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Random thoughts again

Between looking at the "biblioblogosphere" reaction as well as the comments on recent Annoyed Librarian's posts, I am confused. I don't get the virulence. I really don't. The rampant conservativism as well as fundamentalism is also breath-taking.

I understand that there seems to be veneration of Library Journal as an institution. I don't understand why there would be such a vehement reaction to this whole matter. What Library Journal did is hardly earth-shattering and has popped up elsewhere in far larger publications.

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So, what are we fielding at BlogWorldExpo

Sometimes it is appropriate to talk about the technology used in production. Why? Some days I would much rather serve as the pathfinder for others rather than have most in the profession engaged in the Sisephean task of reinventing the wheel. Out of the production team, one member of the team is in Ohio on leave while two will be able to attend the conference. The production engineer is the only one with media credentials for the conference. In the lobby outside the south hall at the Las Vegas Convention Center is where I will hiding out as I have no badge. I wish I could pull off a bit akin to "Blazing Saddles" to get in the door. For this, badges are quite needed. I will be in the background for this. We're putting a non-librarian out on the floor. That was not my choice but I have to live with who had the successful badge application. I applied for badges for the whole team, it should be noted. While Blake and I can both advise the person on the show floor about possible topics we could use all the advice possible. The engineer cannot keep running off the fairly big floor to the areas outside to ask me what to do so any suggestions of inquiry areas will help. Most, but not all, of the tools we are planning to take: 1. 2 laptops with their necessary accessory components 2. One ICD-P620 Sony voice recorder 3. One condenser microphone 4. Headset for reviewing audio recordings 5. Diagnostic & Repair tools as needed We won't be ready or able to do video work. With only one person on the floor that isn't really feasible either. When Pixelcorps filmed at New Media Expo they had to have multiple crew members involved. While their most expensive piece of equipment was the portable LED-based light, it still was a two-person minimum matter. We have the capacity for audio reports to be recorded on the floor. While our person on the floor is recording, I will be outside editing. As the recent techcrunch50+2 showed, banking on having usable WiFi is not necessarily a viable proposition. As such, we will have no way to receive feedback while at the show. This is why Blake's post noted that there is a deadline to get feedback before we have to go get media credentials. Once the show starts and we are there, it will be the engineer's judgment supplemented by my advice. The information gathering strategy we have is something librarians might not be used to. The first round will involve having the engineer out on the floor without a voice recorder but with a writing utensil and a notebook observing. After that we'll review things against inquiry priorities that were established beforehand as well as any suggestions I may give. Once that is done the engineer returns to the floor to make the rounds while occasionally bringing me back audio files to review. My purpose in reviewing the audio files would be to see if follow-ups were needed. On the second day such would also include hopefully getting started on editing work so that the podcast can be released on time. BlogWorldExpo is a very rich environment full of vendors that offer things to libraries and librarians. With recent attempts at incarnating a Library 2.0 culture using such tools, representatives of the vendors libraries rely on will be available. These will not be vendors specific to the library profession by any stretch of imagination. As libraries and librarians start to reach beyond our own little niche, though, we eventually do have to engage with the world around us. What we are trying to do is to produce something that meets the needs of librarians rather than general tech reporting offered by an outlet like CNET. CNET has a general audience and that has worked for them well enough to where they have been bought by CBS. LISTen really doesn't serve a general audience so it behooves us to focus on what the audience wants to learn. Who knows? Perhaps someone might suggest an area of inquiry that CNET would not follow up on? While this may seem hideously complex, it really isn't. This is the way news-gathering and reporting happens. The only reason it seems to be complex is that we are trying to be open and transparent about such so that others can learn. Look at LISTen as being akin to a teaching hospital without a Dr. House rambling around the halls. If someone was really interested in doing so, this would be an easily adapted strategy for covering ALA Mid-Winter by folks other than LISTen perhaps. Feel free to ping us as Blake describes.
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About the experimental transcript offering

A few thoughts about the experimental transcript offering:
  1. This was an experiment that I did not initiate. Someone else on the Las Vegas end of things kicked this one off.
  2. The experiment that was initiated by someone other than me had the stipulation that an offering could not be free.
  3. In setting the price, the object was to ensure that there was some revenue being developed. There is hardly any profit to this.
  4. The use of Lulu has several reasons behind it. First and foremost it allows the outsourcing of many business functions I do not want to deal with. Reporting sales tax collection to the state authorities in Nevada is not fun and is a pain in the backside for small entities. Secondly it allows for outsourcing of fulfillment to an entity with infrastructure for effectively handling that.
  5. Transcript copies are offered as digital downloads as well as print versions. The print version was put together to be okay for adding to collections. There was debate about creating a vendor CIP record for such but timings did not allow that.
  6. To paraphrase the person who started this, talk is cheap so put your money where your mouth is. The reason why the transcript offering has a cost attached to it is to help bring up the issue of commitment. While the current episode was easy to put a transcript together for the problem arises in about eighteen days when BlogWorldExpo 2008 kicks off and there are floor interviews. For the work that that would require, some level of commitment would have to be exhibited before the event.
  7. Is there a magic number that needs to be reached? To the best of my knowledge, no. Then again, that is not something that I will be judging. The numbers from downloads and plays may well be considered against any sales figures that develop. Such just helps flesh out whether one thing needs to be prioritized over the other. If there were a massive turnout for the podcast but not for the transcript, then our focus would be more on the podcast. If things were otherwise then that may lead to some interesting discussion about where things may go.
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Trying the LibraryThing widget

And this is set to randomize on load:
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Saying with slides and sound

Mixing a little bit of Keynote with Garageband and showing odd colors, hopefully something is conveyed:
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Morning hours

Sometimes recording interviews is not simple. There can be much involved in preparing. As I write I am wondering when I might fall back asleep (tried once already and failed) after getting up well before dawn. Working across time zones can be hard in scheduling things because if an interview subject on the east coast of the United States wants to talk at 8 AM their local time, I have to be up by 4:45 AM at the latest Pacific time. The engineer for the production has to be up quite a bit earlier to make sure everything fires up and doesn't die.

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Testing something in editing I haven't tried before

This shows a nice intersection between iMovie and GarageBand as tools: Granted, I did have that one relative offer to build something running Cinelerra but I do not think that the time is ripe for that yet.
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As to my previous blog post

The previous post which apparently touched quite of bit of nerves has been deleted. It shall not return.

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Cringeworthiness

I am posting this early although it is a draft script and quite subject to revision prior to airing on the next episode of LISTen.

As this is recorded, ALA Annual 2008 is underway. I will admit upfront that I am not a member of the American Library Association and never have been. I simply cannot afford it while I can afford Christian College Librarians which is headquartered at Harding University in Arkansas. I can manage annual dues of twenty dollars far more easily than what is asked by ALA.

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Sitting at the bar at Turtle Restaurant in the Lambert Beach Resort

This is one of the few times I am blessed to write a blog post on LISNews from another land. Right now I am trying to eat dinner at the Turtle Restaurant. It has been an interesting trip in and out of the British Virgin Islands. If anything I will spend more time airborne than I will on the islands.

Will LISTen happen this week? One way or another, yes. The dominant US-flagged air carrier out here is American Airlines and so far there have been only minimal flight disruptions. Saturday may be a different story.

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