Monthly Archives: January 2014


DBF is a beautiful writer.

This has always been one of her talents, whether it’s a letter or a thank you note or a beautifully crafted speech. She has a way with words, and I have been nudging her for years to jump into blogging so that we all might enjoy.

It has finally happened. North of the Tension Line is her new blog, with some exquisite essays posted that she wrote a few years ago. (Note: tissues may be helpful. Trust me.) And by the way, North of the Tension Line is the name of her new book,  which will be published by Beaufort Books in September. You’re gonna love it.

Wander on by and visit.

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Filed under Me and mine, Miscellaneous


It’s brutally cold here in the upper Midwest. The high today in Minnesota is supposed to be -15. Dangerous windchill factors. Blowing and drifting snow. Bleah.

I’m blessed enough to have a home that’s warm and snuggly, and a job that has me indoors. However, there are lots of folks out there that don’t have one or the other – or either.

When I was the public library director in western Nebraska, we would have patrons that would all but live in the library in the scorching hot days of summer, taking advantage of the air conditioning. I can’t help but wonder whether there are people in the life-threatening cold we’re experiencing that take advantage of the library and its warmth.

Random strangers rarely wander into my library these days, as it’s an academic library in an academic setting. Those of you in public libraries, though, are serving an additional purpose in this weather. Blessings be upon you.

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Filed under Libraries and Librarianship


The 23 Things has morphed into 23 Mobile Things.   Back in the day, I was one of the people helping to coordinate the 23 Things.  Now that I’m at another POW, I’m not in the loop on these things, though I do try to keep up.

In any case, I thought I’d officially see if there aren’t a few things I can still learn about this stuff.  My suspicion is that, yes, I can.

I’ll keep you posted. If you follow along on Twitter, watch for the hashtag 23ThingsMN.

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Filed under Libraries and Librarianship, Techie stuff

Failure to present

I’m looking at the program for Computers in Libraries and considering whether I will attend.  As I’m reviewing the program titles, I’m struck with the notion that I could be presenting at this conference, given the topics.   For instance: “Solving common issues with innovative collaboration.” That’s what UMR is all about.

What’s my holdup, I wonder? In my day-to-day work, I don’t think about whether what we’re doing here is special, or different, or innovative. Yet  MPOW has been written up in publications ranging from the Chronicle of Higher Education to, most recently, Forbes

I struggle to think of how I can present what we’re doing here at UMR, since it feels….routine. Yet, when I look at conference programs, I realize that we’re already doing some of the things that other presenters are talking about. I sometimes  sit and listen to presentations and wonder why I didn’t think to develop some presentation that talks about these things.

Part of it is a question of what topic I would present. How to create a library from scratch? How to talk to students about information literacy when you don’t have a physical collection? How to collaborate with the faculty on everything from information literacy to acting workshops?  

I’d love to hear from you. Would any of these interest you? What would you like to know about UMR and its virtual library?


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Filed under Libraries and Librarianship, Me and mine

3-D, redux

I’m beginning to change my mind on the topic of 3-D printers.  There have been stories of wonderful things people have done with these printers, one of which started to revise my opinion.

Now, someone has published a children’s book with the option to print the characters on a 3-D printer.  That, my friends, is seriously cool.

It’s enough to make me want to run out and get one for the library. Or me. Who knows?

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Filed under Techie stuff, Things that make you go, "Hmmm..."


Hello, world.

It has been a rough few months in my neck of the woods, but  even with a few new twists, things seem to be calming down. I haven’t been writing much, having fallen victim to the appeal of the pithy.  However, I’m going to try to get back to this forum more often.

Hope you’re all still there. If not, I’ll be here.  Wander by if you feel like saying hi.


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Filed under Me and mine