Outboard Brain

As these things often do, writing and thinking about my last post, far from closing the issue for me, led me to more on the topic. Specifically: Cory Doctorow’s 2002 essay My Blog, My Outboard Brain… …and the considerably more recent: Your Outboard Brain Knows All, from Wired Cory Doctorow’s essay is about his use of his blog, specifically Boing Boing, as external memory as background conversation. I especially like.. Read More

Just a little piece of the big mind

The Outsourced Brain, from the NY Times Until that moment, I had thought that the magic of the information age was that it allowed us to know more, but then I realized the magic of the information age is that it allows us to know less. It provides us with external cognitive servants — silicon memory systems, collaborative online filters, consumer preference algorithms and networked knowledge. We can burden these.. Read More

Slam the Boards + Yahoo Answers = frustration for your humble narrator

On September 10 there was a sort of guerilla action digital reference event, called Slam the Boards. This was “a day-long answer fest” where reference librarians would answer as many questions as they could in one day, using authoritative resources. This was quite well publicized, at least in the digital reference community, and planning had been underway for more than a month. It’s not clear how many librarians actually participated,.. Read More

Facebook Apps for Librarians

Thanks to Gerry Mckiernan for pointing this out, in a post to Dig_Ref: Top Ten Facebook Apps for Librarians (in 3 parts) from Ellyssa Kroski’s iLibrarian blog Apparently, UIUC is the only library that currently has an app for its OPAC, but they’ve posted the code, so others could follow. Also there’s a search app for JSTOR. May I suggest other search apps for other online databases? Perhaps by vendor?

Not a killer app

Kids say e-mail is, like, soooo dead, from CNET News This is nothing new; a lot has been written about the apparent fact that teenagers and younger don’t use email much. Indeed, this gave rise to what is probably my favorite headline of all time. But if this is true, then maybe so much for email being the internet’s killer app; that was just a phase. Thus far, chat has.. Read More

I have got to get me one of these

Look at numbers 6 & 7 in the Pimp Your Cube 2017 slideshow, from PopSci. Cordless power? RFID tags in staples so your lost papers can find themselves? Totally want.

The bookless library

If a Library Is Bookless, What’s In It?, from NPR It’s always interesting to me to see how libraries are presented in the media. This piece makes us look rather cutting-edge, which is a happy thing. Amusingly, there were technical problems with the first guest, who was connecting remotely from the studios of a member station, and what Neal Conan got was dead air. And my immediate thought was: and.. Read More

Plymouth NH is cooler than you thought

My parents, who live in way northern New Hampshire, sent me an article the other day from Plymouth Magazine about a point of local technological pride: the information architect for the Lamson Library at Plymouth State University in Plymouth NH recently received the Mellon Award for Technology Collaboration. For what did he win this? For WPopac, an OPAC app based on WordPress. This OPAC now seems to be the default,.. Read More

Netflix video-on-demand

Wow, 2 posts in one day… I need to figure out a more productive way to spend my leave. Netflix to offer online movie viewing, from CNN Money Online movie rental service Netflix introduced a new feature Tuesday to allow customers to watch movies and television series on their personal computers and said it will make the new feature available to its subscribers in a phased rollout during the next.. Read More

Spam Über Alles

9 out of 10 e-mails now spam, from CNN The number of “spam” messages has tripled since June and now accounts for as many as nine out of 10 e-mails sent worldwide, according to U.S. email security company Postini. And the press release from Postini that CNN is reporting on. …a 59 percent spike in spam over that period [from September to November 2006]. Unwanted email is currently 91 percent.. Read More