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The Information Professional
Librarians and Archivists in a fast-changing digital lanscape
Curated by Karen du Toit
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3 Geeks and a Law Blog: Are you a Dead Librarian Walking?

3 Geeks and a Law Blog: Are you a Dead Librarian Walking? | The Information Professional |

Colleen Cable:

"My new #ILTA13 inspired post on #3Geeks."


Monica’s summary of the key note address [at The International Legal Technology Association’s annual conference] by Scott Klosoky of Future Point of View, where he asked the question: Are you a dead leader walking or one with your high beams on?

Two quotes really caught my eye:

Leaders get stuck in what they have invested in, and cannot move forward


See 10 years ahead. Think about what services you will be offering, how they will be delivered, how you will find new clients, and what new businesses you will be handling

I was struck by how directly this applies to law firm libraries.

What have we invested in that prevents us from moving forward and how we are “seeing” 10 years ahead: 

Print?We aren’t completely in control of what print we maintain, but we are in control of planning and presenting a vision of what the print collection will look like in the future. How are we planning to stop investing in print and utilizing emerging technologies to shape the collection of the future? How have we communicated that to firm leadership? Space?Does our space or lack thereof, continue to define us? Do we need “space” in today’s law firm to be effective at our work or does it hinder us? If we look into the future, does space impact the services we provide? Maybe one day we are completely mobile with a tablet in one hand and our Google Glass on, working in attorney offices, client meetings, offering assistance as a roving service provider. How might we plan that kind of transition?Non-core activities?Jean O’Grady has done a tremendous job over the past few years focusing on the non-core activities that we must be willing to give up or out/in-source to others in order to focus on core activities. I’ve also heard Steve Lastres say many times that he tries not to do anything that isn’t “client-facing”. Both of these leaders are attempting to see 10 years ahead and planning their services accordingly. How can we take on and provide new services if we still have everything else on our plates?
Karen du Toit's insight:

Specifically for law librarians, but valid to all librarians!

We need to make future predictions to make changes now!

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Archivists Race Technology to Save Past Space Research, Records - Newswise (press release)

Archivists Race Technology to Save Past Space Research, Records - Newswise (press release) | The Information Professional |

With billions of dollars of past space research at risk of being lost forever, Dr. Charles Lundquist is running a race against technology and time.

Director of the Interactive Projects Office at The University of Alabama in Huntsville’s Research Institute, the 85-year-old Dr. Lundquist spent 40 years in high-level positions with the U.S. Army, the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, NASA, and finally the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He officially retired in 1999. Working as a volunteer since then, he spends his time sleuthing for past research from the Army, NASA and private papers, as well as collecting oral histories from NASA retirees and others. All are added to an archive on the ground floor of UAH’s M. Louis Salmon Library, where Anne Coleman is a reference librarian and head of Archives and Special Collections. The archives preserve continued access for future historians, scholars and students.

Karen du Toit's insight:

Archivists racing against time with formats becoming obsolete!

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MVRDV: book mountain + library quarter, spijkenisse

MVRDV: book mountain + library quarter, spijkenisse | The Information Professional |
a mountain of bookshelves is contained by a glass-enclosed structure and pyramidal roof with a total surface area of 9,300 square meters.

Via Doug Mirams
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JFK Library to host live chat with astronauts -

JFK Library to host live chat with astronauts - | The Information Professional |
JFK Library to host live chat with astronautsBoston.comLibrary officials say the event, co-sponsored by NASA, is among those being held to commemorate President John F. Kennedy's dedication to space exploration.
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University libraries: 10 global portraits

University libraries: 10 global portraits | The Information Professional |
University library chiefs worldwide reveal the challenges they face, plans for the future, and their role in higher education (Uni librarians talk about their libraries > University libraries: 10 global portraits


America: New York University library

Well-designed space is one of the most important services an academic library can offer, says dean of library Carol Mandel


UK: University of Manchester library

The library is not being used less, it's just user needs that are changing, says university librarian Janet Wilkinson – so don't forget the wifi


Japan: Hachioji library, Tama Art University

A university library designed by a world-leading architect inspires and challenges in equal measure, says library head Hidemi Kondo


Nigeria: American University of Nigeria library

Open access and libraries centred around online learning and research are key in developing countries, says library director Amed Demirhan


UK: Bodleian library, University of Oxford

We need to shape the skills of library staff to meet user needs while maintaining specialist knowledge, says interim Bodley's librarian Richard Ovenden


Australia: Queensland University of Technology library

With 97% of its research downloads from outside Australia, the library's open access expertise is invaluable, says library director Judy Stokker


Singapore: Nanyang Technological University library

Finding information is not the problem, says university librarian Choy Fatt Cheong – libraries are now taking the lead on how to communicate it


Karen du Toit's insight:

The state of university libraries! Interesting reviews!

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Libraries and Their Landscapes - Library Journal

Libraries and Their Landscapes - Library Journal | The Information Professional |
Cicero was suggesting a garden in the library, where he could spend his time in a natural setting, reading, writing, and conversing with his colleagues. This ancient idea can also apply to contemporary thinking about libraries and their landscapes. How do we thoughtfully place a library in the landscape? And how can we create outdoor spaces that work in concert with the library interior?

When a new public library is planned, it is not only the design that must be considered. The placement of the building in its setting (its landscape) and the design of the landscape together with the building are fundamental parts of the planning process. Unfortunately, architectural endeavors sometimes focus almost exclusively on the building itself. How the building might relate to its setting is often an afterthought. As a result, important opportunities to enhance both the building and its site are overlooked.
Karen du Toit's insight:

The use of landscape when designing and developing a public library > various examples are shown!

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What is a librarian without a library? – another perspective

What is a librarian without a library? – another perspective | The Information Professional |
By Felicity Cross of the Scottish Law Librarians Group
"Recently whenever I have been thinking about being a law librarian and what that means the issue of space has kept popping up.
To try and come to some conclusions about what it is exactly that I do, I thought about the different parts of my job role. And distilling them all down to their smallest common denominator; I found that it is to provide our fee earners with time and space. This may sound a little bit grandiose but bear with me.

We save time for our fee earner by analysing and searching through the best resources to make sure they have the right information at the right time, that it is up-to-date and reliable. We provide space by filtering that information, providing them with only what is relevant to their specific circumstances; clearing a space for them to think in a world filled with seemingly endless amounts of information. We give them the space and time that they need to provide the best service possible to our clients."
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