Archive for the ‘Passé’ Category

YBP Academia now features C&I essay

Monday, May 1st, 2006

As noted in the current Cites & Insights, “certain select C&I essays will also appear in the YBP electronic resource Academia.”

YBP calls Academia an online magazine, and I think that’s right.

The first such appearance is there now in the May 2006 issue–“The Journal of Electronic Publishing Returns!”, very slightly modified from the Spring 2006 C&I to work better as a standalone essay.

Taking the bait

Tuesday, March 28th, 2006

It’s hard to read this post without feeling that the writer’s trolling for reaction.

And, sad to say, I find myself taking the bait.

Here’s my take:

If what you’re doing is repackaging carbonated sugar water and trying to convince people that they absolutely must have it, a hot new name is a fundamental necessity. After all, selling people stuff they don’t need is all about branding and hype.

If what you’re doing is pointing out new ways to meet actual needs, recognizing that needs differ from person to person and library to library, that resources differ from person to person and library to library, and that some people who’ve been doing great work may not like to be told they’re old hat if they’re not on the bandwagon right this minute…well, then maybe the brand name is more of a distraction.

That’s particularly true when the brand name itself becomes a divisive issue.

I don’t believe John Blyberg, Michael Casey, Casey Bisson, Jessamyn West, Meredith Farkas, Sarah Houghton, Aaron Schmidt, Luke Rosenberger, Steve Lawson, and a bunch of others are in the New Coke business. (Or, for that matter, Steven Cohen, who was pushing social software in libraries years ago…)

I believe they’re looking for ways to solve real needs in real communities using a variety of tools, some newish, and that most or all of them recognize that each library and each community has a different set of critical needs. I’ve disagreed with each of them on occasion; I generally admire the work each of them is doing.

I believe their work would be equally effective with or without a brand name–except among librarians who really don’t buy into New Coke or like to be labeled as old hat, where the work would be more effective without the brand name.

But what do I know? I’ve only been using old and new technologies to try to make library services better for, oh, 38 years now…

Moving it, losing it, and Jim Croce

Monday, July 18th, 2005

The gist: my personal website has moved–to

If you’re a traditionalist, will work (and if you’re really a traditionalist, so will

If you’re wondering, is hosted by the same fine host as WebJunction and a whole bunch of other library-type sites, including this weblog:

“Losing it”? Well, the site now consists of a note that my website has moved and a link to the new page. Right now, I’m paying att.worldnet $19.95/month to keep that page up (since I’ve moved on to SBC Yahoo! DSL, and that account includes dialup if I need it). I won’t pay that for very long–two or three months at the outside.

Which means my primo ranking in web search engines is likely to be useless for a while. It will be interesting to see how long it takes for the new site to reach the first page of results…

Jim Croce? Well, I first registered When I told my wife about it and about the newish “.name” domainspace, she thought I really should use as a domain–after all, until/unless I offer some items for sale, it’s not commercial, but it’s based on my name.

So, thanks to (the registrar I used: I could not get’s order form to stop asking for nonexistant mandatory form elements–and is cheaper, at $5.99/year), “I got a name.”

If you’re wondering, there’s nothing new on the new site–but I’ve moved over almost all of the old junk, dated as it may be.

Update: I really do need to thank Blake Carver for easing the transition to LIShost. I’m still a novice at all this DNS and SSH and similar stuff…and having a web editor/FTP client that shows nicely abbreviated forms of Unix directories doesn’t help a lot.