Sunday, December 18, 2011

ebooks and bookshops

This photograph shows part of the window of the Hill of Content Bookshop in Balmain.  It is a lovely bookshop and this photograph does not do the shop justice, but that was not the purpose of the photograph.

I was really interested that this bookshop was advertising Kobo readers for sale in the shop.  It was an interesting tie in, and one of the few times I have seen ebooks and print books sold side by side in this way.

Window of Hill of Content, Balmain

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Outpost at Cocktoo Island

By Roa
This is by ROA - it is one of the amazing art works on exhibition at Outpost at Cocktoo Island (although the art works painted on the buildings like this one may be around for longer).

I took a few more photographs and you can see them in the slideshow

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Museum Shop - Museo Nacional de Athropologie, Mexico

The shop at the Museo Nacional de Athropologie, Mexico was a later addition to this museum. It was a smart and attractive addition as it was designed in a way to look great in the museum, but in a more modern style of design. It looked good, and you knew it was a later element and this worked very well.
Museum Shop - Museo Nacional de Athropologie, Mexico
You can see more photographs of the museum shop here

Monday, November 14, 2011

Do you like your job so much you want to sing about it?

How much do you like your work?
This is a question to ask yourself. This young man enjoys his work making and tempering fudge so much that he was singing about fudge.  It sounded like an improvised blues song, which since he was singing in New Orleans was appropriate.

People may look at you if you sing about your work in a library (and I know some childrens/young adult staff may be able to get away with it), but the point is not so much about singing as asking do you look like you enjoy your work?  A better question is do you actually enjoy your work?

Are you conveying enthusiasm as well as you are conveying your amazing effective library skills?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

#egoreads for October

My reading for October did not include many #egoreads, it included:
    egoreads tea cosy
  • Faking it by Jennifer Crusie - mixing art and romance
  • Bourke Street Bakery by Phil Allan and David McGuinness, a great bakery well represented
  • Matthew Reilly Five greatest warriors - an enjoyable e-audio experience
  • Stardust by Neil Gaiman - this was a lovely read
  • Mark Abernathy County attack - action thriller set in south east Asia
  • Michael J Parry The spiral tattoo - noir-ish mystery in fantasy environment
  • Gaming the past by Jeremiah McCall - video games as a way of teaching history to high school students
  • The way of kings by Brandon Sanderson.  I had not read any titles by Sanderson before - don't know how I missed doing this.  Really enjoyable, with some great ideas about libraries and storytelling.
  • The impossible dead by Ian Rankin - another enjoyable read by this author
  • Everything bad is good for you by Stephen Johnson - about learning from popular culture

Friday, November 11, 2011

Libreria Porrua

Libreria Porrua is a Mexican bookshop, one branch is in a large park, near the botanic gardens and the National Anthropology Museum.

This bookshop is impressive because of its light and open structure (it even had a full size tree growing through the building).  It looked a lovely bookshop, the kind any one would like to have in their community.

Libreria Porrua
It had a lovely connection to the park, and is welcoming and engaging. Libreria Porrua - open air bookshop

You can see more photographs of it here

roving shop help

Roving shop support
Michaels staff in Ithaca, NY use these walkie talkies to communicate with one another so they can tap into each other's specialist skills - it is very effective - and a shop version of roving reference.  Michaels is a craft shop with a broad range of craft materials represented.  It would not be possible to be an expert in all the craft options in the shop.

All the staff were wearing these radio headsets including the staff on the checkouts.  They allowed staff to tap into each others expertise so that the cup cake specialist (yes there was one) could talk to the beading expert rather than bluffing or providing inaccurate information.  Staff were very happy to talk about the great assistance these radios were for their customer service.  It was impressive, it was slick and most of all it provided assistance to the people in the shop.

It was also great that the staff were happy with my questions, when I was in the shop as a client. The staff were proud of the system and how it helped them do their work better and help each other.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

La Biblioteca Nacional de México

La Biblioteca Nacional de México is located within a university. The building is an older style, but is interesting because of the way the story of Mexico's history is constructed into the building. Mural detail - La Biblioteca Nacional de México
You can see a few more slides of the building here.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Biblioteca Vasconcelos, Mexico Ciudad, Mexico

Biblioteca Vasconcelos, Mexico Ciudad, Mexicois an amazing public library as the shelving within the library is an integral part of the library structure holding the building together.  There were quite a few issues when the library first opened, but they have been resolved.

Biblioteca Vasconcelos, Mexico Ciudad
The shelving is very sculptural
Under the shelves - Biblioteca Vasconcelos, Mexico Ciudad

and there are many places with comfortable seating or study tables for people to work at. Seating around the glass walls - Biblioteca Vasconcelos, Mexico Ciudad
You can look at more photographs of the library using this link (which will provide descriptions of the photographs) or you can follow the link below.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Salt Lake City Public LIbrary, Utah

Salt Lake City Public Library has a pedestrian street with shops inside the building,
Looking down - Salt Lake City Public Library, Main Library, Utah
a very impressive library shop totally run and managed by Friends of the library...
Library shop - Salt Lake City Public Library, Main Library, Utah
and interesting promotions.
High T novels - Salt Lake City Public Library, Main Library, Utah

You can look at the slide show here to see more photographs of the library including their bee hives (and read the descriptions), or follow the link below.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Herriman Library, Utah

Herriman Library, Utah was a new public library in a new community. There was very interesting use of art works to tell the story of the area. It was a lovely, light library which was well used by the community.

Exterior with scooters - Herriman Library, Salt Lake County Library Services

Signage showing the children's area...
Children's area signage - Herriman Library, Salt Lake County Library Services

You could see the current energy use within the building.
Local conditions - Herriman Library, Salt Lake County Library Services

You can look at more photographs of Herriman Library by following this link (and you can read the descriptions), or you can look at the slideshow below.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Novel destinations

Summer reading promotion - Herriman Library, Salt Lake County Library Services

This was a lovely summer reading promotion poster from Herriman Library in Utah. It really like the way the local canyons and buttes are made of books. The retro look works really well

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

J.Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City

Safety cow says read - J.Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah
You can look at some more photographs of the J.Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City in the slide show below.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Prescott Public Library, Prescott, Arizona

Prescott Public Library had an impressive range of artworks associated with it. There was a long mural behind the library which included fanciful elements like this dragon, as well as elements from the history of the area.

Detail of dragon on mural behind Prescott Public Library

There was a strong local studies presence in the library as well, with the Kachina doll featuring.

Kachina dolls at Prescott Public Library

You can see more photographs of the mural and the library in the slide show below

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Brigham Young University Library, Provo, Utah

Brigham Young University Library, Provo, Utah has a recent extension to the library, it was mostly underground, but with the glass entrance to open up the space and to provide a light well. Other light wells to the extension were visible through the garden landscaping.

Looking up to view - Brigham Young University Library, Provo, Utah

You can look at other pictures of this university library through the slide show below.

Friday, October 7, 2011

roving reference at Appaloosa and Mustang Libraries

Roving reference is about taking the service to the client, without expecting them to find a staff member to help them.  You go and find who needs assistance.  I have written about this before, but it is such an exciting area, more can always be said, and new possibilities and examples keep coming forward.  There are still a lot of libraries who are not using roving reference, or any similar idea, to help people in their libraries who would like a bit of assistance and who may not come and ask for help.

A new term I discovered recently was "shoulder to shoulder" reference service, because the client is next to the staff member. This is the term being used in Appaloosa Library, Arizona.  You are taking the client with you and the service points are designed for this.

There were several of these pods through the library to aid in the proactive delivery of roving reference. While seats are shown, I mostly saw staff standing with the client, after having been walking around looking for people who they could assist. This is a proactive model and it was very exciting to see it in operation.

Information pod -
This shows another view of the information pod.  Staff really were walking around and looking for people to help.  They were covering the entire library space.  It was not intrusive, and it looked like it was effective.

It was part of the service helping people find what they were looking for, before they were frustrated, or left.  The staff used positive body language as well as non-invasive questioning.
View of information pod - Appaloosa Library
This service point below shows a slightly different style of desk in Mustang Library, Arizona.  The staff space was at the Info end, and public opac at the Search space.  This also was very effective for roving reference.
Information desk - Mustang Library, Arizona

It really is about asking "are you finding what you are looking for?" or a similarly open type of question, and not expecting the client to come to you - you need to seek them out.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Burton Barr Central Library, Phoenix Public Library, Arizona

Burton Barr is the central library for the Phoenix Public Library. There are impressive views over down town Phoenix from the top floor of the library. The library sign on the street (shown in the top photograph) is a great way of finding this library. It was an impressive (and very eye catching) combination of sign and art work. Library sign - Burton Barr Central Library, Phoenix Public Library
This photograph  (below) shows one of the eye catching signs from within the library. Fiction/genre sign - Burton Barr Central Library, Phoenix Public Library
You can look at other photographs of Burton Barr Library, below, or follow this link for the photographs with more information.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Coffee cups for a shop fit out

This photograph was taken in a pop up shop in Brisbane. The small shop sold kitchen wares and food related books. The major design features were lots and lots of paper coffee cups.  They were stacked up as shelves and clustered as sculptures hanging from the ceiling.
Take away coffee cups as shop fittings
You can see some other photographs of this shop here...

Monday, October 3, 2011

#bookbites - my reading for September

This is the #bookbites tea cosy


My reading for this month included:
  • Spider trap by Barry Maitland (always a pacy author)
  • Bet me by Jennifer Crusie - featuring food as a way of connecting the main characters
  • Seven ancient wonders and Six sacred stones both by Matthew Reilly, and both e-audio.  They are entertaining, pacy reads
  • Hammered by Kevin Herne - think druid in modern Arizona taking on a Norse god
  • The beer cook book by Mary Novak - what is not to like - how to include beer in your cooking from soups to fruitcakes (and yes the recipes are fun to make too)
  • The story of England by Michael Wood - this follows Kibworth from the time of the Romans to the present and is based on very detailed archival records
  • Fun Inc by Tom Chatfield is an excellent overview about the role of games and their potential in our lives
  • Inside cyber warfare by Jeffrey Carr - the name says it all
  • Dark Jenny by Alex Bledsoe - pacy, engaging and a disturbing read - kind of showing how far people will go to prove a point
  • Ghost story by Jim Butcher - I knew it was a set up, and it shows the danger of not balancing the good of a wider group with the good of an individual (and I am not sure it was meant to be making this point)
  • Baking with passion by Dan Lepard and Richard Whittington - I have not been able to try any of the recipes yet - but they are on my to do list
  • Tess Mallos - The complete Middle East cook book - impressive
  • Coraline by Neil Gailman - creepy, but very postive
  • Ready player one by Ernest Kline - about a slightly future world with games and very strong 80s retro elements (it was a page turner - or should I say tapper as I read this, like some of the other titles listed, as an e-book)
  • A new culture of learning : cultivating the imagination in a world of constant change by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown - excellent
  • Double back by Mark Abernathy - recent thriller set partly in East Timor around the time of the vote for independence

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Grand County Public Library, Moab, Utah

This library was awarded the Best Small Library in America by Library Journal in 2007, and it is a lovely library.  The landscaping, shown below shows how the design fits within in the local environment. 

Landscaping and library - Grand County Public Library, Moab

The entrance to the children's had 'read' posters featuring many locals, including national park workers (there are two national parks very close to Moab).

Local readers (from the National Parks Service) in the Read promotion - Grand County Public Library, Moab

This shows just one of the comfortable seating areas in the library, and other outlook from it.

Corner seating - Grand County Public Library, Moab

You can read about these and other photographs here, or you can look at the slide show below.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Appaloosa Library, Scottsdale, Arizona

The Appaloosa Library is part of the Scottsdale Library Public Library.  It is in a new area of Scottsdale.  It is mostly lit by sunlight, although lights are installed for use on cloudy days.  It is a beautiful building, well designed for the Arizona location. 

The image below shows an education game which is about the library, helping children learn about the environmental features of their library while they are in the building.  The children's area was amazing with lots of games to stimulate brains, and a few to build muscle as well.

Learning space, Children's area - Appaloosa Library
This photograph shows the ceiling of the building with the sculptures highlighting the sculptural nature of the ducting.  It looked great, and fitted well with the overall design of the building.
Ducting and sculpture - Appaloosa Library
This is the outside space, as you can see there is a lot of shading provided by the roof.  Although it was a warm day, it was pleasant in the shade.
Outdoor seating - Appaloosa Library

This was a very well used library with lots of people reading, listening, browsing and receiving assistance from library staff.  You can look at the slideshow below to see more photographs of this library, or click on this link to be able to read about each photograph.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

#geekreads - reading for August

August reading for #geekreads was mixed.

My reading for August included:
  • For the win by Cory Doctorow - an international novel of games and labour unions
  • Mortal instruments by Clarissa Clare - seems to be a move into spoof horror
  • Fast women by Jennifer Crusie
  • Hounded by Kenneth Herne - druid in modern Tempe (with some great laugh out loud moments)
  • Chelsea Mansions by Barry Maitland - another engrossing read 
  • Pervasive games : theory and design by Markus Montola, Jaakko Stenros, and Annika Waern - helped to build by understanding of this kind of game
  • also read New Scientist, Delicious, Jamie


My reading of one title (not on the list above) was progressing well until I read a comment by the author who seemed to like to buy copies of all the books she was using as research tools, and did not seem like to find them in libraries, not if she could not buy a copy for herself.  It made me  think about findability for future researchers, if the titles were all in private collections with no way of even locating holdings (no worldcat equivalent). This does highlight need for libraries to make sure their content is findable electronically.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Simply books - the format does not matter

This bookshop at Salt Lake City Airport was making sure it was reaching a range of reader.  In a very prominent position at the front of the store was a stand displaying kindles for sale.  It fitted really well with the look of the bookshop as you can see.  I photographed this because this is still not a common sight, even in airport bookshops.

Simply books - Salt Lake City
 This photograph shows a close up of the kindle sales stand.
Kindle stand in Simple books - Salt Lake City Airport

Mustang Library, Scottsdale Public Library, Arizona

Mustang Library, part of the Scottsdale Library system had impressive staff desks for helping with roving reference.  The desks were signed info/search with the info part for staff and the search for the public.  There were a few of these throughout the library and they were a very effective way of making opac accessible and signaling staff assistance.

Search / Information space - Mustang Library, Arizona

Mustang Library played with its name in the art works in the library.  These mustangs racing across the bring wall, and trying to break free from it are just one of the many horse themed works of art on display.
Mustangs racing across the library wall - Mustang Library, Arizona
The exterior of the library played with traditional designs giving them a new form.  It was also very practical as part of the area provided a shaded bike rack (a really good idea in Arizona's climate) and another part gave outdoor seating options (also shaded).
Outside Mustang Library, Arizona
This was yet another really impressive library in Arizona. 

You can look at more photographs of Mustang Library, below, or follow this link to be able to read about them as well.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Civic Center Library, Scottsdale Public Library, Arizona

The Civic Centre Library in Scottdale, Arizona was telling everyone who came to the library that they were the readers choice for "best library" in 2010.  This was a great promotion as it was impossible to enter the library without seeing this banner.

"Best library for 2010" - Civic Centre Library, Scottsdale
The young adult area was being well used (despite this photograph), there was electronic music being created and you could hear this when you walked into this space.  It had a glass wall really really clearly letting people know this was the young adult area with signs on it.
Seating and summer reading promotion, youn adult area - Civic Centre Library, Scottsdale
There were two fancy saddles in the local studies area, and they were part of the collection.  The local studies area had a very good looking collection, and space for doing research. 
Amazing saddle in the local studies section - Civic Centre Library, Scottsdale

You can look at the slideshow below for more images, or click this link to read about the photographs as well.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Arabian Library, Scottsdale Public Library, Arizona

Arabian Library was the first of the Scottsdale, Arizona libraries I visited.  The library has a dramatic entrance and it reminded me of a canyon, but also a giant snail, and you walk into the shell or the canyon.   It is an unusual building to walk into with a strong sense of drama in the design.   It was also very welcoming so the design was not intimidating, and it was also very practical for the climate.
Signage for library entrance - Arabian Public Library

It was really cute that children could measure their height in horses in the Arabian Library (this feature was repeated in the other horse named branch libraries)
Height measurement (done in horses) - Arabian Library

The children's collection had lovely descriptions for the titles which were shelved in the area, they were subject descriptions, and they were whimsical and meaningful (there are quite a few more photographs of these in the photostream)
Seuss on the loose - subject headings in children's area - Arabian Library

You can look at the slideshow below, or follow this link to read about the photographs.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Water Brain

This amazing animation was shown at Graphic.  Choose a quiet moment to watch this - it should not be rushed.

Water Brain Complete Edition(16:9) from Johann.Poo on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

#whodoneit reading for July

This month started with rereading two Brent Weeks titles, Shadow's end and Beyond the shadows.  They were an amazing reread.  I also read his new novella Perfect shadow which was really impressive.

Other reads included:
  • Frances Hodgeson Burnett The secret garden - a stories of garden providing connections
  • staying up to date with The Mongoliad - this is great reading
  • Minette Walters' A chameleon's shadow - a good challenge to assumptions 
  • Paul de Gelder No time for fear - reminded me of why I don't read biographies, but I finished it
  • Peter Lovesey The house sitter - provides a different slant on the Rime of the ancient mariner 
  • I listened on e-audio to Scarecrow by Matthew Reilly - it translates well to this format - I did not want to stop listening, Jason Chaser Hovercar race, and Hell Island (I really was having lots of fun with the e-audio)
  • Dorothy L Sayers A busman's holiday mixes romance and crime
  • Douglas Hulick Among thieves - not so much shades of grey as shades of charcoal
  • Jesamyn Ward Salvage the bones - a setting and character dominated novel set around Hurricane Katrina
  • Quintin Jardine Thursday legend - some gruesome moments
  • Summer  of unrest Tom Chatfield - an account of recent world events and a discussion of the role of social media
  • J K Rowling Harry Potter and the deathly hallows - a speed re-read after watching the final film
  • kept up to date with New Scientist, and Jamie
  • also read lots and lots of blog posts and tweets
whodoneit tea cosy