Thursday, September 30, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/30/2010 (reading, libraries, well being, outsourcing)

Poster of book exhibition, by Vladimir Taburin, 1910, , Wikimedia Address 

Daily Thoughts 9/30/2010

Today has been a quiet, peaceful day.  I did some more weeding in the oversize books, some spot checking in 300s, and checked on the shifting in the storage area.  I am focusing on the 800s in storage right now.  Things are moving along nicely. I like to keep track of the small details so things go right.

We have a program today by John R. Howard who is reading Faces in the Mirror, Oscar Micheaux and Spike Lee  from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m..  John R. Howard used to be on the library board.  We picked up a few of Spike Lee's movies; Do The Right Thing and When The Levees Broke as well as the videocasette for  Body and Soul by Oscar Micheaux.  We also picked up a few books on their films as well. 

Last night, I read Well Being The Five Essential Elements by Tom Rath and Jim Harter.  This is a study by the Gallup organization on the elements of what makes a person well.  The five elements are career wellbeing, social wellbeing, financial wellbeing, physical wellbeing, and community wellbeing.  This book speaks volumes about how the general wellbeing of Americans is slipping.  We are 19th in overall wellbeing.  It also describes how poverty causes more than a lack of monetary wealth.   It also increases the amount of pain people are in because of lack of healthcare, and limits physical safety.  There are some interesting insights in this book.  A lot of the interviews in this book were done in person because the book has international coverage where many people do not have phones or electronic equipment.

On the train home, I started on The Glamor of Grammar A Guide to the Magic and Mystery of Practical Enghlish by Roy Peter Clark.  This is a surprising book.  The author manages to make grammar fascinating.  He argues that one should be immersed in language.  Grammar is a tool to improve language, not a prescriptive or descriptive device.  His argument is very likable.  In chapter 3, he asks the reader to adopt a favorite letter.  I chose Z because it reminds me of the Zizzer-Zazzer-Zuzz in Dr. Seuss's A B C.

Web Bits

From the Wall Street Journal, an article that argues that the internet is killing superstores, but will allow small stores to flourish.
 This is an interesting idea. Maybe, we might see some of the specialty bookstores come back.

The New York Times article about outsourcing public libraries.  I find this to be a little bit disturbing.  There are two reasons.  The first is sucking money out of the local community by sending it to a corporation that is not necessarily part of the local community.  I would think this would have a similar effect to Walmart.  You might get cheaper services, but the money does not go back into the community.  The second problem is one of transparency.  Libraries are public institutions run by the government where you can see how the money is spent.  LSSI is a private corporation which does not release its financial figures.   This is very short term oriented thinking.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/29/2010 (Spook Country)

Die Allegorie der Poesie, Raffael 1508 - 1511. Fresco im Deckengew├Âlbe der Stanza della Signatura, Vatikan,Kopie von H.-P. Haack,_Mosaik_von_Raffael.jpg

Daily Thoughts 9/29/2010

I finished reading Spook Country by William Gibson.  I noticed that every single book mentions steganography.  All the books are full of slightly masked details.  They Bigend Series also uses a mix of various acronyms for secretive organizations or law enforcement, the NSA-- National Security Agency (United States), DEA--Drug Enforcement Agency (United States), IXO-- Information Exploitation Office (Swiss), and many other organizations.

Today, I did a little more checking in the 300s, and had someone do shifting in the 800s in the storage area.
It was a quiet, pleasant day.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/28/2010 (Spook Country, Electric Cars, Directors Station)

English: Painting "Still life with red material", by Russian artist Anatoli Nenartovich (1915-1988), 1979
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0

Daily Thoughts 9/29/2010

Today I took the train up to Chappaqua.  We had a user group for Sirsi Dynix, Directors Station.  Mostly it was about how to get circulation statistics for books.  There were a few other surprising applications.  Someone was tracking fines with it, another person was generating lists of missing items, another librarian was checking for duplication, and another person was keeping track of the last activity date patrons used their cards to determine if they should be kept on the mailing list.

The reports were exportable to microsoft excel which allows people to change a few things so they are more useful.  The auditorium was fairly nice and it was easy follow.  It was a chance to meet a few of the library directors and people working in the library system.  They served coffee and cake. 

I'll probably try to get a better sense of it tomorrow. 

The day went well.  I printed up some bookmarks on material on AIDS & HIV.  I also did some checking in the oversize 300s and regular 300s.

While reading through Publishers Weekly, I noticed the book Jolt The Impending Dominance of the Electric Car by James Billmaier.  This is very interesting.  If you follow like I do, you might see some very interesting things coming up with electric cars, specifically the S Class sedan.  Also Phoenix Motors is promising as well  I know it is a bit off topic with this one.

I read some more of Spook Country by William Gibson on the train home. You could call the trilogy The Bigend Trilogy. On P.106 of Spook Country , there is an excellent quote which says a lot about the book."Secrets," said Bigend beside her, "are the very root of cool."  This ties a lot of the themes in the book together.  His characters in the series are partaking of or searching for secrets.  Their jobs are usually cool; fashion is cool, spies are cool, music is cool, locative art is cool, and even advertising is cool in the novels.

Web Bits

Blio the new ereading software from Baker and Taylor was released today.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/27/2010 (Spook Country)

Gerard Dou (1613, Leiden – 1674, idem), Painter With A Pipe and Book, Self Portrait, Oil On Panel (1650)

Daily Thoughts 9/27/2010

We have a community program on AIDS tomorrow.  I am putting together a bookmark with recommended book titles and pulling some books on AIDS and HIV for the program.  We also have the Directors Station meeting tomorrow at Chappaqua.  This should be interesting.

Today has been a steady day.  I checked the displays, did some spot checking in the 300s, and did a small amount of weeding in the oversize 300s.  I also did a little bit of checking on BWI.

The book Spook Country by William Gibson came in for me to read.  I also finished reading Third World America by Arianna Huffington on the train in to work.

Spook Country is revealing some common themes in the trilogy of Spook Country, Pattern Recognition, and Zero History.  Each book seeks to find something hidden, has ornate background descriptions, uses music as a kind of subtheme to add to the mood of the writing, and usually has some right wing secretive group as the opposition.

Hubertus Bigend is a kind of representative of a hidden war that is going on in the United States for control of our ideals through advertising, hidden messages, and shadowy deals.  There is a theme of secret brands, hidden artwork, and shadowy figures playing a game of cat and mouse with hacking, corporate espionage, and memes.  It has a very different feel when you look at the books together.

There is a lot to think about.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Clementine by Cherie Priest

Clementine by Cherie Priest

This is a chase novel. One main character, Captain Beauregard Hainey seeks to recover his stolen property, a war dirigible.  Another character, Maria Isabella Boyd, must make sure the stolen dirigible, the Clementine reaches its destination.  This creates opposing chases.

The characters are also described in opposition.  Captain Beauregard is an African American air pirate, arms smuggler, and wanted man.  Maria Isabella Boyd is an ex-confederate spy hired by the Pinkertons.  This makes for a novel with strong clashes.

The clashes between the opposing sides happen at a whirlwind pace.  The reading is as fast as the storyline.  It is nonstop action mixed with intrigue;  aerial dirigible battles, dirigible hijackings, and quick thinking.

The setting is a steampunk version of the American civil war replete with clockwork technology.  The book makes some references to her previous novel, Boneshaker, but it is not necessary to read it to understand the action.  There are a few cliches in the novel like a man portable gatling gun and a diamond powered deathbeam.  This is the only real flaw I found in the writing.

I sat and read the book on the train home, then finished it that same night.  It works very well as an action novel.  If you want a couple days worth of fast paced escapism, this novel is worth reading.

Daily Thoughts 9/26/2010 (Where The Wild Things Are)

"Where The Wild Things Are" graffiti, in Kelsey-Woodlawn, Saskatoon, SK, Canada, 27, May 2009, 16:59, Scott Woods-Fehr (Freedom of panorama) , Creative Commons Attribution 2.0,
Daily Thoughts 9/26/2010

I watched the new film of Where The Wild Things Are which was released to dvd in 2010.  It is a live action film.  I very much liked the monster costumes.  My favorite was the minotaur.  The film was about anger and being wild.  Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak was one of my favorite books as a child.

I also read some more of Third World America by Arianna Huffington. I liked the line, "There are no lobbyists for the American Dream," on p.133.  She argues that there are too many lobbyists and moneyed interests for change to effectively take place for the better in congress.  Arianna Huffington also describes how infrastructure from bridges, roads, dams, electricity to broadband internet is falling apart and costing the United States leadership in business.  The book mainly attacks republicans, but also does not spare some democrats incompetence.  It is very much a call for change.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Ebooks, Ereaders, and Digital Content Meetup

Roland Lange, Manager for Strategic Partner Development at Google, explains Google Book Search at the Innovation Forum of the Frankfurt Book Fair 2007. 11.10.2007, User Weltach. Gnu Free Documentation License

Ebooks, Ereaders and Digital Content....

I might have been a little bit exhausted this time. I was offered a business proposition to work on a social networking site on the way home. It was a serious enough offer for me to spend some time talking about it. It is a very interesting idea. This made me a little late for the meeting. I got there at 7:00 p.m. The meeting was at the Landmark Tavern in Manhattan. I also walked to the tavern from the subway. It was a fairly long walk.

I am going to mainly go over some of the ideas which I ran into. There was too much to put in a single post.

The Landmark Tavern was a nice place. The service was good.  The selection of beer was also very solid.  I had a Guinness Stout.  There was enough space to sit down.  It did a get a little loud at points because it was quite crowded.

One of the most striking things which I saw was the ability to synchronize the iphone and ipad so they worked together. Robert Forrester of Forrester  Networks was showing different applications on his ipad.  He showed how his ipad, iphone, and computer all synched together. One of the applications he showed was Evernote, a clipping application for the internet and documents.

A lot of the people were marketers, researchers, or media strategists. Bowker which owns the Proquest magazine and newspaper database as well as Books In Print was there. Bowker was there to discuss marketing. Most of the people were from a corporate background.  I admit, I felt a little bit like a fish out of water.  The language I heard was very different than the language of econtent.  I did not hear the new terms like "Internet Producer" or "Creative" that much.

It was a bit different than the librarian meetups.  I go to.   I think I have the tech meetups and library meetups pretty well figured out.  I am not sure that I have the publishing meetups that well down. 

I rather liked the one line pich of The Idea Logical Company, "The Idea Logical company is a book publishing futurist." It has a nice ring to it.Very similar to a tech evangelist style.

How Elaine Bloom's business card read, "LinkedIn In Strategist, LinkedIn is more than just your profile."  http://www.linkedinstrategist/   I took a look at her site, and followed up on a suggestion to join interest groups.  I joined one on science fiction and one on blogging.

Part of our discussion was about people being out of work. This is one of the reasons I go to these things. From my experience and what I have seen, many recruiters are forgoing resumes and going right to the social networking sites to recruit people.

 I have had some interesting experiences. My father got his job not because he sent in a resume, but because he posted his profile somewhere. His view is put up a public profile if you are looking for a job.

I have talked to people who have been looking on job boards for years. Sometimes social media works better., Bernardo's List, and other places list events in the tech community. Some people are not aware this is happening. Even if you don't want to put your profile up, go to social media events to make contacts.

I remember that I got my job at an internet service provider partially because I proved that I was web savvy by selling on ebay as eye-in-the-sky-books which I no longer maintain. Blogs are free to put up. I freely admit to being one of those people who scare recruiters. I like talking to them, but don't easily match with many recruiters ideals.

There is a kind of long chain back with eye-in-the-sky-books. I used to hangout in Manhattan at a now defunct science fiction bookstore. This is where I got most of my books. I also learned about  from selling specialty and signed science fiction books on ebay. This is where Bibliomania started. Most of the specialty science fiction bookstores in Manhattan are gone.

It is a kind of sad thing to happen. It reminds me that I have to go back to look at the Soho Gallery for Digital Art which is owned by John Ordover. John corrected me, there used to be a sceince fiction bookstore further down on Sullivan street from the gallery.

Elaine Bloom asked me what I thought about the future of the book. I gave a half an answer because I was a bit tired, but this is how I see the future of books. I see the publishing companies switching to a mix of print on demand and ebooks. Dorchester is an excellent example. .

If you follow the big distributors, they are planning for more ebooks and print on demand. The platform which Baker and Taylor is banking on for ebooks is called , Ingram, the largest distributor for bookstores owns Lightning Source the largest print on demand company.

I also see print on demand becoming far cheaper with new technologies like the HP Inkjet digital printer.  Eventually, I think that print on demand will integrated with 3D printing making for much more interesting books made of different materials than paper.   If you go to the childrens section of bookstores, you can find books full of textures, embossing, popups, photographs, and other innovations. I think this will carry over into the adult generation.

A good example of a this  is Cradle to Cradle Remaking The Way We Make Things by William McDonough and Michael Braungart. The pages are made of lightweight, tough recycled plastic.  The book is designed to be completely recyclable. I have seen a number of books which  are both 100% post consumer material and completely recyclable.

I also see many large content providers aligning themselves with print on demand technology. Google Books is in alliance with Espresso Book Machine.  Google Books is also providing a free public access terminal to every public library in the United States.

There was a question about what happened to the Google Books settlement. Columbia University law school has quite a bit on the future of the google settlement in relation to copyright and authors rights.

Ebook devices will most likely become much cheaper and more flexible. The Copia which integrates an ebook reader with a social network for $100 is an interesting example of this. I find the site intriguing.  which . I applied for the beta but did not get in.   There is also the cheap Indian laptop which costs $35 which is in the works.   This makes me think we will see ebook readers for less than $100 very soon.

It was interesting hearing about a person who was using a kindle which she checked out from her library.  Someone donated 16 kindles to her library to circulate.  She had kept the kindle out past the due date and was charged one dollar a day until she renewed the item.  The idea of circulating kindles is very interesting. 
It would be nice to circulate ebook devices.  We have video games, video game controllers, Transparent language flash drives , and playaways that can be checked out as devices.  We are looking at MP3s players and ereaders.   These are expensive and we of course have to look closely at the security of the devices in a library setting to prevent loss.

I think we are at the begining of changes to the publishing business.  Media will become a lot more integrated. 

Another conversation was about science fiction books and music. There is a fairly strong tie with many science fiction authors with music.This is an article about the soundtrack for Finch performed by Murder by Death  . Margaret Atwood sells hymns of a fictional group she created from The Year of the Flood.  Linnea Sinclair listens to trance music while she writes.  It fits very well with her books.

I was a bit tired. We talked a little about libraries and ebooks. The main thing which we have right now is Overdrive  which has lots of ebooks and audiobooks which are available for download. I have recommended it a few times. We are getting steadily increasing usage of overdrive. We also buy playaways which are preloaded audiobooks . These seem to do best with assignment books for high school and junior high school at the library I am at. We interfile the playaways next to the book on the shelf in the young adult area.

We would like to get more devices, but there is quite a bit we still have to figure out about security for things like MP3 players, Nooks, and other devices. Most of the books on Overdrive are single use licenses. There is some drm free material on Overdrive as well . I  sometimes recommend free ebooks that are classics to patrons. It is alternative way to get them what they want. Even if you pay for classic books, many of them are $2 each as downloads. The formatting is better on the pay downloads most of the time. Stanza is also an excellent free ereader . I am also partial to Project Gutenberg

I mentioned two authors that gave away their ebooks under creative commons license as a strategy to sell more of their paper books. These were Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross. I should have also mentioned The Future of the Internet and How to Stop It by Jonathan Zittrain which is available as a free download. I was a bit tired at the time.

I could not help but hear snippets here and there. People were talking about the next George R.R. Martin book and showing different things on their ipads. There was mention of a George R.R. Martin television pilot for A Game of Thrones

I saw a lot of ipads, but no kindles. I think the ipad is becoming the tool of choice now. The most obvious advantage it has is the color. It also has a lot of applications.  was an application for time management which Robert Forrester was showing on his Ipad.

I think I might have caught a few more things if I was less tired. I know that Kobo which makes the ereader was there. I know I still made a few mistakes. I still have not gotten a more professional business cards for my blog; just a card with my name and email. Sometimes, I think it is better to have a LinkedIn connection than a business card. It is more permanent and it is harder to lose.

This reminds me of another discussion. This one was about how to use Facebook. I am on Facebook under my name. Facebook is based on building communities. You go out and choose who you want to follow in your specific interest. I follow lots of library related content, author related content and some people that I know. Some of the library and book related content I follow is, I Love Libraries, American Libraries Magazine, Book Expo America, and Book Bloggers Convention. Some of the authors, editors, and publishers I follow are John Ordover, Ellen Datlow, Charles Stross, Cory Doctorow, For Beginners Books, Fantagraphics, and Robert Sikoryak.

I stayed at the meetup from 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. It started at 5:30 p.m.  The conversation flowed freely, the drinks were pleasant, the appetizers were tasty, lots of business cards were exchanged.  This one of the first meetups of the group. 

It is very much a ground floor opportunity like the Book Bloggers Convention was at Book Expo America.  The LinkedIn group is seeking to grow.  I am fairly sure they will be having another meetup in New York announced on LinkedIn.  Bill Glass, the person who confirmed my invitation is seeking to grow the group.

There are other things which I remember clearly, but might be better for another day.

It was a long day. I meditated a bit on the train home. It does not look that different from napping.

You wonder sometimes when you write these posts. I am not sure exactly why I am doing it. I don't really consider myself a journalist, even though I have been given access to news areas at conventions sometimes. As with so many things, you can't include everything, but it is worth the try. 

As always, I try to say something positive.  Feel free to comment, make corrections, ask for inclusions. I don't mind a little bit of pointed conversation so long as the language remains clean. 

I am trying to include full urls in this post. It makes it a little bit harder to edit. Blogger is really designed to change the links into captions. The reason I do this is that I like to be able to see full urls when I search for things. I parse urls into sections. The recruiting term for this is x-raying a url. This is a tool which lets you see the full url for shortened urls

Friday, September 24, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/24/2010 (Ebooks, overdrive)

The Scott Monument in East Princess Street Garden in Edinburgh, a Victorian Gothic monument to Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. John Steell's statue, made from white Carrara marble, shows Scott seated, resting from writing one of his works with a quill pen and his dog Maida by his side. Picture by Ad Meskens.

Daily Thoughts 9/24/2010

This morning we had a general staff meeting.  It was a chance to meet the new president of the board of directors and hear a little about what was happening.  There was some discussion of retirement packages, a number of people were offered packages, holding a gala by the library foundation in the library, and our 156th anniversary as a library.  Our building was built in 1904, but our library was started much earlier in a local school.

We also have an exhibition of local artists in the rotunda.  There are a number of landscape paintings, abstract paintings, photographs, and pencil drawings their now.  We also have a number of books on display from our oversize book collection of art books.  The oversize art collection has books close to the date when the building was built in 1904.

I did some more weeding in the oversize 300s.

On Tuesday, I am going to a demonstration of the Directors Station for Sirsi Dynix which allows people to look at the statistics for usage in our library.  Hopefully, I will learn a little more.  I am hoping I can look at our statistics to be better able to choose what people use.

Also, I should be visiting a local library media center soon to look at the way they have their computers setup for Overdrive Digital Media catalog. I have also been noticing that patrons have been taking out dvds and watching them on the computers in our Job Information Center.

I am going to the Linkedin group meetup for Ebooks, Ebook Readers, Digital Books and Digital Content... this afternoon at the Landmark Tavern in Manhattan.  Hopefully, it should be very interesting.

Today was a bit challenging.  I like equilibrium.  The director commended me for helping clean up the collection.  The number of missing items has dropped considerably.  I also was complimented on the display of art books in the rotunda. There is stilll quite a bit to do.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/23/2010 (Third World America, Banned Books Week)

"Banish lonely hours in camp! Help provide libraries filled with books for soldiers A million dollars for a million books for a million men--Leave your money at the public library or at any bank. The Library War Council - appointed by the War Department through the American Library Association - is raising one million dollars during Camp Library Week, Sept. 24-30, to build and maintain a library at every training camp and cantonment for soldiers, sailors and airmen, at home and abroad. Massachusetts Library War Council."

Daily Thoughts 9/23/2010

Today has been very steady.  I started on weeding the oversize 300s.  Sometimes even doing a small amount is enough to get things going.  I also gathered together some bookmarks and flyers for my colleagues who are going to a career fair at the local high school.  A lot of our focus during the last week has been very much about business and jobs.  There is going to be a workshop from the Women's Enterprise Development Center for computers for business.

I also did a few minor things, bringing out some things that needed to be mended from storage, shifting some paperbacks around, and spotchecking the 300s for orderliness.

The young adult department is doing a display for banned books week.  Two books which I suggested for the display are a young adult novel by Laurie Halse Andersen called Speak and the graphic novel Bone by Jeff Smith.  There are of course many of the classic books; The Jungle by Upton Sinclair, The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck, A Vindication of the Rights of Women by Mary Wollstonecraft, The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver, and Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut.  Attempting to censor books often has the opposite effect on reading material.  It makes the books more popular, not less.  Banned Books Week runs from September 25- October 2, 2010

The book, Third World America How Our Politicians Are Abandoning The Middle Class And Betraying The American Dream by Arianna Huffington came in for me to read.  I started reading it on the way home.  It is about the dismantling of the middle class by government and business.  It describes the process of creating massive industries based on personal credit and foreclosure of property. Arianna Huffington describes how some elements in government and business feed off the middle class pushing people into poverty, then create mechanisms like payday loans, complex bankruptcy and foreclosure laws, and expensive healthcare to reinforce this poverty.

There is a strong liberal theme in this book.  It argues against the dismantling of the safety net for the middle class.  There is a lot to think about in what this book is saying so far.  Hopefully, it will spark some interest in change.

This book would also tie in well with another book Broke, USA: From Pawnshops to Poverty, Inc.How the Working Poor Became Big Business by Gary Rivlin who is a journalist for the New York Times.  This book also has strong polemics in it.  It is about the poverty industry, payday loans, credit repair groups, pawnshops, rent to own furntiture and similar financial schemes.  Sadly, this is a growth industry in our current economy.
Web Bits

Four color inkjet printers from Hewlett Packard.  This could make print on demand even cheaper.

From Information Week.  People with ebook readers, read more books.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/22/2010 (Clementine, Audiobooks)

Poster "The camp library is yours - Read to win the war. You will find popular books for fighting men in the recreational buildings and at other points in this camp. Free. No red tape. Open every day. Good reading will help you advance. Library War Service, American Library Association." 1917 Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington, D.C. 20540 USA C.B. Falls / American Library Association

Daily Thoughts 9/22/2010

I finished reading Pattern Recognition by William Gibson this morning.  I will be waiting for Spook Country to come in soon.

We had a gentleman from Tantor Media audiobooks come to discuss his books.  We sometimes buy MP3 CDs, we are slowly getting them, many of the older cd players before 2005 can't play them, so we have to be careful getting them.  He also showed me a new format for classic literature.  It is a combined PDF file of a book on cd and cd audiobook.  This would be quite useful for assignment lists for the schools.  They of course dropped off a few samples.  One of them was John Buchan, The Thirty Nine Steps

We are also going to be doing more promotion focused on our collection tied in with programming.  This should be interesting.

The book, The Glamour of Grammar A Guide To The Magic and Mystery of Practical English by Roy Peter Clark came in for me to read today.

Today is anothe multi-event day at the library.  We had a class on Internet Marketing from the city Business Expo this afternoon.  One of my colleagues set up a cart of material for the Business Expo; flyers, bookmarks, and a selection of new books.  This evening we had the Womens Enterprise Development Center in the community room, and a computer class for Microsoft Publisher in the computer lab.  It takes a little patience to make sure everything is set up and ready before the people come.  A lot of it is meeting the people at the door and being polite while things are setup/

On the train home, I read Clementine by Cherie Priest it is a steampunk novel set during the American civil war.  It is very much the classic chase novel, where the hero wants something that has been taken from them and is out to get it back.  This makes both the writing and reading very fast paced. What is interesting to me is the setting,  I am seeing both gaslight fantasy and steampunk westerns expanding more into the old west setting.  It seems like writers are seeking to expand the steampunk and gaslight genre outside of Victorian England into other parts of the world.  It would be interesting to see some steampunk set in Russia or France.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee

The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee

This is a fantasy novel set during the American frontier period.  The author in the interview at the back of the book describes how she wanted to combine the American west with an Inuit character.  This makes the novel a little bit different.  It creates an alternate history which combines steam technology with magic.   The magic is spirit magic. This is the first book in a trilogy.

The settlers in this novel are a bit different.  They are driven from their homeland because of religious persecution.  However, they are not greedy for land so much as power.  The Ciracusans have a motif of seven gods. The seven gods represent seven paths to heaven or seven paths to hell.  They wish to convert all of the aborigines to their religion and way of life.  The Ciracusans consider the aborigines uneducated and irreligious.

The novel starts with a young Aniw spirit walker, Sjennokirk, being taken prisoner after she kills a Ciracusan soldier who enters her home unbidden.  She then kills a Ciracusan priest at the bidding of her fathers spirit.  She is not executed, but instead is forced to teach a Captain of the Ciracusan army, Jarrett, to take on the form of a dog.  There are quite a few dog motifs in this novel, the Aniw husky of the far north, the plains dog, and the native coyote.

The novel is written from a number of different perspectives.  I like how Sjennokirk, the Aniw spiritwalker describes the Ciracusans as being horrendous because they eat cooked meat and don't wear furs.  I also like the harsh military edge which Captain Jarrett experiences.

The history and belief systems in this novel are well worked out.  It is refreshing to read a fantasy story based on the conflict between natives and settlers.  Karin Lowachee does a very good job of creating unique characters in an interesting setting.  Karin Lowachee has a website at

Daily Thoughts 9/21/2010 (Coraline, Pattern Recognition)

Why books are always better than movies? Paranormal levitation made with the free software Gimp, 27, September 27, 2009, Massimo Barbieri, Gnu Free Documentation License 1.2

Daily Thoughts 9/21/2010 

I read some more of Pattern Recognition this morning.  I also put Spook Country on hold which I will reread once I am done reading Pattern RecognitionPattern Recognition reminds us that the world changes so fast now, that it is hard to recognize things in a short time period.  I read a bit more Pattern Recognition on the train home.  Somehow, William Gibson manages to fuse fashion, thriller, and near future technology into a unique mish mash in all three books.

I also read some more of Self Esteem by Matthew McKay, Ph.D.  I read the book, but did not finish completing the exercises spread throughout the book.  I have already done severald exercises on shoulds, wants, self assessment, and cognitive distortions.  They are quite interesting.  I still have to do some visualization, meditation, and self-hypnosis exercises.  The book has a lot of material in it.

I got invited to a book signing on October 17, 2010 by a local poet for the book "Blood Beats In Four Square Miles" An Anthology of Poetry. Hopefully, it should create an opportunity to work on doing a poetry reading series at the library.

We did a display for the book, Play Me a Song by Barbara Jo-Lucchine Kruczek.  She sent us photographs of big band musicians and some articles from the local paper, The Daily Argus on her father, Philip Lucchine, who was a composer for big band music.  All of it will go to the local history room when the display is over.

The business resources list is up on the library website now.  I am waiting for them to put up the new library website soon.

I also confirmed that I am going to the Ebooks meetup this Friday.  I think it will be an interesting and useful experience.

Tonight, I finished watching Coraline. I like most all of Neil Gaiman's writing.  This is a short piece on him talking about Coraline.

Web Bits
An animated Neil Gaiman is going to star in the children's show Arthur doing a book signing.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/20/2010 (Pattern Recogntion, Coraline)

Luca della Robbia, Priscian, or the Grammar (1437-1439). Marble panel from the North side, lower basement of the bell tower of Florence, Italy. Museo dell'Opera del Duomo.

Daily Thoughts 9/20/2010

Today has been a quiet day.  I picked up a copy of Pattern Recognition by William Gibson to read so I can finish reading the trilogy of books.  It will fill in so I can understand Zero History a little better.  

We just had pins assigned to our library cards to increase security.  This happened yesterday which makes things a bit interesting today.  There were a few questions about how it worked.

We also finished creating the business resources list for the library.  We are printing it as a flyer and posting it as a webpage.  It was originally created in publisher.  We create a lot of our documents and flyers in publisher.  A gentleman came by today to look at our community room.  It can seat 49 people. We are having some business programs tomorrow.

On the train home, I read some of Pattern Recognition by William Gibson.  It helped me get a better grasp of the series featuring Hubertus Bigend.  Hubertus Bigend is not the main character in the book.  He kind is the theme behind the story.  All of the books, Spook Country (2003), Pattern Recognition (2007), and Zero History (2010) are very intricately detailed and can stand as separate works. In fact, there is an odd quality to them because unlike most series, they were published several years apart.  The complexity of the writing is very clear.  There is a lot of detail which can be very distracting but makes sense when you compare all of the three books together.  I am just beginning to get a sense of how this detail works.  On P.76 of Pattern Recognition, there is a quote from the writing which kind of explains how the books are very different when compared together, "Steganography is about concealing information by spreading it throughout other information. At present I know little else about it."

I also watched some more of Coraline.  I am almost finished watching the film.  I very much like the message of the animated film.  It is about being true to yourself even when giving up yourself is very enticing.  The animation is superb.  I especially liked the cat and the circus mice.  They are my favorite parts of the movie.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/19/2010 (Coraline, School District Library)

"The Writer", Hampstead Heath, August 2005, Creatives Commons Attribution Share A Like 2.0

Daily Thoughts 9/19/2010

I finished reading The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee.  She also has written Warchild which is excellent.  Her website is 

I added April and May of 2008 to my list of book reviews. I actually erased one of the reviews and did some minor editing on the review on Tony Millionaire's Sock Monkey.  I can see a considerable difference between the writing I am doing now and the writing I was doing two years ago.  Writing this blog has improved my skills considerably.

Ossining Public Library is amending its charter to become a school district library.  This is very similar to the library I work at. They also have two open board of trustee positions like us. They are going to have their budget go up for a vote as well.  We will most likely have our budget go up for vote in 2011.  I think that there has been a push in New York State to put a lot of libraries budgets up for vote and change their charters to school district libraries.

The changes which I have been experiencing at the place I am working have made things very uncertain.  In the near future the libraries budget will be put up for vote.  There also may be funding cuts.  In addition, there was a recent attempt at a reduction in force.  This creates a lot of uncertainty surrounding the January budget. The general environment in libraries across the nation right now is one of funding cuts and layoffs.

Even if our budget turns out well, we will be facing an interesting challenge in 2011.  In 2003, the New Rochelle Public Library Foundation spent $8000 dollars to campaign for the library budget.  New Rochelle is one third the size of my city.  It could possibly run quite a bit more than this considering inflation and the number of people that have to be reached.

I have to evaluate my own position and be prepared in case things don't work out well.  I have some time to systematically look at my options.

I took some time to watch part of Coraline the animated movie.  There is also a graphic novel and a book written by Neil Gaiman. The graphic novel is illustrated by P. Craig Russell one of my favorite comic book artists. I like the message underlying the film so far.  It reminds you that perfection has a high cost and being real is very important.  I think I'll finish watching it tomorrow.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Rework by Jason Fried and David Hansson

Rework by Jason Fried and David Hansson

Jason Fried and David Hansson are the founders of 37 Signals which is a software development company.  They have produced a number of different products including Ruby on Rails.   They are contributors to the blog Signal Vs. Noise.  37 Signals was not founded on venture capital.

The approach which is described in this book is contrary to many current business practices.  The authors are describing a bootstrapping and self motivated style of business practice.  They write against fast growth, venture capital, and forecasting.  For them financial projections are just guesses.

This does not mean that they are backward.  The authors describe how it is possible with a laptop and very little money to start your own company.  They describe how their company hires and works with people remotely on many software projects.  They tell you that to start a company you do not need an office or fancy quaters.  Your house or a garage will do.

I like the ideas in this book.  It fits well with my own personal style.  I agree that working all night, having lots of meetings, and creating giant lists do not lead to being more productive.  I also like the philosophy of doing it yourself as much as possible, and breaking large projects into small pieces.

The layout of this book is very well done.  Each section has a large black and white drawing with a saying next to it to begin the chapter.  Some of the sayings are; "good enough is fine", "long lists don't get done," and "say no by default."

The writing is plain language.  There are very few business terms in the book.  Jason Fried and David Hansson ask a lot of questions in the text.  They also use short bulleted lists.  Most of the paragraphs are fairly short.  This makes for very fast easy to absorb reading.  It is more of a book on a philosophy of business than a book of practice or case studies.

The book does not have an index.  There are not a lot of other companies cited. If you read this book, you might stop talking, roll up your sleeves, and start working.

Daily Thoughts 9/18/2010 (Ebooks)

Valentin Alexandrovich Serov, Portrait of the composer Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky Korsakov, 1898

Daily Thoughts 9/18/2010

Web Bits

Ray Kurzweil's new ebook reader, Blio is coming out on September 28, 2010. 

I thought this was kind of interesting.  It questions the assertion that Amazon is selling more ebooks than printed books.

I am reading The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee.  This book was reviewed by Jeff Vandermeer in the NewYork Times Book Review. 

Friday, September 17, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/17/2010 (Zero History, Books, Business)

Zane Grey, western author and writer of the book, Riders of the Purple Sage.

Daily Thoughts 9/17/2010

This is an interesting list of business books.  All of them are very popular.  The Financial Times Business Books of the Year.

Today has been very interesting.  The list of business resources has been added to the upcoming Business Expo 2010 for our city.  I also did a small display of business management and leadership books in the lobby.  I picked out a few books by Peter Drucker as well as some  business strategy books like Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne and Built to Last by Charles Collins.   I am still talking with SCORE about doing business counseling.

I did some spot checking the shelving in the storage areas.  Things are getting a little better.  We also got a request for Louis L'amour who writes westerns.  People are starting to get more interested in the western genre again.  Some of the older authors like Zane Grey and Max Brand are being asked for again.  Larry McMurtry and Joe Lansdale are also very popular right now.   I think some of the steampunk authors have also sparked an interest in the old west as well.  Cherie Priest has at least part of her steampunk novels set in the old west.    The Victorian setting of steampunk easily ties in with the frontier period in American history.

I also looked through the latest gifts and added some thriller paperbacks from Dan Brown, Brad Meltzer, and James Patterson.  We always get donations of romance and thriller paperbacks.

I checked out three movies, Where The Wild Things Are, City of Ember, and Coraline.  These are all based on books.  Where The Wild Things Are was one of my favorite books as a child.  I would give it a tie with One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss.  I am very much looking forward to seeing it as a live action film.  I also like Neil Gaiman and his writing.  Coraline was an excellent graphic novel.

On the train home, I finished reading Zero History by William Gibson.  I felt like I was missing something when I was reading the book.  It is part of a trilogy starting with Pattern Recognition.  I did not realize this until I looked up the book as a Wikipedia article.  I had read Spook Country which also features Milgrim.  Spook Country is the second book in the trilogy.  I feel like I have to go back to read Pattern Recognition to understand the book a little better.  I put Pattern Recognition on hold.  I am not quite sure when I will read it.  I currently have ten books which I have plans to read.

If you are on Linked In, there is an excellent ebook group with thousands of members.  They are planning a physical meetup on September 24, 2010 at 6:30 p.m.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/16/2010 (Zero History)

Bookplate of American painter and illustrator Edward Penfield (1866-1925)

Daily Thoughts 9/16/2010

I finished reading Rework last night and started reading Zero History by William Gibson.  William Gibson is using very ornate descriptions of the characters surroundings.  He is trying to create a bohemian or avant garde feel to the book.

This morning I checked the displays and updated the current events display with books on topics from the news; North Korea, hurricanes, China, foreclosures, Afghanistan, finance, automobiles, and Apple.  The only good news these days seems to come from the electronic gadgets like Ipad.  We are planning to do a display on a local jazz musician at the end of the month.

I also was asked to look up business websites.  There are a few which are quite good, is a site which is a fairly comprehensive view of how to build a business plan.   Also, I read Yahoo! Finance sometimes to find out about stocks.

My trip home was extra long tonight.  There was a storm and possible tornado this evening in New York.  I got to sit in the station for an extra hour and read my book Zero History.  I have learned to wait until the train starts moving and ignore the garbled announcements.  I am almost half way though the book. I rather like Milgrim the main character.  He is quite observant.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/15/2010 (Ordering, Business, Books)

Szymon Buchbinder, The Astronomer , Date Unknown, Oil On Panel 

Daily Thoughts 9/15/2010

I won a book from one of the exhibitors at the Brooklyn Book Festival, For Beginner Books  The book which I chose was Barack Obama for Beginners by Bob Neer.  It will be added to the libraries collection.

Today has been fairly busy.  We had an ordering meeting for the library this afternoon.  I put all of my orders in.  I also had the graphic novels club this afternoon which went well.  We are getting a steady small group of people who are attending.  We are having an author talk this evening as well. 

I also finished putting together the business resources list for the library.  There will be other resource lists that we will create as well.   We also did a bookmark of books on starting a business recently. There is going to be a business expo on the 22nd and 23rd of September sponsored by the city.  There is also a Business Resource list which we added to the Community Links on our website. We are having the Women's Enterprise Development Center do a presentation on starting a business tonight.  This is the third year that the Women's Enterprise Development Center  has been coming to our library.   Hopefully, this will strengthern our contacts with local businesses and businesses organizations.

Two books came in for me to look at, Clementine by Cherie Priest and the social media marketing book by Dan Zarella.

I have started reading Rework by Jason Fried and David Hansson.  I think it will take a while for me to think over what they are writing.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Social Media 101 Tactics and Tips to Develop Your Business Online by Chris Brogan

Social Media 101 Tactics and Tips To Develop Your Business Online by Chris Brogan.

This book originates in tips from the blog  . Chris Brogran is giving 87 actionable steps for business to use social media. Each step gives specific tactics to improve outcomes for business.

On most of the pages of the book, there are footnotes with links to website or online articles. This makes it easy to find interesting social media sites. For example, Chris Brogan sites meetup  and upcoming  as places to look for events.

In each of the 87 different sections there are many bulleted lists with things you can do with social media. This creates a large volume of ideas to draw from. It is very hard not to find something useful. For example, he suggested that a thin header for a blog makes a site more visible.

The book is designed so you can easily pick and choose what you are interested in. For example, I am not that interested in photoblogging or doing youtube videos, but I am interested in tips on what to do at social media gatherings and how to build a loyal, consistent readership. Chris Brogan suggested that I get a business card on heavy paper stock with my blog name on it to hand out at meetings. He also reminded the reader to post almost every single day.

Social Media 101 is a very upbeat book. Chris Brogan is using the tech evangelist style. This means he smoothes over some of the rough spots in social media. He does not go into how to protect your privacy, or secure your site from hackers. There is no mention of that twitter spammer taking over your account, or that denial of service attack because you posted something that another blogger didn't like. He does tell bloggers to accept negative comments if they are not derogatory.

He wants you to have headshot, put down your cell phone prominently on your site, and link to a lot of different sites. Maybe, I need to be enigmatic and not post my photograph and prefer to contact people via email. It is easier for me. 

If you want a book that is focused on branding, marketing, public relations, sales, and customer services this book is for you. He is very much writing about how to reach out to people using popular networks like twitter, facebook, linkedin, flickr, youtube, and meetup. He even includes a lot of smaller networks like meebo, tumblr, and reddit.

The book was very easy to read. Chris Brogan is writing in an open style that focuses on self disclosure. His layout uses lots of bullet points, lists, bolded headings, and numbered sections. It is very action oriented. The writing is meant for people who produce content online.  I found it useful.

Daily Thoughts 9/14/2010 (Business Books)

Public domain clipart.

Daily Thoughts 9/14/2010

While I was looking at the concept of coworking I found an interesting office called Paragraph.  Paragraph is a coworking space for writers in New York. Coworking seems to be a new trend.

I am looking at the purchase alerts. This is a list of what people have requested to be sent to our library. One book which caught my attention was Four Fish The Future of the Last Wild Food by Paul Greenberg.  It stands out because most books with environmental themes are not requested a lot.  Also Sherrilyn Kenyon who writes dark romantic fantasy has a lot of different books being reserved; Dream Chaser, Dream Warrior,  The Dream Hunter, and Dark Side of the Moon.

Today has been interesting.  We put together a list of the different resources available for business available at our library.  This includes databases, websites, books, and other resources.  We have a strong Job Information Center collection.  We also have been buying quite a few books on business on the internet and social networking.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/13/2010 (Coworking, Publishing)

Picture from Information Commons, University of Sheffield, UK, Author Markpeak,Creative Commons Attribution 3.0   I wanted to get a sense of what an information commons looks like inside a library.  It gives me a bit better idea of what might be going into the new Information Commons at the Brooklyn Public Library.

Daily Thoughts 9/13/2010

I went for a checkup with my doctor this morning.  Things are fine.  I'm just a little tired. 

I have been reading more of Social Media 101 by Chris Brogan.  It has given me a few new ideas.  I am probably going to adjust the banner at the top of my blog a little bit.  I decided not to review Common As Air.

I went by a place called New Work City which is in Manhattan .  They are a coworking space for the tech community in Manhattan.  The space just opened on September 1st, 2010.  They recently had a startup summit on September 10-12. The space is about twenty feet away from the Canal Street exit for the N and R subway line.  You go up a flight of stairs and you are there.  The place has an unfinished feel to it.  The front of the building has still not been filled with desks.  It is very new.

There were several small breakout rooms for conferences.  Four people were using one of the rooms as an office for a new startup.  There was a coffee urn.  The walls were mostly bare of art.

Most of the people using the space were sitting at laptops typing away.  I was met by a gentleman sitting at a desk.  I asked about internet access.  They have wireless access points and some dsl lines.  They are planning on getting some cable modem lines in as well.  It all appears to work quite well.  They will probably have more desktop computers and servers when there are more permanent people in the space.

The fee seemed reasonable $600 a month per person to use the space as an office.

I found the group because I was wandering around looking at MBStartups on Twitter  around eventually bumping into New Work City.

I got invited to a Publishing Business Virtual Conference and Expo on September 16, 2010 for free.  I am not quite sure what to do with it yet.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/12/2010 (Brooklyn Book Festival)

Looking west along north facade of en:Brooklyn Borough Hall at dusk of a cloudy June 15, 2008, Public Domain  The publishers tents for the Brooklyn Book Festival were outside Borough Hall.

Daily Thoughts 9/12/2010

Brooklyn Book Festival

This morning, I went to the Brooklyn Book Festival Librarian's Breakfast at the Brooklyn Historical Society Library from ten o'clock in the morning to twelve noon.  It is a very beautiful library with polished exposed ornate woodwork.  None of the woodwork is painted which makes it even more beautiful.  The library itself is a research library with no lending. It is extremely clean and well organized.

Unfortunately, the main speaker, Marilyn Johnson was unable to attend due to illness.  Still, it was an enjoyable morning.  There was a group called the Quotables who read out loud quotes from different authors: we were supposed to guess the quotes.  They read quotes by Jack Kerouac, Truman Capote, Edwidge Danticat, Walt Whitman, and others.  I won a poster by guessing a quote.  It is on my kitchen wall now.   There were several people that I recognized from the New York Librarians Meetup  and Barbara Genco who is doing the Facebook page for the ebooks Libraries @ the Tipping Point Summit

There were two librarians from Westchester.  One worked for Backstage Library Works , and another worked as a school media specialist.  There were also quite a few librarians from Queens,  New York.  They served coffee, bagels, and mufins for breakfast.

Anthony W. Crowell, Chair of the Board of Trustees for Brooklyn Public Library announced that Brooklyn Public Library was going to have an Information Commons which would be a special area for computers in the library.  He said that they would call the librarians who worked there "informationists" which was kind of interesting.

It was a pleasant way to spend a morning talking about libraries.  Some of the topics that came up were, professional development.  Metro New York was mentioned well as the ALA
 online courses .  Another conversation was about advocacy.  Turning the Page Online is well worth taking if you are interested in advocacy. 

The breakfast was sponsored by Target which has an educational grant for libraries

After visiting the Brooklyn Historical Society Library, I went outside into the light rain.  There were lots of tents with publishers at the book festival.  Some of the publishers which I recognized were Akashic Books, Two Dollar Radio, Small Beer Press, Granta, Verso, Graywolf Press, Black Lawrence Press, Drawn and Quarterly, and Dorling Kindersley. It had a very indie feel to it.

 Small Beer Press has a site which sells ebooks called Weightless Books I like Small Beer because they produce fantasy books which are "slightly weird" and not overwhelming.   They have an excellent roster of quality fantasy wrters; Kelly Link, Karen J. Fowler, Poppy Z. Brite, Kathe Koja, Carol Emshwiller,  and John Crowley are just a few of them. 

Another press which caught my attention was Purgatory Pie Press.  They make books on making books and paper toys.  I especially liked the book Magic Books and Paper Toys by Esther K. Smith at their table.

Akashic Books was interesting to talk to.  One book that caught my attention was a collection of Caribbean poetry, So Much Things to Say: 100 Poets from the First Ten Years of the Calabash International Literary Festival edited by Kwame Dawes and Colin Channer.  They also have a blog. 

Many of the booths had local literary magazines like N+1, small press authors, and small press publishers.  The Strand Bookstore was there as well as Greenlight Bookstore.  I have never been to Greenlight.  There some literary groups like Poets and Writers, The Center For Fiction, and the Writers Studio from Manhattan.  I picked up a copy of the latest New York Review of Books.

Gryphon Books was a bit nostalgic for me  Gary Lovist, the owner of the press writes The Antique Trader Price Guide to Collectible Paperbacks.  He also runs the Collectible Paperback Show in Manhattan which is coming up on September 19, 2010.  I found the show to be quite interesting when I went there.

I kept track of a few titles in a notebook which I carry while was walking around; The Flatiron: The New York Landmark and the Incomparable City That Arose with It by Alice Sparberg Alexiou , The Wilding by Benjamin Percy, and  Everything is Going to Be Great by Rachel Shukert.

I also got two free poetry books, Heredities Poems by J. Michael Martinez and How To Live on Bread and Music by Jennifer K. Sweeney.  These were courtesy of the Academy of the American Poets

There was an Advanced Reading Copy of Burnt Books Rabbi Nachman and Franz Kafka  by Roger Kamanetz which is coming out in October by Schocken Books.  Schocken Books has a series of Jewish biography which is very well done.

It was a pleasant walk in the light rain.  I filled my bag with various pamphlets, bookmarks, buttons, and catalogs which I will look at when I get back to work on Monday.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/11/2010 (Common As Air, Social Media 101, Brooklyn Book Festival

Poster design by Alex Keil, featuring book cover, Germany, 1930 Blickfang - The Eye-Catching Covers of Weimar Berlin on A Journey Round My Skull Flickr Photostream , Creative Commons Attribution From , 

Daily Thoughts 9/11/2010

I read some more of Self Esteem, Third Edition this morning.  Right now, I am creating a long list of everything which I think I should be doing.  It is definitely too much for me to accomplish in a realistic manner in the next couple of centuries.  But, I am very much like that.

Some of the books on social media like Social Media 101 by Chris Brogan which I am reading right now,  tell you that you should not write too much about yourself, people are not that interested in the mundane things like the toast you made this morning, the coffee you drank, or the time you spent cleaning the sink.  I think it has more to do with the ability to make the mundane interesting.  I got my coffee from the local deli owner who is a bald gentleman with a goatee, I like my rye toast with grape jelly and butter, and I rinse the sink out after I use it every morning.  The little details of your personality can make a blog very interesting.  The mundane with the plain is what kills interest.  I read the first three chapters last night and will probably read a little more of it each day until I am done.

I am almost finished reading Common As Air by Lewis Hyde.  He is arguing against excessive control of intellectual property.  Lewis Hyde hide quotes the term "De minimis non curat lex", law is not interested in trivial matters to challenge the increasing focus on control of individual consumers by the music industry. This book is very much in the tradition of professors writing for the interested lay public about important ideas.

I went back and added June and July of 2008 book reviews to my list. It is clear that I will have to go back and edit many of my entries to get them to appear cleaner.  It might take some time to do this. I also have been copying a few of the reviews into Goodreads.  Goodreads allows the user to cross post their reviews to Twitter, Facebook, and blogs.

I am going to the Brooklyn Book Festival tomorrow.  There is a librarian breakfast at 10:00 a.m. at the Brooklyn Historical Society.  There also should be several people from the New York Librarians Meetup at the breakfast.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/10/2010 (Books, Ordering, Libraries, Newspapers)

Gustav Wentzel, norwegian painter, 1859-1927, Frokost II / Morgenstemning (breakfast II / morning mood) , 1885, National Gallery, Oslo. 

Daily Thoughts 9/10/2010

The Wall Street Journal is launching a book review section

The New York Times will go digitally only soon. I can see people paying for a print on demand if they still want a paper version, but mostly digital only. This is the wave of the future.

My book bag is full of books now.  I am still reading Common As Air, but I am also reading Self Esteem Third Edition by Matthew McKay, Ph.D.  This is mainly a workbook.  There are a variety of exercises on how to redirect your thoughts.  One of them which I liked quite a bit was to write down all the positive and negative aspects about yourself, then change the negative aspects into neutral factual statements, and finally combine everything into a more positive description of yourself.  I also have started on Social Media 101 by Chris Brogan.  I am reading three books at this time.  I have two more to read later, Rework by Jason Fried and  David Heinemeier Hansson, and Zero History by William Gibson.

Another book also came in for me to read, The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee it is a mass market paperback.  Jeff Vandermeer reviewed it in the New York Times Book Review.

I have been doing some ordering.  I noticed a few books of interest.  The one that caught my attention most was Djibouti by Elmore Leonard.  It is a crime novel about modern day Somali pirates.

On the way home, I read some more of Common As Air by Lewis Hyde.  There is a quote which I find especially interesting from Noah Webster in the book, "Nothing is more dangerous to liberty than the power of entailed art and ideas."

I finished adding August and September of 2008 book reviews to my book reviews list.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Daily Thoughts 9/9/2010 (Common as Air, Fundraising, libraries)

Reading In The Study

Daily Thoughts 9/9/2010

Today has been very quiet.  I spent some time cleaning off my desk.  I usually end up with a variety of things on it.  Now it has that prepared for takeoff look again.  It is quite clean.  I also worked on a new flyer for our research databases.  The staff were collecting different bookmarks and marketing material for the business fair this weekend at city hall on Sunday.

I had my book chat today.  It went fine.  We were also discussing the final touches for the bimonthly report for the collection development and technical services department.  I am going to put in some of my orders tomorrow.   Other than that it was a very even day.

I usually plan on working on 2 to 3 projects every day.  More than that and it becomes too much.

Overdrive is going to start having comics from Marvel and Tokypop available as ebooks.  I think it would be interesting to try reading an ebook from Marvel.

I also like the description of the Birmingham Alabama fundraising campaign for materials.   They are using a combination of cards and postcards to raise funds for their materials budget. 

I read some more of Common As Air on the train home.  The author is describing how public domain creates a common space to share ideas and invention.  These ideas help everyone because they are no longer under commercial control.  He uses Benjamin Franklin for many of his examples.  Benjamin Franklin never patented his lightning rod, Franklin stove, spectacles, or typefaces that the created.  He left these things for the public to use.