June 7, 2011
You haven’t heard from me all spring because I’m retiring on June 15th and I have been spending most of my time winding down. I’m trying hard to document the procedures I have put together over the years. I have to accept that there are still items hiding in the dark back there that I haven’t found or haven’t figured out. Oh well, it won’t be fair to the next person if they didn’t have some mysteries, right?
It’s been fun sharing with you all and thanks again for all the great input you gave me when I was stuck on various problems.
January 28, 2011
It’s always interesting to try to pin down an answer to a question when you have incomplete information.
Example: You’re given names of three faculty members and asked when and what they taught. Hint: we think it was about 20 years ago.
Let’s see… We don’t have files by faculty names.
- College catalogs have the faculty listed.
- 20 years ago, let’s start with 1990 — nothing.
- Check catalogs going back 10 years at a time.
- Find one of the names in 1978. (20 years???)
- With each name there is a date for the year they started. Great, now go forward every year until they are no longer listed, then you know when they left.
The dates I came up with were 1967-79; 1961-66 and 1958-1965. Next problem, what courses did they teach?
- The courses are listed, but not the instructors.
- Check to see if there are any other faculty files anywhere.
- We have a some files described as “biographical information”.
- Find 2 names out of the 3.
- First has back type information only.
- Second…I can tell you what he was paid, when he asked to be excused from attending commencement. What’s this, a letter from the registrar telling him what rooms he was assigned for one semester, with the courses listed.
Well it’s better than nothing!
January 25, 2011
Last Friday I was part of a panel at the Pioneer (public) Library System meeting. The purpose was to get the libraries interested/excited about providing digital content to their patrons.
Blanche Warner of the Naples Public Library told about a community funded project that digitized a local person’s love letters, sent home during the Civil War. The project was outsourced. The search capability is good and the letters are a lot of fun to read. She also showed a clip of the local news doing a piece on the collection, great PR.
I talked about the things I wrote about in my last blog entry.
April Younglove and Debbie Emerson of the Rochester Regional Library Council (RRLC) talked about the FLAG Heritage project of putting local images on CONTENTdm. FLAG is in the process of merging with a similar New York State project, New York Heritage. They explained how the libraries could get involved and how much support they are able to give. (A lot)
It seemed like quite a few librarians were interested in pursuing some of these options. I hope they are able to follow through.
January 6, 2011
Wonderful. We upgraded our computers to Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro! Now, of course, my procedure for archiving the Faculty and Staff lists no longer works. (See post of April 3, 2008–that’s how long I’ve been doing it)
I used to do it by printing to PDF where I could change to properties to PDF/A. Now the print job just hangs up. If I make a PDF portafolio from the menu, I can’t make it PDF/A. I’ve written to the Adobe Forum, and Adobe support. I’ll let you know when (if) I figure it out. As always, if you have figured it out, please let me know.
I’ve decided to take the WordPress challenged to write every week this year. Wish me luck.
I was lucky enough to attended this workshop on archives security, sponsored by the New York State Archives. The presenter was Mimi Bowling and it was an excellent program. The handout is also great and includes samples of suggested forms and a selected bibliography. “True stories” of thefts added a lot to the day.
Topics covered included hiring practices, security systems, researcher room layout, researcher registration and paperwork in general. It is going to take a while to determine which of the solutions offered might be workable for our small archives. I don’t envision getting the funding necessary to install laser beam motion detectors and round the clock video cameras.
It’s not my personal style to make people jump through too many hoops to get to the materials they need. Too many years as a public librarian, I guess. But I think finding ways to have a tighter control are needed.
I’ll try to keep you up to date on the procedures we put in place, but in the mean time, if you get an opportunity to attend this workshop, I can recommend it highly.