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Archive for the ‘Odds n’ Ends’ Category

I have a job!

While this is not related to this research project, I’d like to announce – on a more personal note – that I have accepted a position at Thomson Corporation (soon to be Thomson Reuters) as a Web Producer with the corporate portal / intranet team.  As I’m wrapping up my Master’s of Library and Information Science (MLIS) in just a few short weeks, this opportunity came at the perfect time.

I finally feel like a real, live librarian! Horray!

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Click here to see a video of the most creative avatar I’ve ever seen.

With her permission, I’ve posted the following. What looks like a flying book is actually an avatar! The avatar-book would animate and flap her pages as shown in the video. But otherwise, she appeared as a book just laying on the floor. Pretty flippin fantastic!

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Tom Werner writes about Second Life and learning from a corporate perspective at his Brandon Hall blog. Werner’s blog – unlike many SL-themed blogs – is a great place for the uninitiated. For example, he makes sure not to use lingo like “SL” or “rez” unless he explains what it means.

His recent post about avatar identity reminded me of my own avatar identity crisis. I first created a ‘Margaret-looking’ avatar, then just found her too boring. In the end, I felt more ‘me’ as the punk-rock Testy.

This brings me to a larger point. Over and over again, I’ve read other SL blogs and had an uncanny feeling that I’m reading my own words. It seems like we’re all experiencing the same things, and I’ve found myself wondering if there is some sort of SL archetype of the user experience….or some semi-standard phases that we all experience.

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The damage has been done. This is my couch after a marathon weekend focused on my literature review.

Originally uploaded by librariandreamer

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Report from Croatia

Library students make shushing motion at closing party of BOBCATSSS conferenceI’m just arriving back from Zadar, Croatia where I attended and presented a paper at BOBCATSSS 2008, an international library and information science conference. See more photos here.

The theme, “Providing Access to Information to Everyone,” drew participants from across the globe. Most attendees were European, although the U.S., South Africa, & Australia were also represented. My biggest take-away was a huge increase in my awareness of the variety of library models and services across the world. I realized just how easy it is for me to become stuck in a U.S.-centric mindset of librarianship. At the same time, overarching issues – such as struggling with change, discerning how to best utilize new technologies and moving more toward user-centered library services – were concerns we all shared. As with any conference, perhaps the best aspect was the friendships, the networking and (hopefully) life-long professional connections that I now hold dear.

While this is a departure from my SL project, I feel compelled to share a bit on this blog because it was such an amazing experience. A Web 2.0/3.0 panel discussion did take place, focused mainly on social networking sites, blogs, tagging, and the ever-present privacy issues with some discussion of the semantic web. Opinions were wide-ranging. As one Hungarian library science professor stated, “Social networks can do in 15 minutes what the secret service could do in decades” concluding that web 2.0 technologies were not worth pursuing because of privacy implications. A German student on the panel spoke about the role librarians may be able to take on as creators of the more complex metadata necessary for the success of the semantic web. A reference librarian from the U.K. talked about the success at his institution in using del.icio.us to create dynamic, portable, where-the-users-are-at reference lists.

PICT0374 Originally uploaded by librariandreamer

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