I admit, I was totally wiped out by the end of the day yesterday (and the wonderful California wine offered at the Sponsors Reception did not make me more awake), so I failed to post about the sessions I attended. As such, I’ll try to keep it brief and split up today’s sessions, to write about some tomorrow.
Metadata Crosswalking, Data Quality, and Semantics: Repurposing MARC records for digital collections – A pretty illuminating overview of the troubles one project faced in converting their records from MARC to DC–a process I had always [wrongly] assumed must be straightforward. The number of errors in the MARC records: rather shocking. The workarounds the speaker put into his code were pretty smart. All his talk of clever scripting made me want to learn XSLT and work as a metadata librarian, honestly.
Shelflessness as a Virtue: Preserving serendipity in an electronic reference collection – Some folks at the University of Manitoba put together a really fantastic tool that shows the covers of reference e-books, broken up by subject, with the goal of reintroducing serendipity into electronic collections. I could see this being expanded for e-books in general. I want to borrow their code and try to reproduce this for CMU!
Beyond Federated Search: The Next Generation of Information Discovery – This was mostly about using enterprise search, instead of federated search, for a consortium of law libraries. They’re on to something, and the policy implications are interesting; however, it wasn’t the new technology I was hoping it’d be. (Great presentation; misleading title.)
Successful Institutional Repositories: Libraries that Provide Value-Added Publishing Services to Faculty and Campus Communities – I didn’t know before I went in, but this was actually a talk by a representative of Bepress. So, that was kind of neat. To his credit, he definitely kept the discussion to digital publishing by libraries in general, not specifically on the Digital Commons platform (which seems to be pretty ideal for the purpose). I found it interesting and thought-provoking.
Open Source ILS Panel – I was a little late to this one, but the discussion was fantastic (including the Twitter conversation that happened at the same time). We need more libraries and librarians who are willing to be part of open source communities; I would love to work for one of these! Also, I read Karen Schneider’s blog–and so does my cataloging professor–so shaking her hand was kind of neat for me, like meeting a celebrity.
The Seismology of Google Scholar: Does Google Scholar Rock Your world? – Sometimes, things that get talked about as if they are surprising … aren’t? I mean, parts of the data were really interesting, but I was surprised that they were surprised to learn that Google Scholar has become more popular every semester since 2006, eventually overtaking their most popular database in number of searches. Also, I am inclined to question their belief that librarians teaching Google Scholar is what made it popular, particularly given that I found it myself (or through grad student hearsay) when I was in engineering school. That said, the fact that their catalog and other databases did not see lower usage: that was really interesting!
2009’s eBook Think Tank – Another interesting discussion. Not much to say about it, except I really didn’t think that much about eBooks before now. (They don’t seem all that useful to me, unless I can load them on my own device, you know?) But there are some pretty serious workflow considerations, where eBooks are concerned.
I’ll talk about the rest of the sessions in another post, most likely tomorrow. Cheers!