The Librarian in Black points to an article on WebJunction called “Technology Watch List for Small Libraries” and I have to say that I am also unimpressed. The difference between reading blogs and RSS feeds and creating blogs and RSS feeds is substantial, as is the difference between employing a thin-client solution to the centralized server problem and just learning how to do ghosting effectively. Ebooks are not a good solution for cash-poor libraries [which is what I hear when I hear "small libraries" though maybe this is geared towards small rich suburban libraries] and when I think “cost effective” for virtual reference, I think IM — which isn’t even mentioned — not joining a consortium. In short, this article seems to be more effectively titled “shopping tips for small libraries” because by and large it is much more geared towards things to buy than things to learn.
Andrea’s at CiL and has some tips for presenters that are right on the money. I went to show off one of our library databases at an elementary school yesterday. Everything was fine until we got to the database login page. For some reason IE wouldn’t let us in, the tech guy had gone home, and no one else knew if there was a firewall or virus software on the machine. Fortunately, I had brought all the screenshots of the database that I had used when I was demonstrating it on public access TV. Oddly, the demonstration search I had used for the TV show just happened to be the same as the name of the town I was in. I walked away from that talk looking well-prepared and smart instead of tech-clueless and frustrated. And that IE problem we were having? We switched to Safari as an afterthought when I was on my way out, and we logged in to the database no problem, vexing!