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Monday, May 21, 2018

Happy Library and Information Week!

So, it's 2018, and the times are a-changin'!

We've recently had a change-over in committee, and are having a make-over with our online presence. We're starting fresh with a new blog, so from now on, please direct your browser to:

You can also follow us on Social Media:

- Our Facebook Group for connecting with one another and managing your PD calendar with us.
- Our Twitter account for those of you who prefer to tweet.

And, of course, we still have our e-list where we will send regular details of upcoming events.

So, hopefully we'll see you around the territory in the near future.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Noel Butlin and ANU Archives Tour July 2017

Maggie Shapley (ANU archivist) led the tour of the  ANU and Noel Butlin Archives  on 26 July 2017.  A small crowd of librarians and records managers turned up to explore the repository situated over the  Parkes Way Tunnel.  Maggie explained that  the Noel Butlin Archives centre had originally been designed as an underground carpark so it is not designed in its floor loadings to carry the heavy compactuses of  purpose built  Archives. The staff have done a  great job of storing the  various collections in archival  quality  storage boxes and  making do with the shelves they had .  Various numbering  systems has been  changed and started  by different archivists. Under Maggie a major achievement has been pulling of all these diverse systems into the one relational discovery system.

 Maggie and  Sarah Lethbridge the Senior Archivist had gone to some pains to  draw out  interesting items in their collections to  show  us on the tour and  we all enjoyed the show and tell. The Noel Butlin Archives is a mixture of company records and union records so many family historians  use the Noel Butlin Archives to find out about their ancestors involvement in   certain unions or  firms  as well as academic researchers doing formal research into  such organisations. The range of topics researched include industrial relations, immigration, working women, indigenous employment, architecture, economic history, family history, social history in Australia and the Pacific, and on particular industries such as agriculture, timber, shipping, mining, brewing, advertising and finance The ANU Archives holds corporate as well as personal papers of ANU academics. Several interesting collection items were  the   research and mapping of the many pubs in Sydney based on the Tooth company records and the  pamphlets and photos of the  spartan ANU campus and  sparse settlement of Canberra of the 1940s used  to market ANU  and to entice British academics to migrate to  Canberra. To me personally a very interesting  collection were the unions banners  used by various trade unions as part of their Mayday celebrations. I was  also intrigued to see the  very old  minute books of   one of Australian’s earliest trade unions ,  the stone masons of New South Wales. The  collection of old sporting trophies from the old forestry school reminded me of the stories my mother an old Canberra girl use to narrate.  Learning about how they physically   treat the collection by freezing  to  keep pests like silver fish out was another interesting aspect. It certainly beats reading about such things . The  physical process of digitising various  memorable papers and  other items in the collection was an eye opener for me.  Afterwards all of us remarked how much we had gained from going on the  tour and discovering for ourselves the ANU and Noel Butlin Archives.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Kym Holden library leader and volunteer 2017

Kym HOLDEN tribute 2017

Kym Holden, our colleague and stalwart of the Canberra library community recently retired. Kym has been a pillar of the library community from many years and often we have genuinely appreciated her contribution. Kym has been one of the quiet achievers who volunteers and is volunteered to work on many activates and does so very competently and quietly. Her strategic insight, sound approach and calm leadership skills have been much appreciated by ALIA colleagues throughout her career in special libraries.
Kym Holden has been an Associate Member of Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) since 1996.
Her notable contributions have been many and varied
  • She has been an active participant in ALIA Canberra groups and events over these 21 years and remains on the national ALIA Special Library and Information Services Advisory Committee.
  • Kym was also a valued member of the Charles Sturt University ALIA course accreditation panel in 2016.
  • Kym by her work for ALIA and AGLIN has encouraged capacity building and knowledge sharing for library staff across the ACT including:
    • contribution to Information Awareness month which has effectively raised the profile of libraries within the information professions and supported many professional development activities
    • Contributed to the ACTive ALIA committee by organising events
    • Providing mentoring and support to many of her professional colleagues.

Kym has been the team leader of a number of government libraries over a span of years.
She has achieved much such as:
  • considerable achievements in the workplace including delivery of new online training services, development of library intranets and information skills in the department, reflecting extraordinarily well on the skills and knowledge of the profession
  • willingly sharing with colleagues her innovative library practices.
In addition to her work in the ACT, Kym has made a major contribution to Australian government libraries through her leadership in the Australian Libraries Government Information Network (AGLIN).
Kym was a volunteer with AGLIN for over a decade where she led and contributed to both the Executive Committee and the AGLIN Training and Development Committee.
She has been a passionate supporter of Government Libraries both through her ideas and contributions in advancing the learning within Government Libraries and also in mentoring new committee members. 
Her contributions to AGLIN include:
  • As the longest serving Executive Committee member, Kym developed a wealth of corporate knowledge which was invaluable for assisting with the decision making within the Committee.
  • Kym’s dedication in personally supporting the more general tasks of assisting at Forum registrations, being the AGLIN chair of ceremonies at AGLIN Forums and events.
  • Kym was a volunteer with AGLIN for over a decade where she led and contributed to both the Executive Committee and the AGLIN Training and Development Committee.
Government librarians and information specialists owe her a debt of gratitude.
ACT ALIA wishes her the very best in her retirement.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Linked data: time to act

More than 50 librarians, archivists, information professionals and interested community members attended a presentation on 20th February by Karen Smith Yoshimira, Senior Project Officer, OCLC on Linked data - bringing the world closer together.

The full presentation is available online Linked data: bringing the world closer

Karen started by reminding us that in 2006, Tim Berners-Lee published a blog post in the w3c web space. It featured an image that became an icon of the linked data movement: the coffee cup with the five stars. She drew our attention to two points:
*The text:  make links to things. Use a special kind of identifier [called a URI] to name things; include more URIs so people can discover other things. URIs: Identifiers that are persistent, unique, resolved with existing web protocols.
*The insight: This appears to be describing hypertext, but it is different from the web we know. It is about things in the world. URIs are collection points for information about them. By interacting with the web, we are getting information about objects, and not just reading documents.

She noted that from the research of Lynn Connaway (The Library in the life of the user) “Students’ information searches have evolved from browsing books in the stacks to submitting online queries to Google because is quicker.”

Taking a deep dive into Google knowledge Card and WorldCat she explored how unleashing bibliographic information can add to the user journey increasing visibility of works and linking translations.

The linked data sites mentioned in the OCLC 2015 International Linked Data Survey for Implementers provided a rich set of examples that she discussed including Europeana, the Digital Public Library of America, National Diet Library projects, German National Library projects and Pratt Institute Linked Jazz project.

Her summary remarks inspired us all to look at how we can use linked data to achieve greater visibility and access to the digitized resources from the GLAM sector:
       Linked data can bring the world closer together through a worldwide web of data
       It will likely take years for library data to be ingested in the websites where information seekers live and learn
       Library data can help bridge the world across both domains and languages through more linked and actionable data
       And that’s a Good Thing

Roxanne Missingham
University Librarian (Chief Scholarly Information Services)
The Australian National University

Friday, November 18, 2016

Tour of interim ACU Canberra Library 24 October 2016

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Proposed new library

A group of us gathered at  the Australian Catholic University (ACU) , Signadou campus Monday 24 October 2016 to visit the  interim library. ACU Canberra is  transitioning to a new library building but until that happens  some contingency  measures have been put in place. Helena Zobec the  campus library manager lead a tour of the interim portable library building . This building was needed so space could be freed up for the nursing labs and to house a growing collection.  The collection has been accommodated well in this  “big shed “ of a demountable and an airlock corridor put in place to link the library  access and computer  labs to the  demountable building. 
Helena  told us of the challenges in moving the collection into the demountable to make sure it was in the  correct  Dewey order when reshelved and the issues faced when using a demountable building that is  poorly insulated and can be very hot in summer. She recounted  how these issues had been managed and to some extent overcome to  make  the best use of the interim  building. Helena also  told us of the challenges of   planning for the new multi-use  building that is being designed to house both the  library and  to service other uses. The new building   will be a joy to work in for library staff  and well used  by   the studentsoffering   space to expand the collection, private and group study areas and  more room for  the information commons areas. What was  interesting was that  the new library will at long last have a separate tea room for library staff who currently eat at their desks or in the rose gardens if the  weather is fine. It was an enjoyable library tour  and I was glad I had gone along  to see the  interesting architecture of the former convent  building on the campus..
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Helen Zobec Canberra Campus Library Manager

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Parliamentary Library innovations synopsis 26 July 2016

A good  crowd turned up  to hear Sam Spencer and Liz Luchetti of the  Parliamentary Library present on the innovative products they have created or adapted to the needs of their politician  clients. Liz presented on the overview of what the parliamentary library does and how it must  rigorously meet the demands of their select clientele. She explained how the library  canvassed to understand the needs by surveying their users each year as well as keep  a finger on  the day to day pulse of what users requested . Sam  gave us a picture of the  new products they had created in the past year such as streaming news for their  clients to access on mobile devices in their electorates well outside the  infrastructure of the Parliament House. Sam gave a rundown on how he is morphing the Parliamentary Handbook in an elegant extensible online version that can harvest data on individual politicians from other sources .

The Parliamentary Library has recently recruited a Library Innovation Manager. The Parliamentary Library recognises that this is an important strategic position that has a significant information technology component. The appointment of a Library Innovation Manager continues an established program of innovation within the Parliamentary Library. Liz Luchetti, Assistant Secretary, Library Collections and Databases Branch and Sam Spencer, Library Innovation Manager, will talk about past, present and future Library innovation and demonstrate their favourite innovative products that enhance the delivery of library services  - the new parliamentary handbook data management system and the news services currently available via the mobile Web@Workapp. In addition they will provide some tips on how to engage staff in the innovation process. 

 Innovations in the Parliamentary Library presentation

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Bring Up the bodies synopsis 21 June 2016

Many of you came to  our interesting and to me  very exciting Bring up the bodies expose on  gems in  two major archival collections here in Canberra. Kylie Scoope from the  National Library  Manuscripts collections and Rhonda King from the National Archives of Australia  catalogued for us  interesting items in their collections. Kylie focused on items that touched on body parts such as the locks of hair saved in the  Macquarie family collection or Patrick White’s beret and glasses.  Rhonda took a  gleeful look  at  gems like the Marmalade files and  intelligence reports on  suspected individuals, Many there said it was a fun  and illuminating session for  them as many are unaware of the great jewels held by the  various   archives. Now  those not present can enjoy these presentation as well. We are so lucky to have great speakers in Canberra

Bring up the Bodies: oddities and quirks in archival collections (Rhonda King, National Archives of Australia)

Bring up the Bodies: oddities and quirks in archival collections (Kylie Scroope, National Library of Australia)