Nicole\’s got a library blog (again)

2006 University Libraries/MINITEX Reference Symposium
July 5, 2006, 6:02 pm
Filed under: semantics, Web 2.0

This looks so good, I can’t wait to read/watch it when I get home from work tonight.:

Reference 2010: the Librarian 2.0 in Your Future presented by Stephen Abram, Vice President, Innovation, for SirsiDynix and immediate past president of the Canadian Library Association, at the May 15, 2006, Reference Symposium, Library as Place: Physical Realms, Virtual Possibilities.

I always throw around the term “Web 2.0” without much explanation. To be honest it makes the term sound like a new installation of software or some cheesy news letter. I kind of wish there were a better term for what Web 2.0 actually refers to. Which is?

Web 2.0 is the direction that the web is taking where information is being used in everyday life and not as a cool novelty (technological fetishism). We can see evidence of Web 2.0 in blogs, wikis, podcasts etc. There’s a lot of talk about it (see my previous post about Tom Stites). But nonetheless Web 2.0 is exciting and really important in libraries.


Review: Finn by Matthew Olshan
July 4, 2006, 12:36 am
Filed under: book review, fiction, Young Adults

[I finished Finn  by Matthew Olshen a few nights ago and would like to get into the habit of writing review’s for the YA books that I complete]

Olshan, Matthew. Finn: a novel. Bancroft Press. ISBN: 1890862142. 188 pages

Her father is dead and we don’t know too much about how she feels about it. Her mother is a bit of a lying vagrant. She lives with Dad’s parents who are wealthy, send her to a nice school and she pretty much likes it. Chloe becomes the image of the adventurer icon Huckleberry Finn and gets thrown into a journey that tests who she really is.

The story, as it parallels the characters and plot of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a fantastic tale that incorporates the struggles of various disenfranchised groups most notably through Silvia, the Mexican illegal immigrant maid of Chloe’s grandparents. The plot does an honorable job of exposing the circumstances that illegal immigrants face.  Chloe, or the modern Finn is thrown into reconciling a situation of her own all while aspiring to guide Silvia to a safe place to birth her baby.

Chloe’s tough girl attitude does not detract from her being feminine and strongly emotional. This potentially sends a strong message to young women reading the book who experience mistreatments and misappropriated opportunities through the eyes of the heroine.

I do wish that Silvia had more dialogue to credit her as being intelligent and responsible. Her lack of assertiveness or ability to plan beyond the short term, along with many scenes portray her as weak and fragile. Otherwise, Finn  should be used by teachers and librarians to cultivate interest in the classics, immigration issues or even as an example of a strong herione in a YA novel.

I reccomend this book.

A weekend and a bit on gaming

I decided not to make this blog much about my personal life, but to include reflections here and there in order to make this blog as honest and open and possibly, complete, as possible. 

Philadelphia has been nothing but rain over the past week or so with destructive consequences. I wish nothing but the best for those who are undergoing the unpleasant and emotional task of cleaning up following the flooding. Luckily for me, my life was more or less untouched. 

I had a fantastic day on Thursday working at the zoo again for the first time in such a long time. I did a Zoo On Wheels program entitled “Built to Survive” at a summer camp sort of in the Kensington/No Libs section of the City. I don’t want to say that I forgot how great it feels to present in front of all those kids, because I hadn’t forgotten – but I definitly experienced some emotion that I haven’t felt in some time. 

Since Saturday was my only real weekend day last week I of course wanted to go to the beach. The drive to Sea Isle City down Route 55 to all of the small pine barrens roads bouding Belleplaine constitutes one of my favorite drives. I’m normally so excited to get to the beach however that I get impatient even through the thick of that forest. A nice time was had although the water was absolutely shockingly freezing! 

I’m looking forward to posting following the Fourth of July since it will be my first Fourth of July spent in Philly. Usually on the Fourth I end up someplace else although Philly is home but this year will be different. I’m looking forward to the fireworks and of course whatever it is that is going to happen when Lionel Richie takes the stage. 

After a busy weekend and a bloglines loaded full of clippings, I’m going to be spending the next hour or so posting some of those clippings. Not too mant because I tend to clip something and then upon review wonder what I was thinking.

The YALSA Blog posted the following on June 28:

Technology of Gaming

Posted by Jami SchwarzwalderTeens and TechnologyEli Neuberger
Why games are a good fit
84% of kids 12-17 are internet users
Of these users:
75% are using IM
81% are playing games

Its not just about gamers. Its common cultural currencies.
From 2000 to 2004 the number of teens playing games jumped from 66% to 81%

Its an $11 billion business world wide
Fundamental part of Media appetite

Video games are older than video cassettes

Try to have something for everyone

It reaches boys, 95% of teenage boys play video games

Only 12% of games sold in 2005 were rated M
There are a lot of adult books on public library shelves as well

ESRB ratings are a great standard

Sometime in Mesopotamia a librarian said “this is a library not a place for paper”

Look at the garbage on our shelves
Libraries are in the content business
Games are content too.

We need to meet the recreational needs.

If we stake our business on recreational reading we may miss generations of users

Games are literacy activities.

Its important to not think of video games a mentally castling activity.

Having a video game event at your library, it takes something someone does alone at home, and turns it into a social event.

This is not outside of a core services. Do we consider story time as a lost leader.

Parents do not complain. Resistance is internal.
Outstanding way to become a focus of the teens enthusiasm.

A great way to promote library materials, but don’t hand out bibliographies. Just have the books on the table and displays.

A way to say we are about social events. Offer a non commercial space.

Seen sportsmanship like he has never seen before.

Audience: Do you have behavior issues?
It’s a library it should be loud. With a tournament you have a build in equality so there isn’t as many issues. When you have these events you develop a relationship with the teens, so when you have issues you can just go talk to the person, and say “You need to calm down or I’ll have to ask you to leave” which works

You don’t have to buy anything. A tradition is that at gaming events gamers bring their own equipment. You just need a projector.

If you buy the equipment you can have partnerships, but this will be used by more people than the books in Print catalog. You can use old TVs , if you have 8 it allows the teens to each have them on their own TV, so that they are completely immersed.

AADL-GT run a tournament with Mario kart and Supper Smash brothers.

Email Eli if you want a copy of the DVD he made about the first drama, that captures the excitement, the drama, interviews with the kids, and color commentary.

Teen blog


Entire prize budget came from friends.

Matt Guillete

This generation are producers. For more information read RenGen

We can be more than just a collection.
Place people can develop social interactions and people can create things

The Amazing Beth Gallaway

Search institute came up with 40 developmental needs of young adults

Teen developmental need is that they need to be able to be physically active, they need to be social.

Teach ethical issues.

There are elements of story in games. If you can get kids talking about the movies, tv shows, or video games, you can get them to tell you about what they enjoy about the media.

Let them play with tools and see how to use it. Then ask how it went, and give them hints and tips. Meet them in their space.

Gamers are technology enthusiastic.
Keep up with the gaming industry.

Try some games.

Treat it like story time, and make it an event for all ages. =