deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I'm on the last day of my third conference in three weeks, and tonight I go home and stay home. I'm only here at JCDL for two days -- I'm missing the third day of presentations and all the great looking workshops and tutorials -- but after three consecutive conferences (and two all-day NELINET classes, and an all-day DigiTool training I'm hosting on Friday) , I only have a few brain cells left.

I've already blogged on Console-ing Passions, bu I didn't say anything about ELUNA. Mostly that's because I don't find user group meetings to be all that interesting to the blogging community at large. How much can I say about a vendor's glowing statements about its own product? And I found that my colleagues who were perfectly willing to complain (quietly and polietly; they are librarians, after all) in private wouldn't call Ex Libris on any of the claims they made about their software. Some of what Ex Libris chose to showcase was itself worthy of negative comment; their method for creating and editing METS objects, for example, is a massive kludge.

Coming to JCDL a week after ELUNA is illuminating. They're very different in intent: one is a user group meeting for a product used by acting librarians; the other is a theoretical conference co-sponsored by the ACM and the IEEE, with ASIS&T added on as an afterthought. But it's very noticeable to me that ELUNA was mostly female attendees (though the DigiTool track was about 50% male) listening passively to mostly male presenters, and JCDL is a slight majority of men with attendees actively participating in a way I didn't see at ELUNA, at least in the DigiTool track. That follows naturally from the librarians vs. programmers balance, I suspect. At JCDL, I'm enjoying the balance of theory, science, and practice -- it works for me.

Oh, also met Dorothea, which was great, and ran into Mark Anderson from the University of Iowa again. Everyone's been great; people in this sector are interesting and smart.

I'm going to put the detailed paper commentary in a second post, just to keep this from being overwhelming.
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