All 5 entries tagged Conference

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December 16, 2005

busy week

This week has been a whirlwind! I guess it started with the trip to Dorney lake at Eton college on Sunday. Up at 6am, drive to the lake, screw together an iced up boat, hang around in the freezing fog for a few hours, then command and steer a boat of 8 men for 2×4km training pieces: its quite tiring, believe me! The last thing we needed was bad traffic, but with the M1 closed and a couple of accidents on the M40 and the road leading up to it, we were scuppered on our journey back to the boat club to put the boat away, before we could go home: we got back at about 8pm.

Tuesday night was the Institute of Mechanical Engineers Midlands branch Christmas dinner. It’s my husband who’s a member, not me, but I was tempted by the prospect of a night off from cooking, and the speaker was a lady rally driver, which I found intriguing. Lorna Smith is the British ladies rally champion, I believe, and she had some gripping video footage to show.

Wednesday saw a conference in London. Luckily it was just for the afternoon, so I didn’t miss the Library Marketing group meeting in the morning. I caught the pendolino train that got me to London in just about an hour. Those tilting trains make me travel sick! I’m never normally sick on a train, and I can read in cars, but I also do get sea sick. In any case, I skipped lunch because I learnt the hard way on my last trip to London…

The conference was very good and I learnt a lot from Jane Secker’s presentation about the CLA Scanning licence and the trial audit which the CLA carried out there recently. I have a lot of questions to put to Jane, that there wasn’t time for on Wednesday. Basically it’s a very complicated licence and even though I’ve read it through and through, there were still one or two things that Jane had spotted and I hadn’t. Still, the LSE have been clearing copyright for scanned items for a while now, and Jane was involved in the negotiation of the licence, so she ought to know more than me really! I am glad I went.

Last night was the Staff Christmas quiz. The library, the RIU and the Modern Records Centre all put in a team. The MRC team won the quiz overall, so well done to them. The library team came in about 12th, apparently, and I have no idea where the RIU team finished because I left before the end to get my beauty sleep! I don’t think we were last…

Time for a quiet weekend, you’d think, but I still have all my Christmas shopping to do… oh and a ball to go to tomorrow night in Birmingham.

I love this time of year!

December 13, 2005

Bloggy good feedback

Follow-up to ASLIB Exploiting blogs event in Birmingham from Innovating Research!

Just received the feedback on the talk I gave on behalf of ASLIB West Midlands a couple of weeks back, and since one or two bloggers out there helped out with a bit of input whilst I was preparing it I thought I'd report back.

Feedback was universally good – not a single word of negative criticism either. Quotes include:

  • "Far exceeded expectations"
  • "Thought-provoking and inspirational"
  • "Very interesting – a lot to take back to my colleagues."

Actually I can't lay claim to all this high praise, the other speaker & event host (Phil Bradley) probably deserves the bulk of it. But all the same it does the University no harm to have engendered such a groundswell of good will with a broad cross-section of LIS professionals – most of whom were from outside the academic sector!

November 25, 2005

ASLIB Exploiting blogs event in Birmingham

And I'm back from the ASLIB event in Birmingham. I think presentation went down fairly well (I'll wait until I see the feedback before I make any final decisions). Ended up giving it twice in the end to half the attendees at a time. When I get a moment I'll pop a copy of the presentation onto the RIU web site in case anyone wants to have a gander. It was a very good day and if ASLIB or anyone else runs the course again somewhere it would be well worth attending – even if I'm not speaking at it…

I think I conveyed how well blogs are being used here at Warwick in a more professional sense, though as a lot of the people there were attending from corporate or public library services there was a lot of concern over the need to censor/control what was published. Not so free and easy as we have it here in academia.

I also learned a fair bit from the other speaker on such topics as RSS, blog-directories and will be using the terms cat-blog and boss-blog far more (though I maintain my personal blog elsewhere remains a goose blog!).

Anyway fun aside it's time to turn to some 'proper' work for a while – I've a sickening feeling that means more analysis of reading list data and less thinking about blogs for a bit. At least until Wednesday when I'm on a panel discussion at a conference on Exploiting new social media applications talking about such things again with some fairly heavy weight speakers.

(And for those people who asked yesterday how long these things take – this entry has taken me 8 minutes from start to finish – including the editing, spell checking and the time spent in discussion with my colleagues just how artic our offices have remained all week)

November 11, 2005

Blogging about talking about blogging

What a clumsy title. Anyway, I've been putting off starting this for a while. I've been booked to speak at two conference towards the end of the months on librarians and blogging. One's a more formal presentation on their pros, cons, uses etc in a LIS workplace setting, whilst the other is a discussion panel with me, the Guardian and Nokia all setting out our vision for exploiting such social media collaborative tools for a lot of men in suits.

While for the latter there's a handy conference wiki(1) for me to collect my thoughts, but for the other one I guess it's going to be the old ppt slide and entertaining talk. Thankfully having spoken with folks in eLab, the comms office and our very own Learning Grid I've got some ideas where my talk might go – but how do I tell a bunch of librarians "Don't write dull blogs" in a polite manner?

I'm part of a Google group of librarian bloggers and I have to say I've not been that impressed (or indeed stimulated) by the stylistic approach that a lot of them take. Librarians do seem to have a problem with making themselves interesting when they write (I'm only a librarian by trade rather than calling, so hopefully I've got a slightly punchier style).

sigh So if anyone has any stunning suggestions that I can expound to them with a maniacal, but professional, glint in my eye, let me know.

(1) I'm sorry, but every time I hear/type the word "wiki" all I hear in my head is Will Smith and "Wiki wiki Wild Wild West". I've been trying to shake that for months…

September 15, 2005

Academic Library Futures: perspectives on tomorrow

Aston University Library, 24th November 2005, 10.00 - 4.00

‘…It is our future that lays down the law of our today.’ (Nietzsche)

What does the future hold for academic libraries and those who work in them? This one-day conference will explore our new learning environments, technology and professional competences, and provide critical perspectives on the state of academic libraries in the UK, while offering insights on how to build a vision for the future.

Speakers are:

  • Dr Sue McKnight Director of Libraries and Knowledge Resources, Nottingham Trent University, offering an Australian perspective on UK academic library and information services
  • Christine Willoughby, Assistant Director, Library and Learning Services, Northumbria University on physical space and learning environments
  • John MacColl, Head, Digital Library, University of Edinburgh, on digital futures
  • Anne Bell, Librarian at the University of Warwick on planning for the future
  • Margaret Chapman on the value of professional qualifications and the role of CILIP

The presentations will be followed by a workshop on planning for the future

Conference fee includes lunch and refreshments.

The venue
The meeting will be held in Aston University Library. The University is located in Birmingham City Centre on a green, self contained campus just 5 minutes walk from the city's main shopping streets and 10–15 minutes' walk from Birmingham New Street Rail Station. There is good disabled access to the library and a lift is available to reach the room where the event will be held.

See the notice board on floor 3, see me or contact Jane Marshal ( for more details.

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