Friday, February 29, 2008

The Alaska Library Association's newsletter, Newspoke, has highlighted outsourcing libraries as their lead story in the January-March 2008 issue: Outsourcing Libraries -- A Practical Solution?

The editor, Loretta Andress, included posts made on this blog back in August 2007, when I wrote about the Jackson County libraries closing. (This link takes you to all of the posts that have been written about Jackson County outsourcing:

The Alaska Library Association is currently enjoying their annual conference in Fairbanks . I wish everyone attending the best - library conferences are the greatest! If there is any discussion about outsourcing in the conference halls, or later when folks attend the National Conference of the Public Library Association, I hope the comments are sent to me to be shared on this blog.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

From Reuters: Google offers team web site publishing service

Google Sites  a simple web site publishing tool for team collaboration, along the lines of Microsoft's SharePoint. Libraries could use the software to 'organize and share digital information such as Web links, calendars, hotos, videos, presentations, attachments and other documents...' Google Sites can be published to the world as well as only used within the team.

This is free to users of Google Apps. More information on Google Sites at this page:

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

I just learned of the Daily Interview blog , through a story in Medscape (free registration probably required): An Interview a Day Gives More Subjects Their Say

The Daily Interviewer, an anonymous surgeon, has interviews with just about everyone EXCEPT a medical librarian. I hope they find one to interview soon - there are a lot of us that have very interesting things to talk about!
The Josiah Macy Foundation released a report in January on the Chairman's Summary of the Conference: Continuing Education in the Health Professions - Improving Healthcare Through Lifelong Learning

Librarians need to be more involved with CME.
One of the report's recommendations sounds like it is right up the librarians' alley:
Promote the discovery and dissemination of
more effective methods of educating health
professionals over their professional lifetimes
and foster the most effective and efficient
ways to improve knowledge, skills, attitudes,
practice and teamwork.

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Nebraska Library Commission is now including CC licensed books in its collection. Link to their blog on BoingBoing:

Thursday, February 21, 2008

"Tips for Savvy Medical Web Surfing", a CNN article: . Included in the tips - using a medical librarian.

(Thanks goes to my colleague, Sheryl Williams at the McGoogan Library of Medicine, for sending me this link. -th)
Calculate the retail value of your library’s resources and services
How much would it cost to replace your library services on the retail market? Calculate what it would cost to buy library services - at a book store, through pay per view for articles, from an information broker - if you and your library weren’t there. Try this calculator and see what YOU are worth! Retail Value Calculator: .
Thanks to Dick Kammer I’ve already made a couple of small modifications. You can use the web page calculator, open an Excel spreadsheet that mimics the calculator or open an unrestricted Excel spreadsheet that allows you to change lines, colors, add more than three new resources, remove ones that aren’t useful to you. Caution: be sure you know how to calculate the totals in column D. Instructions are on the spreadsheet
I’m also working on a calculator to determine your ROI – return on investment – that you can use with your CFO, boss, stakeholders to show the significant return on your institution’s investment in professional library services. Stay tuned!
Let me know what you think!

Betsy Kelly
Assessment & Evaluation Liaison
MidContinental Regional Medical Library
Associate Director for Digital Initiatives
Becker Medical Library
Washington University School of Medicine
Box 8132
660 S. Euclid Avenue
St. Louis MO 63110

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

"Putting Information in the Hands of the World" - that is the heading on the first page of the web site of Librarians Without Borders . This is a great organization, based in Canada and has a worldwide membership.

If you are interested in improving information in communities around the world, check out this group.
Article in the Baltimore Sun about Judith Tapiero, a library consultant:
Rescuing Libraries,0,6398463.story

Ms. Tapiero sounds like she would make a great speaker at some upcoming library conference! I for one would love to learn more about her work and how she sees the future of libraries.

Here is a link to her company web site: The Organized Library
If you know of ways to raise $12,500, then Zimbabwe would probably like to hear from you. There are 35,000 books worth $200,000 waiting to be shipped to the Harare City Library, according to this news story: .

Friday, February 15, 2008

Check out the new OCLC website:
They are really living up to their slogan: "The World's Libraries. Connected."

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Update on Jackson County, Oregon's outsourced libraries (blog posts on Jackson County can be read here):

LSSI Begins Labor Talks - NLRB complaint means workers rehired by library firm will still be unionized

It will be interesting to see how the outsourcing firm balances what will probably be increased costs with services needed, once the union has agreed to a contract.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

On the way to your virtual library, you may wish to install RFID on your physical (hard copy) library materials. Here is a story about how the libraries in Paris, France are doing just that:
City of Paris Chooses 3M Library Systems for Conversion of 42 Branches to RFID

A telling quote from the story: "The range of RFID-related library products continues to expand, enabling library staffs to provide more services at a time when customer demand is growing faster than financial resources..."

Monday, February 04, 2008

Dare to think of a virtual library? Check out NetLibrary's news that they now have a catalog of over 160,000 ebooks and eaudiobooks, thanks to new agreements they just signed with 21 international publishers: NetLibrary is OCLC's platform for econtent delivery.

Let's play 'what if': what if we become knowledge navigators (see previous post) of virtual collections? What if we are able to visit every patron at their desktop (or in person at their elbow) and help guide them to download their required readings? What if we could completely convert our collections to virtual, yet have to add library staff rather than reduce the numbers due to increased service and education opportunities and requirements?
Tackling Information Overload With Knowledge Navigators

This is a great Computerworld opinion piece that advocates the use of librarians to improve institutional data flows.

Information about the author, John D. Halamka:
"John D. Halamka is CIO at CareGroup Healthcare System, CIO and associate dean for educational technology at Harvard Medical School, chairman of the New England Health Electronic Data Interchange Network, CIO of the Harvard Clinical Research Institute and a practicing emergency physician."