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ALIA National 2014 – Day 1 – Take Charge of your LIS career

First day of the ALIA National conference and it’s really interesting.  This morning Brad King was talking about what you can do to get a job whether it’s your first job or your next career move.  Libraries and librarians need to learn to sell themselves to IT and get them onside as well as selling themselves and the benefits of their services  to stakeholders.  Question that can be asked is “How do you put numerical worth of the service?”  Workshop looked at what the situation for jobs is in libraries.  There are some things that libraries can do better as well as some things that the libraries do well.  One of the things that libraries can do better is marketing themselves.

Brad made the point that Information Technology practitioners were very good at marketing themselves to the organisation while Information Management practitioners were not.  We tended to just put our heads down and get on with the job.  We need to change this and show how what we do benefits the organisation.   Brad also spoke about his role advocating for appropriate salaries for library workers.  There are many more career opportunities other than “Librarian” or “Library Technician”.  Brad also spoke about what makes a good resume and points out that you don’t just have a generic resume but good idea to tailor it to the job you are going for.  There is no set length to the resume but ensure that it lists achievements rather than just the tasks you have done in positions held.

It is important to keep management abreast of what you are doing otherwise you get undervalued. Brad’s top 5 tips were: try new things; network; professional development; sell yourself and be persistent.  Brad made the point that resumes don’t get you the job they get you the interview.  Interviews get you the job. Remember to tell your referees the job  you are going for and what the role is otherwise they may unwittingly sabotage your chances of getting the job.  Dress for the job you want not the job you have.  So you don’t sabotage your own chances research the company you have an interview with and arrive 1/2 hour early for the interview.  That doesn’t mean walking in early just be close and get yourself settled before getting to the interview.

Judy Brooker then spoke about ALIAs PD scheme and why you should be a part of it.  They have recently introduced specialisations within the PD scheme.  You need to be an ALIA member to access but its worth doing as it provides professional development in various ways.  There are lots of different things you can do that fall under the PD scheme, from reading journal articles, attending course, attending conferences, attending seminars and many more.  Go to to investigate further.  Learning is a lot about reflective reading and the PD scheme requiresa you to reflect on your reading as a way of keeping track of your activities.  Hugh Rundle then showed us how you can find lots of training and professional development opportunities without going to courses.  Think about the social media networks you  are a part of and how they form part of your professional development.  Don’t just look for ‘library’ for PD opportunities.  Don’t be a blog snob reading a blog about libraries or other relevant topics is still part of professional development.  Kirsty Butler spoke to us about PLNs.  PLN is a Professional Learning Network.  She doesn’t like the term PLN but uses friends and allies.  Think about who you have in your network, this can be anything from blog you read, newspaper/journal article, colleagues, friends and so on.  Most people don’t realise who they have in their network.  Try mapping it out.

Julia Garnett and Kim Tairi spoke about online presence and creating it.  Julia spoke about building your professional brand.  What is your LIS CRED?

C – Connect & Create

R – Read & Reflect

E – Expression & Engagement

D –  Development & Direction


Creating your own online presence could be easy – you could already have one.  You need to be the curator of your own presence don’t let others control it. One recurring theme is about reflecting about what you read and learn.  Express yourself, have an online presence and be persistent was another suggestion by Julia.  Don’t be afraid to express your opinion of what you have read/watched.  Develop your online voice and think about your professional development and where you want to go.

Following on from Julia we had Kim Tairi talking about reinventing yourself.  Kim pointed out that we spend too much time focusing on our image and not enough time is spent focusing on professional integrity; passion; engagement; experience and knowledge.  You need to work out where you want to be at in your career and what you need to get there.  It is important to define your own professional story and revise it when it’s necessary.

The day has definitely left me with a lot to think about.  Great workshop and I’m glad I was part of it.


AGLIN Forum 2011 new technologies: values and practices in libraries

Some notes from an AGLIN seminar I went to in 2011 as a way of keeping track of PD events I go to. Accuracy not guaranteed

The first talk of the day was by Peter Alexander and Tim Dale on Gov 2.0 and how the government is using web 2.0 technology.  The aim is to use web 2.0 as a whole of government.  There is always pressure to do things better for less money.  Twitter and other social media are just another channel to the job.  Better service deliver is the aim; Give people what they want, when they want and how they want it.  Internet is the preferred method for people to contact government.  The preference for internet communication with government has grown over time.  The main reason is convenience but sometimes regulations mean people must present to shopfront.

Govt 2.0 drivers : leadership, engagement & open access

  • Declaration of open govt: informing, engaging, participating
  • important part of move to govt 2.0 is the people and their innovation
  • innovation is engaging with risk
  • Engagement: govt official website interacting with web 2.0 technologies,
    twitter, fb, media release. two way communication
  • If you going to engage you must engage with the media
  • if you going to use web 2.0 must have a policy, who you respond to &
    possibly sub policies
  • Speechbubble – eg from Human Services
  • Govspace – platform provided by Finance for depts. to have blogs
  • open data – no restrictions to info
  • principles – need to find the data, then play with it & share after
  • agenices need to discover data to publish, the process – any restrictions
    or open needs to be determined
  • then licence phase – choose how to publish then publish phase decide
    appropriate format/look then refinement stage where edited
  • need to give people the tools to interpret the data
  • – help people discover the data sets
  • shown
  • showing uses of data sets in web 2.0  – US police showing where crime committed, giving name, address & rap sheet
  • how do you see libraries using this space
  • use govt material. libraries need to be progressive
  • libraries need to be innovative, drive some of the change, demonstrate
    value, use the tools
  • web 2.0 assist in community engagement

Brian Farnhill & Suzette Bailey on Effective info management
strategies with sharepoint 2010

  • features of sharepont 2010 – managed metadata across all Office 2010
  • difference between – taxonomy vs folksonomy. folksonomy user defined
    metadata, promote popular terms
  • document sets – documents grouped together for a specific purpose; apply
    metadata and info mgtment policies to all docs in group
  • can also manage docs as if single area
  • info mgtment policy is a set of rules that govern the availability &
    behaviour of a certain type of important content
  • web 2.0 assist in community engagement

John Cooksey from Zenith talking about Technology & talent

  • move towards part-time & temporary jobs
  • workforce strategy – more questions then answers
  • should companies ‘make’ or ‘buy’ labour
  • what roles critical, one size fit all does it work, valid & reliable
    people measures in place

thinking for a living – Tom Davenport states knowledge works have high
degrees of expertise, education or experience

3/4 job growth come from – IT, health & Training/Library

influence of web 2.0 – traditional less relevant, need for broader info
mgtment skills including: info/bus needs, info design

vision 4 workforce – can they do the job, will they. short term fixes not
an option

upgrade staff skills

Laurie Atkinson on Victorian Government Library Service

comprised of all govt depts & agencies

part of Victorian Govt agenda to share services

stakeholder engagement critical to success

use staff wiki to help drive change within organisation

wiki used as a survival guide to coping with the whole change

creation of virtual teams created to help with change

staff had to put hand up for one of the 5 teams

changes in structure have not translated to budget

VGLS setting measurable outcomes to changes

VGLS: put your problem on the market and let them fix
it! The power of crowd sourcing!

Paul Hagon from NLA on Web 3.0

web 1.0 = 1993 hyperlinks, static, consumption

web 2.0 = 2004 2 way, interactive, producing, social

web 1.0 info pushed out to you, web 2.0 info you can interact with

web 3.0 ~2010 semantic, machine driven

linkages of search terms and meaning

microformats, rdf, html markup used in web 3.0

values places in code to tell computer of meaning of certain search

eg., html code to tell engine that information it’s looking at is related
to copyright info

search engines starting to put more relevance to the extra code

resource descriptive framework attributes (RDFA) – Xml code

semantic web all about linkages

Dublin Core = specific rules regarding metadata

owl = web ontology language, used to start build semantic rules in strict

sparql = sql for link data

libraries can use markup html using rdfa in their records

dbpedia – like wikipedia for web data

Alison Dellit talking about Trove

using Prezi

what they learnt from Trove experience

Content: if you don’t have the content then you won’t get anywhere

wide variety of use of the content. digital, rare, undiscovered

Convenience: means to the end for some people

simple choices, plain language, complexity for those who want it, user

Libraries Australian & Australian Libraries Gateway important to Trove

Iterative, user-driven collaborative

Scott Lewis talking about The Semantic web

what is the goal of the semantic web? It’s about efficiency

everything that you can get out of the info

How? meaning of info is derived from the document itself, and not the
source context

meaning is structured

meaning is contained/communicated

Increasing total use : less info, not more, increases use: contextual,
taregted, layered

display: using meaning to inform display: priritise, condense, visually

active info: make the information “usable”: share-able,

outsource enrichment: engage users, save engagement: meta-info – comments,
clicks, shared items; tags; additional content

Interface engagement: interfaces have the purpose of making info us as
easy as possible

challenges: relate to your clients, not the info; attitude &
aesthetics are half the battle; learn new ways to say yes

Tool: RDF/RDFs/OWL; social web; AI classification system

web 2.0: originated in thoughts about commodification; web 2.0 “use
of databases which are derived from social interactions;

web 3.0: everything is a database

mass aggregagtors – moreover, muse

Gaik Khong on Automated selection & subject indexing of newspaper

part of ParlInfo

LAST Library Authoring System & Thesaurus : autmoated ingestion,
automated selection, automated subject indexing

collates, selects & indexes the media monitors newspaper clippings by
7.30am each morning

Anne Slaney talking about pay per view pilot for end users

trust in users not to do the wrong in regards to inappropriate material or
over use

AGLIN Forum here I come

Getting ready to go to Canberra for the AGLIN forum on “New technologies: value and practices in libraries”.  Looking forward to an informative day and possible networking opportunity.  This comes after a very informative and enjoyable evening yesterday at the ALIA Sydney “Knowing Me, Knowing You” networking event.  Fun time and lots of information for all who attended.  Especially good to see a good cross section of people from different sectors of the library and information industry as well as varying professional backgrounds.

One thing that came through in all the discussions is that if you have a passion for something follow it and you’ll find the perfect job for you.  The passion may be in libraries but it may also take you out of libraries as well.  Remember that your skills are transferrable to any role you take on.

Web 2.0

Finished teaching on Friday a 5 week course on Web 2.0 and for a change there were no technical issues to be seen.  I’ve had 2 groups that were really enthusiastic, interested and very appreciative of what they were shown.  While some said they there were aspects that they won’t be using they did appreciate finding out more about them and seeing the possibilities available.  There were are couple who were interested in doing blogs for their business purposes.  This is overall a great outcome.  There was one student who now feels she can feel more confident in allowing her child to get on to Facebook.

A good outcome all around.  I’m certainly looking at running the course again and maybe tweaking it to include more/be longer.  We will have to see.

Cookies issue under control

Finally my issue with cookies on training computers seem to be under control 🙂  The Customs House Library lesson went well and fingers crossed so will the Surrry Hills Library.  I can now concentrate fully on getting people into web 2.0 applications.  The group is very interested and this is making things easier to deal with.  Nice to know that I’ve already had a few students who wish to continue blogging, using twitter and are finding things very informative.

Customs House Library Explore Web 2.0 workshop

Today I’m doing a web 2.0 workshop at Customs House Library.  It is going well except that the computers are slow.

Web 2.0 at Customs House Library

Had a web 2.0 course at Customs House Library this morning and the computers did as they were supposed to.  The students enjoyed themselves and were able to complete all the necessary exercises during the lesson.  I do love it when things work as they are supposed to 🙂

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