Beware of the blog

Anyone looking for a snapshot of the way digital communication is accepted (or not) as a viable part of the traditional scholarly process should hie, forthwith, to Ulises Ali Mejias’s discussion on his Ideant blog: “The Blog as Dissertation Literature Review?” and a followup post. Mejias is a doctoral candidate … Continue reading


If you were to invent for academics, how would it work? It would allow for bookmarking, tagging, and sharing. It would pull metadata from academic resource databases. It would allow me (the layprof) to organize collected essays and citations with a minimum of clickage. And it would do all … Continue reading

Teen creators

The latest Pew Internet & American Life study of teenagers and their online habits (“Teen Content Creators and Consumers”) has been out since November, so in our speedy echosphere it qualifies as old news. But I see that this report is getting cited at ALA Midwinter, particularly during the OCLC-sponsored … Continue reading

Looming clouds

Last summer (yes it was once summer) I wrote a bit about TagCloud — a nifty folksonomy visualization tool. When the MetaMuser mentioned this app recently, I took another look and decided to see how websites I visit might cloud together. Which is a convoluted way of announcing ClayfoxClouds – … Continue reading

So we gather

Fresh outta Norway, here’s an intriguing marriage of wikis, folksonomy, and metadata harvesting: meet Collib, an experiment launched by a student at the University of Tromsø. The idea here: records are harvested from OAI-PMH-compliant repositories and brought into the wiki. Users – now end-users of these records – then ‘tag’ … Continue reading

From browser to collector

Of the several new tools under development discussed at ARL’s lively symposium on Managing Digital Assets in Washington last week, none seemed simpler in concept, or more likely to be popular in practice, than “Firefox Scholar,” an IMLS-funded initiative underway at George Mason University (details here). The idea is to … Continue reading

Going electric

Electronic paper? Sounds oxymoronic, but this phenomenon a-borning could make the thought of e-books and e-newspapers more bearable. A description of E Ink’s new electronic ink display describes it as “somewhat like a miniaturized Etch-a-Sketch based on electricity, instead of magnetism.” Once the high-contrast, thin, flexible surface is “printed,” it … Continue reading