How fabulous is this?!


Andrew Carnegie built an impressive 2,509 libraries around the turn of the 20th century. Now Rick Brooks and Todd Bol are on a mission to top his total with their two-foot by two-foot Little Free Libraries.

The diminutive, birdhouse-like libraries, which Brooks and Bol began installing in Hudson and Madison, Wisconsin, in 2009, are typically made of wood and Plexiglas and are designed to hold about 20 books for community members to borrow and enjoy. Offerings include anything from Russian novels and gardening guides to French cookbooks and Dr. Seuss.

Keep reading …

(via bookmania)

Brilliant blog post summarizing some of the key problems encountered when attempting to reflect on practice. Food for thought, as I attempt Thing 5- reflection on what I’ve done to date.

Tags: cpd23

20 things to go - current awareness

This one I feel confident about! I already have a Twitter account, and have followed the cpd23 account since I started this course. I was always sceptical about Twitter, as one of my friend’s never fails to remind me!, especially when it first started (take a bow Stephen Fry), but with it’s adoption at conferences and the like, it’s becoming a very useful tool. Used in moderation, I find it a good way to summarise and clarify my thoughts too.

All the information about libraries is up-to-the-minute too, which is a big plus- the summarised form of Twitter means you can easily browse information and find information of direct meaning and relevance.

I’ve also used RSS feeds for a while, to a varying degree of success (tip: avoid the main BBC newsfeed, unless you either work in a media enviornment or have a nice big space to let posts accumulate, and can then be brutal about dumping them- some news is nice, but its continuous flood of information will drive you crazy!) I must admit I find Twitter better to use to obtain relevant and timely information.

I’ve never used Pushnote- until now. To be honest, I’m not too sure about it, but I’ve set up my profile and I’ll give it a week to see how it goes. I can see it would be useful to keep tabs on websites if you travel about or work multiple locations/ computers, but given this is now a decreasing part of my job, I think it’s something I would use less and less. And Delicious works on a similar idea, but is more established. I’m also not clear if Pushnote organises websites into collections.

As for the rating, it’s an interesting idea, but I’m not convinced- if you find a site useful, it doesn’t necessarily follow that others will. Also- Stephen Fry again made an appearance- is he stalking me online or something?!

Update on thing 3

I’ve made some progress on LinkedIn: now I have a few connections, I’ve risen to the lower-middle of the listings. Next step is to really go for it, and to get some recommendations as well- although something tells me that I will only ever manage to be in the top 3 (the top two people have over 200 connections apiece.

It’s satisfying to see some of this work paying off already. Hopefully as I reflect on what I have done and find more ways to strengthen my brand, the benefits will increase.

One thing I do know- this blog is way too text heavy. Tumblr is such a good site for multimedia, I’m definitely going to come up with something a bit different soon.

And now for something completely different…

I’m really getting a second wind on the cpd trail now I’ve had a little break after Chartering and completing my TLSP and since starting the cpd23 course, I’ve also begun to look at other ways to grow as a Librarian. This could also be because I’m now starting to work through the post Chartering course that they send out. I couldn’t really face it until now, so used how busy I’ve been with work as an excuse not to start.

Yesterday, there was a call for paper proposals for the CILIP Career Development Group UK National ConferenceI’ve drafted something and have contacted my boss to get his approval to send it in. Very excited, so slightly frustrated that I haven’t heard back yet- I think I genuinely have something worth sharing at this conference (something I’ve never really felt before), although I’m kind of expecting them to be deluged with responses given that the cpd23 group that started on time should be looking at things 15 and 16 this week- all about attending conferences and getting published, so I doubt it will come to everything.

However, the fact I want to try is an interesting development.

21 Things to go- branding

Today’s task is to look at branding oneself and projecting a professional image onto the web. My official web branding is a mess. I admit it. I only just managed to get the same photo onto all of my online profiles (except for Facebook- that’s my personal life, not my professional persona, and so relatively well hidden).

The reason is not that I’m anti-brand or selling oneself (hmm hmm, that certainly didn’t come out right), It’s just that in most instances I’ve played about with things and not had an appropriate photo to hand. As in one where I’m not a) feeding my face or b) looking like a serial killer. Let alone a uniform background etc… So: I certainly need to work on my visual brand.

Anyhow, having done the crazy self-justification thing above, I then actually went and did the research. And found that I’m wise not to use my actual name as a general rule! On searching it, I discovered a Field News Editor, a Psychiatry PhD student and the state bird of Victoria are (unsuprisingly) all bigger draws. There was also a reference to my old address floating about, a little spookily, given I’m careful who I give such information to. I eventually popped up as second down on the second page of hits with my work details. My Facebook account remained hidden, as it should. I was 13 of 13 on LinkedIn, when selecting UK as a preference, but one of only 3 with a photo- so I am working to complete my listing to try and boost myself up the charts a little. The key is connections- I don’t have any yet, as I wanted my profile to be as good as possible before approaching colleagues and friends. I’ve now done this, although I can’t find as many on there as I thought I would. Conclusion 1: Perhaps I’m less of a dinosaur than I thought. Conclusion 2: I need to get out and get more networking done!

A shortened, common form of my name was even more interesting- it produced everything from a graphic design student to a porn photo! Lucikly, we don’t look too similar, but it makes me wonder if future bosses might see it and wonder… Another argument in the yes column for changing my name on my marriage! Again, I was 12 out of 12 on LinkedIn.

On searching geeks inherit all, I found my blog was the top result and my twitter account popped into second place. Somewhat unsuprisingly, there are not many of them.

In conclusion, at the stage my career is now at, I do need to knuckle down and get this tidied up a bit. Thanks 23 things for giving me a friendly shove in the right direction!


(by barbera*)
Yummy. Books.


(by barbera*)

Yummy. Books.

(via bookmania)

Tags: cool art

22 things to go

My task today is to explore a few of the other blogs that have been set up by the CPD23 study group. Me, being me, I will probably go off topic pretty quickly, distracted by a new recipe blog… Still, even a selection from the 313 blogs focusing on HE should keep me busy for a bit!

The first one I found was katherineslib:, a really nicely laid out blog, and a fellow late-comer to the cpd23 world (and also a new-comer to blogging). At this stage of the game, reassurance is everything and it’s nice to see I’m not the only one who’s been dragging my feet a little bit! We are also at similar stages of our career- although I gained my Chartership a couple of years ago now. Quite a few of the others I looked at haven’t got much further than me- I hope that this just means that they have got busy and not just given up- although I feel a little apprehensive about this. That is the main problem I have found with blogs in the past- unless someone deletes their account (not always possible), or makes a final post- you’re never quite sure if it is dead or not.

I did find one that seems to be up to date, by Lisa Burscheidt at She has used the features of wordpress particularly well- something I need to work on more with this Tumblr blog- there is a lot of functionality here and I need to take the time to explore it in more detail. Feeling inspired on the whole then!

Also, in the interests of taking a wider view, have looked though some of the blogs here on Tumblr, and also via search engines, on non-library matters. This was my absolute favourite: I should perhaps explain that I’m recently engaged, and planning on making my wedding cake (given some of these examples, this makes a whole lot of sense). ;-)

First thing’s first- 23 things to go

So, now I’m finally up and running, I’m going to embark on the 23 Things for professional development course:

This brilliant idea provides ideas on ways to experiment with some web 2.0 and/or social media apps, along with more traditional ways to develop my professional knowledge. Unfortunately, I’m a bit behind as the course has already begun. Luckily, the course is online and self-paced, so I can fit it around everything else- perfect! My aim is to have caught up by the end of the course.

The main thing I’m hoping to get out of the course is new ideas - I’ve been a bit stumped with all the new media coming out recently, and how to reconcile it with everything else I have to do- this looks like a good way to learn about web 2.0 technologies from other professionals and I can also try out blogging - hopefully with something actually interesting to write about!

In the real world, I’m also trying to improve my cataloguing skills, so won’t be restricting myself just to the cpd 23 thing.

New blog!

Very excited at finally setting this blog up- I’ve been trying to get around to it for ages, but ironically I’ve been rather busy doing things I should be blogging about. The aim of this blog, after all, is to improve my reflective powers and provide me with evidence that I do actually think about my cpd.

Background for anyone stumbling over this: I work in a university library in England. I am involved in a huge project to reevaluate our collections in view of the following:

  1. closure of one campus, including a library site;
  2. changing profile of degree base;
  3. changing formats and future proofing to keep us a relevant and timely information source.

I chartered with CILIP (our professional organisation) in 2009 whilst in my first professional post after completing my MSc from Loughborough. I am on a fixed-term contract, ending in 2012 so I’m also on the scout for permanent roles- the idea is that this will develop me as a person and someone might want to employ me afterwards as a result!

With this in mind, all view are my own, I accept full responsibility for them and disclaim my current employer from any liability arising from them…

Tags: about me