Posted on February 2nd, 2012 by Paul Stainthorp
JISC formally launched phase two of the Information and library infrastructure: Resource discovery programme on 11 January 2012 in Birmingham. CLOCK weren’t able to attend in person, but we sent these slides in our absence. They’re good for a quick overview of the aims of the CLOCK project.
Posted on October 8th, 2011 by Paul Stainthorp
I’m on the way back from the first national Library Camp UK in Birmingham (a bit tired after a 4am start. Yep. 4am on a Saturday).
Here are 10 reasons why Library Camp made for a great unconference. In no particular order:
- The people. There were around 200 folk there (at the weekend, remember!), from all sorts of library sectors; plus a really healthy sprinking of non-library folk – from graphic designers to poets. While the echo chamber wasn’t entirely destroyed, it at least cracked in a few places. The passion for libraries was tangible from the start. And it’s probably no coincidence that quite a few Voices for the Library people were in attendance.
- The unconferencing. There was no sop to traditional conference programmes, speakers, or presentations. Not a PowerPoint show in sight. All the workshop topics were ‘pitched’ by attendees on the day, scribbled onto post-it notes, and assembled into an impromptu programme on a whiteboard. Folk were free to attend whatever sessions they wanted to get stuck into. For my own part, I took the opportunity to leave my ‘day job’ subjects—open data, repositories, e-resources, etc.—to one side, and took part in some refreshingly non-technological library discussions.
- The venue. Etc Venues’ Maple House is <10 mins’ walk from Birmingham New Street station. They let people stick things up on the walls. I think nuff said.
- The topic. Mashed Library is about libraries and technology. Cycling for Libraries is about libraries and… er, cycling. Library Camp is about libraries, full stop. Whatever your pet library topic, it was up for discussion.
- The tweeting. I think this was the first event I’ve attended where very nearly everyone used Twitter. This was brilliant in building a sense of community in the run up to Library Camp, and on the day the hashtag #libcampuk11 pretty much owned the interwebs.
- The democracy. My favourite quote from the day: “leave your perceived status at the door”. I love that “perceived”! No-one was allowed to wear an ‘official’ / institutional badge of library rank. And the internal divisions within library & information work got a good kicking throughout the course of the day. Bravo.
- The organisation. Putting a whole new national event together in a few short months is impressive to say the least. Respect is due to @BhamLibrarian, @libraryjmac, @coralmusgrave, @siwhitehouse, @timmy666, @shedsue, and the sponsors. They’d like to hand the baton on to a totally new group of organisers for Library Camp 2012, so that things are kept fresh and Library Camp is reinvented every year. Will anyone pick it up?
- The city. Alright, Birmingham is a bit of a pain to get to from the depths of rural Lincolnshire (hence my 4am start). But choosing a location in the Midlands did mean that most corners of the UK were represented.
- The cake. It was just… beautiful. A stunning variety and a frankly intimidating amount of cakey goodness: nearly all of it home baked with love by Library Camp attendees. And it wasn’t just for show – keeping everyone’s blood sugar levels high meant that people stayed engaged and enthusiastic until the very end of a long day.
- Did I mention the people? For a bunch of (according to the stereotype) meek library types*, people weren’t shy about getting stuck in. Without that shared enthusiasm: no unconference.
*Yeah, right. I know. ROFL.
Posted on March 1st, 2011 by Paul Stainthorp
I’m in Birmingham for the JISC Infrastructure for Resource Discovery start-up meeting. We’re here to get to know the other 7 projects that JISC has funded. Here’s what we’ll be talking about:
The objectives for this meeting are:
- To introduce the bigger picture of the resource discovery taskforce work and all of the projects that are involved
- To share approaches and knowledge on the key issues for the programme – technical approaches, licensing and aggregation.
For this session each project will need to prepare a 5 minute overview of their project. We would like your overview to address the following questions
- What content and metadata are you working with?
- How will this data be made available?
- What are your use cases for the data?
- What benefits to your institution and the sector do you anticipate?
12.30 Discussion of technical approaches
- Each project will be asked to briefly outline the biggest technical challenge they face in their project. We will then look for common issues and opportunities for projects to collaborate.
- What technical approaches and tools are you using?
And here are my slides for the 5-minute presention on Jerome: