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Posts Tagged ‘Conference’


Currently I am in Melbourne at eResearch Australasia which has been really interesting. I am hearing a lot about data and data management.

One of the things that I have been thinking, and please excuse the brain dump, is that rather than having an IR (Institutional repository) we should have complete DDMS (document data management system) that informs and guides the whole research process.

I see it helping the researcher tracking their research through the whole process and then enabling them to “publish” not only the end result but the research and data at various stages.

It’s something I need to think more on.

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Round The Block


This morning the conference committee announced the first of the real Keynote speakers for LIANZA10 in Dunedin.

From one extreme to the next, from the past to the future, from the fumigation of books to discussing the real challenges that libraries and the library profession are facing and the strategies we need to employ to ensure our success in our own and other learning communities. The Centennial Conference Committee is delighted to announce Stephen Abram as one of the keynote speakers for the LIANZA Centennial Conference in Dunedin where he will deliver a future focused address to inspire and focus delegates.

Stephen Abram describes himself as “a recovering librarian about to enter a 12 step program as an association junkie”. He is currently the past President of SLA but has endured the presidencies of his local, provincial, and national associations. Previously Vice President Innovation for SirsiDynix and Chief Strategist for the SirsiDynix Institute, in January 2010 Stephen moved to Gale Cengage as Vice President for Strategic Partnerships and Markets where “he swims upstream continually to try to discover the future for all types of libraries and their vendors”.

Stephen was listed by Library Journal as one of the top 50 people influencing the future of libraries and has received numerous honours. He holds audiences hostage for about 150 speeches a year, writes all or parts of 6 books a year, posts thousands of blog postings and writes about 36 articles a year. His columns appear in Information Outlook and Multimedia and Internet @ Schools, and he is the author of ALA Editions 2007 bestseller, Out Front with Stephen Abram. He blogs at the popular Stephen’s Lighthouse. He is nuts and doesn’t sleep. He has two children in university and is therefore quite broke. He takes his wife to Europe every year to apologize.

Stephen says that we are well into the new Millennium and the challenges facing libraries are reaching an exponential roar. It’s the information age, there must be a huge role for libraries, right? What are the real challenges facing libraries and the library profession? Is it Google and the web, or is it what it’s always been – lighting the darkness with information? What are the top strategies we need to employ to ensure our success in our communities and learning institutions? Will advertising driven search engines really win the hearts and minds of our customers? Are our collections right for today or will use of Google’s vaults of digitized books grow wildly in importance? Are libraries and librarians ready for the next round of technological and social change? Will our local and national cultures be overwhelmed by generic world services? Stephen as always will deal with these issues in a provocative and entertaining manner.”

My first LIANZA conference was in Wellington nearly five years ago, and one of the Keynote speakers then was Stephen Abram. Even then he was a little controversial as the conference split between the Abram camp and the Tara Brabazon camp. He will certainly be polarizing for our Open Source enthusiasts. So that’s one speaker I will be sad to miss.

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Where Was I Again?


On Saturday night I watched Ellen Degeneres on the Comedy channel on sky. I know, watching trashy T.V. instead of reading, what sort of librarian am I?

I am always impressed with stand up comics, especially one that can hold your attention for a whole hour, without a single swear word!

Anyhow, Ellen started her long seemingly random, but well scripted show, with a segment about procrastination. Describing avoiding writing her show, by cleaning, sorting and going for lunch, had me in hysterics, but then I recognised myself.

You see, as you may know, I am a procrastinator. If they handed out degrees majoring in procrastination I would have a PHD. I was, and I am now, procrastinating. What I should be doing is rewriting, and expanding, my presentation for conference. I had buckled down and finished the first draft a week and half ago, but since then I have had ample opportunities’ to do more, but there was this game I re-found, and that show I wanted to watch, then there was the series I needed to reread.

At work, off course there is lots to do, including catching up with some backlogged work, and processing new books. Then there was the fact the blog (Tararua District Library Blog) had passed a year, and I was finding lots and lots to blog on.

But the fear and adrenaline are starting to creep forward. It’s less than four weeks to conference, and thirty days until my presentation.  

If you’re like me, let me know how you’re going.  

Time’s a ticking, better stop procrastinating, and like a Nike ad Just Do It.

Honestly, any time now.

Hmmm, that book case looks like it needs a good sort…

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I have been thinking about blogs recently. I have been thinking about them rather a lot. In fact you could probably say I have been thinking about them too much. My editor in chief will probably be grateful when I’m not thinking so much about blogs!

Currently I write for two blogs, this one and the Tararua District blog, which will normally be enough, but also I’m thinking and writing and editing my Conference presentation which will be on, you guessed it, blogs. I also have a large number of blogs I like to read.

Part of my presentation will dwell on planning and objectives, which leads me to today’s post. Event blogs.  

Now to me one of the important parts of a blog is to build an online community, and event blogs tend to be one shot wonders. They build a community up until a point, then the event finishes and the blog shuts down. Either the blog stays up but isn’t updated and thus becomes a “cyber ghost town”, or worse still the organisers delete it and all that writing is lost.

Take for example the blogs for our LIANZA conferences.  For the last four years we have had four different blogs, with four different addresses and with two different blogging programmes. In 2006 and 2007 the conference blog was hosted on the LIANZA server using WordPress as their engine, which I think was in the right direction. Then last year the blog was set up as a Blogspot blog, and hosted there. This year we are back to using WordPress, but hosted on the WordPress servers.

What I would have liked to have seen, which I think would have made a wonderful resource and maintained the virtual conference community, would have been one blog with one address that was handed over each year to the next organising committee.  That would mean that instead of four blogs that build up to a point and end, we would have one continuing blog. After conference the blog would have responses to conference and start to post new items building to the next conference.

My suggestion for the current organisers and next years is that maybe we could import and merge all the previous blogs into one that could be then handed on to the next committee, and then we can have that continuous LIANZA conference blog and that continuing virtual community.

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