Volume 39, Number 6 - November/December 2015
What do we mean when we say something? How easy is it for someone to misinterpret what we're saying?
By Marydee Ojala
Using this issue's cover story by Steve Coffman as her inspiration, bq describes what a universal "Cloud Catalog" would mean to librarians and information pros and their patrons. Through a variety of possible scenarios, she shows how each could help these highly skilled professionals reclaim a seat at the front of the bus, being tour guides once more, not obsolete has-beens.
By Barbara Quint
Web Searching Gone Wild
Public libraries in the U.S. provide more books than any other source—topping Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and any other distributors out there. Yet as Steve Coffman notes, when the average person does an online search for a book, libraries never even register as an option. What can libraries do to not only get on the radar screen, but get to the top of the search results list? According to Coffman, plenty. And it all starts out with the creation of what he is calling the Cloud Catalog, in which the approximately 9,000 outdated card catalogs found in libraries across the country would be merged into one giant catalog that lives on the web. While it sounds implausible at first, Coffman has it all worked out ...
By Steve Coffman
Do you believe in magic? Library technologist Nicole Engard does, only this magic is real and stems from the connections that create the Internet of Things (IoT). She describes some practical IoT technologies that can affect your life at home, as wearables, and in your library. IoT is bringing magic—and maybe a bit of science fiction—to life.
By Nicole C. Engard
"Innovation" is one of the newest buzzwords becoming prominent in all sorts of fields, from business to social to financial. Barbie Keiser moves beyond the buzzword hype to explain how innovation can operate and be measured in R&D settings, through knowledge management initiatives, and in the workplace.
By Barbie E. Keiser
Big Data and analytics go hand in hand but are far from synonymous concepts. However, both hold enormous promise for information professionals to understand relationships and patterns within data using new tools for Big Data collection and processing.
By Frank Cervone
Digitization makes enormous amounts of information easily available on the web, but also raises questions about copyright. Just because we have the technology to create new works and disseminate other people's information doesn't make it legal. But tools exist that allow this to happen legally.
By Laura Gordon-Murnane
Gone are the days, if they ever existed, when libraries had unlimited budgets and collections could be comprehensive. Today, it's incumbent upon librarians to spend money wisely to get the best possible value. Evaluation methodologies include usage metrics, assessment techniques, altmetrics, and balancing value with coverage.
By Richard Huffine
Are you still a live streaming newbie? Irene McDermott provides you with several companies that can get you up an running. After beginning with the grande dame of video-streaming sites, Ustream, she moves on to newer services, such as Meerkat and Periscope, and looks how this technology is moving beyond the narcissistic to aid the social justice movement.
By Irene E. McDermott
On the Net
Most information professionals start their search activities from a browser. Thus, changes in browsers, such as Chrome and Firefox, and the arrival of new browsers, such as Microsoft's Edge, can change searcher behavior.
By Greg R. Notess
The Dollar Sign
Individual investors rely on free web financial databases offered by Yahoo and Google. Do information professionals get value for money when they opt for the specialized information offered by subscription investment databases?
By Marydee Ojala
The Open Road
Open access may, at first glance, appear binary—either it is or it isn't. But determining the openness of an individual journal is more difficult than anticipated. Abby Clobridge identifies the salient points to consider when decoding OA.
By Abby Clobridge
Students approach research very differently than their professors. Seasoned scholars understand research methodologies; students need to learn them. Information literacy should include teaching students specific research steps to understand the goals and methods of scholarship.
By William Badke
Library spaces are becoming smart, thanks to new technologies such as beacons and sensors. Jeff Wisniewski provides suggestions for how best to use these technologies to improve the user experience within library buildings.
By Jeff Wisniewski
Recommended Reading on Metrics, Mentoring, Demand- Driven Acquisitions, and Newcomers
By Deborah Lynne Wiley
Mary Ellen Bates, in considering the ramifications of the Internet of Things, thinks the IoT will turn the internet into something akin to electricity—we'll take it for granted.
By Mary Ellen Bates