Thursday, June 19, 2008

Catching up on the Conference

Great session today on the future of news libraries. With all the recent announcements about buyouts and layoffs, some of us expected this to be a depressing session. Conversely, I think most of left encouraged and optimistic about the future. I believe we got the full audio recorded on this session. Amy will be posting that once she has caught up on sleep.

The session this morning on "There's gold in them thar files" also received great comments. You can view Elaine Raines presentation here.

The banquet Tuesday night had great food, drinks and company. Amy Disch presented the Vormelker-Thomas Student Award to Heather Cottle of the University of Missouri-Columbia. Chris Hardesty presented the Agnes Henebry award to Leigh Poitinger. Justin Scroggs presented the other Agnes Henebry award to me and also presented the Joseph F. Kwapil Memorial Award to Ginny Everett.

This Tuesday session, Using blogs, podcasts and newsgroups for competitive intelligence research, was pretty interesting. It was a session shared with the Competitive Intelligence Division and this presentation will not be posted to the Web. May have more information later about this.

I think there will be handouts forthcoming to the Web site from the other sessions on Tuesday that were not shared with other divisions, in particular the session on Web 2.0. Lots of interesting information from this session.

Although we had a smaller crowd at the conference this year, the silent auction on Monday night was quite successful. I don't remember hearing who won the pair of underwear from the Cleveland Plain-Dealer so I'm guessing some lucky person got that in the raffle of leftover items at the banquet on Tuesday night.

Jessica had already posted on her and Derek's great session. Keep checking the news division program for presentations and handouts. Several are up on that page.

And many pictures to come!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Technology Free-for-All

The links and some notes for Technology Free-for-All with Derek Willis of The New York Times and me are on j's scratchpad and

Monday, June 16, 2008

Gas Prices Across North America

With people gathered here from so many different places, I thought it might be interesting to compile a list of how much people paid for gas the last time they purchased it back home. List is below and I'll add names post-conference.

Wisconsin State Journal/The Capital Times $3.97 per gallon
Detroit Free Press, $4.05 per gallon
San Antonio Express-News, $3.89 per gallon
The Columbus Dispatch, $3.98 per gallon
St. Petersburg Times, $3.93 per gallon
San Diego Union-Tribune, $3.56 per gallon (a few weeks ago)
San Francisco Chronicle, California--$4.79 per gallon, Oregon $4.19 per gallon (fewer taxes in Oregon), Washington per gallon $4.39 (this person drove here)
The Ottawa Citizen, $1.29 per liter
Los Angeles--$4.59 per gallon
Tulsa World, $3.79 per gallon
San Jose Mercury News, $4.54 per gallon
Naples, Florida, $3.96 per gallon
Muskegon, Michigan, $4.18 per gallon

Sunday Evening in the Suite

On Sunday night, we had the meet and greet of the mentors and mentees in the News Division Suite. Shira Kavon, who does an excellent job organizing this event, provided gift bags to the mentors and mentees. The bags included many items such as coffee from Pennsylvania, M&Ms, a coffee mug and small magic 8 ball to ask questions about the future. When asked about the future of news libraries, a magic 8 ball responded with "Ask again." It was an opportunity for newbies to meet experienced conference attendees. We got to catch up with colleagues we knew and meet some new ones. Heritage Microfilm provided some great appetizers and beverages, dinner for some of us.

Sunday afternoon CE Course

On Sunday afternoon, several people attended the CE course, learning about researching social connections using Web sites such as Facebook and MySpace. Attendees learned how social networking services must become a crucial part of news research. Meg Smith, from the Washington Post, gave a great presentation in person and then Catharine Skipp, from Newsweek, joined virtually for the second half of the class. Smith's handout is here, also found on the SLA News Division Program page along with presentations and handouts from other sessions. Pictures from this session to come.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Suite times at SLA!

The News Division suite is in room 3315 of the Sheraton, just a short walk from the convention center. On Sunday night at 7:30 p, it opens for the mentor/mentee meet and greet. Monday is the silent auction. See you there for some sweet suite times!

Tour of The Seattle Times

About 20 to 25 people met at The Seattle Times early Saturday evening. We enjoyed a virtual tour of the intranet followed by a tour of the newsroom. We also enjoyed some light refreshments. Miyoko Wolf, a Seattle Times news researcher whose desk is in the newsroom, welcomed us. Katherine Long, Research editor/Weekly Review editor, provided the tour of the Seattle Times intranet, which is called the Cafe. Items on their intranet include the upcoming story plan/budget, forms for making requests from different newsroom departments, telephone directories, database lookups, an experts list and resources for reporters. After learning about the Cafe, Katherine and Miyoko took us on a tour of the newsroom. All of the newsroom staff are located on the same floor, but the floor is not a wide open newsroom as it is in some other shops. Different departments are in different corners. Two librarians share the library with the investigative team. It was an interesting and great evening! See a slideshow of pictures from the tour here.

SLA's Innovation Laboratory

So far, I think the best thing about which I've learned by coming to the SLA Annual Conference is that SLA has an online space where we can play with and learn about all kinds of technology called the Innovation Laboratory. It's just the thing we need to get our fingertips wet with the latest and greatest. There are learning videos, sandboxes where we can play, and a look at cutting edge technology. Daniel Lee, who like me is a candidate for director, told me a little bit about it during one of the board activities. One of the women who worked on it gave a presentation about it during the Leadership Development Institute Sunday morning.

News Division members Richard Geiger and Regina Avila worked on the 23 Things portion of the new online tools. It's a 9-step program to help us adjust to different technology.

Yay! What great resources!

Monday, June 09, 2008

Conference Time

The annual Special Libraries Association conference starts this weekend in Seattle. The News Division has a great program planned. Are there any conference attendees interested in blogging the conference? Space is available here. Just email me or NewsDiv webmaster Amy Disch to get set up with a password.

Or, if anyone's blogging separately, Twittering, or any other form of communication from the conference, send a link and we'll post it here. There is a new News Division Facebook page, which you can join if you're a Facebook member (or join Facebook).