Blogging

Writing about blogging or just blogging

The Language Wars, Left & Right

from JstorDaily.

In the current political climate, it seems how things are expressed has been pushed to the forefront of the debate. It starts with the strange and rambling idiolect of President Donald Trump—which The Guardian describes as “redundant, formulaic, aggressive, “post-literate”—full of bland contradictions, polarizing generalizations, statements sometimes inconsistent with reality (and some, we assume, are good statements).

Interesting don't you think...

A methodology for identifying library peers

Using IMLS 2013 data Levi Bowles, data science professional, applied a "nearest neighbor" methodology to find peer libraries for an example library system. The nearest neighbor method is widely used across many fields. The factors matched on were population served, branches, funding per capita, visits per population. For the full post visit http://www.datasciencenotes.com/2015/10/peer-group-determination-library-peer.html.

What blogging was

I love this one from David Weinberger...
"So, from my point of view, it’s not simply that the blogosphere got so big that it burst. First, the overall media landscape does look more like the old landscape than the early blogosphere did, but at the more local level – where local refers to interests – the shape and values of the old blogosphere are often maintained. Second, the characteristics and values of the blogosphere have spread beyond bloggers, shaping our expectations of the online world and even some of the offline world."
If you've been blogging for more than a decade it's a great read:
http://hyperorg.com/blogger/2014/01/08/what-blogging-was/

Topic: 

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #250

And we're back even though we're now illegal in Vietnam! Then again, so is the rest of LISNews as we discuss in the program. The hiatus is over and normal programming resumes notwithstanding September 2nd being a holiday. In this week's episode we talk about the threat of the Syrian Electronic Army and preparing for it. We also have a unique news miscellany that ends with a fun item from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Related links:

Download here (MP3) (Ogg Vorbis) (Speex) (Extremely Hi-Fidelity Audio via Free Lossless Audio Codec), or subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. New reading material for the Air Staff can be purchased here.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/.

The World's Strongest Librarian

Review of Josh Hanagarne's book in today's issue of Shelf Awareness.

Josh Hanagarne, blogger at The World's Strongest Librarian, "might be the only person whose first three-hundred-pound bench press was accompanied by the Recorded Books production of Don Quixote." This is just one of his remarkable singularities. A gentle giant who tears phone books for fun, at 6'7" he tends to catch the eye at the Salt Lake City Public Library, even when his Tourette Syndrome is not acting up. His memoir explores these contradictions and oddities, and his remarkable journey from idyllic childhood to painfully jerky young adulthood to a contented family and work life.

The authors own site explains why he isn't reading reviews of his book.

Google Reader To Disappear

On March 13th, Google announced that its Reader application would disappear on July 1, 2013. Dan Seifert wrote at The Verge about the matter where it was indicated that Google is doing this as part of a regular service reduction exercise and that Google clims usage of Google Reader has declined. Chris Ziegler later noted at The Verge that this has generated some backlash.

Debian developer Richard Hartmann noted that this shows some of the dangers of relying solely on cloud services. Work is underway to bring the self-hosted reader Newsblur into the JuJu Charm Store for easy deployment to the Amazon Web Services public access cloud to have your own personal web-based RSS reader. The personal cloud platform ownCloud is available with an RSS reader mode added to the latest version. Ars Technica writer Casey Johnston speculates this closure is an attempt to make RSS reading social by moving it into Google+ perhaps.

The situation continues to develop especially as librarians like Michael Sauers explain how to migrate from Google Reader back to Bloglines.

The Joint New Year's Eve Special

In concert with the team behind the Ubuntu UK Podcast, the Air Staff at Erie Looking Productions presented via WBCQ a New Year's Eve special broadcast via shortwave radio. Now that the show has finished being broadcast, it is being made available for download.

Download here (MP3). You can subscribe to the podcast (MP3) to have episodes delivered to your media player. We suggest subscribing by way of a service like gpodder.net. Stephen's shopping list of items to replace hardware damaged and destroyed due to adverse circumstances over the past week, which includes requiring replacement of our dead in-house server with a lower-powered Raspberry Pi at this point, can be found here where direct purchasing is possible to send the items directly to the Air Staff.

Creative Commons License
The Joint New Year's Eve Special produced by Gloria Kellat of the Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

The Epidemic of Niceness in Online Book Culture

Interesting article from Slate Book Review on the fine line between literary criticism and literary boosterism as experienced on social media.

Proposed New York State Ban On Anonymous Posts

A Food Truck & a Bookmobile Walk Into a Museum

This is an essay I wrote last month and am having trouble finding an audience. I think LISnews readers and I would find it mutually beneficial. http://grawlsy.wordpress.com/2012/04/16/a-food-truck-a-bookmobile-walk-into-a-museum/

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #196

Librarian blogger keeps tabs on tech revolution

Librarian blogger keeps tabs on tech revolution
In 2003, librarian Sarah Houghton was tired of having to wander around the Internet looking for information about technology and Web services. So she stopped looking and made a blog of her own. She called it “Librarian in Black,” so that her blog would match her wardrobe.

Envisioning Future English Libraries

It appears that Arts Council England (a non-departmental public body associated with the United Kingdom's Department of Culture, Media, and Sport) has opened a blog seeking to discuss the future of libraries in England. The blog warns that it is only looking at the future while current issues with library services should be brought up with one's local governing authority or put to the forum at Voices for the Library or to The Library Campaign. (h/t The Bill Thompson)

Bombing Bridges

CNET's Greg Sandoval reported last year that top Internet Service Providers came to an agreement with the RIAA and MPAA to engage in copyright enforcement. Ryan Whitwam noted at ExtremeTech that the agreement is set to kick in during Summer 2012 and would entail a graduated response system. The Electronic Frontier Foundation reported that this was not founded by governmental action but instead a Memorandum of Understanding among multiple companies that remains open for other companies to sign on.

By this summer we will see a graduated response system for copyright enforcement arise in the United States. There won't be a firm procedure in place but the general structure calls for six strikes. During later strikes there is the possibility to utilize captive landing pages that would effectively terminate a user's Internet access until they carry out whatever mitigation measure the Internet Service Provider deems appropriate. While there is the possibility of arbitration, there is not generally recourse to governmental involvement in the matter. Contractual obligations and the use of Terms of Service as private legislation come into play.

As seen at Harbor-Topky Memorial Library in the Ashtabula harbor today, signs are posted warning users of library WiFi that using file-sharing applications and peer-to-peer applications on their network may result in the termination of access privileges. That perhaps highlights the danger shared Internet connections present in light of the Memorandum of Understanding entering into force in Summer 2012. If a copyright violation is found, all that can be seen is the account's access point to the ISP's network. There is not necessarily a way to differentiate which particular user committed the infringement, though.

It is regrettably possible that six infringements by six separate users on a shared network access point could result in the termination of service. In an unprotected wireless network it is possible to have parties unknown usurp a connection and cause infringement without the knowledge of the actual account holder. Unless WPA2 and other security measures are employed, an innocent account holder could be blamed for the foul action of a third party. This has already happened which is why normal advice in establishing a wireless network is to engage WPA2 encryption as soon as possible and to keep your network passphrase secret.

A degree of sophistication is required to avoid the very possible nightmare scenarios above. This unfortunately means, though, that networking hardware marketed to consumers needs to be treated as more than "set and forget" devices. With the greater push to frictionless sharing online and reducing burdens in accessing the Internet the possibility of the digital divide widening grows.

In light of an online environment that continues to deteriorate, fallback options are always necessary. For content producers it is very difficult when potential readers/listeners/viewers cannot access the producer's goods. While it can be said by users that the Internet treats censorship and is built to route around it, that notion assumes that routing can continue without interference or disruption. As we now see, the routing of traffic is now going to be subject to intentional interference and accepting that interference will be a condition of access. By private agreement of a group of companies, the trade in information can be restrained at least with regards to information fixed in electronic form.

When it comes to LISNews let alone the rest of the LISHost galaxy this is not an insignificant concern. When the actual means of routing traffic are effectively compromised, relying on a compromised network can result in the effective disappearance of sites. Who needs to burn books when you can just put the functional equivalent of a minefield around content repositories?

Depending upon how this sort of change impacts the Internet at-large, we have looked at workarounds. Since 2009 there have been two proof-of-concept exercises to continue LISNews and other parts of the LISHost galaxy through alternative means. A print edition of LISNews was piloted after being created using tools provided by FedEx Office. Since then we have seen the creation of HP MagCloud which would more easily do what we attempted. On New Year's Eve 2011 we heard LISTen make its debut on shortwave radio through the broadcast resources of WBCQ in Maine.

In both exercises, the general content remained the same while the manifestation differed. This has been a concept seen often in modern librarianship where books have large print editions and unabridged books-on-tape. As an adaptation tactic in terms of content creation, it may soon become quite critical.

It is not necessarily time to begin fundraising to incarnate alternative manifestations of content online perhaps. A few months remain before the private enforcement regime begins. Keeping the thought in the back of one's mind is prduent, though.

Creative Commons License
Bombing Bridges by Stephen Michael Kellat is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #185

Google to censor Blogger blogs by country

Google to censor Blogger blogs by country
Google says some blogs on Blogger, its blogging platform, will be blocked on a "per country basis," in order to comply with "removal request" laws of nations where freedom of speech is not cherished or allowed.

The move seems to coincide with Twitter's recent announcement that it will censor tweets, or posts, in various countries at the request of governments, although the Blogger change was posted Jan. 9, but only reported on Tuesday by the website TechDows.

LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #183

This week's episode looks at the aftermath of the SOPA battle and the take-down of MegaUpload while looking at some consequences thereupon for the knowledge ecology. A draft resolution for any upcoming ALA meeting is also presented. Direct download link: MP3

Creative Commons License
LISTen: An LISNews.org Program -- Episode #183 by The Air Staff of Erie Looking Productions is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

Decentralize, he said

Demographic Rambling

Four years of podcasting with LISNews.org has been interesting. The statistics make things even more interesting. Sadly, I do not have a complete set of data points. Those that I do have worry me.

Location is key. When it comes to covering the Library & Information Science world, our main focus is not geography but instead topical matters. Based upon what data I can derive from FeedBurner's limited statistics, we may cover the right topical matters but hit all the wrong areas of geographical coverage.

From the limited geographical data I have, the bulk of listeners to LISTen: An LISNews.org Program happen to be located in places like the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Canada. US listenership actually comes in a bit lower than would be expected. This may also reflect regional preferences in how you subscribe to podcast content since the FeedBurner link is but one way to subscribe. We simply lack data for some means of subscribing to the podcast.

What can I do with having primarily a foreign audience while the content is primarily produced with a domestic US focus? Some changes in content focus may be necessary perhaps. The big problem with that is that we have virtually no budget and are tethered to the south shores of Lake Erie in a township called Ashtabula. We really do not have the assets in place to cover stories in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Canada. Expansion of assets would otherwise be necessary and we do not have a way to do so quite just yet.

The fifth year of the program is now underway. I want to make changes this year. A big one would be to secure funding for shortwave distribution. With the lessons of this year in terms of how fragile the Internet is, having a backup is important. Considering how much of the listenership is located outside North America, such would be a viable backup that would also skirt around national blacklists and firewalls.

Getting the resources to cover foreign stories is an even harder thing than simply buying blocks of airtime with money we don't have. Foreign collaborators would be necessary. Without any way to compensate them it is kinda hard to recruit such people. Indigenous correspondents would allow for better coverage anyhow compared to trying to secure a travel budget and visa clearances for international travel. We could previously handle this sort of thing through judicious use of Skype but with as unreliable as Time Warner Cable has been locally we cannot go with that option.

These speed results help illuminate what we are paying USD$39.95 to get:



The easy part is knowing what you want to do. The hard part is finding the resources to bring such to fruition. The search for resources is the big challenge for year five, it seems.

Creative Commons License
Demographic Rambling by Stephen Michael Kellat is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at erielookingproductions.info.

Annoyed Strikes Again

Love her? Hate her? Had it up to there with the AL?

Library Journal editorial (from a forthcoming edition) on The Annoyed Librarian.

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