I am always excited to attend the Internet Librarian International, and this year was no exception. I usually write up some of my notes/tweets etc. in this blog. I find that it gives me an opportunity to go through my notes again, get some ideas repeated and I think it enhances my own learning. (I am writing while thinking so just ignore spelling etc.)
I gave the Keynote special attention in this blogpost, so I`ll move directly on to the rest of the sessions I attended on day 1 here.
My first session of the day was A101: Future technology: Stay ahead, stay agile with Brian Kelly, UKOLN and Marydee Ojala, ONLINE Magazine.
Brian Kelly was talking about the fact that it`s not enough to spot trends, you have to understand them. Sense-making (understand limitations of evidence-gathering techniques + provide suggestions of implications of developments in the sector). We cannot always predict what will happen. Kelly asked us to raise our hands if we had at least one device with us: almost everyone did. Then he asked who had two, three or four or more devices with them to ILI. At least 15 people in that session had four or more devices with them (I had three, btw.). Nobody predicted that a few years back.
Kelly also talked about the big trends, like social media (big trend still – really?). Twitter was one example mentioned. During the Olympics in London this summer, over 150 million tweets were posted. The University of Oxford has more than 650 000 “Likes” on their Facebook page. But what does it mean? asked Kelly. It is all about the nodes. It`s no use having one telephone, you need a network [probably why I have never really got going much with Pinterest and Google+].
Open data is a trend. Sports teams have started sharing their data, for example a soccer team (can`t remember which – sorry!) has opened up their statistics bank on player statistics and so on. It was the same with the Olympics.
Another trend mentioned by Kelly was outsourcing. Several big companies have started buing private library services instead of keeping an in-house library.
Marydee Ojala (who gave us a good tip on making your own cartoons, btw. Pixton.com. I had a go myself. Really fun!) was saying that it is very hard to keep up to date, and harder still to stay ahead of emerging technology.
Google are not only adding features, they are also taking stuff away. Social searching is still in. Their relevancy ranking is not just about “page rank”, but they also use about 200 other “signals” in their relevancy ranking. These signals change all the time.
Personalisation is very in. This is a very good thing if you are only searching for things that you are interested in personally, but how many librarians do that? The Knowledge graph (new feature) is completely random.
Other news: Ask.com has turned into a Q&A site, not really a search engine anymore, Exalead is now a business site, not a search engine anymore. Blekko is not really news, but it was still mentioned. It claims to be without spam and uses “slashtags” (forward slash) to facet searching. DuckDuckGo, a search engine that doesn`t store private data.
Premium content: Subscription databases are fighting for rights to publications. New now is that lots of publishers want to sell directly to libraries without going by way of vendors. Open Access is in, and this poses a threat to the big publishing houses. Students (and some staff members, in my opinion) don`t see the difference between bought items and free items. They think everything is free.
Facebook is entering the world of search. Categorisation becomes “fuzzy”.
Ojala`s tip: Read newsletters from vendors so that you know what they actually offer.
The next session I attended was C102: New tools, apps and web resources with Phil Bradley and Arthur Weiss. Phil Bradley`s “What Phil has found” is famous among ILI veterans. Bradley`s session is always full, and everyone is ready for his race through his lates discoveries on the web. It was just as fun and enlightening as always. His slides are available, and there he lists all the resources so I am not going to write them all down here. Just a few that I noted in particular:
- Million short: searches “less popular” searches that is too far down the Google ranking that anyone notices. Good supplement to other search engines, like Google.
- Similarpages.com: finds similar pages. Almost like Keotag and Scoop.it. Can be really useful for discovery purposes.
- Quixey – a search engine for apps
- Alternative.to – finds alternatives to things, like iPad
- Findsounds – search engine for sounds
- Headslinger – gathering news, RSS from your Facebook etc.
- Learnist – interactive storyfier
- BeForgotten – to delete social media accounts
- Jigsaw Planet – makes jigsaw puzzles
- Flight radar – follows airplanes
On a general note, Bradley noted on Google now competing with FB for search, that Google is personalising image search = it finds images from your contacts on FB etc. Google is also pushing its Google+ content to all Google+ users. Bradley also mentioned Google Knowledge Graph, and said that this was one of Googles ways to push as much information as possible by linking many references to few resources on one page.
As always – a really fun session!
Arthur Weiss then followed to talk about Twitter tools. He mentioned that Hootsuite now lets you time your tweet, so that the tweet will go out at the right time to capture the attention of your followers.
These tools were also mentioned by him:
- Allmytweets: lets you see all your tweets
- Twellow and Wefollow.com: info on who to follow (Twitter directories)
- Tweetreach.com and Twiangulate.com: comparing profiles + metrics + hidden networks
- FollowerWonk: also compares profiles, and you can see where your followers comes from. Statistics and analysis.
- MentionMapp: lets you see the links between people
It was fun listening to Weiss, and to realise just how important a tool Twitter has become.
My next session was C103 Access to, and legal use of, e-resources. We don`t own our documents any more, we only pay for access. This became very clear when the Norwegian girl who bought a Kindle from amazon.co.uk had all her books withdrawn from Amazon because she had bought it from .co.uk instead of .com like she was supposed to. She got her books back, but it really brought this issue into the light. We only pay for access. This is a problem.
What are the rights connected to linking, streaming and user-generated content when it comes to copyright? Are we allowed to use screenshots to make our tutorials? What about blogging?
It can be a good idea to include a “terms of contents” on the library website where we say that we are trying to live by copyright laws etc.
The session was called “The new scholar”, and I was very impressed by the speaker Henk can den Hoogen. He was talking about the University of Maastricht`s effort to tailor library services to PhD students. They have a program called UML+YOU for PhD students, and I will have a further look at it. Before the students even arrive at campus they get the opportunity to create a library profile and they receive information about a liaison librarian that is in charge of them (personalised service). This librarian can set up interesting RSS streams etc of interest to the PhD student. When the student arrives at his/her office the first day there is an envelope waiting from the library, with important information, invitation to special events etc.
The video about UML+YOU can be found here: vimeo.com/51138293
It was a really good presentation!
After this session, I wanted to catch the first part of B105 – going mobile. I really wanted to listen to Angela Hamilton speak about delivering services to remote users. Unfortunately, the moderator of that session had changed the order of the speakers, and I had to leave before I got the chance to listen to Hamilton. Too bad! (And hint, hint to moderators: please follow the programme..)