September 5th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

BCR (MPOW) launched its new Web site this morning and the recently launched BCReview is now a blog powered by Blogger. Be sure to check it out and send any comments that you may have on the new look.

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September 1st, 2006 by Michael Sauers

Backroom Disaster (3)
Originally uploaded by travelinlibrarian.

Yesterday I decided to take a day off from BCR, sleep in, get some stuff done around the house, have lunch with my SO, then head over to the Friends bookstore (which I manage for those of you who don’t already know that) and shelve the new paperback Science Fiction and Fantasy books. Instead, I got a call at 8:55am from the board president saying that there was a problem at the store with the new shelving and that I needed to come over right away. What I arrived to find is pictured here.

It seems that we weren’t very smart about filling our new 7′ double-sided shelving unit. The thing is stable enough assuming you balance the load. We, on the other hand, put too many books on the one side and not enough on the other. Overnight gravity decided to raise its ugly head. Luckily, since it did happen over night, no one was around to be underneath the resulting pile.

All of the shelves survived, but the eight of the end pieces that hold the shelves to the uprights will need to be replaced. (A few close-ups of the damage can be found in my flickr account. Just click on the photo in this post.)

Should we have added additional anchors to the shelving? Of course. We’ve got more shelving on the way and we’ve already talked to the plaza’s maintenance guy. He’s got a plan to run beams from the shelving to the walls to give us the needed stability. Still, we’ll not put as many books on the shelves as we have previously.

As far as I could tell, we only had to get rid of one book due to damage from the collapse, and that was a book that wasn’t in very good shape to begin with.

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August 7th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

BCR (MPOW) is looking for a Systems/Network Administrator. The pay is good and no travel required that I’m aware of.

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July 14th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

What Can U Plug Into a USB?
Originally uploaded by travelinlibrarian.

This past week in Iowa I presented “What Can U Plug Into a USB” six times in two locations. (PPT available soon, I left it on my laptop at home.) The photo shows all of the items I had with me to pass around. (The version in flickr contains notes naming everything for those interested.) For the attendees of the sessions I ran a contest to guess which of the items presented were fictitious. I don’t know who won yet, but I did promise to post the answer here…

There was only one fictitious device in my presentaion and that was the George Foreman iGrill. Yes, everything else I showed was real, believe it or not, including the lava lamp.

As soon as Michelle lets me know who won the copy of XHTML and CSS Essentials for Library Web Design I’ll post that information to the blog.

Also, I have scheduled a WebLive version of this presentation through BCR for the morning of Friday, September 29th, 2006. Watch the BCR site for registration information. (Everyone is welcome, but seats are limited so BCR members will receive priority registration.)

One other note for those that were wondering about my trip home: I did make it to the airport on time to check in for my flight but due to the VERY stormy weather, we didn’t end up taking off until 8:10pm. Pictures of the storm and all of the other pictures from the trip can be found in my flickr account.

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June 24th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

Reno Rendezvous by Leslie Ford
As I write this I’m sitting in seat 10C on a United flight from Reno, NV to Denver, CO after aproximately 24 hours in Nevada. I think Murphy came with me on this one…

It started yesterday morning with my leaving my bag at my house instead of bringing it with me to the office so I could go straight to the airport for my 3pm flight. That created the necessity to go back home to get my bag.

After checking into my hotel in Reno I was off to Sparks, NV (a Reno subburb) to find the Sparks branch of the Washoe County Public Library. This short trip was to make sure where I needed to be the next morning to teach my class. I went in, introduced myself to the librarian at the reference desk and said that I was confirming this was the branch I was looking for. She confirmed as such and even pointed me to their meeting room as that’s where training was generally held. I thanked her and headed back to my rental car. A few feet short of the car I reached into my pants pocket for the keys and found only lint. I’d locked the keys in the car.

Luckily I have a AAA membership so I pulled the card out of my wallet, and, since I was in Nevada, and not Colorado, figured it would be better to call the national 800 number instead of the local 303 number. I dialed and was immediately put through to AAA Colorado. It seems that their system is “smart” and figured out that I must be calling from Colorado due to the caller ID on my phone. I informed the person on the phone that I was not in Colorado but in Nevada and his response was to ask me if there was a land line I could call back from as that would be “faster” than him putting me through to AAA Nevada. (Look, I understand how the system works, but in an age of cell phones, what’s the point of having both local and “national” numbers when, if you’re calling from a cell phone, your actual physical location becomes irrelevant to the system?) I was eventually promised that someone would be around to help me “within the hour” and 1:15 later, someone did arrive. It took the lock guy exactly five seconds (I timed him) to get into the rental car.

That’s the end Thursday for me and I ended up having dinner at the hotel as I didn’t want anything else to go wrong.

This morning I awake early, find a Starbucks, have some java, and arrive back at the Sparks branch at 7:00 in anticipation of my contact person showing up to let me in at 7:45 for my 8am class. At 8am, I’m starting to get nervous as no one else has shown up yet. The phone calls to both BCR and my contact’s office number start at this point. I leave a voicemail for my contact and the folks at BCR confirm that I’m in the right place as far as they know. At 8:30 I get a phone call from one of the students (who got my cell number from BCR) wondering where I am. Well, I’m at the Sparks branch but all the students are at the Spanish Springs branch, which, by the way, is also in Sparks. (At this point, I’m sure the total confusion was my fault.) Off to the right branch I head to start class 45 minutes late. (This is the first time in nine years I’ve not started a class on time.)

After class, a wonderful lunch with some systems folks, and a much needed bananna frappaccino at the same Starbucks from the morning, then off to the Reno airport for my 4:30 flight home. The flight home by the way, is going through San Francisco (no need to draw you a map I’m sure) and gets me into Denver at 11:50pm. At about 4:00 I head to the mens room and notice that at the next gate over is a direct flight to Denver leaving at 5:00pm, getting me home about 8:00pm. I ask if I can switch flights (I’ve only got carry-on) and I’m granted not only a seat on the dirct flight but an exit-row seat in economy plus. (Mondo leg room here I come!)

So, I’m in that seat. The seat that doesn’t want to stay in it’s “full upright and locked position” (real fun during takeoff,) and a reading lamp that won’t stay on, or off, for anylength of time.

I need a vacation…

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June 12th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

On Friday, June 9, OCLC and RLG announced that RLG member institutions have approved a proposal to combine operations with OCLC, clearing the way for two of the world’s largest membership-based information organizations to become one beginning July 1.

RLG’s online products and services are being integrated with OCLC’s, and RLG’s program initiatives are being continued as RLG-Programs, a membership-based organization that operates as a new division of OCLC Programs and Research to support architecture, standards development and best practices.

Staff from both organizations have been meeting since the proposal was announced in May to begin planning for the integration of systems, products and services. RLG’s online products and services will be integrated with OCLC’s as appropriate. For example, RLIN, the RLG Union Catalog, will be integrated into WorldCat, delivering economies of scale and reach that will benefit members of both RLG and OCLC.

An FAQ that includes information on the combined organization as well as updates on some specific products and services is at http://www.oclc.org/news/releases/oclcrlgfaq.htm. The FAQ is updated as information becomes available.

Rosario Garza
Acting Executive Director
BCR / 14394 E. Evans Ave. / Aurora CO 80014-1478

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May 24th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

The official information about the conference is now available on the InfoToday site. Here’s what I’m doing:

Sunday, October 22nd
Workshop 19 — Integrating RSS into Your Web Site
1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Michael Sauers, Internet Trainer, BCR
RSS feeds are an excellent way to receive information from the Internet today. What many people don’t know is that you can receive that information and easily repurpose and republish it on your Web site with little technical know-how. Imagine automatically posting up-to-date local or industry headlines on your library’s home page. This is what you can do in just a few simple steps. Our expert Internet trainer shows you how to do just this. This workshop also covers additional RSS tools and services, including one that will create feeds from content without its own feed and another that will turn your text-based content into a podcast automatically.

Monday, October 23rd
Session C105 — The Second Life Library 2.0: Going to Where the Users Are
3:15 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Lori Bell, Director of Innoation, Alliance Library System
Tom Peters, CEO, TAP Information Services
Michael Sauers, Internet Trainer, BCR
In April 2006, the Alliance Library System put out a call for librarians interested in participating in a project to set up a library presence in the virtualreality world of Second Life. By the end of the month, more than two dozen librarians from around the world were meeting at a brand-new virtual library to staff the reference desk and discuss collection development, online programming, and library services. Since then, the response has only grown, and Second Life citizens are taking advantage of all the library has to offer. Our speakers provide an overview of Second Life, the creation of the library, and the services that are now being offered in this completely virtual environment.

Tuesday, Octboer 24th
Session D203 — Flickr & Libraries
1:15 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Michael Porter, OCLC Western
Fiona Hooten, National Library of Australia
Lluisa Nunez, Universitat de Barcelona
Michael Sauers, BCR
Flickr is a treasure-trove for library professionals interested in community, connections, innovative software applications, and marketing. With a strong library-centric focus, this session starts with a brief look at libraries and librarians with Flickr accounts and then explores the largest and most active library/librarian photo group on the Internet, the Flickr “Libraries and Librarians” group with more than 550 members on six continents and 2,600 images. Entertaining recorded stories share observations and comments from speakers on other continents, including how participation turned into a partnership that created a mashup between Google maps and images in the Libraries and Librarians Flickr Group. A dynamic demonstration of third-party Flickr applications using Open API/Ajax, as well as tips and tricks, round out the program. This is the ultimate library professional’s Flickr guide.

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May 18th, 2006 by Michael Sauers

On behalf of the BCR Board of Trustees, I am very pleased to announce Brenda Bailey-Hainer as the new Executive Director of BCR effective July 17, 2006. The Board of Trustees had to choose among several highly qualified candidates for the position. Brenda will bring to her new position an impressive track record of accomplishments working with library networks, nonprofit organizations, state government and library consortia. Brenda has an excellent understanding of the current operating environment for library networks and an appreciation of emerging information technologies. She has successfully secured grant funding for several statewide projects and has marketing, public relations and sales experience. As a current member of the Board of Trustees, Brenda has a good understanding of BCR, its mission and strategic goals.

The Board of Trustees looks forward to working with Brenda Bailey-Hainer and the staff of BCR in building upon BCR’s success as a library network.

Steve Rollins
President, BCR Board of Trustees

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May 3rd, 2006 by Michael Sauers

I started another series of online RSS workshops today and the first homework assignment is to find five feeds that the student is interested in. Here are the results. (All of the students are in Wyoming so the information might be a bit Wyoming-centric.) I’ll post more as the come in.

  1. University of Wyoming Headline News
  2. NOAA’s NWS RSS Library
  3. News from www.casperstartribune.net
  4. Wyoming State Library
  5. President George W. Bush’s featured speeches and remarks (Podcast)
  6. nHumanities
  7. USA Today.com–Top Headlines
  8. Library Journal: Features
  9. Billings Gazette-Wyoming headlines
  10. Librarians Internet Index – New This Week
  11. E! Online Latest News
  12. NPR Topics: News
  13. Wayne Besen – Daily Commentary
  14. MSNBC.com: U.S. News
  15. Public Relations and Publicity Blog
  16. TheDevnerChannel.com – Irresistible Headlines
  17. The Weather Channel – Your Local Weather – Laramie, WY
  18. Pollstar news
  19. American Idol Recaps Feed
  20. Library Marketing – Thinking Outside the Book
  21. Library Link of the Day
  22. Lisjobs.com
  23. New York Times Book Review
  24. PBS Now
  25. ACLU.org Free Speech Action alerts
  26. Quote of the Day
  27. PC World Latest News
  28. NPR Talk of the Nation
  29. NPR Books
  30. Beyond Best sellers (Madison Public Library)
  31. Google Scholar
  32. Universe Today
  33. Discovery
  34. New York Times
  35. The Write News
  36. Military RSS Feeds (directory)
  37. BCR: The Third Indicator
  38. BCR: Continuing Education
  39. Wyoming State Library News
  40. SI.com – NFL
  41. SmartMoney Trends in Investing, Saving and Personal Finance
  42. Word of Mouth Marketing
  43. NYT: Thomas L. Friedman’s Column
  44. Library Marketing-Thinking Outside the Book
  45. Stephen’s Lighthouse
  46. Salon
  47. Texas RV Travel : USAer Blog
  48. Tribe.net: Camping
  49. Alum Creek
  50. Carla Nayland Historical Fiction
  51. Yahoo! News: Top Stories
  52. NYT > Art and Design
  53. News from www.codyenterprise.com
  54. washingtonpost.com – Military News
  55. RSS Feeds at the Minneapolis Public Library (directory)
  56. Buzz Design
  57. World Cafe from WXPN
  58. Casper Star Tribune: Latest news
  59. Science@NASA
  60. Cosmetic Surgery
  61. New York Review of Books
  62. Reader2 – new books
  63. Girl Genius Online
  64. PCWorld.com – Latest News Stories
  65. PC World’s Techlog
  66. GameSpy PC

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May 2nd, 2006 by Michael Sauers

In a last-minute squeak-through I, Lori Bell, and Tom Peters will be presenting on the Second Life Library 2.0 project at Internet Librarian 2006. Probably in the last session of the “Digital Strategies” track on Tuesday. Here is the draft session description. (As soon as a final one is release I’ll be sure to post it.)

The Second Life Library 2.0: Going to where the users are
Lori Bell, Director of Innovation, Alliance Library System
Tom Peters, CEO, TAP Information Services
Michael Sauers, Internet Trainer, BCR
In April 2006, the Alliance Library System put out a call for librarians interested in participating in a project to set up a library presence in the virtual reality world of Second Life. By the end of the month more than two dozen librarians from around the world were meeting at a brand new virtual library to staff the reference desk, and discussing collection development, online programming, and library services. Since then the response has only grown and Second Life citizens are taking advantage of all the library has to offer. This session will present an overview of Second Life itself, the creation of the Second Life Library, and the services that it is now offering in this completely virtual environment.

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