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What is IT?

This covers the on-going professional discussion What Is It that we are searching for?

We Have the Ability

November 26th, 2009 · No Comments

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It is quite common for those who work within the library and archival professions to get caught up in the never ending twists and turns of technology. This particularly happens to those who are new to the profession. For instance, I can remember quite fondly of my graduate work at Wayne State University where I was absolutely convinced that librarians and archivists must not only understand programming, but they must also strive to do as much of their own programming as possible. Naivety is a wonderful thing, especially when you awake from it.
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Category: Skills with a Capital I and T · What is IT?

The Quest for IT

October 30th, 2009 · No Comments

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Oh, I get it. “IT” – of course, the acronym for Information Technology. The name of the computer departments where I used to work. The place where all the “computer guys,” as I fondly referred to them, were busy working their techie magic.

However, when it comes to this particular blog format, a resource for archivists and librarians, “IT” takes on different connotations. What occurs to me is this concept, the quest for high-tech answers to make all our jobs, nay, our lives, easier and cooler, perhaps that is it. Having been teased about how uncool librarians and archivists are (by those not in the profession, natch), it is nice to be able to talk knowledgeably about computer use and social networking applications. It almost proves we are cool.
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Category: What is IT?

What is “IT”?

October 29th, 2009 · No Comments

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Database searching, the Internet, websites, email, blogs, social networking here there and everywhere.

What is it that we are seeking?

The leap that we had thought that we took into information technology is just a step. No giant leap, no crevasse to reach, no earth shattering change yet. The leap was a baby step to the next baby step to the next.
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The Beginning of the Search of “What is ‘IT’?”

October 29th, 2009 · No Comments

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One of the first things I did when I found out I was accepted into library school was to Google for blogs, wikis and podcasts from others like me: new to be librarians and archivists who were in or had recently graduated from their respective programs.

I figured it was 2008, surely there would be loads of blogs, Facebook groups, listservs to name a few places for this sort of thing.

I was wrong – there wasn’t really squat. (more…)

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What is “IT”? : Technology and Digital Obsolescence

October 29th, 2009 · No Comments

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Fast, easy and cheap. This was the title of a recipe book my mother created for me when I left home and entered the “real world,” but it can also describe the ideal technology for dealing with digital obsolescence. Who wouldn’t want technology that is fast, easy and cheap? It’s straightforward (“I’d like to order the archival program that is fast, easy and cheap, please”) and it certainly rolls off the tongue nicely. But what exactly does fast, easy and cheap mean?

Let’s tackle each element on its own:
Fast – You can quickly enter information.
Easy – You know exactly what information to enter and where to find it.
Cheap – You can do all this within your ridiculously slashed budget.
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Category: What is IT?

What is Technology? Archives’ “Frenemy”

October 29th, 2009 · No Comments

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Technology relative to the field of Archives is a much-needed friend as well as an enemy of sorts. The merits of technology are easy to note – probably most importantly the quick access it provides to Archives both internally and externally. Items are much easier to keep track of and to locate internally. When items are made available to the public online, research is easier, time is saved, and so are many other resources. There’s no doubt that technology has opened Archives up to the world.

The speed with which information can be uploaded and made available is astounding – whether from a digital camera, digital video recorder, or general file type (Word, Excel, etc.). Gone are the days of waiting days, if not weeks, to update your files and information. Time to clear the library of that old hand-written card catalog. Or is it?
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