May 31, 2007

Old Fashioned Words

Scott Adams - who we will be hearing give the closing keynote at SLA on Wednesday - apparently thinks "library" is an old-fashioned word, and the days of libraries are coming to an end. Sigh.

Can't do much more with the talk or for the session I'm moderating now, other than show up and do it. Woot!

It's sunny and hot. Yep, that about sums up the weather report for the next three months.

No, no, no, no, NO.

OK: Nothing to do with librarianship per se, only tangentially as it (hopefully does not) affects new librarians coming into the fold. Please, tell me not all twentysomethings think like this; it just seems wrong to me. "In Praise of the Helicopter Parent" discusses parents being involved in millenials' job searches... to quote, "These parents feel they have the right to call their child’s company to discuss benefits and relocation packages and even negotiate salary. I think this is great."


OK, I'm not an HR person, not in a position to hire someone in any way - and I acknowledge that "who you know" (including your parents) is a very accepted way to get your foot in the door someplace - but if the parent of someone I was interviewing called me to discuss benefits and negotiate salaries, that person would immediately be off my list. And much as I love my parents, if one of them were to call someplace I was interviewing I would pass out from embarrassment, I think. Maybe I need to do some more research on this whole "helicopter parent" thing because I always thought one of the main jobs of being a parent is to prepare your child to go out in the world and stand on their own two feet. Sheesh!

OK. Enough ranting, back to tweaking the talk. (Shameless self promotion! Come hear my talk at SLA on Tuesday at 2:30, CC 704!) I'm enjoying the lovely 85° weather, thankful I have a window that opens!

May 30, 2007

Random Musings on Comics

* Questionable Content (home of the "Blinded Me with Library Science" Tshirt) does it again, asking "Have you ever seen a gaggle of drunken librarians?" The answer made me laugh, especially since I'm wearing my "Don't make me use my Librarian voice" Tshirt today (thanks, Mom!)

* Support your local comic book store! I've been unable to find Rex Libris locally so have been ordering it online, but these folks not only ordered the latest issue for me, they've set me up with a continuing subscription - for free - where they'll order it and pay for shipping, then call me when it's in. Awesome!

This constant state of single-digit humidity is wreaking havoc with my sinuses. It'll be cooler - and moister! - in Denver next week (mental note: pack a jacket).

May 29, 2007

Oops, er, great!

So, apparently there is someone other than my mom (hi, Mom!) checking out my web site You Don't Look Like a Librarian - because this weekend I exceeded my traffic quota for the site! (Should have checked my home email address yesterday....) So, um, er, it's unavailable right now. Should be back up within the next 24 hours with a nice, improved, doubled quota. I send thanks to the Librarian in Black because I think the traffic spike is due to her mentioning it on her blog. (And this is serious, Sarah, thanks for mentioning me!)

Random Musings du Jour

First off, in this post-Memorial Day posting, I'd like to say that I'm honored to come from a line of military members. If things had been different in the summer of 1988, I'd have most likely made the third generation in the Air Force. I have many friends in both the Army and the Air Force, and my thoughts are often with them, especially those who are in theater.

OK. Today's Random Musings are:

* A nicely-written ode to a place I spent some time: "Hilo: Hawaii's Forgotten City" (thanks, Liz!)

* This is just too darned cool: Google Launches Streetside View! I can only assume Tucson is way down the list, but it's pretty nifty as it is. I just got a look at the Denver Convention Center, where I'll be next week!

* An amusing mashup if you like Monty Python and Star Wars: King Arthur Vs. Darth Vader.

* OK, this one really is about librarians! Leonid Mamchenkov has his librarian stereotype shaken up. (Good!)

95° today but it doesn't seem that warm. Maybe it's the whole 9%Rh!

May 24, 2007

Danger, Will Robinson

OK, I have to admit it, I'm a fan of Google. It's not the only search engine I use, but I do use it (via iGoogle), and I make heavy use of GMail, alerts, Google Calendar, and Google Groups (and am seriously contemplating dipping my toes into GSpace for storage). But this article (found via Lifehacker) worries me... a lot.

"Google’s goal: to organise your daily life", an article over at Financial Times, quotes Eric Schmidt as saying " 'The goal is to enable Google users to be able to ask the question such as ‘What shall I do tomorrow?’ and ‘What job shall I take?’ '" I'm not sure I want Google to be able to answer that question for me...

Does this make me hypocritical?

It's another lovely moderate day, 90° and sunny... I love having office windows I can open!


That'd be "Yet Another Danged Upgrade". I've spent the last two days wrestling with a recalcitrant PC, reformatting it and reinstalling Windows and Office. (Good gravy, there's a ton of updates to do when you do that!) After much swearing and growling, it finally dawned on me that the CD/DVD drive was dying... once I replaced that things at least went a bit faster! Feel a bit abashed that it took me a day to figure it out - sigh.

I have to say, HP does a very nice job on the internal arrangements of their workstations. Easiest side panel to remove I've dealt with lately, and all the bays have snap handles for their slots (no screws or wrestling with rails, just pull a nice bright green tab and pop, it's out - or pop, it's back in!) There's also enough space to actually get a hand in to fasten connectors, which is always nice. (Can't say that about my old Vaio desktop, I don't think you could fit a cat in there if you tried.)

In between swearing, rebooting and feeding disks, I've been working on my talk for SLA. Time for more shameless self-promotion! Please come participate in my talk on Tuesday the 5th, 2:30pm, Conference Center 704... yes, I won't just be talking at you, but with you, so come join the fun!

May 21, 2007

A Good Monday

Well. This morning I was finally able to get the Drupal backup module installed and working; nice module package, I have to say, although if you follow the instructions in the install file, it doesn't work! (ARRGH. Thanks for the straight info, Cary.) And the upgrade to CentOS 5 has gone extremely well - although I ended up not exactly doing an upgrade, but doing a reinstallation (thanks, Mike, for the info) so that I could keep the data on one partition untouched (kind of crucial if you don't want to lose all your stuff). Would be interested to try an upgrade in the future to see if it gives the option to leave one partition alone, but I just wasn't interested in trying that path today, just in case.

Final package updates are installing now, and I'm feelin' pretty pleased!

It's been a lovely day weather-wise, too - our high has only been 90° and there's been a light breeze all afternoon. Aaahhh....

May 18, 2007

Upgrade Hell... again

Yep, I'm back struggling with upgrades, this time on the web dev platform. I want to upgrade to CentOS 5, as a test for our main server, but before doing that I want to be sure to get a backup of what I've been able to set up so far in Drupal. But I can get neither the command-line mysql backup nor the within-Drupal backup module to work... ARRGH.

It's now officially too late on a Friday afternoon to spend any more time beating my head against this. (Yeah, it'll be SO much better on a Monday morning....)

Looks like we're only going to get up to 96° or so today... with a whopping 7% Rh! (Yeah, yeah, "dry heat", blah, blah...)

Internet Librarian, Here I Come!

So, Information Today accepted my speaker proposal for Internet Librarian! I'll be speaking on a panel regarding Content Management Systems on Wednesday, October 31st. Woo hoo!

May 17, 2007

Casanova was a Librarian

Casanova was a Librarian
A new book on the image of librarians has just been published! By Kathleen Low, "Casanova was a Librarian" "provides a peek at the lighthearted, humorous, sexy and intriguing side of librarians. In addition to information about famous librarians, you’ll learn about librarians in politics, porn, poetry, song, movies, and the comics. Librarian humor, librarian recreation and health, librarian underwear, outerwear and other merchandise designed just for librarians are just a sample of the information you’ll find in this book." Sounds right up my alley - I've already ordered my copy!

More Rex!

Rex Libris #8 is now available; continue the adventures of the World's Most Kick-Butt Librarian (apologies to Andrew, the original Butt-Kicking Librarian) in this "all-action-all-the-time extravaganza"! I found Rex's home page as well, and I really encourage all librarians to read about the Ordo Bibliotheca :-D

As well, I've just learned that Warner Brothers has optioned Rex for the big screen!

Conference Plug: I'll be talking about Rex (and a whole lotta other librarian pop culture stuff!) on Tuesday, June 5th starting at 2:30 pm. I hope you'll join me!

Feh... it's only 94°. Guess our heat wave is over... for now!

May 16, 2007

Trading Images

Laura Wilkerson wrote a letter to Library Journal that was excerpted in the April 1st issue's Feedback. Her husband worked for the Indiana University in the library, and was told by his supervisor that he'd never get promoted as long as he had long hair and dressed the way he did (Dockers & button-downs, surely not at the forefront of challenging attire). It's a depressing story, especially in how it ends.

As Laura said, "Many who hold these stereotypes are librarians in positions of power. Nothing will change until they do." Are you holding any hidden issues about image?

30% chance of rain today... please!

May 15, 2007

The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice

He's back... again! Noah Wyle is reprising his role once more as Flynn Carsen, The Librarian, in "The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice", aka "Librarian 3". (Nothing on TNT's site yet.) It's due to start filming in September of this year, in New Orleans. Gleaned from various sources and rumor-mills, it seems this time around Flynn is up against a group of baddies searching for an artifact that could resurrect Vlad Dracul (yep, it's a vampire story!). I'm sure the zany librarian fun will continue -

90° and, unsurprisingly, sunny.

May 14, 2007

Happy Birthday, Blog!

Wow! A year and a week ago I started this blog... hard to believe it's been a year already! Thank you, dear readers, for letting me share my musings on image, systems librarianship, and desert weather with you! (Speaking of which, it's up to 87° now.)

Ice Break: Update

"At 1:44 PM MST on May 11, 2007, Tucson International Airport hit the century mark for the first time in 2007." That just kicked off our first triple-digit weekend; we hit 103° Saturday, but were back down to 100° Sunday. Hello, summer!

The Anti-Stereotype Sterotype

Found via an email discussion, "The Anti-Stereotype Stereotype" over at Blisspix is an interesting post from 2003 that is probably just as valid today. Fiona makes some good points, and ones I must admit I'm guilty of violating sometimes... It is about the values, skills and abilities of librarians, regardless of what we look like or what we do in our spare time - but I believe strongly that our visual impression also has an impact on our patrons.

I hate to say it - and it's why I keep this site going - but the trend continues that when a student walks up to a reference desk to ask about something related to the computer (even if it's just for help with Google), chances are they're going to approach the more "hip" of the librarians behind the desk, regardless of skill set. I see it in my campus library, I see it when I'm in my public library after work, and family and friends report it happening in their libraries.

I'm absolutely not saying my mom (the sysadmin for her library - hi, Mom!) should run out, dye her hair purple, and get a nose stud so the students will talk to her more. But I am saying I still see the stereotypical effects out there. I think if we swing too far the other way - towards the anti-stereotype stereotype - we'll be in exactly the same situation. But if we can keep convincing people that we do know what we're talking about, whether we've got a grey bun or a green mohawk, then we'll be on the right track.

I think we're on that track, and going in the right direction. Let's keep it up.

May 11, 2007

Institute for Librarian Evolution

Found via one of those random link wanders, the Hedy Siroty Institute for Librarian Evolution is a fun look at the change in the outlook, adaptation and habitats of librarians over time. (Be sure to check out all the tab options, as several have multiple subsets.) Fun!

Currently 93°; today's fun desert weather fact is that at midnight, it was 82°!

May 10, 2007


Ha! Boy, this one's taken off like a shot... the LiveJournal lolbrarian group. (Slightly NSFW in the title.) Like the always-amusing (to me, at least) lolcat meme, or the highly-creative error messages some web sites provide (i.e. Twitter and Bloglines), only this one is even more inspiring. Sooner or later (maybe sooner!) I'm-a'gonna do one of my own.... heh.

Updated about 5 minutes later: OK, so I did one!

Im in ur srvrz

Feh... it's only 95°.

Ice Break on the Rillito

Well, it's that time of year again - the forecast is for our first 100° day tomorrow, and it's supposed to be 100°+ all weekend long. Wonder when we'll actually break 100?

Ah, summer's here!

May 8, 2007

"The Hollywood Librarian" Trailer

The trailer for the much-anticipated "The Hollywood Librarian: Librarians in Cinema and Society" is now available for viewing! The World Premiere of the movie will be at ALA in June.

Read more about the Hollywood Librarian project!

Updated to actually include the link for those reading this in a feed... sorry 'bout that!

May 7, 2007

What kind of information user are you?

The folks over at Pew Internet Life have posted a quiz that allows you to "place yourself in one of the categories in the Pew Internet Project's Typology of Information and Communication Technology Users." I, myself, come up as an "Omnivore" (thought I'd be a "Connector", instead!). Where do you fall in these categories? (found via Free Range Librarian)

Overcast and, a few minutes ago, it was gently raining! Yay!

Super Librarian vs. The Virus!

"When villainy threatens readers, Super Librarian springs into action." Thus says the new comic book from the always-amazing New Jersey State Library, released May 5th (Free Comic Book Day). Wish I could get my hands on one!

It's a (very) cool, beautifully sunny 71° this morning.

May 2, 2007

Oh, I WANT one....

(Yes, the post title is a recurring theme.)

Star Wars Flash Drives. Yes! (I can't decide between Chewie and R2D2.) I can only imagine that owning one of these would up my Geek Score. found via Folderol

Web Design Survey

"People who make websites have been at it for more than a dozen years, yet almost nothing is known, statistically, about our profession." Want more data? Then contribute some data! A List Apart's first annual Web Design Survey is now available - go take it!

I Took the Survey!

I want... to be a... librarian...

OK, late off the block but I just have to share this: Librarian, by HauntedLove. Every librarian stereotype, rolled up into one cheezy-yet-catchy song! The ending made me laugh out loud...

My favorite line is: "Don't you find me appealing, in a nerdy sort of way?" Ha!!

It's a lovely, sunny 86°. Aahhh...