Thursday, October 14, 2004

534 What Librarians do today

If you’d like an exciting career battling technological advancement, choose “library and information science.” I truly loved being a librarian, but technology and our devotion to it is one of the reasons I retired early (and my own thrifty behavior of putting 15% aside for TIAA-CREF all my working years). So here’s a brief compilation of what a day looks like for a librarian:

Krafty Librarian writes:
“. . .the systems librarian and I are working on our server and various problems. I replaced the tape drive Friday and we were able to do back ups for the weekend then all of a sudden on Monday it failed. What was the point of me replacing our broken tape drive when they sent us crappy refurbished one that would work better as a paper weight?”

Shoe frets:
“I am putting Mozilla on them as soon as I get a chance, and taking off IE. There will be no choice. I don’t want a lawsuit because some doofus a million miles away stole a patron’s credit card number. Besides, Firefox and Mozilla are better browsers anyhoo. And the kids love the tabbed browsing. Oh, how I wish I could get a Linux system running. It would ease my fears some. It would ease my fears a lot.”

Tangognat worries:
“Am I missing something, or did some of the search functionality vanish from the redesigned American Memory site? I thought there used to be a way to search by limiting your search by medium. So if you only wanted to search and retrieve photos or audio files you could do that. Now that option seems to hidden, under the option to browse specific collections. If I browse Books and other printed works, I’m then given the option to run a search limited to those formats. I was really confused, probably just because I expect very different things from the labels “browse” and “search". .

Family Man Librarian speaks for all: ". . .librarians are not that great at marketing themselves. By marketing, I don't mean shameless self-promotion. Instead, I'm talking about making clear to their institutions how integral and vital their role and the role of libraries is to their success and to society in general, especially in this digital age. Over and over and over again, I am reminded of how persistently overlooked and underrepresented libraries and library issues are in the general scheme of things in my local environment. It's incredible, especially given the huge (and growing) library website statistics, huge (and growing) use of online resources, huge influx of people in the library. . ."

And these youngsters don’t even comment on the 10 or so meetings a week or the parts of your job that gradually get outsourced to state, regional or national consortia and committees. Still, it’s a great life. Some libraries even have books.

No comments: