Monday, 30 November 2009

Hello again!

Well, here I am, back again, only a week later!

Some folks from here have gone across to middlemash today. I've been trying to follow it all on twitter, but there is so much going on. Not sure how those people there can keep up with all the talks and ideas and tweet at the same time; I know I couldn't do it. Lots of good stuff out there relating to this specific session, like mapping the library, and there are also some slides on the session.

Bye for now.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Sorry, did I really say I'd post weekly?! What an ambitious desire!

As I said in my first post, things in the cataloguing arena are changing so rapidly, I've hardly had time to sit still, never mind put pen to paper!

Anyway, been reading around rather a lot lately: from the future of cataloguing and the future of cataloguers, to new-generation OPACs and all they have to offer; from arcane library standards like MARC and Z39.50 to SRW/U; from top technology tips for librarians, to making best use of RSS feeds; from what makes a good website to microformat applications; from Ruby to Python; from sql to cql - and some!

Feeling totally bewildered and inadequate! According to Roy Tennant, librarians love perfection - and boy is that hard work! The rewards for that, of course, are the opposite of rubbish in, rubbish out, but it is time consuming and hard work to keep up those kind of standards. Roy Tennant also said that librarians love to search while everyone else loves to find!

I might eventually have something to comment upon once I've digested my recent reading, although hopefully it won't take 7 months to make another post! In the meantime, I've already asked the boss if I can go to the CIG conference next September. Looks thought there might be some interesting stuff going on there.

See you later.

Thursday, 9 April 2009

First post!

The more I think about it the more I realise I am in the right profession! Like most people I have had highs and lows in the workplace and have sometimes questioned what I am doing, wondering if I'm more suited to a different career, but I have come to the conclusion recently, that I am essentially doing something I love doing and have no intention of changing career.

I suppose I should have guessed I'd end up being a librarian when I was about 8 and used to make Browne issue cards and lend out my personal books to my friends! Or when I was about 12 I was fascinated by the tall cabinets of catalogue cards - flicking through them opened up a whole new world! Like a lot of people I didn't recognise my calling and was determined to become something I perceived to be a bit more romantic, like a musician, until I discovered that my talents really weren't up to scratch.

In VIth form I discovered that working in the school library transformed me into a better human being! I wanted to help people and loved handling the books and returning the shelves to impeccable order. So, off I trotted to do Library Studies at university, a course which prepared me for my life-long career.

Again, I should have guessed that I'd end up being a cataloguer as my first job (which was very hard to come by) was as a supervisor for a retrospective cataloguing project, which involved converting card catalogue records into automated ones, using what was then BLCMP. After a brief foray into special librarianship, and a couple of years as an issue desk manager, I went back into cataloguing - and I've been there ever since.

Things have changed enormously over the years, for the most part, gradually, until fairly recently when technology seems to have opened up so many possibilities that it's difficult to know which bandwagon to jump onto, or which horse to back. You can almost smell the fear of being left behind!

So, I don't profess to be an expert, but I do intend to share my thoughts about cataloguing with you over the coming weeks. I will try and update weekly, but I'll have to see how it goes. If something gets my goat, I might jst post at any old time, but if I have nothing much to talk about then I may not post for a while.

Keep in touch!