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SDI Questions and Answers

I just got the transcript wirh the questions asked during my SirsiDynix Institute session this week. I’ll do my best to answer them here. I’ve removed the questioner’s names for privacy reasons.
SDI Questions and Answers:
Subject: Open Libraries: 25 Technologies to Watch, and How
Start Time: Thursday, January 31, 2008 8:00:00 AM GMT-8:0
Q: What’s the name of that site again that teaches you how to technology stuff?
A: This is a common question so I did a whole post on this today at Stephen’s Lighthouse. It’s called 23 Things and has a ton of links. I link to other ones besides the 23 Things too.
Question: What is your reaction to the “abandonment” of Second Life?. A report on NPR said that where Second Life once attracted millions at a given moment, it was now numbered in the tens of thousands, at least when the reporter checked. Do our patrons really want us in all social spaces?
Answer: That weird application of numbers on NPR was interesting. Comparing a years worth of visits to a nightly amount and stating a loss of attention is pretty bad research. Anyway, It is plateauing but not dying. It’s a great place to learn and experiment. No one knows the perfect environment yet.
I don’t think our patrons want us to be in ALL social spaces. However, I do think libraries should have an understanding of all virtual social spaces where their users are. Since significant percentages of our users are in facebook, MySpace, delicious, Flickr, etc., then we need to be there to understand what’s happening.
Question: I would hate to invest a lot of time developing something and then have the program or software I use become obsolete or unpopular.
Answer: Good question. However by the time we wait for something to be popular we’ll be too late to the party. I wouldn’t bet the house on any free technology but programs can be planted in them and success can be tested. By the time it’s important to the structure of libraries then professional applications can be licensed or acquired and moved in house for stability.
Question: Hi Stephen. Can you tell me more about ‘gaming as a learning device’? Thought that one slide said ‘Read Wildly’. 🙂
Answer: There are a few books on this topic. Some titles include:
What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy. Second Edition: Revised and Updated Edition by James Paul Gee
Good Video Games and Good Learning: Collected Essays on Video Games, Learning and Literacy (New Literacies and Digital Epistemologies) by James Paul Gee
Everything Bad is Good for You [BARGAIN PRICE] (Paperback) by Steven Johnson
How Computer Games Help Children Learn by David Williamson Shaffer
The Kids are Alright: How the Gamer Generation is Changing the Workplace (Paperback)
by John C. Beck (Author), Mitchell Wade
(p.s. I checked the slide and it did say Read Widely. But wildly could be more fun.)
Question: Website for powerpoint again, pls
Answer: The Powerpoint is on the SirsiDynix Institute website with all of the archives.
It’s also on this blog as a PDF at:
Question: Will you please send us an email with the list from this presentation, or is it on your blog?
It’s on the blog here:
Question: In taking notes, I say/heard #17 as podcasts, and the 20 as streaming media. Did I go to sleep or did you just skip some numbers?
Answer: I lost count and there were some numbers missing. Sorry.
Question: I do have a question about using the right combination of web 2.0 tool for my book group for my library branch at Miami Lakes. I have a blog on wordpress discussing the first book. I have a Google Group to host essays and reviews from those who read the book or for those who want to make comments. I have a MySpace account where either I am sending out information to those who read the book and to libraries. On the date of the event, I am planning to use Meebo to have a live chat with those who can not attend in person. While all these options seems logic to me, is there something else I should do?
Answer: I think that the right mix is highly variable. That’s why we need to pilot and keep our minds open. Just keep experimenting. If this stuff could be prescribed it wouldn’t need professionals to implement it. That’s good for us. Keep up the good work.
Thanks to all who attended. Feel free to ask more questions in the comments.

Posted on: February 5, 2008, 6:18 pm Category: SirsiDynix Events

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