Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Portals with NetVibes

This week Barb sent me a link to Morraine Valley Community College's Homepage and I saw that they had created a portal called Morraine Valley Info Central which includes library RSS feeds and links. A student can log in and create their own account to have a personalized portal. This is created through a free web 2.0 tool called NetVibes.

On a similar note, two students who participated in a card sort activity this week with Kim were entranced with the card labeled My Library Account. They thought that this meant they could create their own library starting page with personalized links, links to their syllabi, textbooks, etc.

Thinking about this, I did a quick search and found this article about creating a start page for library staff members with NetVibes. You can see a sample portal. It could include links to the library blogs, rss feeds, the library email reference account, our AskLCCLibrary AIM account....

This idea of personalized portals for both staff and possibly our library webpage is worth considering.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Creative Workspaces

Something fun/creative this time. View this slide show (well, maybe not all of is since there's over 100 slides) and see what your new home or work office space can be.

See you at the office!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Post from your email

Want to send posts to The Next Chapter blog via email? I think you can! Just use this address:

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Bring out the GIMP

OK, for anyone who's seen PulpFiction that's probably a little bit tasteless, but it is appropriate I swear! I know alot of you are interested in image editing programs, but aren't necessarily interested in paying for PhotoShop. There are good free options out there, some of which have been posted on this blog in the past, but I thought I'd turn you another very feature rich option, GIMP. Here's a short description:
"GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. It is a freely distributed program for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring. It has many capabilities. It can be used as a simple paint program, an expert quality photo retouching program, an online batch processing system, a mass production image renderer, an image format converter, etc."

Check out the features listed on their website at:

They also have some decent HTML tutorials on a variety of topics at:

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


The Librarian in Black wrote up a nice little post about a new service created by the start up mobile Q&A service Mosio. I think this is good news for libraries that the market is beginning to provide tools for hosting this kind of service that would be difficult to create and support all on our own. This really is the next progression.

Just the other day I had a student, who was on a library tour, ask at the reference desk if we provided reference service via texting. I said, "Not yet, but that is where we are heading." He seemed pleased to hear that. I really feel that his query was just the tip of a might iceberg of service opportunity. Let's forge ahead carefully, but conscientiously, with full committment to serving our students as best we can.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Blurring the lines

Here's an interesting discussion that Michael Stephens and Michael Casey had in their monthly column The Transparent Library that Library Journal runs. In their discussion it shows how two professionals, who work with Library 2.0 daily, can have differing viewpoints on how transparency, lack of privacy, or too much privacy, and the blurring lines between our personal and professional lives effect how we interact with the world and with our library customers.

Friday, August 22, 2008

The LCC Library (tres cool) Video

It will be fun & interesting to see how often our very cool & new (and ready for prime time) video is viewed on YouTube and what comments are left.

In the meantime, I uploaded/posted it to my blog as well. I hope to use it in classes this year and when I collaborate with nursing, massage and/or dental hygiene faculty.

Kudos to all who were involved in the producing of that video.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

ALA Read Mini Poster

Have you ever looked at the ALA Read posters with the celebrity endorsements and wished you could be the star? Well now you can! Just use this little gizmo to create your own READ mini poster. So pick up your favorite book, or one that just happens to be nearby and snap a quick photo. You too can bask in the limelight!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Information Literacy Meets Library 2.0

If you haven't used this blog, Information Literacy Meets Library 2.0, see what you think of it.
Some really good posts in this blog include:
  • info about a very interesting international Information Literacy logo contest; I like the winning logo, do you?
  • TeacherTubes- insightful professional videos that promote IL
  • "100 Unbelievably Useful Reference Sites You've Never Heard Of"
  • "Ten Social Networking Tips for Librarians"
  • a post entitled, "Evaluation, Evaluation, Evaluation" mentions a recently published article co-authored by Michael Lorenzen (CMU librarian)- evaluation being the key part of IL

And get this, the posts have an audiocast button to click on.

See what you think.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Gaming and Libraries

I saw this press release from ALA today. Hopefully the study will yield some useful tools for librarians:

American Library Association receives $1 million grant from Verizon Foundation to study how gaming can be used to improve problem-solving and literacy skills

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

For the Geeks Among Us

I read about a web site called Engadget where many new consumer electronics and tech gadgets are reviewed and demonstrated. Since I'm from a far away galaxy and different era, I'm no Geek, but for those who would like photos, reviews and video demos of what's "cool" out there, I suggest you check out Engadget!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Newbie Librarian Unconference

Librarians, like many professionals, like to talk about trends. Today I'm attending an emerging trend called the unconference. This Newbie Unconference is kindly hosted by the Southfield Public Library and organized by Christine Ayar (Adam Cardinal Maida Alumni Library) and Elizabeth Bollinger (Michigan State University). This event seeks to bring librarians together for discussion and the exchange of ideas.

While being a face-to-face gathering of librarians some discussion has revolved around the need to facilitate larger gatherings like MLA and ALA annual conferences virtually, as well, using the internet to extend the interaction of smaller groups. Some of us wondered, wouldn't it be nice if these professional organizations made more of an effort to embrace new librarians, help provide a clearer path into professional service?

One of the sessions we organized revolved around the idea of networking for personal, professional, institutional, and political reasons. The conversation branched into the areas of mentorship, involvement in professional organizations, the value of networks and how to utilize them effectively both face-to-face and virtually.

Unconferencing is fun! It allowed all of the attendees (@35) to have a voice, feel included, and hopefully learn exactly what they had come to learn. I'm excited to unconference again sometime in the future and pleased that the conversation can continue on the New Librarians unConference page.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Got Voki?

Earlier last month I had fun creating a speaking Avatar or Voki! I then put my speaking Avatar on my instruction blog. If you promise not to laugh (I need to re-record to eliminate an error), I will share my blog link and you can give "Barb" listen for yourself.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Go Green @ Your Library

This isn't necessarily "Library 2.0", but I got approval to post it here anyways :)

Planning is already underway for National Library Week 2009 and I hope you can be involved. Our 2009 theme will focus on "green" initiatives and I am requesting feedback from all library staff regarding activities for our Event. A list of suggested activities has been started and is available in our workspace at:

Please feel free to add your suggestions for possible activities, topics, and/or partners for this event. You'll also notice that a list of suggested actions on how our department can be "greener" has been started. Feel free to add your suggestions to this list as well. I hope that we'll be able to talk as a department about becoming a model of "greenness" and sustainability for the rest of the campus.

As I mentioned, the Communications and Outreach Team has already started to plan for National Library Week 2009. If you would like to be involved in planning, presenting, or in another aspect please feel free to contact me (Tori).

For a list of other suggested future topics or to suggest a future topic for National Library Week events, please visit the Library Events page on our wiki at:

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

IUG Opening Session

The key note speaker at this year's Innovative Users' Group was Larry Irving. Mr. Irving coined the phrase "digital divide" but now he thinks the divide will be among the availability of broadband.

He shared a few statistics with us that I found interesting:
  • The United States generates an equivalent amount of online content every fifteen minutes as the entire content of the Library of Congress (gathered from the 1880s to 2007)
  • YouTube generates as much traffic in one day (7-10% of all traffic) as what was generated over the entire web in 2000
  • In 2010, 20 typical American households will consume as much technology as the entire world did in 1998
  • Previously, the digital divide was thought to be limited to race. This new "broadband divide" is now limited by income, age, and location -- race is no longer the primary factor.
With the "broadband divide" affecting over 50% of the US population, Mr. Irving said that libraries will continue to play an important role as bridging the gap between the haves and have-nots. Is our technology up to the challenge?

His closing thought was that the internet revolution is the only revolution that is happening simultaneously around the world.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Opening Speaker - LOEX 2008

Laurel Ofstein, Asst. Director at the Center for Creativity & Innovation at DePaul spoke about the "Nine Dimensions of the Creative Environment": Idea support; trust & openness; discussion; challenge & involvement; idea time; humor & play; freedom; risk-taking; degree of conflict. In my summation it appears that having a positive, enthusiastic, and open attitude will go a long way towards fostering a creative environment. Now, the question is, how to extend the discussion, extend the environment virtually? Is that desirable?

Friday, April 25, 2008

Friday, April 11, 2008

LCC Library Screencast on Library Website

The IST team would like to announce that we have posted a short screencast on the library website that explains how to choose a database to get started with your research.

Check out the tutorial: How to Choose a Database Tutorial
The tutorial is 2 minutes 30 seconds long and 2.8 MB.

You can find the tutorial on the library website on the following pages:
Here are some screencasts produced by other libraries.
Have you seen any creative tutorials on other library websites? What topics do you think might be good candidates for future tutorials?

ProQuest Search Widget- What Do You Think?

Earlier this wk, Elenka email us a link to an article ("Online Databases: Web Widgets Help Searchers") in the current issue of LJ.

I looked over this article to learn about the ProQuest search widget! I wondered how it works so I followed the link to the library that's mentioned in the article. I tried this new ProQuest search widget and it all seems pretty magical to me. See what you think.
Use the link to the Friedsam Memorial Library of St. Bonaventure University. Scoll down a ways to find/use the PQ search widget (left-hand side).

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Monkeysee - See How the experts do it

Ever wonder how to (see below) then this website might be for you:
  • Make sushi rolls
  • Fix a leaky faucet
  • Design a home wine cellar
  • Paint a room
  • Belly dance
  • Groom your dog/cat
  • Change a tire

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Here's an interesting project!

The folks at infobib, a German library blog, have initiated a very interesting project called LibWorld.

"Libworld is a series of postings in which guest authors introduce the library and library related blogs of their particular country."

Check it out and see whats happening in library blogs around the world.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Photoshop Express

Did you know that Adobe has just released a version of Photoshop called Photoshop Express? It's a rich internet application (RIA) with basic photo editing capabilities. RIA's are applications that are run in an internet browser rather than from within your computer operating system.

To use Photoshop Express you need the most recent version of Flash.

Read about and try it out here:

Monday, March 24, 2008

Library Trading Cards

Some time ago (months? semesters? year?) there was some buzz about developing library trading cards- for the fun of it and as a promotional tool. I believe that Suzanne B. introduced the idea on our blog.

I'd like to re-open a discussion about producing LCC library trading cards.

Follow this flickr url to see how creative and/or simple these can be (use the link to view them as a slide show).

What say you?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Will library buildings go the way of the dinosaurs?

Thanks to the Librarian in Black I learned about an interesting photo essay at the online magazine Slate. In a rather pessimistic way it talks about the future of physical libraries in the age of the web. Do you think that library buildings are facing their eventual extinction?

Monday, February 18, 2008

Evaluating Wikipedia

I came across this video called Wikiality in a workshop I attended on teaching information literacy. It is a video by Stephen Colbert that can be used to point out that anyone can edit/change a Wikipedia article. Since then, I have been exploring the Library Instruction Wiki for ideas about how to approch Wikipedia. I found two contrasting activities:
  1. Wikipedia Exercise (create a wikipedia article for yourself to demonstrate how every can add to Wikipedia)
  2. Evaluating Scholarly Sources with Wikipedia (use a Wikipedia article as a starting point for a discussion of evaluating all sources - cites an article which argues that ALL sources should be evaluated and that it is just as easy to find an outdated book on the shelf in the library, as a Wikipedia article with unreliable information)
Then, last week, Bernie Sloan from Web4Lib listserv posted a link to an article arguing that we should teach students about the value of Wikipedia and teach them to examine the History and Discussion pages to understand how articles are created: Wikipedia and the New Curriculum Bernie Sloan goes on to mention that Wikipedia itself has an article on its flaws as a source for academic research: Academic Use of Wikipedia

In most classes, I don't have the chance to talk much about evaluating web sources, but when I do, I usually point out only the flaws of Wikipedia. How do you approach Wikipedia in library instruction? How should we present Wikipedia to our students? Are we doing students a disservice by focusing only on its flaws? Is understanding the strengths and weaknesses of Wikipedia an essential part of information literacy as knowledge is being created in new ways?

Friday, February 8, 2008

Educause Debriefing

I just wanted to post a couple of links related to the Educause overview Shawn, Elenka and I gave at the retreat in January and at today's department meeting. There were a lot of interesting sessions at the conference and I encourage you to check out some of the conference proceedings.

All three of our presentations are available in the department workspace in the infamous Internal-Communications folder. Follow this path to get to the presentations: Internal-Communications - Reports-Presentations - Presentations - Educause-2008. Each person has a folder with their presentation documents inside.

The Programmable Web

Educause Conference proceedings (warning: best viewed in FireFox)

Student Web Portals

Shawn's overview of Xavier University's Road to Xavier reminded me of a student web portal that I used back when I was in school. Created and run by students, Go Haverford! has everything from the lunch menu, daily events, customizable search engines, Blackboard, and board post and Haverpedia (wiki on all things Haverford) RSS feeds. I think this is really exciting stuff. If LCC has any plans for a student portal there are certainly a few that it could draw ideas from...

Thursday, February 7, 2008

LibWiki Training

Part 1: Wiki Basics (10 minutes)

What is a Wiki ?
Wikis in Plain English video

Wiki Software
There are hundreds of different kinds of wiki software to choose from. Check out the WikiMatrix

LibWiki uses Mediawiki software
Widespread Use - You'll be prepared to partipate in other wikis
Familiar - Used for Wikipedia

Examples of Wikis in the Library World

Sharing Best Practices & Professional Development

Library Success Wiki: A Best Practices Wiki
Michigan Library Consortium (MLC) Wiki
Library Outreach Wiki
Library Instruction Wiki
PALINET Leadership Network

Research Guides

Bizwiki from Ohio State University
Norwich Research Guides from the Kreitzberg Library
Florida State University Subject Guides


University of Texas Libraries How do I wiki?

Wiki as the Library Website

USC Aiken Gregg-Graniteville Library web site

Internal Communication/Training
Circulation Department Wiki: Procedures Manual

Part 2: Wiki Scavenger Hunt (20 minutes)

Part 3: Create a Personal Page (20 minutes)

Part 4: Brainstorm Uses of Wiki (10 minutes)
What are some possible ways that the wiki can be used by library staff for collaboration? Post your ideas in the LibWiki Suggestions section of the wiki.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


On February 3, the New York Times published an article about Twine, a new software product that lets you tag and organize emails, websites, and more into a searchable list. It is in beta testing now and sounds pretty handy. Twine's URL is

If you'd like to read the Times article, it's available at:

Do you think there would be some Twine applications for our library?


Has anyone heard of DabbleDB? If not, you should really check it out at:

I could immediatly see about a million applications for making our website more web 2.0. Not only that, there are a number of ways it could be used to make our internal processes more efficient. For example DabbleDB could be used to schedule instruction sessions or we could use it to design suvey forms and easily collect the data and create reports -- just to name two I'm thinking of right at this very moment!

Check it out, I'm sure you'll have lots of ideas too.

Thanks to Shawn for turning me on to this.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

How Should One Define Library 2.0?

Meredith Farkas has made a valiant attempt at defining the rather ambiguous notion of "library 2.0" in a post to her blog Information Wants to be Free titled The Essence of Library 2.0?

I've excerpted the following definition from her well thought out and heartfelt (and long) original post:

"I’ve tried to define Library 2.0 for myself. I see it as:
  • Working to meet changing user needs - get to know your users and non-users, develop a culture of assessment, examine any and all assumptions about how services and systems should “be”, visiting other libraries and remembering what it is to be a patron, and then changing once you’ve figured it all out.
  • Believing in our users - trusting them, listening to them, giving them a role in helping to define library services for the future
  • Getting rid of the culture of perfect - being able and willing to experiment, learning from failure, being agile as an organization, continuously improving services based on feedback rather than working behind the scenes for ages to create the “perfect” product or service
  • Being aware of emerging technologies and opportunities - looking for partnerships in your community or with other libraries, being aware of library and technology trends, giving staff time to try out new technologies and learn
  • Looking outside of the library world for applications, opportunities, inspiration - understanding the culture of the technologies and how they are used by the public, seeing how technologies are implemented in non-profit and for-profit institution
Of course, if you asked me what any good library should be doing, you’d get that same list."

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Michigan Library Association - handouts and presentations

I noticed that the handouts/presentation slides for many of the MLA Conference presentations were just posted on the MLA website (scroll down to the bottom of the page):

So, you can check out some of the programs you might not have been able to attend.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Code4Lib Journal

I read about this new open access (!) library journal, Code4Lib Journal on the "Confessions a Science Librarian" blog.
I think this new publication is worth checking out. Consider looking at the table of contents of the 1st issue. I copied/pasted a portion of the Code4Lib J mission statement:

"Libraries have seized upon advances in computer technology, using computers and the Internet to offer unprecedented access to information and library resources. Ironically, the prodigious increase in tools for accessing information has left many with difficulty managing information about these tools. Projects are announced on blogs, in IRC channels, on websites, at conferences, and many other venues. It can require a research project just to find out what a tool does. Online professional/social networks help mitigate this problem, but entering into these networks can present an unnecessary obstacle to the uninitiated.The Code4Lib Journal (C4LJ) will provide an access point for people looking to learn more about these tools, about approaches and solutions to real-world problems, and about possibilities for building on the work of others, so that the wheel need only be invented once, and can then be cooperatively improved by all."