Saturday, February 07, 2009

Odds and Ends

Went and watched Coraline today with the spouse and 3 yr old. We all really enjoyed it. We haven't read the book yet - but the movie has piqued my interest so I think I may download the audio version of it from our OverDrive collection at work.

Initially I was not to sure about taking our daughter because I heard that it might be too scary. But I found a great site which helped us decide - Kids-In-Mind: Movie Ratings That Actually Work spelled out all the Sex, Violence and Language in the film and gave play-by-play spoilers so we would know if it would be too much. We also looked up other movies that she currently enjoys for comparison to see exactly how the rating system worked with what she already enjoys watching.

I liked this site because it does not throw in a bunch of self-righteous indignation regarding the films - instead it lists "just the facts" and lets us decide. A great tool for parents and reference desk librarians alike. (although as of the writing of this the site seems to be down...)

Let's see what else - oh as many of you know I've been working with Openbiblio as a catalog for my other job. Well, it's been great - but I just don't have the time to develop it like I would like to or to learn all I need to learn. So I'm starting the slow process of migrating everything to LibraryThing - and to use that as our online public catalog.

So far it's a slow painful process. I have MARC records from our other system - many of them are skeletal. So I can't just important in ISBN for all 4,890 titles (many are too old to have ISBN and others that info was never entered into the catalog prior to my working there). So I started emailing tech support at LibraryThing a week and half ago. One person said they could upload my MARC records for me - but I've not heard anything from her since I emailed her the file. When you pay a couple thousand dollars for a database it's easy to call a vendor and demand service -- but in this case - since this was a non-profit pricing of less than $20...I really don't feel like I can just call and demand service. So I'm impatiently waiting for something to happen or someone to contact me so I can get all my titles added and can start the tagging process... The cool thing is once I get this up - I think we'll have one of the largest Jewish material collections on LibraryThing.

I really think it will be great once it's all working...but so far the tech support aspects of Librarything have been frustrating.

Oh - I also got an email this week from Tim @ TCCL who had this to say:
I thought I'd write to tell you that based on the original program by The Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenberg County, the Tulsa City-County Library System is embarking on our own "23 Things" program at Sponsored by the New Technology Committee, this self-paced continuing education class will be performed over the course of 13 weeks, beginning February 2. Participating TCCL staff will work hands-on to learn about Web 2.0 technologies such as blogs, wikis, podcasts, RSS feeds, online photo & video sharing, social bookmarking, & LibraryThing just to name a few. All staff will create their own blogs, be encouraged to comment on each others blogs, and perform such tasks as embedding a video, subscribing to RSS feeds, & editing a wiki.

On top of our current email, IM & text message reference services, we're hoping that TCCL becomes a hot bed of tech-savvy librarians. Check us out!

I'll be curious to see how that goes and if there's any pre and post testing they are doing to see if it actually helped the librarians become more tech savvy.

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