Personal perspectives on information science, the evolving Internet, delivery of public services online, Web 2.0, the Web of Data, the Semantic Web, communities, folksonomies and more. With an emphasis upon convergence between some or all of the above, and a UK slant.
Day 2 ofCIL2006is just about to get underway here in Washington DC where the sun is, rather depressingly, still blazing out of a blue sky. I can see that I shall have to make some time to get out of the troglodytic halls today... Still, at least youcanescape to the outside world here. I found out last night that next year's event will be in Crystal City, across the Potomac. Yeuch. Last time I was there, the only 'outside' seemed to be a freeway, and all the people either existed in towers with windows that didn't open orunderthe towers in a rat run of tunnels.
Returning to today, this morning begins withOCLCbuying breakfast, then a keynote on the importance of mobile (I'll have some stats on that in my talk tomorrow, and definitely agree that it's important; just how unusable doesyourweb presence look on a PDA or mobile phone?).
After that, I'm torn betweenLorcanandAlane, both of whom have every potential to be among my highlights of the event. Typical.
Anyway, I'll blog whichever one I go to, along with the Keynote, onpanlibus. OCLC's breakfast will end up either here orpanlibus, depending upon whether the highpoint is the pancakes or the conversation.
Should probably then find some time to finish tomorrow afternoon's presentation...
It doesn't seem to matter how hard you try, there are always bits of a conference where you wish you could be in two places at once (Alane and Lorcan this morning, for me, and a couple of slots tomorrow). Equally, there are dead spots, where nothing on the programme really leaps out at you, and you just attend sessions out of a feeling of duty.
This afternoon was like that.
Must be time to eat again... What do I fancy tonight?
I'm just about to go into a session here at CIL with formerbossLorcan Dempsey. I'll blog it over onpanlibus, but I hope the slides get put up as I'm sure that Lorcan will hit us with so much interesting stuff, so quickly, that there's no way my jet-lagged fingers will be able to keep up.
Travel was relatively painless (as painless as 8 hours in a very full confined space can be, anyway), and my previously dreadful (justifiably, I might add) opinion of our flag carrying airline has been somewhat mollified. Even The People With Guns at Dulles were moderately pleasant! The sun is shining down on Washington DC this morning and I am making the most of looking out of the windows, as the rest of the day will be spent deep in the troglodytic bowels of the hotel, in bog standard big hotel conference rooms with neither windows nor easy access to the outside world.
At registration, I picked up my bag (and umbrella!), and look forward to filling it (the bag, not the umbrella) with the gifts that my poor abandoned children deserve when I get back home on Saturday. It was good to see ourLibrary 2.0 white paperin the bag, and I look forward to seeing if its content generates much interest/discussion here.
As a registered blogger (!), I've got access to the press room here, where there's power and a network. It's good that the conference organisers are recognising the need to cater for those other than the more traditional media outlets in this way. There is also supposed to be a wireless network in the exhibition/registration space, to which I should be able to connect from time to time. But no power and no network in any of the rooms, which is unfortunate as it basically means you need to leave a session in order to be able to write about anything.
This new laptop seems to guzzle power, too, and extra batteries were impossible to come by before leaving the UK. I feel a quick call to the Apple Stores atPentagon CityandClarendonmay be in order, once they open... I hope they have some of the right batteries in stock...
Right. Time to read today's Program(me), and then think of more 'proper' and journalistic-ey comments to write forpanlibus...
OK, would session chairs here at CILpleasestop plugging the conference wiki, and inviting “all you bloggers” to blog about sessions?
There is no network!!!. We're in a conference to talk about libraries, technology, blogs, wikis, and more. The room isfullof bloggers. The room isfullof people who would quite happily post to wikis. And none of us can, because we can't get online unless we go outside.
Does it make sense for us to have to choose between blogging about the conference from the press room or actually taking part in the conference in the sessions?
Please, technology conference organisers everywhere,give your attendees network access and power!How hard can it be?
And can we turn the lights down a bit - at least the ones that are blazing straight onto the screens? What's the point in speakers labouring over the slides, to have a significant chunk of the content washed out by bright lighting?
Is anyone exhibiting with something different to appease the ravenous horde at home? You have, of course, to be able to give me two, otherwise you're entirely responsible for causing a warandmaking children cry. No pressure, then! :-)
Right. Off to rediscover the wireless network, then a session on “Failing to Innovate”, which I'll cover onpanlibus.
The title of this post really should have been 'A slow boat to China', but as I'm not going to China and I'm not travelling by boat, it didn't really work.
Tomorrow, it's off toComputers in Librarieswe go. This involves a taxi about 0700 UK time, to get to the local railway station. Then a train to Leeds. Then a bus to Leeds/Bradford airport. Then a plane to Heathrow (most horrible airport in the UK, by a very long way). Then a plane to Washington Dulles. Then, depending upon how the flight was, either a cab or the shuttle bus and Metro combo to central DC, and a Washington hotel I've actually managed not to stay in before.
Estimated arrival time at the hotel? About 0100 UK time (8pm in Washington), 18 hours after walking out the door here. I think I'll need a drink, especially if the Department of Homeland Security insist on sticking me in one of those mile-long queues they so politely provide for 'Aliens'.
'Proper' blogging of the event over onPanlibus. Complaints about airlines, the price of wi-fi etc here. Take your pick.
Remember I wasreally pleasedthat my local public library was experimenting with Sunday opening, and running various events as part of the Sunday pilot?
Well, it was great.
Noisy pre-school children wereactively encouragedto laugh, shout, and enjoy themselves.
The library didn't justcondonefood and drink; it gave it out! (to the children, anyway. I'm still a bit cross that nobody would give me the smartie off the top of their cake).
The event was full, the story was fun, and everyone seemed to have a great time.
They're running a similar event next weekend, telling one of ourfavourite stories. Child and I were keen to go again, and this time we wanted to take her younger cousin, who will be visiting us that weekend.
Unfortunately, the library refuses to let the cousin attend, as neither she nor her parents live in the authority.
Another nice idea, wrecked by the pointless strictures of policy, procedure, and red tape.
Why do we keep doing this, and will we ever learn?
I'm now back to being disappointed by my local library, which seems a shame.