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Link Round-up

Note: you read it here first: this blog will be moving soon (where “soon” is roughly equal to one or two weeks) to handsome new digs. You will get plenty of notice and lots of follow-on reminders… just wanted to alert you.

It’s been a couple of weeks since we did a link round-up, and that seems like a pleasant amuse bouche for a Monday in late August.

John Blyberg of Darien Library says that SOPAC 2.0 will be launching September 1. I’ve been watching this “discovery layer” project for some time, in part due to Insurge, an “Independent Social Repository” that will allow libraries to share social data. With SOPAC 1.0, John gained first-hand experience with the limitations of social data silos. John is always an interesting person to watch, because he’s deeply technical and yet tuned into the possibilities and strategies of social engagement.

On August 20, Villanova launched the open-source library software VuFind for its catalog. While playing with its clean, attractive interface, poking around with its relevance ranking and testing misspelled terms, I remembered this excellent article about the impact of spelling errors on discovery.
Equinox participated in a recent “Library 2.0 Gang” podcast about open source software. The question was primarily whether open source had changed vendor thinking, and of course it has. One point that didn’t surface enough is that the vendor world goes beyond the ILS vendors, to include vendor partners who find working with OSS simply easier all around.

Over at Mentat, Lori Ayre has an interesting post about learned helplessness. She makes a very strong point for librarian engagement in software development. That’s where we started, thirty or forty years ago. I wrote about those days in my biographical essay about Anne Lipow, which was a lot of fun to research (among other adventures, I spent many hours reading the weekly newsletters from the 1950s and 1960s for UC Berkeley’s libraries).