The Shifted Librarian - Shifting Libraries at the speed of byte
 Monday, March 17, 2003

Wireless Not Evil in Libraries

Another good post I missed while gone - Let's Hurry Up with the WiFi, Borders Is!

"Borders has hooked up with Intel® for this venture. Intel® is promoting their Intel® Centrino(TM) mobile technology not only in these outlets, but also Hilton hotels and resorts. [link goes to article and list of hotels] and McDonald's.

If libraries can't be on the cutting edge of this technology, we at least need to be ready and implement it before it gets totally mainstream. While I wish libraries could introduce this technology to everyone, it isn't happening that way. The news about Intel® promoting their product is heartening, though, becasue I'm ready to be connected all of the time.

See Wireless Librarian for articles and a list of libraries implementing wireless technology." [LISNews.com]

The comments on this post are more interesting than the article itself (we all know the outside world is going wireless with or without us). Someone tries to compare wireless apples to ebook oranges in the context of bad technologies. While it's important to go into these types of ventures with your eyes wide open to the pitfalls and disadvantages, I have yet to meet anyone who can make a convincing case that wireless, pervasive internet access won't be a major part of our lives in the near future (and I say that as a consumer, not a librarian). Near meaning the next 5-10 years, which means libraries need to start preparing now.

Remember - "preparing" doesn't have to mean "implementing." Yet. The good part is that there's time to start learning about wireless technologies and their various implementations.

Here's my favorite comment from the LISNews thread:

"Our libary steers away from untested technology like electric light. Because what happens if the power goes out? That is why we [rely] on fires built around the library. You can read the stone tablets by firelight just fine. We don't want to mess with that crazy 'paper' technology."

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RSS Getting Play on WEB4LIB

In catching up on email from last week, I see that the RSS feed for the Librarians' Index to the Internet that Steven pointed to over the weekend generated some interesting discussion on the WEB4LIB mailing list.

For starters, Jon Legree at the Yorba Linda Public Library has set up two feeds for the LII, a .91 feed and a .92 feed. That second one also includes a textinput box to search LII. (Interestingly, Yorba Linda PL is using phpWebSite to power their site, which gives them two automatic feeds, as well as a blog on their main page!) From there, someone asked for a definition of RSS, and there were some very interesting responses.

Jon pointed to a RSS Tutorial for Content Publishers and Webmasters, a site I don't believe I've seen before. Peter Scott (Mr. Weblogs Compendium himself) has also begun collecting links to RSS Resources and RSS Readers (aggregators). This is great news, as it will save me the trouble of doing this! And D. H. Mattison reminded us about his article in the February issue of Searcher, "So You Want to Start a Syndicated Revolution: RSS News Blogging for Searchers." That prompted me to find the February issue floating around SLS and photocopy the article. I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but it looks rather detailed, which is always a good thing.

But if he's read this far, what I actually wanted to point out to Steven Vore is that this year marks the first official Take Our Sons and Daughters to Work Day. Link courtesy of LII's New This Week page now that they're back in my aggregator. Hooray!

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