Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Marcia J. Bates and the Google Bookcase

In this week's reading we have an article written by Marcia J. Bates in 1989, in which she talks about better ways to facilitate online browsing--making it more like real-life browsing, or what people are familiar with.

One thing she says is, “If the interface can produce a picture on the screen that looks like the books on a shelf, the searcher can transfer a familiar experience to the automated system. If then, a mouse or similar device makes it possible to, in effect, move among the books, a familiar physical experience is reproduced and the searcher can take advantage of well-developed browsing skills.”

So. Have you SEEN the video for the Google Chrome Bookcase?

We live in the future!

Technology amazes me.

Monday, October 17, 2011

In which I detail the reasons I suck at blogging

I apologize.

I am just no good at regular blogging. I'm usually OK at it for a while, and then I get bored of it and feel like I have nothing to say and I know I should at least post something (even if no one is reading it) because I said I would and then I feel guilty when I don't.

I'll be better. I promise. Maybe.

In short: I feel like I have nothing really to contribute. I'm learning things ever MLIS student learns and right now it's not super exciting to me because I don't particularly care about social research. OK, it's important. And I guess some of it is interesting. But still.

Also, I'm not feeling as overwhelmed or stressed out as my classmates are, so I feel bad because I don't want to just be like, "This is a piece of cake. Maybe I'll go bake a cake. And take a nap!" even though that's kind of what I did yesterday.

Anyway. I'll be back. Regular programming shall return. As soon as I get my blogging act together.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday To-Do List Report

It's the end of my first real week of class, and I'm feeling really good!

Figuring out a method of organization was a big goal in the last week, and I think I've settled on weekly to-do lists, created in Evernote. Putting together, all in one place, the lectures I have to watch and articles I have to read has been really helpful in making sure I get it all done. And I think in the following weeks I'll be adding discussion board posts I have to make and group-work-related things I have to do. (Speaking of group work, that's another post--it's good news!)

So here's my To Do List report for the week.


Nature of Info Bearing Objects

Acts of Publication & Distribution

Notions of Aggregating, Collecting & Collections


Brown, John Seely and Paul Duguid. 2000. The Social Life of Information. Chapter 7: Reading the Background.

Benkler, Yochai. 2006. Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. Chapter 3: Peer production and sharing. Yale University Press.

Waltham, Mary. 2003. Challenges to the role of publishers. Learned Publishing 2003 (16), 7-14.

Lee, Hur-Li. 2000. What is a collection? Journal of the American Society for Information Science 51 (12).



Welcome & Intro

General Expectations & Midterm

Social IB & Reflection Papers

Course Overview: What is IB

Overview & Quantitative Methods

Qualitative Methods


Case, Chs. 1-2; Chs. 8-9

Julien, H. and Michels, D. (2003). Intra-individual information behaviour in daily life. Information Processing and Management, 40:3, 547-562

Fisher, K. E., & Naumer, C. M. (2006). Information grounds: Theoretical basis and empirical findings on information flow in social settings. In A. Spink & C. Cole (Eds.), New directions in human information behavior (pp. 93-111). Amsterdam: Kluwer.

Dill, E., & Janke, K. L. (in press). "New shit has come to light": Information seeking behavior in The Big Lebowski. Journal of Popular Culture.

I'm almost done with the reading from Case for 510 (just one chapter left) and should be done by the end of the day. Didn't finish last night because I was too obsessed with THIS LIST of 136 creepy Wikipedia articles. Crazy, interesting stuff!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Weekend Update

I'm up to my knees in readings and discussions for school, so I took this weekend to step out and dry off for a minute. It's interesting trying to get into a new rhythm of things.

This weekend I:

  • Went to Library Game Night and played Apples to Apples and Scattergories.

  • Saw the bioluminescent red tide. It was so amazing! I've lived in/around San Diego forever, but I'd never seen it before. Click here to see a video or here to read about how it works.

  • Had a visit from my mom and watched my cousin play basketball.

  • Did a little thrift shopping. Here's one of my finds:

(No, I didn't buy it. Too creepy!)

Sunday night I got back into my readings and school work. Definitely ready for week two!

Is the weekend your time to work or your time for play? I find I'm able to do schoolwork during the week, so I like to take the weekend off.

Friday, September 30, 2011


One of my first assignments for class was to create an introduction presentation.

It was terribly awkward sitting in my living room talking to a webcam as if it were a room full of people, but I think it turned out OK. So far it seems I'm the only one that recorded a video--everyone else has gone the voice-over-Power-Point route. I'm not sure if that makes me a rogue or a pioneer, but I guess we'll see.

I used VoiceThread, which seems to be a pretty neat program. It's not life-changingly exciting, but it's good for what it's for.

You can watch it here if you're interested.

What is your experience with recording yourself? Do you find it as awkward as I do? Have you used VoiceThread, or something like it?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Evernote Love

Call me an overachiever, but I've already begun working on my paper for LIS 500. Hey, it's posted on the class website, the info's all there, why not? Plus I'm taking advantage of the fact that the LIS 510 site isn't up yet, so it's almost like I have only one class.

But the point is not that.

The point is this: I'm in love with Evernote.

I've had the app on my iPhone for a while, but I mostly just used it for grocery lists and taking photos of pages of books when I didn't want to copy down a whole quote. Last week, though, in preparation for school, I downloaded the application for my computer as well, and realized what a great asset it's going to be for this grad school journey.

You see, you can create not only text notes, but also photo and audio notes. You can even upload files (like PDFs of class readings) from your computer to make a note. Then you can organize into notebooks, use tags, and share them on Facebook, Twitter, email etc.

The best part for me is that you can access your notes anywhere.

I've been making notes for that LIS 500 paper using the website from my work computer all day, but when I leave for the evening, I'll be able to get to them (and edit them and export them) from my laptop at home, or my phone wherever I am.

You guys, I'm telling you. It's a dream.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Weekend Update--Seattle Edition


Seattle was a success! I had such a good time meeting everyone, and I feel very informed and ready to start classes on Wednesday. On the meeting everyone front--I want to create a link repository for other UW MLIS blogs. If you have one, please leave a link in the comments!

So, in short, here are a few highlights. While in Seattle, I

  • Met a ton of awesome, like-minded people.

  • Had good Mexican food. Yeah. In Seattle. I live in San Diego. This is a big deal.

  • Drank. Every. Single. Day.

  • Stayed with family I'd never met who were so kind and very fun (Hi, David & Eva!).

  • Rode the city bus for the first time.

  • Rode the wrong city bus, got lost, and had to call for help.

  • Ate falafel for lunch every day.

  • Visited the Burke Museum and saw some cool taxidermy & dino bones.

  • Flew alone for the first time since I was 13.

  • Bought this really cute ceramic origami crane for my office:

Classes start Wednesday, and I couldn't be more excited! This is gonna be great.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Away I go!

I'm leaving my office for the airport in 30 minutes.

I'm terrified.

I don't really know where I'm staying tonight (though I know with whom I'm staying, and am grateful they'll be picking me up at SEA/TAC) and I don't know how to ride the bus, which I'll have to figure out early tomorrow morning. I don't know anyone, aside from brief electronic interaction, and I have absolutely no idea what to expect from orientation.

But I'm also excited. As much as I resist change, I do like new adventures, and I'm glad to be able to see Seattle a bit. Events like this prove that I am self-sufficient, even though most of the time I really don't think I am. And I am looking forward to meeting my classmates.

I don't know if I'll be updating this blog for the rest of the week while I'm gone, but be sure to check Twitter to see what I'm up to!

Wish me luck!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Weekend Update

This weekend, I

  • Tried to get a jump on reading for class. I've finished 2/8 of the articles.

  • Had breakfast at a really cute little diner in Mission Hills called The Huddle. BEST strawberry-rhubarb jam EVER.

  • Borrowed luggage from a friend for my trip.

  • Cleaned my apartment so I don't come home to a mess when I get back.

  • Baked pumpkin cupcakes (my student employees are now reaping the benefits).

  • Started packing.

  • And therefore sent my boyfriend about a billion outfit photos so I could get some input on what to bring. Case in point:


I leave for Seattle tomorrow. Can't believe it. Super nervous, but also excited! Lots to do before then.

P.S. If you want to keep up with my weekends in real time, follow me on Twitter! I'll be tweeting a lot when I'm in Seattle too.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Reading, of course

Last night I got an email from the professor of my Information Life Cycle class with the reading list for the quarter.

It's very exciting, and I thought I'd share it with you if you were interested.

  • Buckland, Michael K. 1991. Information as thing. Journal of the American Society for Information Science 42 (5).

  • Brown, John Seely and Paul Duguid. 2000. The Social Life of Information. Chapter 7: Reading the Background.

  • Lee, Hur-Li. 2000. What is a collection? Journal of the American Society for Information Science 51 (12).

  • Benkler, Yochai. 2006. Wealth of Networks: How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. Chapter 3: Peer production and sharing. Yale University Press.

  • Waltham, Mary. 2003. Challenges to the role of publishers. Learned Publishing 2003 (16), 7-14

  • Carlyle, Allyson, and Lisa M. Fusco. 2007. Understanding FRBR as a conceptual model: FRBR and the bibliographic universe. ASIST Bulletin.

  • Taylor, Robert S. 1986. Value Added Processes in Information Systems. Chapter 4: The Value-Added Model.

  • Bates, Marcia J. 1999. The invisible substrate of information. Journal of the American Society for Information Science 50 (12).

I'm thinking about posting responses to the articles up here, just to make myself think critically about them. What do you think? Would readers even be interested in that?

Anyway, it's kind of strange... I guess this class is only 2 weeks long. I never saw any mention of that while registering. But it's kind of cool too--I'll earn 2 credits in 2 weeks! Easy peasy.

All of this is starting to seem real. I leave for Seattle in 6 days, and I am so nervous. Excited, but nervous.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Weekend Update

Once again, my Monday was a little crazy. And so, a day late, I give you the weekend update.

This weekend I

  • Ate dinner at Whole Foods. (We parked on the roof! Urban living is fun!)

  • Drove up to Santa Barbara with my best friend for a lovely wedding and realized that the drive isn't half as bad as I expected.

  • Got a hotel room on my own for the first time.

  • Watched football (of course).

It was quite fun to get out of town and take a little road trip with my best friend. We were roommates our sophomore year of college, but no longer see each other very often, despite living in the same city!

This week will be spent mostly getting ready for grad school orientation next week up in Seattle. I'll do a post on that later. I'm very excited!

Friday, September 9, 2011

San Diego Blackout

2011 San Diego Blackout(via)

As you may have heard (or maybe not... I heard it didn't really get national coverage) the power was out in ALL of San Diego County last night, as well as in some parts of Orange County, LA, and all the way out to Arizona and down to Mexico. I heard at least 2 mililon people were without power!

It was pretty chaotic, you can imagine.

Everything shut down on campus a bit before 4pm, and through text messages, Facebook, and Twitter we found out that it was county-wide. We kept the library open for a few hours since it was still light out, and the library is as good a place as any to congregate in an emergency. Handed out otter pops from the freezer and passed along information as much as we could. Opened up the doors to get some air circulating. A hummingbird came in and went upstairs.

We closed at about 6:30, and I'm really glad I stayed until then. Traffic was absolutely nuts earlier because everyone was trying to get home at the same time and there were no traffic lights! My drive home was a breeze, though, because I guess by then everyone had gotten where they needed to go.

I got home and realized how woefully unprepared I am for emergencies. I didn't have a flashlight or candles or cash, and since my apartment is in an urban area with such a concentrated population of people, my cell phone service was out too. So I literally sat by myself in the dark for an hour doing nothing until my boyfriend came over, concerned that I wasn't answering his phone calls.

We ended up going back to his place and hanging outside with neighbors we'd never met, barbecuing and looking at stars (which you can never see in the city), and it was generally quite enjoyable.

The power came back on for me at about 11pm, and that was it.

Classes are canceled today (power didn't come back on campus until about 4 this morning), but the library is open and I'm at work. We found the poor hummingbird and nursed it back to health, and it's back out in the world.

Overall, it was quite an experience. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love electricity and technology, and it was a little tough being without cell service for so long, but it was cool to see everyone outside in the evening, chatting, and hanging out--actually communicating instead of just watching TV, holed up in their houses with their air conditioning. The bars were hopping, and it was actually fun for those of us who weren't panicking and thinking it was a terrorist attack or the end of the world. It was pretty eerie being without lights, but it was cool how people came together to make a potentially scary or dangerous situation not-so-bad.

Have any good stories from the blackout? Or have you experienced one similar? Do share!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Weekend Update

Yesterday was crazy busy; I didn't have a chance to post.

But this Labor Day weekend, I

  • Went to bed early

  • Had dinner with girlfriends

  • Picked my very first homegrown tomato!

  • Visited my boyfriend at work (i.e. rode the shuttle with freshmen)

  • Slept in late

  • Listened to rain at 4am

  • Made eggless cinnamon pancakes

It was a nice, relaxing, generally uneventful weekend. I like those every once in a while.


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Looking Like a Student

Most days, when I get up and get dressed, I have one question in mind: How do I not look like a student?

I know this post might seem kind of funny directly following that last post about how sad I am that I'm not a student, but oh well.

It's true, I am only 22 years old, and I did just graduate 8 months ago, so it shouldn't bother me that I look like a student. But I do supervise students (most of whom I consider my peers and with whom I worked when I was a student), and I interact often with faculty, so I have this need (however self-imposed) to exert my authority by the way I dress. I want people to take me seriously as a professional!

Usually heels are a good place to start. When you wear heels, people automatically assume that you are up to something fancy. Or you're an adult. It helps if you can actually walk in them, so you don't look like a stumbling baby giraffe.

Also, anything but jeans. This has been a difficult transition for me, since that is what I wear most often and what I am most comfortable in. But if you are wearing a pencil skirt or slacks, you are immediately upgraded from denim-clad student-hood. If I do wear jeans, I try to pair them with a button-up or a frilly blouse so people know I didn't just wake up in a dorm room bunk in a T-shirt and walk across campus.

My library is pretty casual, and there's no real dress code involved, so technically there's nothing wrong with wearing jeans and a T-shirt (many of the librarians go this route daily), but for me, dressing up a little makes me feel more like a grown-up, and like I belong in this office with an ocean view.

Here's what I wore on the first day of classes:

Frilly blouse, slacks, and heels. Went all-out for the first day. Mostly wanted to look like I knew something for the benefit of new students.

Despite all this, sometimes it's nice being mistaken for a student. Today I got a free lunch because the cafeteria worker swiped my ID card as a student and didn't charge me as staff. Oops.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

New Semester

Classes started at my institution yesterday, and it was so busy.

Between dealing with reserves, training new student employees, and pointing people to the bathrooms and the computer labs all day, I didn't even have a second of down time.

I've always loved the beginning of a new semester, but it's kind of strange this year since I'm not going to class or doing homework or living in the dorms. I'm a working professional now. I mean, I will be a student, but doing an online program is going to be totally different. I really have no idea what it's going to be like, but I'm certain it won't really feel like being in a class. I probably won't feel like a student. And that's kind of sad to me today. School has always been what I'm good at. It's part of my identity. If I'm not a student, I don't really know what I am. It's very strange.

I didn't go through this strange sadness last semester for some reason. Maybe because I graduated in December, and spring was all learning my job and getting used to working full time.

I'm sure I'll get used to it. My life will take on new rhythms, and soon I won't even remember what it was like to go to class all day every day. But for now, I'm still kind of missing it.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Weekend Update

Over the weekend, I

  • Bought Christmas lights at an estate sale.

  • Worked the Library booth at New Student Orientation and talked to a TON of new students. So fun!

  • Had my car broken into overnight. Luckily the thieves didn't steal anything important.

  • Got added to the UW MLIS listservs. Already getting emails from fellow students. Getting excited for my trip to Seattle and for starting classes.

  • Played Nintendo 64.

  • Saw Breakfast at Tiffany's at the outdoor movie theater.

It was a great last weekend before school starts.

Classes actually start tomorrow, but the library is crawling with students today getting everything squared away for the new semester. Yay!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Copyright Fun

At my library, we've been learning about copyright all summer. Would you believe we didn't have a university copyright policy, or hardly any information available regarding copyright? So we're making a push to educate faculty so there's no more slightly-illegal reader-copying going on that could get us in trouble!

The more I looked into it (and watched that video), the more I realized how strange and nuanced (and kind of silly) the laws really are. For example, one of the things I'm in charge of is e-Reserves, which means I scan material into a PDF, and add it to our catalog for students to access online. This is OK and considered fair use, as long as it only remains available for one semester. However, if a professor were to do essentially the same thing--scan it and make it available on eClass--that would be the equivalent of making copies and handing them out to the class, which is NOT OK. Even though it seems the same, one is considered fair use, and the other is not.

It's been rather challenging to learn all the details, and even more challenging trying to explain them to professors who don't understand why they can't just make a copy of an article. But it's definitely an important thing to get a hold on. Maybe even more so because of how many are unaware of how the law works. You're liable whether you know it or not!

I'm really glad our library is taking the reigns and educating people about this. It'd be the worst to have a huge lawsuit slapped on you when you didn't know you were doing anything wrong! Check out the LibGuide one of our librarians made. It has a lot of useful information.

Is your library heading up a copyright crusade? What techniques have you used to make your campus copyright-friendly?

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Obligatory First Post

They (whoever they are) say you simply cannot start library school without a blog, so here I am. Blogging all professional-like. Establishing a web presence. Nevermind that I'm what's called a digital native--I was typing 90wpm right out of the womb--and have been blogging in some capacity for about ten years (yikes). But I suppose a real, grown-up blog is in order if I'm going to be a real, grown-up librarian. Because, you know... if a tree falls in a forest, and doesn't blog about it, does it make a sound?

I hope you'll stick around to read about what I learn and what I intend to do with it. I plan to provide some semi-interesting content so you aren't bored to tears with chronicles of group projects and the joys of cataloging. At the very least, I'm sure you'll see some kitten videos from YouTube.

Don't hesitate to leave a comment or send me an email! I'm generally pretty friendly, and I'd love to meet other librarians and librarians-to-be (if only just digitally).