Thursday, August 5, 2010

Day 1: Getting to SUNY Oswego

The purpose of this blog is to let visitors get a sense of the professional conference experience from the effort it takes to travel to the stimulating sessions and people you meet. These posts highlight the activities and experiences at the conference, and attempt to include observations that are hopefully useful to the reader. Feel comment and share your experiences as well!

Content for this post:

  • Travel to the conference
  • Pre-conference Meeting
  • Dinner & Networking

Travel to the conference

  • Plane took off at 8am from South Bend;
  • Arrived in Syracuse around 2; met Anya who is a Resource Sharing coordinator for a group of institutions around Oregon, Washington, and surrounding areas;
  • Shuttle picks us up, takes us to SUNY Oswego; the drive was about 45 minutes, so more than half the day was spent traveling. As I was later to learn, well worth the time; but you want to factor that into your planning.

Pre-conference Meeting
Often conferences will include pre-conference meetings; I was invited to participate in the Technology Advisory Group (TAG) meeting. This group plans projects for the coming year related to technology; in this particular meeting, the group discussed:

Presentations they were giving in the coming days and asked for additional feedback regarding content and delivery; and Priorities for development projects.

The team members were intelligent, professional, yet laid back and friendly. I'd really only interacted with one other, Mike Sullivan of SUNY Geneseo, whom I had seen at another conference and who had invited me to sit in on the meeting. But the other members of the group were welcoming. And it felt good to participate, learn, and offer ideas.

Dinner & Networking

Conferences offer chances to meet others who do what you do. The coordinator of the conference invited us all to a local bar and grill. Although I had known about networking, from previous conferences, we are usually so busy in workshops or running from room to room, that we don't always connect and get to know conference attendees. Not really. However at the dinner, which purposely began with buying drinks, we began to relax; in addition, and I'm not sure if it was intentional or not, but we were not asked what we wanted to eat for at least 30 minutes. And then the first courses came maybe about 15-20 minutes later.

In this relaxed environment, it seemed to facilitate building positive bonds and open communication and trust. It helped to set the tone for the coming days, as we often connected and met throughout the conference.

So if you ever attend a conference - and I have been doing this for about 10 years now - I highly recommend finding opportunities to enjoy a meal and drink with a group of people who do what you do. I'd emphasize fun during those time. There will be plenty of time to work, and the positive relationships you build will flow into the collaborative work that you will do.

Day 2: Joy in the learning

The first day of a conference was the most content rich. It began with a 5K run with Adam (St. Francis) and Corey (Geneseo), both members of TAG, whom I've met the day before; we started at 6:30am. Yikes! We ran it in 22 minutes.

Then it's breakfast and off to the keynote speaker and opening session; then a day filled with a variety of presentations.

How to you absorb it all? May I suggest taking notes on a laptop or iPad?

I used to take copious paper notes, which I never, ever looked at again. In addition, it made it difficult to share. And let's face it, paper isn't green. For example, the notes were taken electronically (in a word document), they are easily shared here:

==== BEGIN DAY 1 NOTES ======

IDS Keynote: Buy only what you need: Demand-driven acquisition as a strategy for academic Libraries

Michael Levine-Clark, Collections Librarian, University of Denver

1. Don't librarians know best?

After data analysis, Denver discovered if item wasn't used 4 or more times within 5 years, it wasn't going to get used. Some tweets in response:

audience tweets:

cyriloberlander we are more accountable for budgets, and 47% no use doesn't look good. #idsconf10

AnyaNArnold "Turning shelf space into people can we justify keep an item that is only used once in ten years" #IDSCONF10

==Developing a DDA Plan for Denver University==

· 1. Jan 2009: Begin convesation with Blackwell

· 2. Spring 2009: Begin conversation with EBL

· 3. Summer/Fall 2009: EBL/Blackwell plaform development

· 4. Dec 2009: YBP/Blackwell announce merger

· 5. Jan 2010: Begin conversation with YBP

· 6. Spring 2010: Implemement DDA with EBL

· 7. Spring 2010: Plan DDA with YBP

· 8. Summer 2010: YBP/EBL Negotiations.

The EBL Model

- First five minutes: free

- First three uses: STL (short term loans/rentals) 1 or 7 days (cost of loan is 10 - 20%)

- Fourth use: purchase


oodja EBL Model (eBook LIbrary): 1st 5 mins free-browsing, 1st 3 uses short term loan, 4th use= purchase #idsconf10 47 seconds ago reply

cyriloberlander Model may be developed has a free 5 min view, first 3 uses,STL 1 or 7 days, fourth use; purchase / most use is 5 min. browse ebook #idsconf10 58 seconds ago reply

Most often, doesn't get past one or two days resulting in significant cost savings plus item not taking up valuable space.

==University of Denver Plan==

- Print and Electronic Plan

- YBL and EBL

- Slips

-- no fiction or textbooks

-- discovery through the catalog

- POD (eventually)

==User Experience==

- Catalog (ebook and print book)

- Landing page (designed by EBL, links to both versions, more information)

- e Book platform (eBook, link to catalog for print (eventually)


- MARC Records loaded loaded (based on YBP slip notifications)

- Requests routed through Acquisitions

- Acquisitions places order (YBP or Baker & Taylor)

- NBook received

- Patron notified

- Future: drop ship to patron


(is currently in pilot)

- Feedback Form (print)

- at request

- at delivery

- Slip "ordering" (print)

- Use Data (print and electronic)

- Overlap of p and e

Cyril Oberlander, SUNY Geneseo

GIST is about:

- Enable user initiated purchasing

- Impoving strategy

User Interface for GIST at Geneseo

- Highly customizable

- Status specific (faculty (with purchasing recommendation option, students, staff, etc.)

- Context sensitive

o Standalone w/ISBN search

o Default loan Form

o Open URL

o Book Chapter Form

- Smart components a la carte (Easy to turn a widget on or off, select widgets at will.)

Both User and Staff interface customizable


=ILLiad / ILL Request Form – User also sees

WorldCat API checks library availability.

Google API shows preview of item

HACHI Trust (available to whole world)

Index Data

Amazon API gives review information and offers link to purchase their own copy via Amazon

Purchasing options (for example, better world books)

=Bringing users into conversation with customizable feedback

For Geneseo, purchase equals Acquisitions in Doc Del

=ILLiad 8 Can Create a Category for Acquisitions

-then only those who need to watch acquisitions i.e., Acquisitions staff.

=ILLiad Addons

INSTALLING GIST (see detailed documentation @

- Backup current ILLiad Web Directory

- For hosted server, log in with an ftp client and download a copy of the web directory to your computer

- Download the current version of GIST:

o Extract file to ILLiad web directory (or the NVTGC directory for shared, multiple sites)

o If get a warning regarding overwriting web.config file, then click NO

o You will need to open the web.config (see Mike)

o Obtain an Amazon web services key, an amazon secret key (same page) and a worldcat API key

§ Http://


§ Also review the google book serach api branding guidelines

o Ente the keys

o GIST.config

§ Configure varius widgets (see

§ Define/configure group members and labels

§ Define estimated delivery time in days

ILLiad Addons

Travis Stokes, Atlas Systems Developper

They can eliminate step of opening up browser and performing search

-Can appear on user form and/or request form

- Request Form (Transaction , Usr, and Lender Info)

-User Form (User)

== What features are avaialble? Well, you can add:

- Forms

- Form Elements (CheckEdit, ComboBoxEdit, ListBox, MemoEdit, RadioGroup, TextEdit)

- Browsers

- Grids

- Easy to user wrapper classes

- Data Access (SQL or OleDb)

o Internal

o External

o Connection Creator/Dbcs files

- Library Support

o Atlas, AtlasHelpers

§ StringSplit (delimiter, text)

§ UrlEncode(str)

§ UrlDecode(str)

- Shared Addons

== Minimum Requirements

- Folder is in Addons directory that coresponds to your new addon

- A config.xml file that has a minimum of info (

- At least one LUA


- Customization key does not exist by default; Cusomizaion key : AddonDirectory


Addon is a LUA file

Use Notepad ++ to edit LUA file

Based on .net framework

Function name = init()

n Create page elements

-Create form

-Create button

- Grab grid control, set event, (makes it so that when you click on any row, method gets called.)

- Loads data access classes; stores classes in ole db type to LUA variable

-Creates connection object, creates query, executes query, populates grid,

-Sets up columns (how it displays)

Another librarian took notes on his blog:

==== END DAY 2 NOTES ======

In addition to full-blown presentations, there are also poster sessions such as this one:

In the evening, we eat, play wiii Rock Band

seriously), have a sing along, and imbibe. Here's the evidence:

So you can see, there is a lot happening:

  • Take advantage of it and attend presentations that will help you with what you do; and
  • Try to record what you learn; it will help you remember; and if there is something that is especially useful to others, you will be able to easily share it.
You may be a little tired at the end of the day...but you will also be on an adrenaline high -- especially if the conference committee did a respectable job selecting presenters.

Day 3: Don't know why you say good bye, I say hello

The final day. Sigh. More learning and good-byes.

The keynote speaker for the final day was inspirational, as good keynote speakers are, and lives in our backyard. Here are the handy, dandy notes (thanks, loaned laptop) from that session:

Keynote: Lessons in Innovation from Better World Books

Xavier Helgesen, Better World Books

Send email for presentation at


1: It started with one book drive; good learning experience; found out what they were good at (selling and shippin)

2. “Swipe from the best, then adapt.” – Tom Peters

- best ideas come from outside your field

- most ideas aren’t original: steal freely.

-benchmark against business…are your stakeholders as satisfied as Zappos?

3. Great ideas don’t have to come from the top…but the top can sure squelch them fast.

-When team members come to you with a suggestion…say, “What do you need to make that happen?”

-data is are a great servant, but a horrible master.

-Encourage discussions of “how can we?” instead of “here are the problems”

4. Finds out what matters to your stakeholders

-You would be amazed at what you learn

-Idea: Conduct “listening labs” (more at:;consulting/labs.php)

-Idea: Track net prompoter score (more at

5. Give a Great Experience

== Here are some ideas you can try

Idea 1: OCLC WorldCat Direct


What if ILL worked like Netflix?

Idea 2: Storage as a service

- Unlimited shelf space for 10 cents per book per month

- Books available via ILL for direct shipment

- Books can be instantly weeded and sold to recoup costs

- This is still in the idea phase – let better world books know what you think

Idea 3: Fully managed gift service

- BWB sets up collections points, mailing address and allows shipment of all books

- Cagalogs books received with donor info included and sends spreadsheet or list

- Desired books sent directly to library or professor

Idea 4: Partner with Libraries when library wants to run their own book drives

The rest of the conference (the final day is just a half a day)

There was one more session; it was a business update of the vendor of the principle Interlibrary Loan software and related products.

Then lunch, then good byes, and travel home.

Whew. Not much left to say, but..

APPRECIATE the people and time you spent. Be grateful that you have an organization, boss who supports you. And the next move is to implement at least one or two things and add value to your organization.