I want to first state that for this assignment I had a difficult time narrowing my choice down four bloggers. There are so many perspectives that I want to follow. So, currently I have a long list of blogs in my RSS feed.
However, I did narrow it down to four: What I Learned Today, Swiss Army Librarian, Tame the Web, and In the Library with a Lead Pipe. I follow these more closely than that others in order to write this post. I choose these four because of the variety that they collectively represent.
This is an interesting blog written by Nicole C. Engard, Director of Open Source Education at ByWater Solutions. The reason that I chose this blog to follow is its attention to technology in regard to libraries and education, playing particular attention to open source software. This is an area that I want to learn more about, but haven’t yet because I don’t know where to start. I have found this blog to be helpful in this department. Throughout the month or so that I have been following this blog, she has been posting her bookmarks, some more relevant than others. They can cover a variety of issues from an app to get good hotel deals to an online resource to manage and reserve rooms. This is a great blog for browsing since she posts regularly and often they are short bursts of information. What I liked was the related posts link at the bottom that will led me to many Internet worm holes or related materials.
This is a collaborative blog with information professionals from different backgrounds. They take submissions for blog entries and have an editorial board listed. First of all, I love the name of this blog. It is very visual and humorous. The blog itself is pretty academic in nature with fairly long posts. Due to this, it seems that they don’t have many posts per month. Since I’ve started following there have only been two posts, one about emotional intelligence and another about students as stakeholders in academic libraries. The quality definitely outweighs the quantity. With this blog, I have to sit down in a quiet place for an hour in order to fully concentrate on it.
This blog is maintained by Brian Herzog a public reference librarian in Massachusetts. I chose this blog because I am interested in working in public librarianship in some capacity. A nice feature of this blog is his “Reference Question of the Week” which is pulled from his experience and he documents the way he went about to solve the questions. This is really helpful to me because I have yet to actually work in reference, so it provides practical steps and thinking on how real librarians tackle information issues. Some of his other posts cover some of the ins and outs of work in public libraries, like building eye catching displays or changes in policy and how it is implemented. I like this blog for the practicality and its insider view into the library. He also writes in a relate-able way.
This is another technology blog that I chose to follow. This one is primarily written by Dr. Michael Stephens an Associate Professor of LIS at San Jose University. His focus is on emerging technologies in libraries, so this goes along well with What I Learned Today. As mentioned above I am interested in the technology side of LIS because it is all so new to me and I want to push myself into that area. There are other occasional contributors and guest writers as well. In this blog, they have current news, such as the Edwin Mellen Press v. Dale Askey case. In fact, this was the place where I first heard of the case before it seemed to be everywhere on the Information Professional corner of the web. In addition, he covers a lot of news regarding online teaching awards and different conferences. Since this is a new side of LIS for me, I think that Tame the Web is a good sneak peak into that life.
Some of the trends that I noticed within these three blogs are the importance placed on teaching and technology. A number of blogs are centered around these topics as well as how emerging and open-source technology play a role in the information field. In addition, there is a powerful thread that runs through all four about the power of information and the right that we have to use some technology (such as blogs) for expressing our thoughts and opinions freely. This may be why the Askey case has caught the LIS world by storm and scared so many folks.