2 Months Later...

I've finally caught with the piles on my desk enough to go over my notes from the Charleston Conference. I don't feel as bad about this as I could, considering I have yet to be fully reimbursed for my hotel, but that's a tale for another day. So without further ado, here's my distilled list of ideas I took away from the conference:
  • With technology like the Espresso Book Publishing Machine, do we really need to buy books just to store them? - James Mullens
  • People want to compute with digital information, not just read it. Researchers combine the published literature with their private data and documents to create relevant, personal research collections. - Clifford Lynch
  • Librarians need to watch research trends and not be blindsided by the actions of researchers. Clifford Lynch
  • Promotion of literacy is one of the most relevant and possible future prospects and functions of librarians. Literacy allows people to function in society. - T. Scott Plutchak
  • If librarians do not provide the best service at the lowest cost, we will not succeed. - Rick Anderson
  • [Academic] Librarians are not necessarily seen by our institutions as the ones who should be doing these tasks (re. Institutional Repositories). There is a need for practical advice and discussion for planning for the future - libraries finding they have to argue and justify their budgets like never before - especially need to argue for more staff to accomplish these new tasks. - T. Scott Plutchak
  • There are 4 exponential laws all working at once right now - we need to be proactive, not reactive:
    • Moore's Law
    • Law of Fiber
    • Law of Storage
    • Metcalfe's Law
  • Also don't be a victim of Gorbachev's Syndrome where the initial leaders of a paradigm are left behind because they are holding on to legacy positions.- Bruce Heterick
  • Users don't want to learn more than 3 interfaces (I can agree with this, honestly) - we need to be in the flow and should not expect to teach them a different interface for every service or data provider.
  • This is a time of revolution, not evolution. - Jane Burke
If I were to boil this all down to a single theme, it would be that everything we as librarians do should be user-focused - from collections, , to licensing practices, to open access, to connecting users with information with whatever tools we can find to make it easier for the user. And we need to do it quickly.

I should clarify that the above list comes entirely from my thumb-typed notes, so are paraphrased, not actual quotes from any of the above. I apologize in advance if my interpretation is inaccurate.


  1. For what's it's worth, your quotes from me are accurate. And your conclusion is spot on.


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