Monday, December 28, 2009

Can you Digg it? No, not really.

Well, I've checked out Digg and found it lacking. Sure, I've previously seen Digg icons next to articles on blogs and websites, begging you to attach a Digg, but I've pretty much resisted the urge. Just because something appeals to me, why should I expect it be as meaningful to you?

I did visit the Digg site and found a mixed bag of items. Some old.... I clicked on a headline of interest, only to find it was published December 17. In today's fast-times, that is ancient history. Some new.... I scanned an op-ed piece by economist Paul Krugman in the New York Times. It was one of those end of the year, or decade, or century pieces where the writer capsulizes the preceeding events and puts them in perspective. Well, I don't often agree with Krugman, but in this case, I think he could have been talking about Digg when he characterized the past year as a big "zero".

Happy New Year.

Friday, December 4, 2009

A new tool

This week Santa (in the form of IT) came early and gave us all Communicator. Its basically instant messaging. Looks like it will be a useful addition to the desktop. Now, I just have to force myself to use it. Do me a favor, send me a message with Communicator and get me used to using it!

Monday, November 30, 2009

This Week: RSS

Just a Really Simple Blog: I love RSS for ease of getting the latest headlines quickly. Can't beat it!

So how does this relate to Danny the Library Assistant? Well, for one, it is incumbent on someone working in a library to be pretty savvy on what's happening. First, a good general knowledge of how the world is rotating, and secondly, a strong knowledge of specific fields of interest. In my case, I'm working on a digitization project. So, blogs and feeds relating to digitization float my boat. Having those feeds pushed to me is a great timesaver.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Doing a "New" Thing

Here we are, week 2 of the FPL 23 Things training, and we're doing a new thing... an Aggregator or Blog Reader.

Apollo 16: Man on the MoonThe Web is so massive -- I've just starting adding a few blogs and I've already got more entries than I have time or temperment to read. Thanks be to Google for coming up with an easy-to-use tool. Here's a picture from one of the blogs I'm following, the National Air and Space Museum blog. In the photo Astronaut John W. Young, commander of the Apollo 16 lunar landing mission, jumps up from the lunar surface as he salutes the U.S. Flag during the first Apollo 16 extravehicular activity (EVA).

Friday, November 20, 2009

I Read the Strangest Things

I want to recommend The Digital Museum: A Think Guide, edited by Herminia Din and Phyllis Hecht with an introduction by Selma Thomas, published by the American Association of Museums, to all my fellow 23 Things bloggers. Don't let the word "Museum" scare you off, the book's content can be applied to libraries, too. The book examines how social media and web 2.0 are changing the museum environment. A bit arcane, but very informative; not what I would call light reading, caffiene is strongly recommended.

Read an excerpt here.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Life on the Fault Line

San Andreas Fault in California
I really enjoy Libraries and Museums on a number of levels. One reason is that they are patron-oriented and are continually seeking to reinvent themselves. At least, the good ones are.... You see, good museum and library personnel have discovered a startling fact: they live on a fault line. The ground often moves under their feet. I lived in California so I have first hand knowledge of how unsettling it is when the foundation shakes. Operating an organization is hard enough, but the stresses of the tremors make it all the more tricky to remain sustainable.

Most of my recent experience has been in a museum environment, but libraries are quite similar. Museums are at a crossroad. Museum professionals have felt the tremors and are concerned that they are no longer perceived as performing as valuable a role in society. Each generation brings with it new perceptions and higher expectations. The status quo is unacceptable. Patrons in a digital age are looking for new ways of enjoying the past. It's not that the artifacts are any less significant, it is the means of interpretation that is at issue. Patrons want to experience the past. They want multi-sensoral and interactive exhibits. They still want to receive the message, but they want to be entertained in the process. Hey, once you've experienced HD, you don't want to go back to standard definition!

Libraries are similar. The content of books is still relevant, but the delivery format is shifting. Media is on the ascendency. The Internet is everywhere. The Web 2.0 has shaken the foundation of information delivery. Interactive knowledge sharing is becoming commonplace. That's why 23 Things is so important. It's simply the realization that we work on a fault line, and we must change with it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Just want to make my appreciation known to all who worked so hard to put together the in-service training day. Thank you! I realize that I have a 'ways (that's Texas-talk) to go before I can add 2.o to my list of accomplishments, but you have done much to get me started down that pathway!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Hello World!

Dannyknowsbest is what I named this, because in a perfect world, I would know best. However, given the fallen condition of the world, I only know best most of the time.