for the students, play around with it, even with engineering students.

Meredith: so many different ways to engage your students in learning; you just have to find ways to engage the students so that they learn.

Joan: hear what the students are saying in response to what’s being used.

Meredith: how to get students to comment on each other’s stuff? not sure if an environment caused this or if it was the students themselves.