26 January 2010

New layout!

If you click through you'll notice that I've chosen a new template design for the blog, courtesy of Deluxe Templates  I still have some tweaking to do (such as on the pages up at the top) to get everything to display the way I want it too.  The RSS feed should still be the same and I've also adjusted something that I missed the first time in Blogger settings.

Leave some feedback and let me know what you think!


19 January 2010

Changes be coming this way...

You'll notice that my blog roll is currently empty. Well it wasn't on purpose, but it serves a purpose. I've had the same template design since I started the blog and although I've added widgets over on the side I haven't changed the design much.

So over the next couple of weeks I'm working on picking out a new template. I'll likely have to write it from scratch so I'm really hoping it won't mess up the RSS feed (it shouldn't since I'm not moving it to a different site) and doesn't create any troubles with reading my posts. So I look forward to debuting it in a couple weeks.

Second change...as some of y'all know I really like using free software (see my presentations at: http://www.slideshare.net/ashuping) and I really want to get better about reviewing them and building a semi-usable list that people can refer too. So instead of writing the reviews here I'm going to have a second blog just for reviews. I'm working on getting that set up and will let y'all know when its up and going.

So those are all of the changes at the moment.

09 January 2010

New job...from July 2009

So as I mentioned a couple of posts back in July 2009 I started a new position at MPOW as Learning Commons/Emerging Technologies/Interlibrary Loan Librarian plus my continued duties as reference/instruction/liaison/tech type person. This new position came as a result of a series of events of people leaving and people requesting changes (including myself) and other events going on.

I can't (and won't) post a lot of the reasons why the change needed to happen, but I was glad for it. I've been in public services every where I've worked and in Access Services in all of my library jobs. During my career I'd come to be enthralled with new areas of the library and was ready for a change and a chance to show what I could do in these other areas. And I'm grateful that MPOW has allowed me to pursue some of these opportunities that I'd been...encouraging them to explore for the last few years. Now I get to take the lead on projects and its actually part of my job which makes it easier to sell.

And yes it is a lot to my name and their are days where I want to pull my hair out and yell "I can't do it all!!!" But its not out of frustration, its more out of the sheer number of ideas that enter my head and get jotted down somewhere or told to colleagues in an effort to help make their lives easier or complete projects that they've been talking about for a while. I have so many ideas that I want to explore, because I want to help transform MPOW into the next century.

And while I'm playing catchup with Emerging Technologies compared to other places, I'm watching for that next tool that will take us beyond. And while we won't have the traditional Learning Commons, I want to redefine how some people view it. I want to find what will make it work for MPOW, my patrons and not everyone elses. I want to challenge myself to not think of things in their traditional means in any area. With ILL I want to look at what can be done to make it easier for patrons to get materials and make it easier on staff not having to deal with outdated and useless technology.

I plan on blogging about some of what I'm looking at and doing during this year. So stay tuned!

01 January 2010

My presentations for the year

This was a good year for presentations for me. I'm getting more comfortable giving presentations and I gave three this year, two in a one month time span which was a bit difficult along with everything else I had going on at that time. But it was great experience and allowed me to stretch myself.

This was a rather interesting presentation for me for a variety of different reasons. In 2008 a colleague and I had done a library 2.0 project at our POW and we submitted to various conferences in the hopes of presenting and BIGGER accepted.
  • The topic of the conference, Information Literacy, wasn't what we had built our project around but at the same time it fit into the theme
  • 1st collaborative presentation. Although I gave it alone my colleague and I figured out a blue print to what we wanted to discuss
  • 1st presentation I've done where the slides are mostly pictures instead of text. This was something new I had seen and I really liked the idea of using less text and this presentation really fit that type of style
Another thing that was different were some comments I received after the presentation. People were surprised that I discussed what didn't work with the project and I was surprised by that.

GA COMO 2009
Last year at GA COMO I discussed different types of free software and this was a continuation of that presentation where I discussed how to choose, how to find, and places to download free software.

Access Services Conference
This was a fun conference to attend and present at. Its the 1st year this conference was held and I was excited to be a part of the program planning committee (and no I didn't pick my own presentation!) The conference was strictly Access Services folks from across the country and it was great to be able to learn and share with folks in this area.

My presentation was on Library 2.0 tools that I had tried out with my department and some tips and tricks to look for when starting.

One of the big things I took away from doing these 3 presentations was being willing to talk about what didn't work. Going in I didn't want folks to think that everything was always sunshine and buttercups and that things always worked the way you wanted them too. Cause man did some stuff fail absolutely miserably that I tried out. So I talked about it. I thinks its important to share not only your successes but your failures as well.