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Web 3.0? March 31, 2008

Posted by Will in technology.
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So now we have someone telling us about Web 3.0. I truly hope this isn’t how Web 3.0 turns out, because it’s the “monetization” of Web 2.0.  Here’s the ABC News article: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/Story?id=4538886&page=1

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Overdrive breaks the iPod barrier March 26, 2008

Posted by Will in libraries, technology.
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Overdrive has just announced that they will be releasing 3000 or so titles in MP3 format, minus DRM, thus compatible with the Apple iPOD. Library Journal has the details:

http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6542329.html?rssid=191

This is a BIG, can I say HUGE change for libraries, since up until now, downloadable audiobooks from library vendors have all been in WMA (Windows Media Audio) format, which is NOT compatible with iPODs, much to the chagrin of libraries and their patrons everywhere.

Netflix unwittingly expands library lending March 10, 2008

Posted by Will in libraries, technology.
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Some libraries apparently have been using Netflix to supplement their own movie holdings, letting patrons use a library Netflix account to borrow items the library doesn’t have. Someone asked about this on Publib, but didn’t get any responses. This issue also came up for discussion at the CLAMS conference I attended this week, but the consensus was that the practice violates the Netflix terms of use, as is also pointed out in this brief Newsweek article (which was cited on Publib).

Google pilots patient medical records project March 4, 2008

Posted by Will in online tools, technology.
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Guess what Google’s up to now! They’re setting up a pilot project with the Cleveland Clinic to house patient medical records in a secure site on Google. Patients will be in charge of their own records, and can electronically transfer their own records if they change doctors or hospitals, etc. From the announcements I’ve read, it’s not clear to me if patients can use the Google search interface to search and interact with their own records.

Here’s a Seattle Times article on it, which addresses privacy concerns

Here’s a Wireless Healthcare article

Here’s the Cleveland Clinic’s own announcement

I couldn’t find a Google announcement.

Library-a-Go-Go February 14, 2008

Posted by Will in libraries, technology.
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The Contra Costa County Library is the first in the country to roll out library book vending machines: stick in your library card, choose a book from one of the 400 or so popular titles in the machine, and out comes the book. They are putting the machines (4 to start) in BART stations and shopping centers. Here’s a link to the complete story replete with pictures of the machine and how it works: http://www.nbc11.com/news/15293003/detail.html?treets=bay&taf=bay

Preserving our Digital Past February 14, 2008

Posted by susanbarrett in Uncategorized.
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HOW CAN WE BE SURE WE’LL REMEMBER OUR DIGITAL PAST?
[SOURCE: The Christian Science Monitor, AUTHOR: Chris Gaylord]
Losing personal files can be upsetting. But failing to protect academic, government, or corporate data could erase irreplaceable pieces of history, says Francine Berman. She co-chairs a newly formed panel of experts tasked to ask how the world can protect its digital past, and answer a more nagging question: Who’s going to pay for it? Unfortunately, she says, the same culture that makes creating our digital lives so easy, makes protecting that data very difficult. Consumers expect faster computers, smarter software, and new gadgets every few years.
http://www.csmonitor.com/2008/0214/p13s02-stct.html

(Via Benton’s…2-14-08. Use link to get the full Christian Science Monitor Story–it discusses both machine obsolescence and the cost of maintaining the files.)

Technology Predictions for 2008 February 14, 2008

Posted by susanbarrett in libraries, technology.
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TECHNOLOGY PREDICTIONS FOR 2008
[SOURCE: Pew Internet & American Life Project, AUTHOR: Jessica Vitak]
After a year filled with change for the industry, many experts have offered their predictions for what consumers, corporations and the government can expect in 2008. After sifting through dozens of news articles and blog posts, five key trends stood out: 1) technology goes green, 2) the evolution of the PC, 3) the cell phone industry expands, 4) the web slows down, and 5) social networks adapt, moving more firmly into the corporate world as a form of collaboration.
http://www.pewinternet.org/pipcomments.asp?r=1451
(From Benton’s Communication-Related Headlines, 2-24-08)

US News – Librarian one of “Best Careers 2008” February 13, 2008

Posted by lrobinson in libraries.
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A quote from the article: “Forget about that image of librarian as a mousy bookworm.” Ugh.

Also, Data Miner, was listed as one of the careers that is ahead of the curve.

Microsoft tries to buy Yahoo (again) February 1, 2008

Posted by Will in online tools, technology.
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By now, most of you have probably heard the other big acquisition news story of the day. Microsoft has just announced another bid to buy Yahoo. And this time, they are hinting (if not threatening) to go directly to the stockholders, and simply buy the stock, if Yahoo management seems disinclined to accede to the buyout. The New York Times has an interesting analysis piece, and I’m sure it’s already all over the web and the blogosphere.

Amazon Buys Audible: big ideas for Kindle? February 1, 2008

Posted by lrobinson in online tools, technology.
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Interesting New York Times blog “Could Amazon and Audible Rewrite the Rules of Publishing?” Amazon is acquiring Audible.com and there is lots of speculation the next generation of Kindle readers may get an “upgrade” to allow audio books too.

Steve Jobs of Apple predicted DOA for Kindle when it came out since, in his words, “people don’t read anymore.” Sort of sounds like a spoiled sport. Though, there seems to be evidence that supports that theory.

Wowsa, this could mean big things for the Kindle and for reading. NYT blogger Brad Stone wonders “How about a service that allows you to seamlessly switch from reading a book on your digital device to listening to the same book read aloud as you get in the car, or if your eyes are tired, or if you simply want to hear a crucial scene acted out? And then to switch back to the printed page?”

Be sure to read the NYT blog comments. I hope that with Amazon’s seeming ambitions to get people to read again includes the perspective (and perhaps help) of the library community.