Woosh!

That wooshing noise I've been hearing lately was January speeding past. In the time since I last blogged, the following has happened: School started again - my final semester here at Arizona. I'm taking two classes and an internship. The semester got off to a slightly rocky start due to a hacker getting into the UA Library's computer system - causing them to shut everything down and make sure there weren't any nasties lurking in any of their systems, from public desktops all the way up to their servers. A good thing to do from a security standpoint, but shutting off library systems like electronic course reserves and interlibrary loan at the beginning of the semester caused, to put it mildly, problems.

I think my classes are going to be interesting this semester. I'm taking a class about marketing library services - an interesting subject in itself, and it's being taught by one of the best teachers in our department - I think it'll be fun. My other class is about diversity in libraries and although I think it will be interesting too, I'm slightly worried by the fact the the professor doesn't quite seem to have figured out what to do with the class. We'll see.

Then there's my internship, which is proving to be quite interesting already, even though I've barely started. For one thing, (and I realize in the grand scheme of an internship as a learning experience, this is a trivial thing, but...) I have an office. Of my own. This is a first for me, and I'm probably more excited about this than I need to be.... Then there's the project I'm working on, which looks like it's going to turn out to be even more interesting than I originally thought.

I thought I'd be helping to design and produce a little online, interactive tutorial for a single subject for one of the Law Library's legal reference classes. Well, it looks like I may get to do a bit more than just one tutorial - they've never taught this class as a virtual class before, and it's looking like I may have a hand in helping to figure out how to best translate the whole class from a 5-day on-campus intensive class to a 1-day on-campus plus 3 week online hybrid class.

That's just... cool.

Oh, and I went to ALA Midwinter, and I think I'm still disoriented. My, but that is a large conference.... Still, I enjoyed myself. I got to see some of the friends I made at Internet Librarian, meet some new folks, attend some informative sessions, see the new Seattle Public Library (oooo, shiny....), hang out with some of the gang from Tucson and go sight-seeing, sample some really excellent microbrewed beer, get a couple of nice tips on job possibilities, attend the LITA Blogs, Interactive Media, Groupware, and Wikis Interest Group committee meeting (cool group, that - and they've got some neat stuff going on - I hope I can find the time to stay involved with them). I even managed to blog about Midwinter, just not here. If anyone's interested in my very short report, head over to the Library Student Organization blog: http://lsoarizona.blogspot.com/2007/01/seattle-impressions.html

And since getting back from Midwinter, I've also gotten to fulfill my first work as editor of our student webzine by putting up our first issue of the year (if you're interested, you can find it here: http://www.sir.arizona.edu/lso/bibliotech/2007jan_vol4_no2/default.htm). I can't claim full credit for the editorial work, though - the previous editor gathered most of the stories, I just did a bit of copyediting and posted them - but it's a start. I'm glad it's up, too. Now I can start pestering people in earnest for contributions for the next issue.

Big things are happening with my position as LSO webmaster, too. We're realizing that since our school has a large group of virtual students (both distance students and local students - by the time I finish, I'll have taken 2/3s of my classes virtually, and I live in Tucson), and since web technologies like blogs, wikis and podcasts becoming important for librarians to understand, we really need to give some thought to our group's web presence. So, we've started a committee to take a look at what LSO can do to better support our virtual members, and what we can do to give LSO members a chance to play around with this technology a little. Should keep me from getting too bored as webmaster.

And of course with less than a semester to go before graduation, my job search is beginning in earnest...

So, yeah, January's been a bit busy. However things are finally starting to settle down to a more normal level of chaos, and I hope to be posting a little more regularly from now on.