Thursday, March 23, 2006

Mistress of my own domain

Hey. I finally coughed up the cash for my own domain.
New Jack Librarian lives at:

Unfortunately, the URL cloaking is a little too robust. For example, if you click on New Jack Facts or the motherblog, New Jack Almanac, the URL doesn't change.

Friday, March 17, 2006

In the Age of the Overamplified, a Resurgence for the Humble Lecture - New York Times

In the Age of the Overamplified, a Resurgence for the Humble Lecture - New York Times:
"'I feel like I'm running a rock concert series,' he said (though unlike at rock concerts, the performers at the library are rarely paid; many do it because they have a book to plug). 'I wanted to go beyond academic discourse and speak to a very large public, and to the common reader.'"

Thursday, March 02, 2006

The reflective fox

I don't really have a true specialty as a librarian but most of my interests as of late fall into the broad categories of information literacy and the social life of information. What I realized today is where these two venn diagrams intersect: the reflective person.

This idea was a two day process.

Last night I began to slowly make my way through the constructionist theories presented in Seeking meaning : a process approach to library and information services. What I've read so far rings true to me and what I think about information literacy: students write better papers when they take the time to reflect and reconsider what they've learned during the research process. More broadly, it also makes for better learning.

Coincidently, better learning is the same reason why I blog. By taking the time to reflect and write about what I've read, I learn more, I feel that I've done something more than just consumed something, and I make myself eligible for egoboo. Bloggers, wikipedia volunteers, Amazon review addicts - they are all reflective users.

I had this epiphany as I was working through my thoughts generated by reading Dan Chudnov's personal mission: ("Help people build their own libraries") that I found via Lorcan Dempsey's post entitled hedgehogs. I immediately loved the concept and it seemed to fit keeping in mind the recent flurry of library-building endeavours currently underway (RefWorks/Endnote/Procite, LibraryThing, weblogs, A9 stream capture, WebDAV, coins).

But the more I thought about this mission of the library, the more I was becoming unsure of it. Was this The Library's hedgehog concept before the Internet? I don't think so. And does the average public library user necessarily want to create their own library of leisure reading? Again, I'm doubtful.

But should The Library help people (the students, scholars, journalists, activists, bloggers) build their own libraries? Absolutely. Why? My first thought is that reflective users are our core constituency... but I'm going to have to dwell on this a bit more.