Unconference and In person

22Feb11

I thought I would go to Podcamp Toronto 2011 which is an unconference. It is described as a gathering of the new media community over a two-day conference February 26 and 27. It features a diverse group of participants, who are amateur and professional content creators and communicators. This includes people from different areas of new media – writers, producers, photographers, designers, podcasters, developers and bloggers. The unconference component refers to participants who are speakers, or that organizers ask participants to provide the programming and sessions. It is right up my alley but I have personal commitments, like a long awaited sofa delivery.

Usually I am a big fan of the Special Libraries Association annual conference held in June, but I have also heard good feedback about the Computers in Libraries conference. This year it is in Washington, D.C. on March 21-23. Some highlights include weaving user experience solutions into resolving library issues at “In Pursuit of Library Elegance” inspired by a book by Matthew May called “In Pursuit of Elegance: Why the Best ideas Have Something Missing.” I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall at General Motors, when they were undergoing all the upheaval, and how that influenced the reinvention of libary services. Laura Nielsen of General Motors will speak on her experience there. Also looking at how multiple generations can work more effectively in organizations, Dudee Chiang of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory has revamped the library physically as well their web site to foster informal collaboration.

I have focussed on the soft stuff but there are offerings on Drupal, e-Readers, iPads, SharePoint, semantic web apps and more. If you are looking for a technology-driven conference, this might be the one for you.

– Brenda

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