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Daily Archives: March 12th, 2008

Just as a little adendum to an earlier post about the way public library organizational structures need to mirror policy decisions, have a look at the Wikipedia entry for “Conway’s Law”.  This was new to me.  Basically it tells you that if you set up a website for your organization and don’t structure it in such a way that it mirrors the structure of your organization it will slowly attempt to correct its misalignment.  Kind of like yeah, duh, but interesting when put into action.

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I’m excited to have gotten involved in this Urban Library Council project, Foresight 2020.  In name it reminds me of the Singapore Library 2010 report, but in practice its a participatory excercise rather than a decree.  I just jumped in and have already found a few strings worth mentioning.  Check out this statement that came from someone named Joe Stoner (sorry Joe I don’t know who you are yet, but I had to quote you here)

“I tend to see the future of public libraries in further division of our current services combined with a simultaneous linking of those services with other jobs once thought more distinct from librarianship.”

Really its the word “linking” in this statement that gets me excited.  I like the metaphor of a librarian acting as a hyperlink between other services and disciplines.  My daily information / reference duties do essentialy create me as a human hyperlink, a dynamic, interactive presence that responds to my patron’s needs in a way that a search engine never could.  Consider this on a macro level: an entire library acting as an interactive portal linking every other discipline, individual, and community orgaization.

I’ll try to report back occassionaly on some of the strings inside this network.  Its great to see these innovation conversations popping up everywhere.