OLA Live: Interview

Here’s the interview I did with Erik Boekesteijn at the OLA SuperConference. We had a great conversation. You should also check out what he’s doing with This Week in Libraries.


Startup Library 101

Slides from our Startup Thinking 1010 presentation at the Ontario Library Association SuperConference 2014 (with the fantastic Helen Kula!)

Ignite Lego

A couple of weeks ago I tried my hand at doing an Ignite talk at Ignite Waterloo 10. If you’re unfamiliar with the ignite format, presenters have five minutes to talk about something that they’re passionate about, but there is a catch: you get 20 PowerPoint slides and they auto-advance every 15 seconds. If you have a tendency to ramble your slides aren’t waiting around for you to catch up – it’s cutthroat PowerPoint – and it was the most fun I’ve had in front of an audience in a long time. The adrenaline kicks in, you hit the space bar, and give it everything you’ve got.

I practiced many (many, many) times so that those five minutes of my life would not be a complete disaster. Strangely enough, I even enjoyed rehearsing it. The real power of the event was listening to such a variety of speakers and topics (check out the list for Ignite Waterloo 10 here). The organizers put together a fantastic event and the venue was unreal (Centre for International Governance Innovation) – definitely the best stage I’ve ever spoken from. I’m definitely going to attend again… you should probably come along too.

If you want to see my 5 minutes, here’s the YouTube link (the people at IW10 covered all the bases!):

Entrepreneurship Course (in five minutes)

Here’s a video that I created to provide students with an overview of the MCS*4100 course in Entrepreneurship. It’s certainly not as polished as the videos from RSA Animate (see a few posts below), but I’m happy with how it turned out. Putting closed captions on it wasn’t that difficult either – thanks YouTube!

If you want to know more about the course, click on the links below:

Full MCS*4100 outline for Fall 2012 [.pdf]

Visual outline (from the video) [.pdf]

Visual outline (from the video) [.jpg]

Library Forum Facilitator

I recently accepted the role of “chair” (I prefer “facilitator”) for our Library Forum meetings. I made the video below in an attempt to set the tone and establish a new direction for this important staff meeting. I know that the video won’t have a wide appeal (since most of you don’t work at U of G); however, it’s my first shot at using Camtasia so I thought I’d post it.

Education Paradigms

I’m sure some of you have seen this already, but I thought I’d share for those who haven’t. I’m a big Ken Robinson fan and what’s not to love about the RSA Animate series?

I particularly like how he distinguishes between divergent thinking and creativity (near the end of the video). I guess you can thank the education system for beating (or boring) the creativity out of you.


Librarian as translator

Building on my previous post, I found another analogy that I had scribbled in my notes (from way back in February 2007). Scrawled across the top of my piece of graph paper was “Librarian as translator.” I kind of like that. Think about translators for a minute: What skills do language translators need to do their jobs? Translators need skills like:

  • Ability to use translation strategies: translators need to be able to rephrase idioms and other figures of speech and still capture the spirit of the original communication.
  • Cultural awareness: translators need to be aware of the cultures on both sides of the translation.
  • Knowledge of terminology in specialized fields: translators have to know the jargon (or at least know how to negotiate it).
  • Ability to use the tools and rules of translation: translators have to know which tool (e.g. dictionary, software, etc.) to use and how to apply proper grammatical structure.
  • Ability to deliver on time: translators need to understand the urgency of the work (and need to deliver competently).

As I scan the bullets above I like what I see. I like the idea of librarians as translators in the Information Age. This is just a short post – you could definitely push this analogy a bit further.

If you’re interested, I paraphrased the above list from here.

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