Recently I’ve been importing the ancient Librarian Avengers archives to live within WordPress. Because the site goes back to…hrm… 1997, there’s some data munging to do.
Right now I’m concerning myself with the period after Graduate School, when I moved to Ithaca, NY for an ostensibly-cool digital library fellowship. I couldn’t talk about how much I hated it at the time so the entries are mostly tangential to the work I was doing, but there’s still some fun stuff.
Importing ancient blog posts involves a bunch of tagging, titling, category-setting, and general modernization. I’ve been progressively making my way through the old posts, adding images, fixing spelling mistakes, and generally adding a bit of polish.
Part of the reason I’m taking on data scrubbing as my One Designated Personal Thing to Do this evening, is that today has been a study in helplessness. My daughter has a (small) fever. It’s the first time she’s been sick, and I’m trying to direct my need to control something (anything!) in a positive direction.
Also, cleaning data is pretty therapeutic after some of the body fluids I’ve encountered recently.
Above is a photo of me undergoing a brief moment of Muppetface onstage. Last week I spoke at OSCON Ignite, the evening entertainment bit of the O’Reilly Open Source Conference and the Google Awards.
Talks took the traditional Ignite format of five minutes, 20 slides. Slides auto-advance after 15 seconds, ready or not.
Speakers were encouraged to address their personal brand of geekery. I chose to talk about the Librarian Avengers Film Rating System, which addresses some movie metadata I’d like to see. Things like “This film contains a Creepy child Singing” and “Warning! Sylvester Stallone!”
OSCON Ignite is online at blip.tv here
My bit starts around (44:45), but stick around for the whole thing. Make sure to check out Kirrily’s talk on Geeky Things you can Do with Textiles, and Liz Henry talking about the barriers to wheelchair hacking.
The format kept everyone pithy, and although I had to speak before the amazing Damian Conway, I didn’t throw up from stage fright once!
Penny Arcade realizes that the word “librarian” doesn’t imply gender, except in issues of pay equity.
Webcomics’ newfound appreciation for the finest of underpaid professions is thanks to an encounter with the authors of Unshelved after the San Diego comic con.
This is the same comic con, coincidentally where my friend and coworker Jon, author of the excellent DogBlog, ran into Joss Whedon while both gentlemen were drunk and thanked him thanked him thanked him for making such excellent movies.
Jon has a photo to prove it, which he will show you at the slightest provocation. Walk quietly around him and don’t make any sudden moves.
Oh? And as they point out, there’s already a word for a male librarian. It’s Librarian. Or Guybrarian, if you buy into my pathetic merchandising attempts.
I got a call about 20 minutes ago from a friend telling me that my website, this website, the website I HAVEN’T UPDATED IN WEEKS was mentioned in the NY Times. So, um. Hi. I’m updating! This is me. Updating. Just for you. La de da.
If you are interested in becoming a librarian, you might want to take this quiz.
If you know some librarians that you want to get gifts, I sell some cool t-shirts and mugs here.
Here are some of my favorite posts.
Here’s a quick summary of this website:
I’m Erica Olsen. I am a librarian (religion) and interface designer (profession). I just moved to San Francisco two weeks ago. I work doing User Experience at Second Life. I’ve been blogging since 1998, but in those days of yore we just called it “having a web page.”
If you wanna write to me and say hi, I’m ericaolsen (AT) gmail (DOT) com.
I went to see Children of Men today, which was fantastic, disturbing, hopeful, and cautionary. I cried a bit, but left not resenting the movie for making me sad.
Beforehand, we saw four trailers which ALL fell into the new Librarian Avengers Film Rating System. There was a Creepy Child Singing, Two Overly Patriotics, and a Jim
It’s official now, and I can finally talk about it here. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, yes, yes, yes, I’m buying a house. Well, it’s a theoretical house at this point, just a glimmer in the mortgage-lender’s eye, but someday soon, around the end of June hopefully, I will be an actual homeowner. It’s a big deal, but I think I’m handling it well. I’ve limited my panic attacks to one a day, and am reading this very helpful book called The 106 common mistakes homebuyers make, which is totally helping my anxiety.
Oh, and I’m changing jobs.
Starting February 23, I’ll be a web developer at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Yup. Leaving librarianship for I.T. Not a huge surprise to those who know me, but possibly controversial considering I run a website called Librarian Avengers. The good news is, I’ll still be working in a library. The Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds holds the largest collection of bird recordings in the world. As their web developer, I get to create an interface for the stadium-sized database holding their digitized collection. It’s a big fat moose of a challenge, and I’m looking forward to getting started. Among other things, it means that this weblog is getting archived along with the one I wrote in grad school, and will be replaced with something new and appropriate.
I was kind of nervous about announcing this job change here, because I didn’t want to deal with any “say it ain’t so, Joe” emails in my spam-riddled inbox from hardcore librarians who think I’ve betrayed the profession by jumping ship for a mostly interface design position. To you, I say: Buck up. There are still plenty of good, stylish librarians out there. I may not be a librarian in real life, but I’ll continue to play one on the web. And, hey, there’s more than one way to serve an information need, buddy.