Archive for July, 2014

15 Perfect Etsy Gifts for Librarians

Etsy is the perfect place to find hand-made, one-of-a-kind gifts for that someone special, or just for you!  Etsy is overflowing with unique items geared specifically for book lovers and librarians.  Here are 15 of my top picks!

  1. Keep Calm And Ask A Librarian T-Shirt

    carryon

  2. Alice in Wonderland Literary Laptop Sleeve

    laptopcase

  3. Library Due Date Card T-shirt

    duedate

  4. Vintage Library Card Notebook

    librarypads

Read the full post 15 Perfect Etsy Gifts for Librarians on OEDB.org.

What Happens if Your Library Systems Go Down?

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We’ve done a lot of planning and preparing and organizing in our library since Hurricane Sandy hit NYC to ensure that we would have business continuity in case of another such disaster. We’ve designed a disaster recovery plan, put backups into place, etc. But what if it’s not a full-blown disaster? What if the IT staff are away on vacation or off-site at a meeting and the server, website, or electronic resources go down? Does the rest of your staff know what to do?

This is a situation that has come up a few times in our library and we realized that there are two major considerations to address; putting a troubleshooting response protocol into place so that all staff are informed and know what to do in such a situation, and instituting a PR response protocol to guide what and when to share about outages on social media, listservs, etc.

Toubleshooting Response Protocol

No library is immune to outages so it’s important to let your entire staff know that it is a very real possibility that you may experience unplanned downtime at some point in the future and that there’s a clear plan in place for that occurance.

  • Tell Staff Who To Notify – The best way to ensure that your systems get fixed is to inform staff about who they should notify in case they do go down. This list of who to notify should specify several people in order of notification, so that if one is away/unreachable, they can attempt to contact the next person.
  • Give an Overview of How Things Work – In our library, different systems are handled by different people and providers. For example, our website is hosted by one company while our network is monitored by another, and our databases by others. It’s helpful to let staff know about this so that they can determine which company to contact in case of an outage, even if IT isn’t readily at hand.
  • Provide a Plan for Continuity – If your servers go down and you’re hosting Outlook in-house, how can staff get their email? Is there a cloud backup service you’ve put into place? If so, does staff need to set up accounts beforehand? How will staff access their documents if your network server is down? Again, are you using an online service such as iBackup that they have access to? If so, let them know ahead of time how to get into it. We recently rolled out Microsoft Office 2013 which allows users to save their documents to their hard drive, but also to a cloud-based OneDrive storage app. You may encourage your staff to save copies of heavily accessed files to this space as well.
  • Have a Print Copy of the Plan – If you’ve posted this information on your intranet or sent it via email and your network or internet service is down, no one will know what to do. Always have a hard copy of the plan in the office where staff can access it.

 

PR Response Protocol

Read the full post What Happens if Your Library Systems Go Down? on OEDB.org.

16 Conference Networking Tips for Educators and Librarians

Summer is conference season for many in the library and educational fields, and there’s no better time to make new contacts and network than at a conference. Not all of us are natural networkers however, (myself included!), so I’ve gathered some tips and tricks for conference goers that you may find useful. What I’ve found most helpful personally is preparing before the event so that I have a plan and some groundwork already in place. And I can’t stress enough how handy social media is with regard to event networking so be sure to take advantage of social tools such as Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. to make yourself more visible and also for interacting with others at the conference. And if you have tips of your own, please share them in the comments!

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    Before the Event

  1. Post Your Schedule – Most conferences these days will post the entire schedule of sessions well in advance. Some even have apps or websites with social networking components which will allow you to set up a profile with your photo and bio so that people can get to know you even before the conference begins. Posting a photo makes you easily recognizable come conference time! And those same websites oftentimes allow you to share your schedule from within the site. If there’s not a conference website outfitted with all of these features, you can still plan which sessions appeal to you and create a schedule which you can post yourself on Facebook, your blog, and other social media websites. Remember not to over-schedule yourself with sessions, much of the benefits of conferences come into play in between sessions, meeting and chatting with others in your field.
  2. Plan for Social Events – Every major conference and event will have a series of receptions, cocktail parties, and luncheons for attendees. These are just as important to be aware of as the sessions as you will have a chance to meet and network with colleagues and find out what new projects they’re working on or have implemented. Add these events to your schedule so that others will know where they can meet you.
  3. Grab a Badge – Many conferences will offer some sort of “I’m attending!” badge which you can post to your website and social media accounts letting others know you’ll be there.
  4. Take a Roll Call – Find out which of your Facebook or Twitter contacts will be attending the event by posting a status update such as – “Roll call! Who’s going to ALA Midwinter next week?”.
  5. Schedule Informal Meet-ups – Is there someone in the field that you’ve been waiting to meet in person but haven’t had the chance? Will there be influencers you’d like to talk to about a project you’ve developed at your library? Why not make contact before the event and find out if they’d like to go to coffee or meet at a session. Since you’ve posted your schedule, you can send them the link to see if they’ll be attending any of the same talks you’ll be going to, or any of the receptions you’ll be attending.
  6. Post to LinkedIn – You’ll find that most of your networking contacts will have their profiles on LinkedIn. Share that you’ll be attending the conference and see if anyone responds that they’d like to meet you!
  7. Pack your business cards – This is the simplest tip for networking, yet it’s the one that many people forget to do. Be sure and pack extra business cards in your suitcase early so that you aren’t left at the conference without them.
  8. Set a networking goal – One of my colleagues sets a goal for herself before every conference to collect a certain amount of business cards before the end of the event. This type of goal guarantees that you’ll talk with people and make connections.
  9. During the Event

  10. Tweet the event – Twitter is a great tool for up-to-the-second news and updates. Why not tweet your impressions and key points of each session you attend to Twitter so that others who are both at the conference and at home can follow along? This will put your name in front of people and may start conversations both on the social network and in person.

Read the full post 16 Conference Networking Tips for Educators and Librarians on OEDB.org.

47 Library Stories You May Have Missed in June

June was a great month for library and information science-related articles and blog posts.  If you’re still catching up on your news, you’ll want to check out these 47 stories on everything from chained libraries to setting up a Roku lending program in the library:

  1. The tweens of summer
  2. Serving military families
  3. Teen services in a rural library
  4. How to Conduct Library Website Usability Studies for Free
  5. 54 Library Stories You May Have Missed in May
  6. 10 Lesser-Known Horror Films Based on Books
  7. A Guide to Little-Known Image Collections with Millions of Free, Hi-Res Images
  8. 4 Free and Easy Ways to Display a Live Tweet Wall
  9. 7 Obscure and Intriguing NYC Libraries
  10. Digital preservation
  11. Orange is the new academia
  12. How to appear like you have it together
  13. This one is really bound in human skin
  14. Google tablets to be loaned at Queens branches
  15. Library as infrastructure

Read the full post 47 Library Stories You May Have Missed in June on OEDB.org.

4 Great iPad Apps for Creating Educational Videos

If you’re a teacher or a librarian who creates instructional materials regularly, you’ll want to have a look at these great apps for the iPad that let you easily create educational videos with your tablet.

1) Knowmia Teach iPad App

Knowmia
This is a free lesson planning and recording tool for teachers and their students. It helps you create short video lessons on any subject and publish them on Knowmia.com so students, other teachers and the public can find them. You can record everything that you do as well as your voice and video to create the lesson step-by-step and even capture your face in the video as you narrate the steps. You can import images, graphics or video clips from the iPad’s media library and built-in camera.

2) ShowMe

Show Me
This is an interactive whiteboard app that allows you to record voice-over whiteboard tutorials and share them online. You can drop in images onto the whiteboard and switch between drawing and erasing (as well as pausing and playing) to make your ShowMe flow from concept to concept.

Read the full post 4 Great iPad Apps for Creating Educational Videos on OEDB.org.

How to Create a Video Press Release for Your Library with Adobe Voice

This morning I created this video press release for my library with Adobe’s new free app for the iPad called Adobe Voice. This easy-to-use app was just released last month and it allows you to create stories using a combination of still images, icons, voice narration, and background music. The end result is a cross between a video and a slideshow.

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The app is very simple to get started with. First you choose the type of story you’d like to tell such as “Teach a Lesson” or “Give a Tour” and Voice will launch a template for you to fill in with your content.

voice

By clicking into each slide you’re given the opportunity to choose the layout, record narration by holding the record button (you can re-do your narration endless times which really makes this stress-free!), and then choosing what you want to go on the slide. You can choose from the millions of images that Voice provides for you to search or upload your own, or you can pick out one of the 25,000 icons the app offers.

Read the full post How to Create a Video Press Release for Your Library with Adobe Voice on OEDB.org.