Percussion Concerto & More Saturday, Apr 14 2007 

You were “lucky” if you attended the Friday the 13th Columbus Symphony performance. The music started wih Rossini’s Overture to La gazza ladra. After this short ten minute piece, we were treated to the featured percussion solist. The front of the stage was filled with four different stations where soloist Colin Currie performed Jennifer Higdon’s Percussion Concerto. What intriguing sounds! (Perhaps amplified by my new hearing aids, GN Resound Pulse). After the intermission, the guest conductor, William Eddins, wowed us with Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 in F Minor, Opus 36. His expressive body movement was in the “flow” without the use of a musical score. The orchestra responded with an incredible performance. A very special evening!

Ohio Collegiate Chess Championship 2007 Sunday, Apr 8 2007 

Although only ten Ohio college chess players participated in the 10th annual Ohio Collegiate, the quality of play was excellent. Phillip Seitzer and Peter June, both from Case Western Reserve University, tied for first place with three wins and a draw in their individual encounter. They split $150 with sophomore Seitzer receiving the individual trophy on tie break and freshman June receiving the Class A medallion. Daniel Chauncey III, a junior at Franklin University, won the $25 Class A prize money for his three wins. William George and Michael Davidson , both juniors at Case Western, split the $25 Class B prize money with their identical 1.5-2.5 scores. Davidson received the medallion. Sam Valerius, a junior at Ohio Wesleyan University, won the $25 Class C prize money and medallion. Kevin Grimes, a graduate student at Case Western, took the $25 Class D prize money and medallion. Muhit Ince, a senior at Ohio Wesleyan, received the $25 prize money and medallion for Class E/Unrated. Case Western successfully defended their team title with 11 points and their name will agin be added to the traveling team trophy.

ACRL in Baltimore Monday, Apr 2 2007 

“Sailing into the Future – Charting our Destiny!” was the theme for the 13th ACRL National Conference held in Baltimore. Academic librarians from every state as well as several foreign countries attended this bi-annual event.

Michael Eric Dyson, University of Pennsylvania, delivered the opening keynote session in a style that would make a Baptist preacher proud. He gave me a new appreciation for the language used in hip hop. World famous film director and local icon John Waters entertained us during the keynote luncheon. His presentation, like his films, tested the boundaries of society’s norms. Nina Totenberg, whose voice I’ve been listening to for years on National Public Radio, delivered the closing keynote session. Her story about her younger relatives not knowing who Ho Chi Minh was a powerful example of generational differences.

Panel sessions were excellent. Elizabeth Wavle, Director of the Gannett-Tripp Library, Elmira College, revealed much about herself and encouraged me to look into establishing my own Facebook account with her presentation “From Midnight Breakfast to Social Networking and the Small College Library.” Edward Corrado, Systems Librarian at The College of New Jersey informed us about “Privacy and Library 2.0: How Do They Conflict?” Portland State University librarians Adriene Lim, Linda Abscher, and Kery Wu shared “Library Mashups for the Virtual Campus: Using Web 2.0 Tools to Creat New Current Awareness Resources.” Oregon State Librarians Margaret Mellinger and Jane Nichols discussed their research findings on “Subject Search Disconnect.” C. Jeffrey Belliston and Jared Howland from Brigham Young presented their research on “Federated Searching: Do Undergraduates PreferIt and Does It Add Value?” The federated search engine they are using shows clustering, something that Metalib does not. “Reinventing Library Services for Undergraduates: Strategies for Reaching Millennial Students” showcased what is happening, such as checking out games and gaming units, at the undergraduate library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Kathryn Silberger shared how Marist College is “Out-googling Google: Federated Searching and the Single Search Box.” Jesse Koennecke discussed Cornells’s exploration of “Social Navigation, Recommender Systems and Libraries.” Lynn Silipigni Connaway introduced me to “screenagers, the youngest cohort of Millennials. Her presentation “Service Sea Change: Clicking with Screenagers through Virtual Reference” gave tips on how to transfer traditional reference skills to the IM world. University of Southern California librarians Robert V. Labaree, Sara R. Thompson, and Karen Howell talked about “Effective Practices for Technology-Enhanced Spatial Transformations.” The podcasting kits being checked out at Leavey Library were of special interest to me.

Contributed papers were another interesting introduction to what’s happening in the profession. Dowling College librarians Diane Holliday and Joyce Gotsch shared some ideas about “Designing a Library Environment That Promotes Learning.” Carol Ritzen Kem, University of Florida, discussed her research on “Work Behavior Type and Myers Briggs Personality Type Preferences of Academic Librarians: Change over Time?” Her research updated Scherdin’s 1994 study that I participated in. Interestingly, INTJs moved from the number two spot (11.5%) in the distribution of librarians by MBTI type to number one (16.1%). ISTJs, on the other hand, dropped from first (16.5%) to number five (8.9%).

David Silver presented a fascinating invited paper on “Digital Media, Learning, and Libraries: Web 2.0, Learning 2.0, and Libraries 2.0.” He offered some interesting ideas for incorporating social software to student learning from his experience at the University of San Francisco. His assignments force students to use the library but they use the new media for sharing their findings. Tracy Mitrano, Cornell, also delivered a timely, information invited paper on “From Soup to Nuts: Copyright, Electronic Surveillance and Social Networking Technologies?”

The poster sessions were a mob scene. I weaved through the area during each break picking up handouts on topics with relevance for our situation. In most cases, I was one of the lucky 350, the recommended number of handouts presenters brought.

The exhibits were well done, if not quite as flashy as at Educause. Ebsco, CQ, Lexis-Nexis, and OCLC were my meal tickets to learning more about their offerings. I returned with lots of pens, three new tote bags, a pedometer, luggage grip, a combination key chain, compass, and flashlight. I submitted my name for the possibility of a gift, and a guarantee of increased mail and e-mail.

The Convention Center accomodated ACRL quite nicely. However, we were not the only one’s using the facility. We were joined by cheerleaders and Mary Kay consultants?! The cheerleaders looked to be middle school age wearing revealing (although they didn’t have much to reveal) outfits with lots of make-up. The Mary Kay consultants, looking like they came from identical molds, moved in pods of four. Librarians showed much more variety in appearance than either of these other groups.

The Inner Harbor provided an excellent backdrop for the conference. Good weather was a plus. The National Aquarium was an excellent site for the all-conference reception. I enjoyed the displays and applaud the Aquarium’s mission to connect people with aquatic life in order to create a better world for both.