Friday, April 28, 2006

Interesting People, Interesting Blogs (Part 2)

I came across a few more bloggers that I believe are worth reading.

What I Learned Today... is a blog by Nicole C. Engard. She explains that her blog is about "Web 2.0 and programming tips from a library web manager." It covers "blogs, rss, wikis, php programming and more as they relate to libraries." A lot of good techie stuff.

For readers out there who speak and read French, I came across Figoblog, a blog about the Internet, librarianship, and "la confiture de figues." (Rough translation: fig jam.)

Figoblog appears to be based in France, but he/she is fully immersed in what's going on around the world regarding digitization and digital preservation (hey, Figoblog even linked to my post on the preservation of blogs.)

Aaahh, the power of blogs.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Interesting People, Interesting Blogs

In between scanning job sites and updating my resume this morning (ho-hum), I came across a blog by Eric Lease Morgan, Head of the Digital Access and Information Architecture Department at the University Libraries of Notre Dame (bio here).

Morgan's Infomotions, Inc. blog/consulting website offers some interesting insights--or musings, as he calls them--on library technology and its impact on delivering information.

More writings:

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Career Reinvention

I read an interesting article in the Montreal Gazette's "Working" section the other day ( Saturday, April 22, 2006) called "Dive right in."

The article focuses on and discusses the points mentioned in a career planning book titled Working Identity: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your Career by Herminia Ibarra, a former teacher at Harvard University, now a teacher at INSEAD, an international business school in Fountainbleau, France.

Ibarra's argument runs contrary to traditional career advice; she recommends that people wanting a career change or wishing to reinvent their career paths should go out there and do it rather than plan every little detail before acting (lest paralysis by analysis settles in, that's my additional opinion).

Considering the career roller-coaster ride that I am currently on (I resigned from my job in March, am now working as an independent web consultant and web designer at a downtown hospital, but still looking for better), I think the article, the book, and the thoughts the author puts forward are well worth mentioning in The DIGITAL Archive.

I suspect this blog may have a few library or archival studies students, as well as a number of established librarians, archivists, and information professionals, who may be seeking a (new) career direction or who are in the midst of reinventing their careers.

I think this post will be worth your time.

Before I dive in to the "Dive right in" article (no pun intended), I want thank one blogger by the name of Will Richardson whose educational blog Weblogg-ed: the read/write web in the classroom first shed light (to me at least) on the concept of reinventing one's career. Browse on over to his February 7, 2006 posting in which he announces his decision to leave his current job to pursue "(a)nother path, one that I hope leads to satisfying, engaging, urgent work. Urgent work."

I really like that line!

OK, now on to the Montreal Gazette article...I wish I could add a URL here, but unfortunately the Gazette has locked this article, making it only available to online subscribers.

For those with access to an online newspaper database, try searching for "Dive right in" and "Strategies to reinvent your career" by Donna Nebenzahl, Montreal Gazette, Saturday, April 22, 2006.

Herminia Ibarra, author of Working Identity: Unconventional Strategies for Reinventing Your Career, suggests 9 "unconventional" strategies for reinventing one's career.
  1. Act, then reflect - You cannot discover yourself by introspection. (I think French author Albert Camus made this point in his novella The Outsider).
  2. Flirt with yourselves - Stop trying to find your one true self, she recommends. Test out your various selves, your various ideas, in the real world, where concrete behaviour and feedback give you new insights.
  3. Live the contractions - A little unclear this one, but she suggests one allows oneself to oscillate between holding on and letting go of ideas when in the midst of transition.
  4. Make big changes in small steps - Don't make big sudden changes, she argues. Like the construction of a sky-scraper, take one small step at a time in re-building your career.
  5. Experiment with new roles - Try out new roles or styles of working by pursuing them as extracurricular activities. Vary experiments as much as possible to get as much feedback as possible.
  6. Find people who are what you want to be - Look for role models.
  7. Don't wait for a catalyst - Don't wait for some big event to reveal your true calling (dang, no Luke Skywalker moment, folks). Use everyday events to find meaning in your transition period and soon clarity will occur.
  8. Step back, but not for too long - Take a break from the norm and away from that which is familiar. A day's hike or doing something that removes you from the usual surroundings are useful moments to reflect.
  9. Seize windows of opportunities - Take advantage of windows of opportunities as they open.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Time for some R and R

I noticed that I have not been posting much lately.

Perhaps there's not a lot to say at the moment. Perhaps the DIGITAL Archive is undergoing some growing pains (the DIGITAL Archive was a project-based blog, detailing a specific project I once worked on while employed in the McGill University Archives).

Maybe that could be the reason.

Or perhaps it's just a slow news day, as they say in the journalism business.

Well, rather than filling this space with, well, filler, I think I will take some time to off - a break from the blogosphere.

Actually, make that a break from blogging - I will still find time to read other people's blogs since I find those I subscribe to interesting and informative.

Also, there is still work to be done: the medical library website re-design project continues. As well as my on-going job search.

It's been touch and go--the job search, that is--since March 3, 2006, the day I ended my time at McGill. Not sure why it's been so rough. It's been tough enough that I often wonder and question my future in the archival/library/information field. As far as I am concerned, librarianship is a difficult field to enter, a tough nut to crack.

Although I feel a little discouraged, I nonetheless hate ending a post on a negative note.

It's Spring out there, folks. The sun stays out longer, the grass is getting greener - at least in this part of the Western hemisphere.

Time to take some r&r: a little rest and relaxation.

Surely, summer--and brighter days--is right around the corner.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Blog Item: Health Problems Related to the Geek Lifestyle

If you suffer from the following health conditions, you might be a geek:

1. Poor Sleeping Habits
2. Headaches
3. Back Pain
4. Poor Attention Span

More >>

Health Problems Related to the Geek Lifestyle » Carotids.Com

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

...And we're back!

Yes, I am back, after several days away from the blogosphere; and I am back with a very good posting that I read on Jill Hurst-Wahl's Digitization 101 blog.

The posting focuses on non-traditional career paths for librarians. It's a nice piece, full of insight and information for librarians and information professionals who seek to pursue a, well, non-traditional career path.

Overall, the posting covers a lot ground, but it's all good.

With my university archives experience and now my web design work in a medical library, I definitely fit the description of someone wanting a career path that differs from the norm - one that realizes the value of information, embraces technology in its many evolving forms, and makes a connection with and helps people along the way.

I truly believe this library/information field is going through some major changes and challenges. On the one hand, the future of the field is dependent on it transforming itself to face new realities; but, on the other hand, are library school's across Canada and the United States teaching the next-generation set of skills, let alone aware of them?

I wrote about this in an article that was published in the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Spectrum magazine (October 2001). (Shameless plug.)

On a side note, the Digitization 101 posting also mentions an article in Searcher magazine (July/August 2002) called "A Resume that Works." That article (and the entire issue, for that matter), is one of the best information professional magazines I have read. Try and find a copy!

about the author

I am an information professional, researcher, and writer with over eight years experience in the information services field with experience in information and communication technology.

I have a B.A. in History and a Master's in Library and Information Studies and working on a Web and Multimedia Design certificate.

I believe that empowering people with information can enrich lives and transform the world.