For the final Carnival of the Infosciences of 2007, I went through all of this year’s editions and picked out what I thought were the most interesting posts. Yes, I’m succumbing to endoftheyearbestlistitis.
But before we look at the past year, let’s take a quick look forward. Katie Dunneback has started a new blog for 2008 called Book a Month Challenge. Dunneback, who submitted her blog using the carninfo del.icio.us tag, writes in her initial post:
“Right around the first of the month, every month, we’ll be posting a theme. All you have to do is read a book that corresponds to that theme and post a review, either on your own website/blog and comment with a link to it or in the comments for the post itself. Pretty simple, right?”
Quite a few people have signed on to participate, and Dunneback reports that another library has asked if they could borrow the idea.
Now, without further ado, here is my list of the best posts highlighted in the Carnival of the Infosciences in 2007. Feel free to add to this list in the comments.
The issue of weeding at public libraries hit the front page of the Washington Post with an article by Lisa Rein about Fairfax County (VA) Public Library’s weeding policy. The library system’s director Sam Clay worked to set the record straight about the policy after the inevitable uproar. Christina Pikas provided on her blog an excellent overview of the ins and outs of weeding, which hopefully will be a reference point the next time a story like this makes its way into the papers.
Crosby describes a thoughtful, even philosophical discussion on social collaboration inspired in part by the book Wikinomics. I like any meeting that involves busting out a Wii.
Michael Casey laments the frequency of incidents when a library staff member brings a new idea to a supervisor only to be hit with a straight-up no, without consideration and without discussion.
Michelle McLean outlines changes made to her library’s circulation policies, and describes the positive effects these changes have had.
Inspired by the Slow Food movement, Mark Leggott lists the six major tenets of the Slow Library and dispels the idea that it is the same as Library 2.0.
In my favorite post of the year, Cindi T explains how integrated library systems (ILS) still do not conform to the ways modern users seek information.
Jennifer Macaulay offers advice to distance education students on how they can make the most of their online studies.
Ellyssa Kroski posted her Computers In Libraries presentation on her blog, and it is a great overview this whole Web 2.0 that the kids are talking about these days. If you have the August issue of Choice handy, I recommend checking out Kroski’s article “The social tools of Web 2.0.”
Pegasus Librarian: Looking Back.
I will admit that while this is an excellent post from Iris Jastram, the main reason why I included it here is because of “Lunch 2.0.”
In reviewing LibraryThing and Last.fm, Rory Litwin writes, “I think there will be an emergence of support for the role of professional catalogers somewhere in the system, so that the majority of users, who ‘just want it to work,’ will be satisfied.”
#72 (Connecting Librarian)
LibrarianInBlack: Sarah’s social network presences, and the dilution thereof.
Sarah Houghton-Jan asks the obvious question about signing up for multiple social networking sites: “Am I the only one feeling the weight and noticing the dilution of our social networks?”
One of the things I love about library blogs is that, beyond all the heavy theorizing about the future of the profession and so forth, there is often a lot of practical advice to be found. Case in point: Emily Clasper offers some true stories about how “the smallest, simplest changes make all the difference in the world.”
Britannica Blog: The Siren Song of the Internet: Part I.
Oh, you know I had to include this one. For a brief moment this summer, library blogs were caught up in a Michael Gorman frenzy. We were also swept up by “Crank That (Soulja Boy),” which I think is the true siren song of the internet.
Another post from Jennifer Macaulay, who notes that Jeff Scott sums the topic up best: “Everyone finds their own path and it’s never the same path.”
Peter Bromberg explains how life can imitate art.
The Other Librarian: We Asked for 2.0 Libraries and We Got 2.0 Librarians.
Ryan Deschamps gives a state of Library 2.0 address, and his conclusion is summarized succinctly in the title of this post.
Another post that I had to include. This post is the “Longview” of library blog posts. You heard about the Annoyed Librarian, saw the Annoyed Librarian name-dropped in some post on some blog you read. Then “The Cult of Twopointia” came out, and suddenly the Annoyed Librarian had blown up in a big way. Everyone was talking about the Annoyed Librarian. Hell, some people had to deny that they were the Annoyed Librarian, something I’m pretty sure Billie Joe Armstrong has never had to do.
By the way, I have it on good authority that Joshua Neff is the Annoyed Librarian.
Give Online Education Database founder Jimmy Atkinson credit: he submits a lot of the materials OEDb puts out to the Carnival, and a lot of it makes it in. For us bloggers who navel-gaze (as opposed to non-bloggers, I suppose), the organization’s big story this year was its “Top 25 Librarian Bloggers” report. Jessamyn West, who topped the list, analyzes the results.
Eclectic Librarian: librarians in the news.
Anna Creech’s summary of the five types of stories about librarians was the funniest post I read all year.
This is a good time to mention that one controversial story that didn’t make its way into the Carnival this year was the New York Times article “A Hipper Crowd of Shushers.” To quote Greg Schwarz on Uncontrolled Vocabulary (at the 23:09 mark):
“My concern is that the response from, let’s say, the library blogosphere basically refutes the basic premise of the article which is that librarians are kind of hip. I mean, nothing says hip like a bunch of tightly-wound folks responding, responding so, you know, seriously to a fluff piece in the Fashion section of the New York Times.”
#80 (Connecting Librarian)
Shelf Check: Shelf Check #93.
The controversy over the Wyoming Libraries’ mud-flap girl got the treatment it deserved: a comic strip by Emily Lloyd.
This post by Zarah Grace C. Gagatiga is one of the many great posts from the Philippines that Vonjobi of Filipino Librarian included in #81.
John Miedema: “Balanced Libraries” by Walt Crawford.
superemang is another librarian from the Philippines who writes about the joys of her job in this post that draws a bit of inspiration from Hiro from Heroes.
Another state of the Library 2.0 address, this time from the man who coined the term, Michael Casey, with Library Crunch and Library 2.0: A Guide to Participatory Library Service co-author Laura Savastinuk.
It seems fitting to end with Mark’s post about the Dewey Decimal System. First off, I think he’s a great writer, and secondly, as Anna Creech told Ryan Deschamps when he hosted #84 at The Other Librarian, “It’s rare that something about cataloging doesn’t make my eyes glaze over, and this addresses [an] important issue with traditional library cataloging structures.”
Plus it brings us all back to Melvil.
The Carnival of the Infosciences returns on January 7, 2008. Be sure to visit the Carnival wiki to find out who the next host is. Could it be… you? Thanks for stopping by!