Overview Technology - Bringing Power to the Information Pipeline October 23, 2004 Darlene Fichter http://library.usask.ca/~fichter/ Data Library Coordinator University of Saskatchewan Library
Overview • What technologies have a “sweet spot” for libraries? • New (free or almost free) tools • Weblogs, RSS, Instant Messaging • Key components • Metasearch and link resolvers • Digital projects and local communities • Small-scale digital projects
Take a Moment • Think about family & friends • What technologies are they using now that they didn’t 2 years ago or 6 months ago • Jot down three
Now, Consider • Have libraries made use of these new tools? • How could we make use of them?
William Gibson’s Observation “the future is already here, it’s just unevenly distributed”
Technology Hype vs. Reality
2 5 1 4 3 Tip: Where is the new technology on the hype cycle?
Broadband Home: Armchair Revolution • Ultimate jukebox has every • song ever recorded • movie ever made • game ever created • Every book ??? • Infinite television • Early adopters: 12,500 songs,125 hours of video (300 gigabytes) on tap What haven't you noticed lately? Welcome to the Broadband Home of the Futurewww.wired.com/wired/archive/12.01/wiredhome_1.html
Broadband Library? • My “personal” library • What will be our role? • Digital library for the “have nots”? • Or full circle? • Institutions of learning • Media literacy • Trusted advisors (reputation managers)
Broadband Library Challenges • How will we facilitate moving information in and out of the content repositories that we license? • How will “The Library’s Collection” be part of a “personal library” • How will we handle authentication and rights?
WiFi revolution • Always on • Always connected • Always part of the “infosphere” • Like air around us
WiFi Phones/Devices • People will snap up one device that offers • telephone, web and e-mail access, • unified address book, • a calendar for meetings. • Plus • Camera, portable music player
End of Browser Domination • There are 1.5 billion mobile phones in the world today. Already you can use them to browse the Web, take pictures, send e-mail, and play games. Soon they could make your PC obsolete.* What haven't you noticed lately? *Brad Stone, Your Next Computer. www.msnbc.msn.com/id/5092826/site/newswkkk
WiFi and Libraries • Is the library a “hot spot”? • Are we ready to deliver our services and content to range of devices? • What changes if our users are “always on”?
Infosphere “Today’s digital kids think of information and communications technology (ICT) as something akin to oxygen: they expect it, it’s what they breathe and it’s how they live. They use ICT to meet, play, date and learn. It’s an integral part of their social life; it’s how they acknowledge each other and form their personal identities.”* *John Seely Brown, “Learning in the Digital Age,” The Internet and the University: 2001 Forum
How We Might See the Infosphere Web/Internet Databases/ Publications Library Collections Intranets & Institutional Content Adapted from Cathy DeRosa, OCLC Presentation on the Environmental Scan
How Our Customers See It Databases/ Publications
Expectations & Learned Behaviors • Infosphere is continuous • Our users are used to the “AmaZooglePedia” phenomena • Simplicity • Seamless
Major Challenge: Break Down Silos • Information silos or "stovepipes" result when information storehouses are created at different times or by disparate applications or groups • Databases from different vendors • Catalogue • Library site search
Photo Credit: Aaron’s Photos http://www.aaronisnotamused.com/gallery/newhampshire/ChimneysCreative Commons – Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 1.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/1.0/
Result • User is left to cope with the fragmentation • Frustrated users • Time wasted • Lost opportunities
Libraries are Responding • Metasearch or federated search • allow users to search heterogeneous resources including licensed databases from a single search interface
Metasearch Engines Break Silos By • Reducing the cognitive burden choosing databases • Minimizing time needed to learn a dozen different search interfaces • Increasing productivity by saving time repeating the same search and manually deduplicating result lists
Library Crosswalks –Link Resolvers Photo Credit: Constructed converging lines - walkways of the Otway Fly by thppt http://chiastic.net/gallery/auGOR/CIMG1053
Link Resolvers • Based on the OpenURL Framework • Transmit bibliographic information via hypertext links in order to connect users to the full text content
The article Full text in Science Direct
Focus is Shifting Technology 1994- Information 1999- Communication 2004 -
Connecting the Dots: Information to People • Collaboration and social software • Use of the internet is shifting • Online world has moved from reading web pages as solo activity to one of social interaction with chatting, commenting, and sharing information
The Hype about “Social Software” • What is it? • “Social software can be defined as whatever supports our actual human interaction as we colonize the virtual realm”* *Jon Udell, The Social Enterprise, March 26, 2004, InfoWorld, www.infoworld.com/article/04/03/26/13FEsocial_1.html
Some Types of Social Software • Weblogs • Friends of friends sites • Wikis • Instant Messaging • Social bookmarking sites
“Push Button Publishing” for the Web • No need to know HTML • No need to know about FTP and servers • Sign up for an account at a free service like • www.blogger.com • Have a web page in 3-5 minutes!
Some Ways Libraries Use Weblogs • New Resources • Library Construction News • Teen Blogs • Book discussion blogs
What is RSS? • Rich Site Summary • Really Simple Syndication • Think of it as a machine readable file (XML) that includes headlines of new content on your web site and links back to your site
Why have an RSS Feed? • Free publicity! • Who • Individuals will subscribe • Other web site publishers will list your “headlines” • Content is searchable in RSS search engines • News is free • Comes free with weblog or can easily be created by hand or with a script
Instant Messaging and Libraries • Some libraries are using it for “low cost” reference or in the library • Pluses • Familiar to many of the library’s younger users • Natural fit for them • Things to consider • Keeping a copy of the transcript • Not as private as it’s hosted off site • Not all the bells and whistles of some packages
Data Library and Instant Messaging • Are you there? • Quick answers • Cut down email glut • Can you meet Tuesday? • How about Wednesday? • 10 emails later …
Libraries and Social Software • Are we prepared to help our organizations make use of social software applications? • Initiators and leaders • Supporters • Participating • Are we ready to make internal and external content available as RSS feeds and to authors of Weblogs and Wikis?
Small Scale Digital Projects with a Big Impact • Most libraries have unique collections • Photographs • Local history • Unusual or rare materials • Specialized indexes or finding aids • All the songs that mention “Saskatoon” • All the hockey stars from “Saskatoon”
Libraries as Content Creators/Curators • Tour a few projects • Typical staffing requirements • Part-time one staff member • Teams of 4 students for 4 months
Native Law Cases (1800’s to present) • All case law related to aboriginal people of Canada from courts in Canada and England • Start in 1994 – 11,000 cases per month More than 120,000 per year Will it ever be used?
Canadian Native Law Cases http://library.usask.ca/native/
Northwest Resistance Materials about battle between the Métis people & the Government of Canada: biographies, maps, broadsides, 35,000 pages per month 350,000 pages per year http://library.usask.ca/northwest/
Special Exhibits 1700 pages per month http://library.usask.ca/spcoll/postcardsindigenous/
Directory Site with Two Partners 10,000 pages per month http://library.usask.ca/native/directory/
First Nations Index Built with Partnerships 31,000 pages/searches per month 1998 - http://www.lights.ca/sifc/