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Seeing Opportunities!

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Rebecca and I have had many conversations over the years about identifying gaps and seeing opportunities, in fact we did a segment on this topic in our Seeing the Big Picture and Critical Thinking workshops. It is a skill I have and didn’t realize for many years that not everyone has this skill. In a recent article, Amy Wilkinson referred to identifying gaps and seeing opportunities as entrepreneurial alertness. I am thrilled to find her recent book The Creators Code: The Six Essential Skills for Extraordinary Entrepreneurs. Here’s a bit more info about the book. Not sure how I missed it when it was first published!

“For her landmark book, Wilkinson conducted rigorous interviews with 200 of today’s leading entrepreneurs including the founders of LinkedIn, Chipotle, eBay, Under Armour, Tesla Motors, SpaceX, Spanx, Airbnb, PayPal, JetBlue, Gilt Groupe, Theranos, and Dropbox. Setting her work apart, she then drilled down through the latest academic research and analyzed data from across diverse fields, applying scientific methodology to crack the code on what it takes to go from startup to scale in our rapidly changing economy.

Evaluating companies as diverse as Yelp, Chobani, and Zipcar, Wilkinson found that their creators all share — and have honed — fundamental skills that can be learned, practiced, and passed on. Entrepreneurial success is born of daring, discipline, and the six skills she identifies, proven effective in a variety of endeavors and industries:

Find the gap: Spot opportunities that others don’t see Drive for daylight: Manage speed

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Computers in Libraries 2018 -- Program Sneak Peak!

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As program director for more than 20 years for the Computers in Libraries conference, I am thrilled to introduce our keynote speakers and some of the themes to be discussed!

Keynotes:

Rick Huijbregts, VP, Strategy & Innovation, George Brown College former VP, Digital Transformation & Innovation, Cisco Jeanne Holm, Senior Technology Advisor to the Mayor, Deputy CIO at City of Los Angeles, Information Technology Agency, City of Los Angeles UCLA, In Unison, Open Data Collaboratives, International Academy of Astronautics Digital Transformation & Libraries: Participatory Culture Hubs with Brendan Howley &Daniel Lee, Co-Founders, Icebox Logic — using media & stories! Facts in the Digital Age: Coping in an Era of Total Noise! with popular #CILDC speaker Lee Rainie, Director, Pew Research Center & others! Games, Gadgets & Makerspaces: Conference Opening Networking Event!

Lots of wonderful speakers will be participating, some returning, popular experts, some new & exciting. Key themes:

Navigation & Search UX & Digital Presence Community Engagement Learning from Leaders from Toronto Public Library, British Library, Edmonton Public, Purdue, and more! Also in Library Leaders Summit! Internet@Schools & 2nd day too! Open Access Enterprises: Processes & Practices Makerspaces: Tips & Practices Systems & Operations Discovery: Practices & Possible Future Future & Innovation Metrics Management Tips & Practices Tech Tools

There are also lots of in-depth workshops on these topics for those who want more. Conversations and networking are most important at Computers in Libraries 2018 so our producer, Information Today, and our sponsors host morning breakfasts, coffee breaks, and receptions;

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Turning Over a New Leaf!

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Tribute to Josef Frank

Can you see me sitting under this tree turning over a new leaf? Well I’m there somewhere!! 2017 has not been a good year for me updating the Dysart & Jones website even though I had promised certain people that I would!

Get ready for many new pieces in the coming weeks and months!

eBooks: Current State in Libraries

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Guest Post from Graham Lavender, Associate Librarian, The Michener Institute of Education at University Health Network [well over due for posting, sorry Graham!]

On March 17 & 18, I had the pleasure of attending eBooks Symposium! The Current State of the Art in Libraries at the University of Toronto iSchool. The room was filled with mainly public librarians from across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), though some came from as far as Ottawa. There were a number of vendors in attendance (not just including those who gave presentations). The many insights into the world of ebooks wouldn’t all fit into a blog post, but I share some of the highlights.

Stephen Abram, conference co-chair and Executive Director, Federation of Ontario Public Libraries, kicked things off with a fascinating look at the data behind ebook usage in Ontario. For example, 41% of people surveyed indicated they had “checked the library’s online catalogue, downloaded an item, or accessed other materials via the library’s website,” and the top two “specific types of electronic resources used on the library’s website” were fiction ebooks and non-fiction ebooks. Considering that 86% of Ontarians have read at least one book in the past year, it’s no surprise that the demand for ebooks continues to grow, especially in Metro Toronto and other urban parts of the GTA, where ebook usage is most prevalent. Take a look through Stephen’s slides for more data: http://www.slideshare.net/stephenabram1/e-books-symposium-intro

Next up was Vickery Bowles, City Librarian, Toronto Public Library, to talk about the Fair

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Learning from Others!

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This email hit my desk today and it really resonated with me as I work with and talk with so many who have difficulty proving their value and impact. It also addresses the financial industry where my roots are! The highlights below are mine but the text is not.

Monetizing Information Flows

StreetContxt is a hot, Canadian-based start-up that just raised $8 million from A-list investors, including a number of big banks and brokerage houses. Its mission is simple: to maximize the value of the mountain of investment research that gets generated each year. But what really makes StreetContxt stand out to me is that it offers a very compelling business proposition to both those who create the research and those who use it.

For the sell-side (those who create the content), it’s currently difficult to measure the impact much less the ROI on the huge volume of research they create annually. They send it out to presumably interested and qualified recipients, with no way of knowing if it is acted on, or even viewed.

For the buy-side (those who receive and use the content), it’s impossible to keep up with the blizzard of information being pushed out to them. Even more significantly, some of this research is very good, but a lot of it isn’t. How do you identify the good stuff?

StreetContxt offers the sell-side a powerful intelligence platform. By distributing research through StreetContxt, research producers can learn exactly who viewed their research and whether it was forwarded

Continue reading Learning from Others! Monetizing Information Flows!

Information Architecture 4th edition!

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Did you know that O’Reilly has published the 4th edition of this seminal work, Information Architecture: for the Web and Beyond, by Peter Morville and Louis Rosenfeld first published in 1998? Terrific! And I just got my copy. The first section introduces IA with definitions and issues then discusses design for finding and for understanding. Part 2 covers the basic principles of IA including organization systems, labeling systems, navigating systems, search systems as well as thesauri, controlled vocabularies & metadata. Peter is a wonderful teacher and speaker about these topics for librarians, info pros, taxonomists, and knowledge managers. He will be participating in Library Leaders Digital Strategy Summit at the DC Hilton, March 8-9.

Computers in Libraries 2016

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Library Labs: Research, Innovation & Imagination

I’m very excited about the next year’s Computers in Libraries 2016, March 8-10 in Washington DC. First, #CILDC is 31 years strong! And still highlighting innovative technology and library practices, sharing leading-edge information services and community engagement strategies as well as looking at the impact these services and practices have on their communities.

Many organizations have innovation labs, incubating spaces, and ways to stimulate imagination and support research. Our theme for Computers in Libraries 2016, Library Labs: Research, Innovation, & Imagination, aims to do the following: • Highlight library research that translates into useful strategies and practices for libraries. • Share new and exciting projects from information industry labs. • Feature innovative services and libraries. • Stretch our imagination with possible areas for further library research and testing.

Monday March 7th

18 wonderful workshops — the always popular Searchers Academy, Tech Trends for Libraries, Design Thinking for Libraries, Responsive Web Design, How to Make a Makerspace, Information Architecture, User Experience (UX), Data Visualization, Essential Sharepoint, Staff Development, Demonstrating Value with the Logic Model, Marketing Your Library, and more. A new full day workshop, Incubating Creativity & Imagination will inspire many ideas for incubating learning in your community!

Games, Gadgets & Makerspaces: Welcome & Networking Event from 5.30 to 7.30 with refreshments is a popular meeting, learning, and networking event. Includes lots of gamers and gadget lovers and is definitely an evening of fun, playing, learning, and networking. See how you can transform your thinking,

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The Future of Libraries

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The first day of our University of Toronto symposium, The Future of Libraries, was filled with talks and discussions about challenges for libraries; what boards, provosts and city managers are saying about libraries; what surveys and research are telling us; what our competitors are doing (and how we might partner with them or learn from them); how we can streamline our operations and gain efficiency; how libraries are dealing with change; and more. Here are the top challenges this group articulated:

* Promotion of library services

* Staff competencies, resistance, culture

* Competitors – alignment vs duplication

* Rationalizing services, sacrifice, stop doing

* Making our case in municipalities

* Balancing Act — electronic vs print, staff in or out of the library, service points/back room

* Future of the profession

I found it every interesting that the top challenges weren’t funding or money. We recognize that we have choices, even if they are difficult, but we can choose where we put our resources.

Brandan Howley gave a thought provoking talk and I’m still thinking about his statement, “Future proofing libraries means managing disruption while proving relevancy.” He discussed how libraries are cultural triggers that activate networks — very powerful! He recommended the book, A Pattern Language, about UX (user experience).

“More libraries & their staff “get it”, understand that serious change is necessary, and ask for our help as partners not just vendors” Edmund Salt, President, Whitehots Inc.

Ken Haycock framed the event by starting us off thinking about

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Gadgets, Makerspaces & Innovation @ Internet Librarian 2015

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Guest post from Brian Pichman, Director, Strategic Innovation, Evolve Project

There is still time to register at Internet Librarian 2015 in lovely Monterey, California; October 25th – 28th. If you haven’t registered yet, be sure you do to check out some of these Internet Librarian exclusive events:

This year join Nate Hill, Tod Colegrove, and Brian Pichman as they launch an entire interactive workshop on Makerspaces, Idea Labs, and Hackerspaces. Joining them are individuals from littleBits, Hopscotch, LightUp, Twenty One Toys, Brown Dog Gadgets, and more. Get a chance to not only talk about makerspaces, build strategies for success, but also get a chance to play with some leading edge technology that is featured in makerspaces around the world. Learn about code writing, engineering, learning by failure all in this full day jam packed workshop. This workshop offers an opportunity to collaborate with other start-ups and help build your library into an incubation space for start-up culture.

Looking for something to do Sunday night? Join in on the first ever Games and Gadget night hosted in part with Monday Morning’s Opening Keynote Panelists. Get an opportunity to talk to Ilana Ben-Ari, founder of the innovative way to learn empathy and failure from her company called Twenty One Toys. Have a chance to meet Erin Mulcahy who manages the strategic initiatives of littleBits education. Talk to her about prototyping and creating using circuits to help foster innovation in your library space. Explore programming with Liza Conrad, head of community and partnerships

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Libraries: Rewiring our Thinking

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My “must” reading for the past 15 years has been Harvard Business Review. About 6 years ago I added Rotman from University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management to the “must” list. To be honest, there’s nothing else on that list. Just these two journals. The articles are often based on solid research, usually incredibly interesting, and frequently force me to think differently. These journals target business and management leaders. Many of the influential stakeholders for libraries in the public, academic, government and profit sectors are business and management leaders. We need to know how they think. And we certainly need to think differently.

Joe Rotman, a highly successful, respected businessman and philanthropist died recently. Roger Martin, renowned management author and thinker, and the 1st dean of the Rotman School, wrote in the Spring 2015 Rotman issue of how Joe Rotman “rewired” Martin’s brain. Given that the library sector is essentially shifting below our feet, it behooves us to consider the 4 fronts on which Rotman changed Martin’s thinking and use these to change our own thinking:

Nothing is Not-doable

There’s 2 parts to this truism: first, that if you want to “do” it, then do it. In 1998 when Martin became dean of Rotman, that management school wasn’t even in the rankings or the radar with its competitors. Joe and Roger envisioned it in the top 5 – which most people thought was crazy – ‘not-doable’ for sure. Yet Joe taught Martin that anything is doable so long as

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