deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Those of you who subscribe to the childlit mailing list will understand why this clip has been looping endlessly through my head for the last day.


(Transcript)

Those of you who don't can extrapolate.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Yet another pass through the cycle that periodically afflicts me.

  • Follow professional colleagues on twitter.
  • Be relatively quiet and well-behaved on twitter because it's a professional forum.
  • Follow more social justice folks on twitter because that's where they are.
  • Tweet more about politics because these issues are important.
  • Get stressed about tweeting about politics because I'm inexplicably followed on twitter by my boss, my grandboss, my great-grandboss, and my CEO.
  • Get equally stressed about tweeting during the workday because see above, even though I'm responsible about when I check it.
  • Hope they have me muted.
  • Follow lots of people using twitter as a long-form platform because the New Web is weird, y'all.
  • Start to long-form tweet because I pick up the languages of cultures I'm immersed in far too quickly.


With a soupçon of "I have all these blog topics half-drafted; why do I never finish them or reply to comments?" and a dash of "I seem to be so destractable and irritable lately."

I did eventually figure out that one of the reasons I was doing long-form tweeting is my perception that more people will read a storify than a blog post (unless it's on medium, *snort*). Which, (a) aargh, whatever, this is not a productive of my focus, and (b) I'm not widely read anyhow. [footnote]

I also keep running into the situation where I'm capable of being ridiculously diplomatic in situations where I believe it's called for (basically, any situation which has already become fraught), but in pretty much any other situation I am my father's daughter. I call that "assuming that in any non-politicized situation everyone is an adult and is willing to speak frankly with each other and hear frank and open opinions", though I suppose my father probably would have called it "not having time for assholes". To be fair, he also would have said something to the effect of "you're your father's daughter, and we're both assholes."

(Sometimes I miss the hell out of my dad. ♥♥♥♥♥)

This has led to the odd situation where some people believe I am incredibly diplomatic and can be called on to moderate awkward conversations, and some people think I am a bull in a china shop and should not be allowed out in public. Both of which are actually situationally true! But twitter, in any case, is one of the situations where it will not occur to me to be incredibly diplomatic, even though almost by his very nature it is already fraught.

It was at this point that I recalled I could disable Echofon notifications on my phone.

I'm hoping this will stick.


Footnote:
Certainly I'm not widely read in the accessibility community, where I'd like to have some influence. On the one hand this is deeply frustrating, because I do have a lot to add to that conversation with respect to technology, usability, and standards. On the other hand, that arguably means I can burn bridges freely.

Which, as I watch (as I have over the last decade) women, people with disabilities, and people of color get shunted to the side in accessibility standards making, accessibility voices cited, and people in the field given credit for their work, is something I have been considering more and more lately. If I'm not going to be allowed to help improve the accessibility of the web as a whole, why not focus on improving the accessibility of individual websites? I am too practical to bang my head against this particular wall forever.

Also, today was my first real mansplain! (Since its coinage.) I mean a For Serious dude in my mentions Calmly Explaining Me Things, when it became clear via three separate threads that he had no idea what he was talking about, and I, who had assumed he knew more than I did because he was so confident about it, was the more more knowledgeable of the two of us.

I was grimly thinking last week about the great day in the future when I will be able to burn all of those aforementioned bridges and speak a truth or too about the way things happen in the accessibility community, when I remembered the also aforementioned "the accessibility community doesn't particularly value my voice." Which again, means I can be tactless enough to make a post such as, say, this one, without even worrying about ticking people off. I could even link to it from twitter, honestly, although that would arguably be counter-productive for my own mental health.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I'm supposed to be at Linux Conf Australia now, ready to give a presentation on "User-Created Content: Maintaining accessibility and usability when we don't control the content". Due to the vagaries of snowstorms and the helpful Can Don't attitude of Emirates, I'm not there, but luckily Her Fabulousness the amazing [personal profile] fu is going to give the presentation in my stead, which makes up at least a little for missing the conference myself.

I've uploaded my slides to slideshare, though if you're at LCA I suggest going to see [personal profile] fu speak instead (her presentation will differ from mine, of course, in style if not in content).

The topic:
Social Media sites, Content Management Systems, and Learning Management Systems rely on end-users, not web developers, to create the content at the heart of the site. How can we design our interfaces to encourage users to create usable, accessible content? Can we train our users without annoying them or driving them away? What tools can we give them to make it easier for them to create the best content? We want it to be easy for our users to create content every bit as accessible and usable as we would create ourselves.


The meat of this presentation is in the notes; I'm not big on text-heavy slides, which is great during a presentation but harder to follow when downloading a presentation. On Slideshare you can view the slide notes on a slide by slide basis or in a PDF I've created of the entire presentation. Sadly PPT-to-PDF notes view has no alt for the slides, and slideshare has no way of modifying a transcript to include off-slide text. In other words, my authoring tools got in the way of the accessibility of my content. >:( The most accessible format might be downloading the PPT directly from slideshare! (All non-decorative images in the Powerpoint have alt.) I will upload audio at some point.



Oh, and if you're at LCA, [staff profile] mark's giving an introduction to Go tomorrow, so you should go to that, too!
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
All these papers will eventually be available in the Open Repositories 2008 conference repository. I'm linking to all of the placeholders; papers should be up soon.

This will be very limited liveblogging, because I'm typing in the conference and dictating betwen sessions, so I can't say much. Hopefully I'll get some good fodder for my upcoming sustainability post.

Keynote:

Repositories for Scientific Data, Peter Murray-Rust )

Session 1 – Web 2.0

Adding Discovery to Scholarly Search: Enhancing Institutional Repositories with OpenID and Connotea, Ian Mulvany, David Kane )

The margins of scholarship: repositories, Web 2.0 and scholarly practice, Richard Davis )

Rich Tags: Cross-Repository Browsing, Daniel Smith, Joe Lambert, mc schraefel )

Ow. I'm not doing this for the next session. I can blog at the breaks.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I've been far too overwhelmed to post here recently, or even to read my blogs, and for that I feel immensely guilty. I've been doing so much: getting settled in my new job at Tufts Digital Collections and Archives, working on my research on romance fiction, working (far too little) on the project I'm doing with Rebecca Rabinowitz on subversive children's literature.

I've also been talking with Alan McKee in preparation for our installation of Henry Jenkins' fangirl/fanboy detente. That has been an absolute joy. It's so wonderful whenever you find another scholar who delights in examining the same kinds of questions that you do. Both of us have found such pleasure in talking about media fandom, and I confess it has been from both a scholarly perspective and a fan perspective. This, of course, is the most wonderful part about being an acafan; the shameless delight in the subjects of our study.

I wonder how much further I would have gotten in children's literature scholarship if the academic blogging community had existed 10 years ago. Would I have made further inroads there? I've made such friends in media and fan scholarship, real genuine friends, people I love and care for -- and I suspect I will be making similar friends in romance scholarship, based on what I've seen of that community. As an independent scholar, it is so discouraging to have no infrastructure for my fields of study. And it's not like I'm not busy, it's not like I'm not doing this scholarship in my spare time after work and dinner and gardening and feeding the cats. If it weren't for the social network of wonderful people who share my interests, I don't know if I would be able to keep it up.
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
I've just come back from a conference, and even though it wasn't a library conference, I think it's interesting to post about here; in fact, there are some issues that arose at the conference which I think are of interest to librarians. Console-ing Passions is a feminist media studies conference. While there is ostensibly a focus on new media, most of the panels I attended had to do with traditional forms of interacting with more traditional media, such as television, news media, and the like. Even many of the panels which focused on the Web treated the more static forms of media still created by an editorial team. Don't get me wrong, many of the panels were extremely good and I enjoyed the conference, but there wasn't a lot of emphasis on social networking. Facebook and Myspace got mentioned in passing several times, but I only went to one panel (decides the two fanfiction panels with which I was involved), which really focused on user-created content. That panel had two papers about message boards and one about identity creation on Friendster.

I think there's a good space open for a crossover conference that covers issues of social networking. From a literary analysis perspective I'm primarily interested in the texts which are the product of social networks; as a librarian I am interested in various forms of communication and information sharing that social networks enable. I assume media scholars would also be interested in social networking but that's not my field of expertise, I'm afraid.

In any case, it was absolutely wonderful to me my fellow panelists in person, when before I only knew them online (and in the case of [livejournal.com profile] kbusse, on the telephone). Everyone had great things to say, and I've great ideas about this paper and more. Now I just need to find an OA humanities journal to submit the paper to. *g*
deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
Prompted by the Google movie, I've been thinking about why Google is vital to me, as a librarian who is heavily invested in intelligent searching (both on and off the public web). And I realised I use Google as a glorified bookmarks file. If I use a resource so often that I want to get to it in four keystrokes (which is why I find tagging useless as a bookmarks replacement -- I can reach anything in four keystrokes) then I bookmark it. But what if there's a ton of tools out there which do, say, currency conversion? I only need to do that occasionally, and I don't care which currency calculator I get. So I Google, and take the first one unless red flags gets set off by the link. Same for web color chart mappings, or lists of HTML elements. I know I can find those easily with Google as my bookmarks file. But if I want a good definition, I go to m-w.com, and if I want a more specific type of definition (jargony / more complete / etymylogical / etc) I'll go to one of the many other sites I have bookmarked (OED, Webster's unabridged, etc). I won't go to Google for something where I know precisely who'll have the best answer.

Tags, I suppose, are halfway between Google and a good bookmarks file, which might explain why I don't use them much (I tag my own lj posts, but I don't do social bookmarking). They still require effort to create and maintain a coherent system, like bookmarks, and they require multiple keystrokes to access, like search engines. For me the main value of social bookmarking is the "social" not the "bookmarking". If I felt like organizing something in order to share it with the world, I would find very useful. At least one feed in my personal RSS aggregator is a del.icio.us feed which updates when new entries are tagged.

But for my personal use, its search engines or bookmarks files. Even when I search, I don't tend to search for my final goal -- I usually search for a good resource which is likely to have information about my final goal.
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