Libraries as Provisioner, Quartermaster, and Curator

Yesterday I heard Catherine Murray-Rust give a keynote at the Georgia Knowledge Repository workshop. She used the phrase, and I think I transcribed this correctly, “provisioning of knowledge” when describing the activities that institutional repositories can do. That phrase reminded me about a recent discussion on a mailing list (I can’t find it now) where people were seeking short definitions of what it is that libraries do. I think I have a new one: in your knowledge journey, libraries are your provisioner, quartermaster, and curator of resources.

Provisioner

pro·vi·sion \prə-ˈvi-zhən\ : to supply with needed materials (as food)1

My ALA Anaheim 2012 Schedule

It is that time of year again where representatives from the library profession all gather for the annual Annual Library Association meeting. This year it is in Anaheim, California on June 21–26. And as the pace of technology continues to push libraries into new areas of content and service, this meeting promises to be an exciting one. Or, at least I’m planning on having a fun and engaging time. Here is my tentative schedule of public events. If you’d like to get together to chat outside these times, please get in touch.

Updated to correct the date for the LYRASIS lounge.

Thursday Threads: Research Works Act, Amazon Kindle Give and Take, OCLC’s Website for Small Libraries

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I’ve been away from DLTJ Thursday Threads for a while, but that doesn’t mean the fun hasn’t stopped. This week there are stories about the beginning and the end of the Research Works Act (again, one might add), Amazon’s continuing shifts in the ebook marketplace, and an announcement of beta access to OCLC’s Website for Small Libraries service.

Thursday Threads: SOPA, PROTECT-IP, Research Works Act, and Broad E-Textbook Pilot

Slidecast of David Lewis’ “Collections Futures” Talk

At the 2010 Annual RLG Partnership Meeting, David Lewis (Dean of the IUPUI University Library) gave a talk entitled “Collections Futures”. I’ve followed David’s ideas since we crossed paths a few years ago; his ideas on applying Clayton Christensen’s disruptive innovation theories to libraries ring true to me. This presentation is in part an update on his earlier work on this theme and an expansion to include new ideas from Clay Shirky and John Seely Brown.

With David Lewis’ permission and in keeping with the Creative Commons license he used to publish the work, I have synchronized his slides and the audio recording using Slideshare.net. That effort is embedded below and is available on the Slideshare site.

Thursday Threads: Digital Reference Librarians, First Sale Danger, Open Access, Data Modeling

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When I say “<blank> is a question answering system. A question can be posed in natural language and … <blank> can come up with a very precise answer to that question” — what comes to mind to fill in the <blank>? If you guessed a system developed by IBM to appear alongside human contestants on Jeopardy, you’d be right. That quote comes from video posted by IBM earlier this year that is the topic of the first DLTJ Thursday Threads entry. This weeks other entries look at possible erosions of copyright first sale doctrine, the state of open access publishing, and a proposition for new definitions to terms of art in data modeling.

If you find these threads interesting and useful, you might want to add the Thursday Threads RSS Feed to your feed reader or subscribe to e-mail delivery using the form to the right. If you would like a more raw and immediate version of these types of stories, watch my FriendFeed stream (or subscribe to its feed in your feed reader). Comments and tips, as always, are welcome.

Federal Research Public Access Act Reintroduced

New legislation was introduced in the U.S. Senate last week to support the publication of federally-sponsored research results under open access terms.
Sponsored by Senator Lieberman of Connecticut and co-sponsored by Senator Cornyn of Texas, it mandates open access to author pre-print versions with peer review changes in federally-run repositories within six months of publication. Called S.1373, it is a nearly identical version to the bill of the same name that these two senators introduced in 2006, which ultimately died in committee. The 2006 version was supported by a wide variety of organizations including the American Library Association, as tracked by the Alliance for Taxpayer Access (ATA).

Online Editions of Out-of-Print Books Result from Library/Press Partnership at Univ of Pittsburgh

Late last month, the University of Pittsburgh Press and Library System announced a joint effort to revive 500 titles with online and print-on demand access. I originally found this via a post on the Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education (CITE) blog. Since we have been ramping up discussions here in Ohio about ways OhioLINK can be an aggregation point for efforts at the four university press services in Ohio, I was interested to read about this and learn more.

Beyond Federated Search Redux

It started with a post by Carl Grant on the Federated Search Blog: Beyond Federated Search – Winning the Battle and Losing the War?. I bookmarked this in Delicious and copied this extended quote from the text into the bookmark:

I’ve long argued that librarianship on top of digital information is about the authority/authenticity/appropriateness of the information provided to the user, as opposed to the overwhelming amounts of information available via other search tools that don’t provide that differentiation. In order to meet those tests, one thing that is clear is that libraries and librarians should never cede control to other organizations over the content they offer to their end-users. It doesn’t matter if that happens because the content providers fail to provide access via federated search, or whether the library has allowed third party organizations to determine what content they can access via a local index discovery tool. Ceding this control cripples the ability of a library to build unique and precise informational offerings that target the needs of their end-users.

This in turn got pulled into my FriendFeed stream and the ensuing discussion seemed too valuable to let sit there, so I’m creating this post with those replies and adding a little bit more of my own thoughts. (Since all of these were public comments, I believe it is good nettiquete to reproduce them here with attribution. If not, please let me know…particularly if you are one of the people quoted!)

Durham Statement on Open Access to Legal Scholarship

Earlier this month a group of law schools released a statement promoting open access publishing of law school journals. Called the Durham Statement on Open Access to Legal Scholarship, it was signed by representatives from Duke, University of Virginia, Georgetown University, University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, Yale University, Stanford University, University of Texas, Columbia, Northwestern, Harvard, New York University, University of Chicago University of California — Berkeley, Barry University, University of Cincinnati, and Fordham University.

The undersigned believe that it will benefit legal education and improve the dissemination of legal scholarly information if law schools commit to making the legal scholarship they publish available in stable, open, digital formats in place of print. To accomplish this end, law schools should commit to making agreed-upon stable, open, digital formats, rather than print, the preferable formats for legal scholarship. If stable, open, digital formats are available, law schools should stop publishing law journals in print and law libraries should stop acquiring print law journals. We believe that, in addition to their other benefits, these changes are particularly timely in light of the financial challenges currently facing many law schools.