Monday, April 26, 2010

Web 2.0, Library Skillz (that's right, with a z) and more

So tonight in one of my GSLIS (grad school) classes we had a discussion about Web 2.0, and the importance of keeping up to date with technology and technology related skills in the field of library and information sciences. One of the things we discussed was blogs, both related to the field and personal. My friend/classmate Emily and I both keep blogs and, without discussing it first, had both decided during this discussion to blog about tonight's class and share it on our course web page :)

One thought I had during class tonight that I wasn't sure when to share was how daunting all of this Web 2.0 technology seems to me. I often browse library and LIS-related job ads to see what the descriptions say and what I would be comfortable applying for. Many, if not most of these job ads list web design skills or familiarity as requirements for the job. Now, my mother may think that I'm some sort of computer guru because I know how to update my Facebook status, but I know pretty much nothing about web design. I can use very rudimentary HTML code, like I could probably make something bold for example, but that's about as far as my knowledge reaches. We talked about web design and other technological skills and how things such as database and other code-related topics are covered in some of GSLIS's classes. However, since I am doing our program's Certificate in Special Collections, I try to take as many rare book/special collections classes as I can while I am here. So while some people may be taking say, community informatics over the summer, I am taking Bookbinding and Paper in the Scholarly World, two classes which will likely do next to nothing to advance my technological skill set!

I'm so torn when it comes to technology in libraries. I hope someday to work in a museum or library in a preservation/conservation related job, and though digital preservation is obviously becoming hugely important to this field, I don't know enough about these kinds of jobs to say how necessary technological skills will be to any future job I may hold. With the wealth of information and tutorials available on topics such as HTML, web design, and even using YouTube, Facebook, and other social media sites, I feel like if I put aside the time and effort I could probably attempt to teach myself some rudimentary skills in these areas. However, the approach I have taken so far to my education is that 1. Old books will only continue to get older as time advances and 2. The people who know now how to preserve these old books won't be around forever, so someone has to pick up the torch. I'm hoping that by learning the somewhat specialized skills involved in the preservation and conservation of books and documents I will be marketable when it comes time to find a job, but I do worry realistically about the fact that I will be a new library school grad with very little experience with technology (not to mention very little job experience on my resume, as graduate assistantships here are harder to find than Carmen Sandiego).

So.....that's my 2 cents and more on the topic of technology! As you can probably tell from my previous entries, this blog doesn't often deal with library issues and I probably won't ever market it as a library-related blog, but I will occasionally blog on library stuff just because I enjoy it so much :) below is a list of library blogs I read, and I don't know how to make them hyperlinks so if anyone can clue me in on that that would be great! :) lol


1. Awful Library Books at
2. Library of Congress blog at
3. The Adventures of an Unemployed Librarian at
4. Closed Stacks at
5. The Food Librarian at

I occasionally visit other library blogs that I have found through this list of library-related blogs!

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