Monthly Archives: October 2008

Google Book Search channelling

Regular readers will know that I follow the Hitwise blog. I was interested to see their note on Google Book Search the other day, prompted by the settlement which discussed which sites benefited from downstream traffic from that site. In other words, where do people go when they leave Google Book Search by following links. … Continue reading Google Book Search channelling

On the record: two views from the Guardian

There is an interesting and reflective commentary about the historical record and ‘unpublishing’ in the Guardian. I particularly like the comment about tattoos. The consequences of putting information about yourself into the public domain are more far-reaching in a world where things you say are linked to, easily passed around and can pop up if … Continue reading On the record: two views from the Guardian

Jazzing up information/scholarly literacy

Writing about scholarly method, Paul Courant discusses ‘information literacy’ and ‘scholarly literacy’. Partly in response to these concerns, there has been much talk about the importance of developing “information literacy”. I will argue here that our most important audience is already information literate and then some. [3] Our interest should be in ensuring the production … Continue reading Jazzing up information/scholarly literacy

Are you Asking …

After a recent makeover, search engine Ask has a nice clean interface and some nice features. One that is foregrounded is the ‘related searches’ feature. I could not immediately see how they were generating this list, but it was often helpful. I was interested in what a search for Lorcan Dempsey returned …


I have observed that ‘concentration’ – of data, of connections, of computing capacity – is major feature of Web 2.0. Nick Carr talked about the centripetal web the other day, and this was picked up in an interesting way by Mark Dahl: With the web as the medium, it becomes that much easier to take … Continue reading Spinning

QOTD: IBM and standards

On the politics and business of standards making ….. Bob Sutor, vice president of open source and standards, tells me that Big Blue has decided to cast a cold eye over the performance of the standards bodies it belongs to – which number “several hundred” – and may drop its links to some. The process … Continue reading QOTD: IBM and standards

User behaviors

My colleague Lynn Connaway has been working on several collaborative projects looking at user behaviors over the last few years. Together, she and colleagues have produced a nice body of work looking at user attitudes and behaviors to library services, and to information work more generally. I thought it would be useful to pull together … Continue reading User behaviors

LAM Consolidation and public funding

It looks as if Ireland is to follow Canada in amalgamating its national archives and national library. However, the driver appears to be financial rather than functional, and it is one of several organizational consolidations being pushed through by the Irish Government. The news came in the 2009 budget announcement as part of a package … Continue reading LAM Consolidation and public funding

Blogging and Montaigne: musing and raving, humours and conceits

I returned from my travels last night to find a new edition of the Atlantic waiting for me. It grabbed attention as it has been redesigned, and I liked the redesign. But also, my eye was caught by the title of Andrew Sullivan’s essay ‘Why I blog’. Sullivan’s whole essay could be quoted, but as … Continue reading Blogging and Montaigne: musing and raving, humours and conceits

A local view

I have had a chance to see more of the Science@Cambridge ‘portal’ and to hear from Cambridge colleagues how they plan to evolve it. As I noted, I particularly like the way in which access to the literature is surrounded by feed-based contextual services. I wondered about a view of materials produced within Cambridge and … Continue reading A local view