Tag Archives: english

I’m listening to “This Is The End” by The Doors

29 Nov

Thing 23: Reflection – What next?

Ok, here we are. The final post about cpd23. Right near the deadline. I’ve did it!

Glad to participate to the program, discovering the UK situation for librarians, and compare with italian’s situation. There’s a lot of good ideas, initiatives and librarians. (My only regret was seeing too much cpd23-bloggers disappear slowly from my feed reader…)

As I expected, it force me to blog semi-regularly. This led me to consider another approach to blog posting: “write less, post more“. I think a lot about my work and follow some news, so why not share more thoughts?

Mantain this blog and try to create conversations is the first task on my Personal Development Plan. By now, every other task is “finish-to-read-that-damn-book” related (this and this) or something like “organize-yourself-remember-what-free-time-means“.

Sometimes I think about the language issue (english? italian? both?), but given the difficult I’ve found to mantain both, I think the majority of future post will be italian only (sooo saaad). Maybe some tech post will be only in english, who knows….

ok, done, also the survey….now gimme the certificate! 😛

save your reference will save your time

24 Set

Thing 14: Zotero / Mendeley / citeulike

(vai alla versione in italiano)

Back from the summer, back to work. Well…indeed I’ve worked all the time…by the way, sorry for the late late late late post.
Cpd23 is near the end and my reflection are still on 22 august….

Talk about Zotero, Mendeley and citeulike is all about bibliographic reference. I must admit that my experience with this topic is very low. During my studies I encounter these kind of tools, but never start to use them seriously (sometimes Zotero, but Mendeley application for Linux was not so good). Also, after my degree, I’ve faced two obstacles:
1. no need to manage bibliographic reference, ‘cause no one ask me to produce scholarly articles etc etc
2. I felt in the “too-work-no-time-for-organization” sindrome

After a year or so, finally I’ll have to produce scholarly articles and the second point will become “all-my-work-is-a-matter-of-organization”….so I hope to improve my use of those tools, at least to suggest them to people that really need.

I think the better tool for manage bibliographic reference is Mendeley, because rather than Zotero or citeulike has a client not tied to a browser. So, if you have a bunch of documents that you need to reorganize, you should use Mendeley (my case…).
I never used citeulike, but Zotero has always been tied to my browser. It’s funny because I use it to review websites rather than to save references.
Like other firefox addons (for example DublinCore viewer), it show me if the site take care about metadata.

Now that I’m actively developing a (so-called) next generation catalog I must take care about how to tell to Zotero (and others) “hey, this content it’s for you”. My decision was to implement COinS (ContextObject in SPAN) to embed citation metadata in HTML. It’s a simple but effective technique. Ask your vendor to implement it 😛

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tools to do things togheter

31 Ago

Thing 13: Google Docs, Wikis and Dropbox

Google Docs

Got it! I use a lot Google Docs, instead of Evernote, if I’m on other’s pc or devices and must store a lot of information to check later.
It’s really useful also for sharing and create documents for a group. I used it, for example, to keep updated the radio schedule at university radio, to plan group trip or to work on document translations. When Google Wave made its appearance we tested it a couple of times, it seemed like google docs but with more integration with other sharing tools.
I’m very sourprised whenever I find someone who doesn’t know google docs.


I knew it but registered only a month ago to share docs with some friends who use it. (Shame on me, cause another friend of mine ask me for registration two years ago to increase his available space…).
As for every tool, it depends on with whom you use and for what purpose. Until now Google Docs was enough, and if I had to share something more heavier I used some FTP account of sites I manage.
However, I know Dropbox is a good way to mantain an online repository. I’m just a little bit scared about synchronization, because I’m very messy. Until one year ago I used to have only one pc, now the devices are grown and I must find the time to make order.
P.S. dropbox for linux is easier on GNOME, but it works also on KDE.


I always find wiki syntax annoying. Maybe because I speak HTML, or because every wiki engine differs from the others. However, wiki concept and use is very helpful. I contributed very little to Wikipedia, but plan to add some contribution in the early future.
I suggest the following LIS wikis:

Also, I’ve studied “wikis”, because TRAC (our project tracking system) use it, and also I developed our ILS user manual with dokuwiki.
P.s. coff coff…nobody from our librarian customers contribute to the ILS manual….coff coff….until now…coff coff…who know the future….

Briefly on degrees, mentoring and social media

15 Ago

(vai alla versione in italiano)

Thing 10: Graduate traineeships, Masters Degrees, Chartership, Accreditation

If you want to know about training in Italy, I think you must look at this page on AIB site: http://www.aib.it/aib/form/form.htm3 (italian only)
There are listed a lot of courses (at univerity or not). Most of the informations may be out-of-date due to the continuos changes in universities assets (I think to Ca’ Foscari where, as I know until last year, LIS master course was merged with Padova’s one), but could be a good start point.
In addition, AIB offers a lot of useful courses during the year.

Anyhow, I’m not a librarian 🙂
I graduated in Japanese Language and Culture, then in Humanities Computing. It was a course intended for humanists that want to improve their informatics skills. A lot of my collegues now works in agencies or as communication experts. I took the library way, focused my thesis on ILS and been luckily hired by a very good italian company that develop its own ILS.
As far as I know, my master cannot be compared to a LIS master.

Thing 11: Mentoring

Sadly I didn’t find a mentor inside university. Indeed I never thought about mentoring as presented in the cpd23 post and don’t think that in the future I will present myself to a person with something like “please be my mentor“.
I would rather try to keep my mood on “don’t be shy to ask“. It’s the mood with which I started my job and think that’s a good point to develop a relation based on sharing knowledge.

Thing 12: Putting the social into social media

Don’t know what to say about social media. In a “profersonal” world doesn’t matter if I follow you on twitter, facebook or on your ’90s-static-site-without-a-simple-rss-feed. The matter is only if I follow you. The good point about social media is that they shift the conversations on a more comfortable environment, without many unnecessary formalisms. Indeed I don’t think we should thank social media but the Internet.

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Calendar and notes management

28 Lug

(vai al sommario in italiano)

Thing 8: Google calendar

Simply: I use it.

Also, I suggest Lightning if you use Thunderbird to manage emails. It provide integration with Google Calendar at least for events, not for tasks. (as well as having the possibility to convert emails in tasks and events).

Finally, I think Google Calendar could be more suitable for sharing events than for time management. Even if I suppose that between Google Calendar and me, is the second to have a bigger problem with time management.

Thing 9: Evernote

I knew it, but: there’s no version for LINUX!!! Hey! Evernote-people from the outer space: linux came before iPad!!!

So, back to the problem:

You want to be able to make comments on webpages and archive them along with your own notes so that everything is all in the one place and easy to access.

then back to Evernote alternatives. Tried and used some of the listed for a lot, especially Tomboy and Zim. Now it’s from about 6 months I’m using CherryTree (sometimes google docs too).
I know, there a bit of difference between Evernote and an offline (sort-of) wiki. But, frankly, I don’t have frequently that kind of problem. If I find an interesting page I decide if: subscribe it via RSS, read it later, save on bookmark, twitt it, write something about. For the rest CherryTree seems fine to me.

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In network we trust

27 Lug

(vai al sommario in italiano)

Thing 6: Online networks

As previously said (somewhere, don’t ask a link, doesn’t matter, I’ve said, I’m sure I did) social networks are increasingly important in my everyday life.
Once upon a time in the far far web, it was a matter of “where I am” aka “I’m the first in, I won“. Sadly, for every shiny people time passes, no new connection were developed, so even the beautiful social network means “with who I’m inside” and “how I use it“.
I don’t play anything so I had to delete my MySpace account. What’s then? Facebook? Ah, yes, it’s the only place where I can find (almost) all my friends, and is the only tool they use to stay in touch (they don’t read nor reply to mail, don’t use blog, twitter or feed reader). Without fear for privacy (my updates and a lot of other informations are available only for my contact – not their networks) Facebook it’s a place for my friends, where I read their updates, chat with them and browse their photos.
LinkedIn seem the tool for the professional side, sadly even here I’m not in touch with a lot of professional, because everything started with friends connection. So I’m connected with a lot of humanists, but just a few of my connection reflect my actual professional side. Anyhow, I see a lot of professional people that use it like a social network for professional and prefer to read linkedin updates instead of twitter ones.
I love code4lib, it’s an informal (but really wide) group about people who code for libraries (unexpected?). I’m on the mailing list for 2 years, I think I’ve wrote 1 or 2 emails, but only cause I’m at the start of my profession.
Last week I discovered shambrarian international and fall in love with it’s philosophy, rules and passion for the beer. After a lot of time trying to explain myself my role on the lib-world, I think I’ve found the right place.
Google+ seems well done with its circles, but I return to the same questions (who use it? for what?). Until become clear for me what kind of niche google+ could be useful for, there’s no place for it 😛

Thing 7: Face-to-face and professional organization

Woha! UK and USA and the rest of the WORLD have a loooot of good organization.
In Italy there’s AIB. I’m not inside AIB, mainly because I’m too young, I think 😛
I’m following AIB mailing list (AIB-CUR), that’s distributed to more than 6000 accounts, I went to a couple of convention in 2008 and 2009, I read AIB publications if I can.
Despite my criticism with AIB (as it seems, to me, now), I’ve ended thinking that in Italy isn’t a matter of Library Association but of Librarianship as a discipline and a respectable job.
So, enlightened by the words of Enrico, I’m seriously thinking to stop my professional idenity crisis about been a librarian or a developer or an elephant or a refrigerator….and subscribe to AIB.

Ah, a special mention to virtual meeting online. I’m joined it near the end, but really appreciated. It was funny, shyness therapy, and a fast way to share idea,questions&answers.

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You had better stop and think before you think, think!!

17 Lug

Thing 5: Reflective practice

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mumble, mumble… I’m reflecting on the reflective practice….
I thought to be reflective. In fact I share Katie’s point of view about what it really means to me: “thinking about what you’ve done and are doing“.
Thinking this, as stated on the presentation of the lesson, the main difficult is time. And when i say “time” i mean “practice” 😛
So, if you’re not used to spend time to rethink what you’ve done, the entire practice could be difficult.

But been introduced to the reflective practice with its literature bring me a little further. First of all, even if you’re used to think on what you’ve done, awareness on the matter improve your skills about how you could get better.
Then remind me that (on professional side) is not enough to “stop->think->start“, there would be a map, you must put the reflection in context.

So, just to repeat what’s reflective practice (for me):

  1. find something to think about (remembering the suggestion “be selective”).
  2. once you find something you could evaluate, evaluate it.
  3. finally apply what you learnt from your (or others) evaluation.

The simplest example:

  1. cpd23 partecipation
  2. it’s a good program, not only because it focuses on reflective practice (do a thing, review it, think how this thing could affect your professional side), but also beacuse increase my network and I get used to create conversations.
  3. basically I’ll continue to follow this program and spread the love for it 🙂
    In practice I’ll try to turn the “stop->think->start” practice into “(stop and) find a target->(start to) do->(stop and) review->(start to) apply what you’ve learnt“.

Ah…trust me, is not as simple as it seems…

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Keep up to date good news

10 Lug

Thing 4: Current awareness – Twitter, RSS and Pushnote

(vai alla versione in italiano)

“I’ve got it, got it, miss it. Ah, a new one!”
Sounds like when we were children and trading collecting cards (like public phone’s or soccer player’s ones).
Twitter is a big help to keep up-to-date, I’ve builded my network mainly on professional side, not only ‘cause none of my friends use it, also because it’s the fastest way to find quality contents (yes, better than online newspapers).
I’m a fan of RSS feed and two years ago tryed to spread rss love to my friends. When i browse the net I’m really sad to notice there’s still sites without a feed service. Google reader bundle is not so friendly, but really usefull. For example, when started cpd23 and tryed to found other italian librarian blogs, i’ve created the one you can find on this site.
Pushnote is new to me, but i found really interesting the possibility to vote and comment every site’s page. Unfortunately I found a couple of things not so good in the service. There are really a looooot of page’s on the web…a looooot of….so if you don’t have friends or neighbours it’s difficult to take advantage from the tool. I mean, to take advantage to discover things. I think it could be really usefull for that resources still without feedback capability, like comments or similar.

For this lessons I have a tool to suggest too. Summify.
It’s a tool that summarize updates/posts/feeds from: facebook, twitter, google reader (or an OPML file). Based on a simple alghoritm, provide to your mail a summary of the top N stories of the day/week/month. You can filter and train the summary with things or domain you like or dislike.
For me it’s a great tool, because (sometimes) I suffer the overflowing noise from people that re-tweet 1 news-per-second. I prefer a daily digest of the 10 top news from my network.

Ultimately I think it’s aways a matter of “what’s your network?

Update, few hour later.
After reading the post on Dots&Loops, I forgot Instapaper!!! I have a Kindle, I have 40′ when I’m on the train to/from my office, I read a lot “later”. Speak about it in a previous post.

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Little Thumbling in the wide wide web

3 Lug

Thing 3: Consider your personal brand

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Thinking about my online presence as my brand is really engaging. I love the term “profersonal” and, for the first time, i make ego-searching with a specific purpose.
Anyway, I must face with the fact that before been active in online libraryworld, i was active in online somethingelseworld for some years.
Be online for a lot of time, means leave a lot of breadcrumbs behind you. But, until my first gmail address, I identified myself with nicknames from comic world, and until my falling in love with humanities computing, the crumbs concern only the personal side.

Just before starting to develop my professional side, I choosed to take more control over my online presence. So, closed some accounts and stop using nicknames
Then I thought: “if a person spend time over my name on the web, why not satisfy him giving my personality?”, it’s not a matter of hide things, but to show first what counts. So I create a splash page that aggregate my profiles, professionals and personal.
Now, trying ego-searching..em…profersonal-searching, find that first results corcening mainly my professional activity in LIS space. Then come also something else (my personal blog, my activity in the university radio, something horror I wrote for a magazine…).

When this blog come in my mind was months before its opening, so i spend a lot of time thinking the better name and the purposes (as soon as I can I’ll translate and give more visibility to the first post, where I explain thoose things…i think).
Sadly, I feel comfortable with my avatar and don’t want stop use it. But my splash page is built over a giant photograph of me during a metropolitan safari with dinosaurs 😛

….so….this is the brand’s core values:”not hide my personality” that i hope is perceived during my job, on my professional side.
Do you think I’m on the right way?

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With great power comes great responsibility

25 Giu

Thing 2: Investigate some other blogs

(vai alla versione in italiano)

It’s not simple. At the beginning I was thinking that should be like my first day of school “say your name, prevous school, favourite cartoons and bands”. But I haven’t more than 500 classmates!
So I tried with:
1. people from non-english speaking countries. Like Ella (and others) from Latvia, with which i share the same feelings about spread in our native language the cpd23 experience.
2. people who commented my first post.
3. people who commented blog of people who commented my first post.
4. people who commented blog of people who commented blog of people who commented my first post.
5. meanwhile people from point 2-3-4 started to post about Thing 2, reporting other interesting blog. And the trip restart.
6. tag Y and Z, don’t know why, maybe I love the last positions
(meanwhile tags on del.icio.us where refined, so, more tags to choose, more blog to see….)

I’ve found
• shyness for first blog post. But also, for every ‘lame‘, ‘shy‘, ‘trivial‘ etc. someone from the network had already said ‘it’s not lame‘, ‘don’t be shy‘, ‘it’s not trivial‘…. well done!This is the mood!
• a lot of people make reference to new professionals in the library and information sector. A subject really interesting but that seems understimate in Italy.
• myself thinking about the importance of commenting blog posts. Not always done, but tried to…..I’ve also to admit that my first attitude was thinking “damn! I’ve read the post! Now I must leave a comment (or I’ll die in 48 hours due to the cpd23 Thing 2 curse)” 😛

the rest….don’t remember. I was thinking about a great Thing 2 post, but after waiting too much, saturday suddenly knock on my window.

A special thanks to Enrico, like my boss says, “absolutely yes” you drag me in.

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