Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Silent, upon a peak

Take my trousers. They have a hole in the knee that started forming just after the Large Hadron Collider was switched on. Soon it will take my leg. Then the universe. Such is change.

Consider.. since this course started how the 'things' have changed: Blogger has had a facelift, Facebook a makeover, Delicious and Bloglines upgraded their software, billions of videos have been viewed on YouTube, hundreds and hundreds of thousands of photos have been uploaded to Flickr. Over fifty thousand articles have been written for Wikipedia..

The content has changed and the underlying software has changed, and the possibilities these open up have changed. Forget trouser-devouring blackholes, this is the real dilemma: the relevance of public libraries shrinking in realtime.

One good way to appreciate how much each 'thing' has changed, and how these changes ramify, is to look at the developers' blogs. Take FlickrBlog for example. Reading through it over the course of the last ten weeks it's clear it's about more than just promoting new software developments like layouts for the photostreams, or slideshow features.

These are important, but it's also about new projects and new groups, and encouraging usage, and innovation, and drawing out what photographers have done. Check out these squirrels.. And then there's all those APIs. All in all, an extraordinary buzz of energy and feedback. Not just PR puffery, but useful, inclusive.

And I haven't even started talking about wiki yet.

Meanwhile, the library.

Sure, we've not got anything like the resources of a Google or a Flickr. But we do have possibilities and given a reasonable committment over time..

The problem, as I think this course makes clear, is not technological. In fact, that might be the acutest revelation of the course. Despite the anxious mutterings, I've seen nothing in any of the course blogs that make me think any individual's grasp of the technology is the limitation. Be reassured, more than ever it comes down to how clever we are as librarians.

Oh, and politics.

Whatever, I know what I'm doing in the future. Hopefully the library is doing it too.

Yup. This is the last post.


Ellifantile said...

Oh my god it cant be over. I'm quite glad I didnt continue with my own attempt at polluting the universe (where's that Collider when you need it)because this blog is so out there and with and of the moment I cant even keep up. Thank you for having fun and letting us join in, and let the powers that be find a way of extending the experience. Please.

Biblio Chick said...

Spam is as Spam does, and Spam does exeedingly well. From the old to the young, thank you for the exciting site and insights. Will you keep blogging in this blog or will you move on to ever newer and exciting places to play? Loved your comments about the rapid changes that occur so quickly. What ho the future!!!

SoAndSo said...

Cheers y'all. Well, death to spam right? It is true though, i didnt get a chance to explain the pink. Got some funny looks, electronically speaking.

NSL Learning 2.0 team said...

Some very important thoughts you penned here. The ever increasing scope and pace of change should spur us on to adapt the new technologies and the possibilities they present much sooner. And you are right - we are more limited by our creativeness and proactiveness than by anything else.

It was wonderful reading your posts throughout the programme - thought provoking and creative. You have your finger on the technological pulse!

Missy said...

Soandso, you rocked this journey.

Ramona said...

I'll be sad to see you go. Keep spamming. Loved the trip