A Second Life Experience

And wow again.
Last week I signed up for a free account in Second Life so that I could experience the SL training in Virtual World Librarianship. This was the most amazing trip I could have imagined. Before the first session I spent a bit of time wandering around Info Island trying to get acclimatised. I was also able to change my appearance, learn to fly, make a virtual cup of coffee in a virtual library and relax on the comfortable furniture.

I met several other interesting people wandering around and we communicated using our computer keyboards to type in text.

I'd miscalculated the time in SL compared to Perth RL and the session started at 10:30pm - 2 hours later that I'd anticipated. Still, it was a real buzz. There were a few issues with the presentation - hopefully these will be resolved next time around - but I'd never realised that work could be such fun. When we finished at 12:30 am I was too hyped up to sleep.

The pictures show

  1. the class having flying lessons
  2. examining exhibits in one of the libraries.
That's me in the striped jumper. I must try and find another pair of jeans - don't like having the crack in my rear showing.

We've been told that next week we'll start having fun - as if the first session wasn't already a load of fun! I also look forward to learning how to use SL for real work.

Some of the issues I have encountered locally
  1. TAFE has a firewall that won't allow me to access SL from my office.
  2. Must have broadband or cable access - dialup is way too slow.
  3. SL is very download hungry and I have had to upgrade to a more expensive ISP account.
  4. Luckily I have a new computer with good video graphics - very important.


It's Library Week and libraries all over Australia are pulling out all the promotional stops. But what happens next week, or the week after that? We should never stop promoting our libraries and all the wonderful things that can be found in them.

In the Shifted Librarian this week is a link to a video posted that looks at the future of libraries:
[Public] Libraries in 2010 - What Happened? Also shown on LibrariesInteract.info.

Here at Leederville we hosted a breakfast for all staff and were pleased to see many unfamiliar faces. Now that they know how to find their way to the Library I hope we may see them more often.


Perth Barcamp and Unconference

Kathryn Greenhill's blog, Librarians Matter, this week refers to two unusual library-type events in Perth. The first is a Barcamp to be held on June 30th at Central TAFE's eCentral campus and the second is an Unconference scheduled for early August. I'll be on holiday in Bali for one of them (not sure which) but definitely plan to attend the other. Not sure what they are? Read Kathryn's blog.


Nerdy Things

Tomorrow I'll be attending "Nerd School", a PD session run by the college's IT department. Can't wait to improve my nerdy skills.

On Friday I'm teaching one of our Library Technician classes about blogs and on Monday I'm repeating the PD session for staff "Making the most of wikis and blogs". There's little need to supply handouts as all the links I refer to are already on this blog.

I'm thrilled to have been enrolled in Virtual World Librarianship - Your Second Life run in virtual time by Illinois Alliance Library System and GSLIS. Because it will be coordinated from the other side of the world I'll have to be online in Second Life from 8.30 pm on Friday nights for 6 weeks. Bang goes any social life I might have had. Friday is the only evening that my husband and I usually have a chance to go anywhere without my mother who is 95 and lives with us. However, I've been interested in experimenting with SL for some time (there have been previous references to it on this blog) but the college firewall has prevented my doing anything at work. Hopefully my new whiz-bang computer at home will give me a better experience.


Who participates in Web 2.0?

A post by Peter White on DownloadSquad had me giggling when I read it during a Librarian's meeting this morning, Most US citizens not participating in web 2.0. Peter has a cynical turn of phrase which has drawn several comments both agreeing and disagreeing with his philosophy.



Last week I was fortunate to attend the Challenging How Knowledge is Created workshop at Burswood Entertainment Centre in Perth. Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, gave a stimulating talk about knowledge sharing and the opportunities available for making knowledge freely available to everyone. The panel discussion and group participation that followed were insightful and gave much food for thought.

Educators (and Librarians) are divided about the value of Wikipedia as a reference tool. Jimmy himself considers that, like any other encyclopedia) it should be only a starting point for research.

The Denver Post has an article, Grading Wikipedia, that reports on the results of a study in which five Colorado scholars were asked to review the Wikipedia entries on Islam, Bill Clinton, global warming, China and evolution. Four out of five agreed their relevant Wikipedia entries are accurate, informative, comprehensive and a great resource for students or the merely curious.

Information Literacy Blog

I've added a new link to this blog today, Information Literacy Meets Web2.0. It is definitely worth a look for anyone interested in InfoLit.