Changing the Face of Librarianship

07/07/2012 § 19 Comments

L-R: 2011 Spectrum Scholar Teresa Silva, 2011 Spectrum Scholar LaToya Devezin, 2009 Spectrum Scholar Stephen X. Flynn, 2011 Spectrum Scholar Ana Elisa de Campos Salles, 2011 Spectrum Scholar Jarrett Drake

Editor Note: This is a guest post by Jarrett Drake

“The Incunabula. I’d like to see them,” said a patron in a muffled tone. “Can you repeat that?” I responded unassumingly. “The Incunabula, the Incunabula!” she exclaimed, her voice rising with each repetition. After a brief hesitation of speech that left my mouth quite unable to repeat her enunciations, the patron interjects, “You’re not familiar with the Incunabula? Are you a librarian?”

And that’s where I’ll stop. For the record, I’m not a librarian (yet). But if there’s one takeaway from my attendance at the 2012 Spectrum Leadership Institute and the 2012 ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, it’s that the future of libraries—and indeed, librarianship—is a changing face. As emerging professionals, we library and information students mustn’t simply notice that change, but champion it.

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Hack ALA Annual: Recovery

27/06/2012 § Leave a comment

We are slowly getting reacclimatized to real life after an absolutely fantastic and overwhelming time at ALA Annual over the weekend. We learned, we networked, we were inspired, we picked up tons of great freebies in the exhibit hall, we partied hard and we generally geeked out on all things LIS.

We hope you enjoyed the event — either in reality or virtually — as much as we did. It was an absolute pleasure to meet so many of you in Anaheim.

We are working on various posts to summarize the event and share our experiences, expect those to roll out in the coming weeks. In the meantime you can continue to contribute to the #HLSConvo and of course browse our archive to find applicable content to your current hacking needs.

- Your Friendly LIS Hackers

[Series] Hack ALA: Eating Right at Conferences

15/06/2012 § 1 Comment

Joanna recently wrote on why you should attend conferences, Brianna wrote about presenting at them, and PC Sweeney wrote about how to be awesome at going to conferences, but what happens when you get there and you are starving for food you can actually eat? Vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, Paleo/Primal – these are just some of many specialized diets out there. Sticking to any diet is tough and takes plenty of willpower. For many people who have food allergies, there just isn’t a choice in the matter. Traveling complicates things because you are forced to eat out more, and you don’t know what is available to you. Many of the tips tell you to eat for free and take advantage of the multitudes of vendor lunches. That’s well and good, but only if you don’t have any dietary restrictions. What about the folks who do?

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[Series] Hack ALA: Annual Party!

13/06/2012 § 1 Comment

Today we’ve got a special guest post from JP Porcaro with lots of advice and fun events to check out this year at ALA. He’s a 2012 Mover and Shaker, head guy at 8-bit library, and tweets at @8bitlibrary.

Hey hacklibschool team, JP here (you know, #partyhard #makeithappen guy). If there’s one regret I have from when I was in library school, it’s not getting involved in the ALA immediately. There’s no larger library community in the USA! My advice to everyone: if there’s one conference you attend every year (besides your state association conference), it should be ALA.

The reason ALA Annual is such an important event is because you get to meet people. Real , flesh-and-blood people. You meet them, build relationships with them, and party hard with them.

It’s not so hard to find new people to meet, because it’s such a gigantic conference,  but there’s some events I am especially excited about that I’d love for you to attend! Add these all to your conference scheduler (and if you aren’t coming to the conference, there’s still time! in fact, I haven’t even booked my flight yet).

Almost every link is direct to the conference scheduler, so you can use this post to build your conference schedule via ALA Connect. Shouts to Jenny Levine, just in general, but also for the conference scheduler.


7pm: ALA Think Tank kicks it off right with the ALA Think Tank Tiki Party. If you don’t know about ALA Think Tank, now you know.


9am: Annual 2012 Unconference is always worth waking up for. You meet fabulous people from across the country, from all different types of libraries, with various world experiences and skill sets, and share ideas with them.

3pm: Emerging Leaders Poster Session and Reception is the best mix of the old-school of the ALA & the new-school of us young folks. Everybody gets along, trades business cards, chats…it’s one of the BEST events at ALA that is presented sans-alcohol.

7:30pm: ALAplay is the most fun event at Annual every year. It’s the most relaxed event for sure, and brings together folks from lots of different committees, divisions, etc. Also, there’s cosplay at it, which is a spectacle for those of us not dressed up. I did don a red wig for it last year which was killer. :)

10pm: ALA Dance Party III is the premier party at ALA and needs no introduction. Last year it was one of the top-twenty highest-attended events according to the conference scheduler!


10:30am: Games and Gaming Forum (GameRT). The reason I put this is because GameRT is the ALA’s newest round table and this is their first event as an official organization. Get involved with it as it rises from the ground-up. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that games are fun.

5pm: Happy Hour (RUSA MARS) has the word “happy hour” in it. Happy is good.

7:30pm: 6th ALA Annual 2012 Newbie & Veteran Librarian Tweet-up is just a laid-back great time to meet librarians who you might know digitally but not personally. I’ve attended every tweetup and have great memories of all of them.

10pm: #ala12 After Hours / LibrarianWardrobe Walkoff Contest! Other than Dance Party, this is THE social event to attend for 6 years running (maybe more?). With the additional fun of running their fashion show walkoff contest, it looks to be the best after-hours event yet.


5:30pm: LITA Happy Hour has moved to Sunday night, and I’m very pleased about that, because it is  one of the events that you’ll see MOST of the twitter people at all in the same place! I am particularly thrilled that it’s moved so it doesn’t interfere with ALAPlay! No conflicts, double fun.

6:30pm: Student Reception (NMRT) is also Sunday night, so if you wanna do a “networking pub crawl”, add this to the list.

7pm: Hacklibschool / Library Boing Boing Meetup ;)


2:45pm: Librarian Wardrobe #ala12 Conversation Starter Session. Style and Stereotypes: Perceptions of Librarians – join a panel + discussion on style and stereotypes of librarians, perceptions inside and outside of the field.

5:30pm: Battledecks 2012! If you kick-off the conference with Think Tank, end it here! Another fun fun fun event that needs to be seen to be believed. I competed 2 years ago (won the bronze medal!), judged last year, and this year just wanna chill with all my hacklibschool ppl. Let’s #makeTHAThappen! And i’m sure we’ll all find some informal locations to share our library stories with after.


Recover. Sleep on your flight. Or find me & PC Sweeney and we’ll drink some mimosas before heading back to our libraries.

One last thing, Mango Languages always throws a killer party, and this year it’s at a bowling alley. You need an invite, though, so hit them up at their booth in the exhibit hall for the pass to the party!

LIBRARIANS ASSEMBLE, #partyhard, #makeithappen.


To make things a lot easier, here is the ALA Annual #partyhard map. Use it well.

[Series] Hack ALA: Our Recommended Sessions

11/06/2012 § 1 Comment

Editor’s Note: We are happy to kick off our second annual Hack ALA week! We’ll be dedicating posts this week to all things conference-y and professional. As students, it’s important to get your feet wet in the LIS professional world early, and as often as your budget allows. While these posts are ALA-themed, much of the advice can be applied to other professional networking situations.
These are just some sessions that we think are orientated towards library school students. We also encourage you to independently explore sessions that you are interested in. Also be sure to check out the exhibitors hall and the Networking Uncommons while you’re at the conference.

HLS Stuff

Conversation Starters: Hacking Library School

When: Saturday, June 23, 2012 – 10:30 am- 11:15am

This conversation starter seeks to bring together students and professionals to talk about issues pertaining to our education and our field. It will be a moderated conversation with guiding questions such as: What aspects of library school curriculum prepare you for the job? What emerging technologies enrich your education? How do you “hack” library school? Hack Library School is about being the change that you want to see. What would you change? We hope to see you there!

Hacklibschool / Library Boing Boing Meetup

When: Sunday, June 24, 2012 – 7:00pm-9:00pm

Come meet the #makeithappen crowd at the joint Hacklibschool / Library Boing Boing Meetup at The Ranch Restaurant & Saloon (1025 E. Ball Rd., on Sunday evening. We’ll be waiting for you in the Saloon.

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