Internet Librarian 2006 – day uno.

eateryI’ve now been in Monterey for two days.

1st day on my own dime. Rented car. Drove to San Francisco to skate. Had a great time. Drove north to Mill Valley to hang with my friend Dale and skate. Also had a great time. It’s always great to see Dale. Good to skate with someone who’s style makes sense to me and talk to an old friend about new things. As usual, I was so busy skating I forgot I had a digital camera with me. So no pics or video.

calamari2nd day — Day 1 of the Internet Librarian conference. So far the conference has been very cool. I spent most of the day in sessions related to some new (to me) web technologies. Paul Miller, of, was an interesting speaker. He discussed the terms “Web 2.0” and “Library 2.0” – essentially a service outlook of engaging your customers and the technical tools that enable that to happen ( I was pleasantly surprized today by a session on information discovery of blog and podcasting information. I really only went to the session because after lunch I wanted a comfy seat, and that session was in the “nice” auditorium! haha. Anyway, besides providing some hints on resources for finding such information sources, the session gave me some ideas for new things to try at work. Actually, new things for other people to try, that I’d like to be involved with. In particular, I can think of some good applications for podcasting of some services the public library provides. Likewise, there are some really cool potential applications for podcasting to my own, specialized customer base.

At 5pm they opened the exhibit hall and had free food. I lurked in there for a while and took some pictures. Then I went down the old pier and ate some fried calamari while watching some sea lions beg for food. Nothing compliments the taste of good fried calamari like the smell of sea lion.

sealionI’ve decided that on Tuesday I’m going to attend sessions on podcasting all morning. In the afternoon it’ll mostly be podcasting, but also a session on JavaScript and RSS techniques that we might be able to use to include external content on our webpages, which is one of the main things I came here to learn. I’ve decided not to hit the session on Mashups. I think the topic is a bit too technical to get the detail I need in short sessions. I can learn it on my own.

Monterey, last year

Slide in Monterey, Ca.

Last year while I was at the Internet Librarian conference, my friend Dale came down from just north of San Franciso to skate at the little skatepark in Monterey. While he was there he snapped this shot, which is my favorite skate pic anyone has taken of me. Looking forward to more skating with Dale this coming Sunday. Click for the full size. It’s just me, but the photo is really cool.


Skateboarding, Germany, and Information Filters

It’s interesting and weird exactly what information makes it through our built-in cognitive filters. Most skateboarders will tell you that they constantly, involutarily scan for places to skate, other skaters, etc.  It’s just the way we see the world. After over 30 years of being a skateboarder, I doubt I will ever be able to not think this way.

Last summer we were on a trip to Germany, during the World Cup. We were at a big festival in Frankfurt, just walking, taking in the sights, and chilling. I noticed a bright spec of paper on the ground several feet away. Something familiar to it. As I got closer, I noticed it was a sticker for Chocolate, a well-known skateboard brand. I guess some skater dropped it. It ended up there, face up, ready to get my attention. We snapped this pic, and a nice print is now hanging on our wall.

 chocolate sticker in Germany

Mashups article

The July/August issue of Online magazine has a pretty good introductory article on web mashups. This is a topic I’d like to learn more about, so I’ll be attending at least one session on it at the Internet Librarian conference. Frankly, I’d like to do a skateboarding mashup, but not enough to actually do it. I’d rather spend my non-work hours doing something like actually skating.

Comet longboard: pre-review article

For my recent birthday I treated myself to a new longboard — a 40″ Comet Spoon-nose downhill. I’ve had several Comet decks before, and thought I’d like one specifically for skating parking garages. Something stable, yet still nimble, light, with a kicktail for extra versatility. The Comet fits the bill.

I got some new Retro ZigZag 66mm wheels, and put some Randal-II 180mm trucks on it. Just from rolling a bit, I can tell it’s going to be a killer setup.

Now I’ve just gotta find some time to go test it. More later, when I’ve got some results to report. Anyway — here’s a pic…

Comet longboard

Spam hits Blue Dot

The bookmark management site I discovered a few days ago — — has already been hit with spam. Ughhh… someone set up an account and “dotted” links to items from their adult toy shop. This is probably the biggest problem I see with social networking sites. If very strict control isn’t maintained over membership, the spammers will take over and quality will suffer. But of course, strict control over membership slows down the development of the social network, so what’s the answer?

An old longboarding video study


longboard turn imageI’m posting an old video I made last year.  I was experimenting with different angles with which to take some longboarding shots. I recently got a new longboard to review, which I’m going to compare to the setup in this little vid.  The board in this is a Fibreflex Funshape, with Randal-II 180mm trucks and 66mm 82a Gravity Street-G wheels. Its a fun board for surf style carving and board walking. It’s also very light for such a long board.

 The music in the vid is the Wedding Present. Sorry about the sound quality. I don’t have a good audio codec. Soon I’ll be upgrading my video editing system, so I’ll do some better stuff then. The original video file sounds really good, but it is also 36 megs — too big.

Anyway — click my pic to download the QuickTime file…

Blue Dot

I just discovered what appears to be a new “tagging” tool for the web, Blue Dot. Its sort of like or , but this one is trying to incorporate a social networking aspect in which you share your links and tags with a group of friends. Interesting. I set up an account.

We’ll see if this takes off. I haven’t have a lot of success getting myself interested in the whole tagging thing, but personalization of this tool might make it more compelling.

One interesting feature on Blue Dot is automated dotting on your personal blog. It was easy to set up my account so that anytime I post an entry here, on my Word Press blog, my Blue Dot account automatically “dots” that post, by monitoring my RSS feed. They feature this kind of support for quite a few blogging systems.

P.S. Man — less than 30 minutes after I made this post, it was captured by the blog search tool on Google. Scarey. The moral of the story — if you don’t want something to exist forever on the internet via Google, don’t put it up in the first place.

the Internet Librarian: part 1

Later this month I’ll have the opportunity to once again go to a great conference, the Internet Librarian. Very useful for librarians of a techno-bent, or really anyone wanting to learn some of the more recent things happening in library-relevant internet technology. I’m going to try to blog my experiences every day. The big topics last year were blogs, RSS, wikis, and tagging. It will be interesting to see which of these is still hot, and what if anything has displaced them.

Last year, I learned that you don’t have any cool tourist experiences if you don’t take at least a day outside the conference to devote to fun. Everything in Monterey except eateries seems to shut down after about 5pm, and there’s only so much fried calamari I can eat before it loses its novelty. So this year I’m going out a day early, on my own coin, renting a car, and driving up to San Francisco on Sunday. Going to meet up with Garry Holl and some other freestyle skateboarders for a nice session, then hopefully see my old friend Dale, who lives in the area. Then a scenic drive back to Monterey.

Fingers crossed for good weather.