What’s new with you TYBYWYers? I’m sure you’ve been setting the world on fire with your freshly acquired tech skills. You’ve been pushing back the boundaries of the semantic web. Maybe the rumors are true and you’re developing a new app to better serve your users. I have no doubt you’re staying busy.
If you’re new to Tech Yourself, let me give you a quick overview. Each installment, produced monthly-ish offers a curated list of tools and resources for library technologists at all levels of experience. I focus on webinars, MOOCs, and other free/low-cost options for learning, growing, and increasing tech proficiency. Welcome!
Texas State Library and Archives – Tech Tools With Tine – One Hour of Arduino – May 29, 2015 – I’ve talked about this awesome ongoing tech orientation series before, and this installment on Arduino promises to be an exciting time!
TechSoup for Libraries – Excel at Everything! (Or At Least Make Better Spreadsheets) – May 21, 2015 – I will confess I am obsessed with Excel, and so I take every free class I find on the program. Hope to see you at this one!
I Made This:
Shameless self-promotion, but I’m going to take three paragraphs to draw your attention to an online conference which I’ve organized. I know! I am proud of me too.eGathering 2015
But not as proud as I am of the impressive and diverse line-up of speakers and presentations that comprise the 2015 eGathering. The event is free, online, and open to you through the generosity of LYRASIS members. Register online today and see a Keynote address by libtech champion Jason Griffey, followed by 6 workshop/breakout sessions, one of which is being hosted by our very own LITA treasure, Brianna Marshall. Do you want to learn ’bout UX from experts Amanda L. Goodman and Michael Schofield? Maybe you’re more interested in political advocacy and the library from EveryLibrary‘s John Chrastka? We have a breakout session for you.
Register online today! All registrants will receive an archival copy of the complete eGathering program following the event. Consider it my special gift to you, TYBYWYers.
TYBYWY will return June 19th!
I work closely with the Hydra and Blacklight platforms in digital library work, and have followed the DPLA project with great interest as a potential source of data to drive Blacklight sites. I think of frameworks like Blacklight as powerful tools for exploring what can be done with GLAM data and resources, but it’s difficult to get started in without data and resources to point it at. I had experimented with mashups of OpenLibrary data and public domain MARC cataloging, but the DPLA content was uniquely rich and varied, has a well-designed API, and carried with it a decent chance that an experimenter would be affiliated with some of the entries in the index.
Blacklight was designed to draw its data from Solr, but the DPLA API itself is so close to a NoSQL store that it seemed like a natural fit to the software. Unfortunately, it’s hard to make time for projects like that, and as such the DPLA+DLF Cross-Pollinator travel grant was a true boon.Attending DPLAfest afforded me a unique opportunity to work with the DPLA staff on a project to quickly build a Blacklight site against DPLA data, and thanks to their help and advice I was able to push along a Blacklight engine that incorporated keyword and facet searches and thumbnail images of the entire DPLA corpus—an impressive 10 million items!—by the end of the meeting. The progress we made was enthusiastically received by the Blacklight and Hydra communities: I began receiving contributions and installation reports before the meeting was over. I’ve since made progress moving the code along from a conference demonstration to a fledgling project; the community contributions helped find bugs and identify gaps in basic Blacklight functionality, which I’ve slowly been working through. I’m also optimistic that I’ve recruited some of the other DPLAFest attendees to contribute, as an opportunity to learn more about the DPLA api, Blacklight, and Ruby on Rails. Check the progress on the project that started at DPLAfest on GitHub.
LITA’s UX Interest Group did a fantastic job moderating the first ever UX Twitter Chat on May 15th. Moderators Amanda (@godaisies) and Haley (@hayleym1218) presented some deep questions and great conversations organically grew from there. There were over 220 tweets over the 1-hour chat.
Update: Bina's affiliation corrected - my bad.