Monday, March 20, 2006

Sad News

From Tina Hubert, the Executive Director at LCLS

It is with deep sorrow that I must notify you of an LCLS staff member's death. Dan Sawler experienced a heart attack while driving the courier route this morning. He was rushed to the hospital by ambulance, but all efforts to stabilize him did not work. Dan died at Oliver Anderson Hospital in Maryville, Illinois, this morning.

We will share information regarding visitation and funeral services as it is received.

Dan was a part-time driver who was very well-regarded by all of his colleagues at the Lewis & Clark Library System and he will be sorely missed.

No-one else was injured in this incident. The courier route was delayed and shortened and all materials will arrive at their destinations throughout the week.

Tina Hubert
Executive Director
Lewis & Clark Library System
425 Goshen Road
Edwardsville, IL 62025

I meet all the drivers when they are first hired because I take their photo for the website. Dan was always very friendly and he will be missed by all. My condolences to his family.

Friday, March 17, 2006


Charm just sent this out to our staff: Mapping Routes

Cool! Neat to see your work get out there.

For those of you looking for baby updates, I'll post soon! Until then you can check out the new photo set @ Flickr.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Hello World - Meet Tess

I just watched the entire focus of my life change. World, meet Tess Isabel, the newest member of my family. Mom and baby are doing fantastic!!!!


Friday, March 10, 2006

From TTW: Ten Ways to Lose Your Technies

Michael made a great adaptation post on Ten ways to lose your techies. (Note to employer: No worries, you guys do great!) He hit some great points that I want to restate in bold print.

4. Allow barriers to exist that make it difficult for IT staff and librarians to plan and collaborate

5. Bog down their projects in red tape and approvals that take weeks or months to get

Bonus: Never Dream. Never innovate. Never think outside the Box.

Many who have come to know me or work with me know that #4 and 5 are huge problems with me. Because of the nature of my work and how my position has evolved, I believe firmly in breaking down all barriers. I am trusted to do a job and there should be minimal things that prevent me from doing so. This goes for all staff!

There is an inherent disconnect that occurs when developers are not allowed to interface directly with end-users or that interfacing is done through a middle-man that causes things to be "lost in translation". Believe me, every system I've seen that was designed without direct end-user to developer communication and collaboration was more work for and accomlished less for the end users. IT and management should never forget that every system is designed to accomplish something for the end users.

When it comes to IT planning you need a true dialog between management, end-users, and IT staff. All staff should dream and say things like "It would be nice if" and the biggest thing is that...IT should not rule out anything just because. I regularly sit down in tech meetings and open the floor for people to say their wildest tech dreams. Then we look at what is available today that could possibly accomplish that. Somethings are just not feasible or affordable, but you'll be surprised at what you can accomplish just by entertaining ideas. You'll also be surprised at what other ideas are generated from that synergy.

There is a lot to be said for collaboration and putting up barriers definately does not invite that dialog or collaboration. And in that end, your internal constituents lose and so do your external.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Illinois Library Day on Flickr!

March 1st was Illinois Library Day. Over 500 librarians met in Springfield, IL (the state's capital) to meet with Legislators and their staff. The librarians were also addressed by Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White.

For those of us that couldn't make it, we have rallied and created some hot (should I say Overdue instead?) Flickr action!

You can check out the LibraryDay2006 tag or view some of the Illinois Regional Systems that have posted photos:

Lewis & Clark Library System
Lincoln Trails Library System
Metropolitan Library System
Shawnee Library System

Also check out the Illinois Library Day Group!

If you know of more Flickr photos from Library Day, let me know!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Singing the harddrive blues...

The inevitable has come. The harddisk on my almost 2 year-old Dell is starting to fail. Thanks to our next-day keep-you-harddrive warranty Dell is hooking me up with a new drive that will be here tomorrow. In the meantime I'm backing up what I can and plotting out my fresh install of Windows XP.

I know a lot of people probably see reinstalling an operating system as the biggest headache ever. I'm actually looking forward to it. I have not formatted my drive and started from scratch in nearly two years; so this is a great chance for me to declutter my electronic work life.

Fortunately this all comes at a time where I'm between major projects and can afford to take a day to restructure and reload.

Anytime you can, I recommend taking a day to do housekeeping around your office, with your electronic files, and taking care of the little things you haven't done that are bothering you.

While you're at it, check out Getting Things Done by David Allen from your library. It just might open your mind to decluttering and taking control of all the things that seem to be in control of you.