the library is the arsenal

Thursday, December 4, 2008

so meta

ok. so it's been a long time since i've posted. i promise to get back on the blog.

i'm sitting in LIS654 Information Technologies right now and we're learning about Web 2.0 and specifically blogs at this moment. i am reminded of my dear cannoneers and that i haven't forgotten you. give me a good whack with the fraternity paddle upon our next meeting.

the class is quiet tonight. no one answered questions like "what is web 2.0?" or "what is a blog?" which makes me wonder if either no one is using this technology or everyone is using it. has it become such a part of our internet experience that to describe it in such rigid definitions is unnecessary? i hesitate to assume this since only 2 people raised their hands when asked "who blogs?" but nearly the entire class raised their hands for social networking.

we're still talking about blogs

now we're talking about vlogs.

ok that's enough. this is becoming too meta for me.
i promise real content next time.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Friday, November 28, 2008

Processing 1.0 is out!

From the email announcement:
We've just posted Processing 1.0 at We're so excited about it, we even took time to write a press release.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and LOS ANGELES, Calif. - November 24, 2008 - The Processing project today announced the immediate availability of the Processing 1.0 product family, the highly anticipated release of industry-leading design and development software for virtually every creative workflow. Delivering radical breakthroughs in workflow efficiency - and packed with hundreds of innovative, time-saving features - the new Processing 1.0 product line advances the creative process across print, Web, interactive, film, video and mobile.

Whups! That's not the right one. Here we go:

Today, on November 24, 2008, we launch the 1.0 version of the Processing software. Processing is a programming language, development environment, and online community that since 2001 has promoted software literacy within the visual arts. Initially created to serve as a software sketchbook and to teach fundamentals of computer programming within a visual context, Processing quickly developed into a tool for creating finished professional work as well.

Processing is a free, open source alternative to proprietary software tools with expensive licenses, making it accessible to schools and individual students. Its open source status encourages the community participation and collaboration that is vital to Processing's growth. Contributors share programs, contribute code, answer questions in the discussion forum, and build libraries to extend the possibilities of the software. The Processing community has written over seventy libraries to facilitate computer vision, data visualization, music, networking, and electronics.

Students at hundreds of schools around the world use Processing for classes ranging from middle school math education to undergraduate programming courses to graduate fine arts studios.

+ At New York University's graduate ITP program, Processing is taught alongside its sister project Arduino and PHP as part of the foundation course for 100 incoming students each year.

+ At UCLA, undergraduates in the Design | Media Arts program use Processing to learn the concepts and skills needed to imagine the next generation of web sites and video games.

+ At Lincoln Public Schools in Nebraska and the Phoenix Country Day School in Arizona, middle school teachers are experimenting with Processing to supplement traditional algebra and geometry classes.

Tens of thousands of companies, artists, designers, architects, and researchers use Processing to create an incredibly diverse range of projects.

+ Design firms such as Motion Theory provide motion graphics created with Processing for the TV commercials of companies like Nike, Budweiser, and Hewlett-Packard.

+ Bands such as R.E.M., Radiohead, and Modest Mouse have featured animation created with Processing in their music videos.

+ Publications such as the journal Nature, the New York Times, Seed, and Communications of the ACM have commissioned information graphics created with Processing.

+ The artist group HeHe used Processing to produce their award-winning Nuage Vert installation, a large-scale public visualization of pollution levels in Helsinki.

+ The University of Washington's Applied Physics Lab used Processing to create a visualization of a coastal marine ecosystem as a part of the NSF RISE project.

+ The Armstrong Institute for Interactive Media Studies at Miami University uses Processing to build visualization tools and analyze text for digital humanities research.

The Processing software runs on the Mac, Windows, and GNU/Linux platforms. With the click of a button, it exports applets for the Web or standalone applications for Mac, Windows, and GNU/Linux. Graphics from Processing programs may also be exported as PDF, DXF, or TIFF files and many other file formats. Future Processing releases will focus on faster 3D graphics, better video playback and capture, and enhancing the development environment. Some experimental versions of Processing have been adapted to other languages such as JavaScript, ActionScript, Ruby, Python, and Scala; other adaptations bring Processing to platforms like the OpenMoko, iPhone, and OLPC XO-1.

Processing was founded by Ben Fry and Casey Reas in 2001 while both were John Maeda's students at the MIT Media Lab. Further development has taken place at the Interaction Design Institute Ivrea, Carnegie Mellon University, and the UCLA, where Reas is chair of the Department of Design | Media Arts. Miami University, Oblong Industries, and the Rockefeller Foundation have generously contributed funding to the project.

The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum (a Smithsonian Institution) included Processing in its National Design Triennial. Works created with Processing were featured prominently in the Design and the Elastic Mind show at the Museum of Modern Art. Numerous design magazines, including Print, Eye, and Creativity, have highlighted the software.

For their work on Processing, Fry and Reas received the 2008 Muriel Cooper Prize from the Design Management Institute. The Processing community was awarded the 2005 Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica award and the 2005 Interactive Design Prize from the Tokyo Type Director's Club.

The Processing website ( includes tutorials, exhibitions, interviews, a complete reference, and hundreds of software examples. The Discourse forum hosts continuous community discussions and dialog with the developers.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

“It’s the greatest project ever”

The New York Public Library, our fair city's jewel of information, is embarking on a grand renovation. The best part about it seems to be that they are considering the library as a space to work and visit, therefore fostering the third place aspect.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

biblioburro! need i say more.

What has 4,800 books and 10 legs? libraries to the people, that's what. In case you missed it, this is a fantastic thing going on in Colombia. And the pictures tell the story so well.

back in the saddle

Hello Cannoneers. Hi. It's me. Kyle. I have been compelled to come out of retirement for two reasons: 1) I miss the game and 2) To announce the NY Art Book Fair this weekend. Sorry for the short notice, but I am not sorry that I am posting. See you there!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Red Scare

Fast forward this to around 12:30. Or watch the whole thing if you've got that kind of time on your hands.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A work in progress

This post will change over the next couple weeks as my research begins to unfold more details, but I can't help wonder what the hell the director of the Frederick County Public Libraries was thinking and whether he holds an MLS?! I believe that the most important issue that is instilled in us during library school is our professional ethics (thank you very much, John Berry), and Mr. Batson's actions go again every ethic we are taught. your thoughts and comments are appreciated on this issue.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Reanimation Library Re-opening on Friday, September 19th

Hello All,

I wanted to mention that the Reanimation Library is reopening this Friday (see message from Andrew below). I went to a reading sponsored by the library over the summer and the artists and Andrew were so appreciative of the support and everyone I met was so open to conversation and creative. So come on out and support not only the incredible endeavors that are the Reanimation Library and Proteus Gowanus, but the amazing people behind it as well (yes I gush but it is deserved).

After taking the last three months off, I am pleased to announce thatthe Reanimation Library will be resuming its regular hours beginning Saturday, September 20th. To mark this occasion, and to launch theProteus Gowanus 2008-2009 show on the theme "mend", the Library andProteus Gowanus will be hosting an opening on Friday, September 19thfrom 6 to 9 PM. Please join us!
The Reanimation Library and Proteus Gowanus( are both loacted at 543 Union Street,Brooklyn, NY, at the corner of Union and Nevins.,+Brooklyn,+NY+11215,+USA&sa=X&oi=map&ct=title
During the library's summer hiatus, I was busy traveling and acquiringnew goodies for the collection. Please see the news page forspecifics:
Also, please be sure to check out Denise Iris' minimental about theReanimation Library:
She filmed the footage a few years back, just before the library movedinto its current home by the Gowanus. It pretty much rules.
Thanks. Hope to see you on the 19th.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

CLIR report to research libraries: Get with the times.

Via Library Journal's Academic Newswire.

The Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) has put together a report outlining some of the innovations Research Libraries might consider adopting in order to stay relevant and take advantage of 21st century tools and technologies. The report can be found here, if you're interested.

Welcome back, Cannoneers.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Herman Melville: Fan of Librarians

From Moby Dick:

EXTRACTS (Supplied by a Sub-Sub-Librarian).

It will be seen that this mere painstaking burrower and grub-worm of a poor devil of a Sub-Sub appears to have gone through the long Vaticans and street-stalls of the earth, picking up whatever random allusions to whales he could anyways find in any book whatsoever, sacred or profane. Therefore you must not, in every case at least, take the higgledy-piggledy whale statements, however authentic, in these extracts, for veritable gospel cetology. Far from it. As touching the ancient authors generally, as well as the poets here appearing, these extracts are solely valuable or entertaining, as affording a glancing bird's eye view of what has been promiscuously said, thought, fancied, and sung of Leviathan, by many nations and generations, including our own.

So fare thee well, poor devil of a Sub-Sub, whose commentator I am. Thou belongest to that hopeless, sallow tribe which no wine of this world will ever warm; and for whom even Pale Sherry would be too rosy-strong; but with whom one sometimes loves to sit, and feel poor-devilish, too; and grow convivial upon tears; and say to them bluntly, with full eyes and empty glasses, and in not altogether unpleasant sadness--Give it up, Sub-Subs! For by how much the more pains ye take to please the world, by so much the more shall ye forever go thankless! Would that I could clear out Hampton Court and the Tuileries for ye! But gulp down your tears and hie aloft to the royal-mast with your hearts; for your friends who have gone before are clearing out the seven-storied heavens, and making refugees of long-pampered Gabriel, Michael, and Raphael, against your coming. Here ye strike but splintered hearts together--there, ye shall strike unsplinterable glasses!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

My new sideline?

I came across a healthcare site called Organized Wisdom tonight in a roundabout way, and I was curious about a healthcare website with a cool name like Organized Wisdom, so I checked it out. It turns out, you can apply to become a "guide", and get paid to create informational "WisdomCards" about different healthcare issues (diseases and conditions, drugs, alternative therapies, etc). This seems like a great way for soon-to-be medical librarians to do some reference work and really dig into sources, which I may want to do after a semester of "Online Health Databases."

So then I started to wonder, how do they pay people to put all this free information out there? The answer, of course, is advertisements. Still, they seem to have a strict editorial policy keeping the ads separate from the "wisdom." Hmm...

Of course, beyond my own personal interest in getting paid to do reference work online, this does seem to bode well for reference librarians. This is a chance to do some good public service work, provide much-needed, quality information to the public at no cost, and get paid to do it. Am I overlooking the negative aspect? Can this model be applied to other fields as well?

Friday, April 4, 2008

retrospective censorship of information

this is bullshit. providing access to information IS NOT the same as endorsing or promoting its content. any librarian worth their weight in catalogs cards know that!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

a summary of KOedu at pratt

created at

Monday, March 17, 2008

Editor-at-Large of the OED on WFMU

Giving me yet another reason to believe that it's the best radio station in the Universe, WFMU's Speakeasy has an interview with Editor-at-Large of the OED playing right now. You can catch the archived program here.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Demise? Really?

Interesting discussion in the comments of this MetaFilter post about the demise of the library, as reported in the Guardian.

I'm always intrigued to hear the reasons why people avoid the library (notable in the MetaFilter comments is "the schizophrenics and clandestinely-masturbating pedophiles"), as well as how they use the library, if they do. For the record, I'm not "Jess the Mess." How uncouth.

Friday, February 15, 2008

so much organization

in case you didn't have enough plugins and tools. enjoy.

worlds collide

conversations with an old friend last night sparked a realization. sitting side by side on my couch, we passed our laptops back and forth showing each other the blogs we read and the resources we use. what is fascinating is that she is a designer (and a cultural curator). as a library student, i was showing her classification schemes and she was showing me information design technology. we were both left totally intrigued of how our professions have become very intertwined.

knowledge organization is far far beyond Dewey and Cutter.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Copyright Documentary

This seems like it would be worth checking out. It's screening next Thursday (1/31) at NYU. I can't make it, but if someone does, please let me know how it goes!

via Stay Free!, which organizes the Illegal Art Exhibit, and about which I have previously gushed.

Lorcan Goes Easy on Aquabrowser

Jess and I did a presentation for our Knowledge Organization class on Aquabrowser, the catalog browser interface that uses a word cloud and facets to enhance a library search. We found it to be pretty disappointing, but Lorcan Dempsey from OCLC is a bit more positive about it. It is certainly an improvement over the traditional interface that makes a user feel like they're performing a search in the early 90s at best, but the accuracy is way off.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Welcome back, Cannoneers!

To get the semester started off right, may I recommend a library-themed online game? It's marginally fun for a few minutes, although I think it tells you less about how the LC system works and more about how fast you can alpha-numerically order something.

Via The Triumph of Bullshit, which wonders if it is the most boring video game of all time. Possibly.

There is another one here.
I find it weirdly satisfying when one of the people in the "I'll Get It" game says "This is exactly what I was looking for." Thanks for spicing up the musty old library image, Carnegie Mellon! Sort of.

UPDATE: Here is another one.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

America's Most Literate

Top 10
Library Support, Holdings, and Utilization

These five variables were indexed to determine a total score and consequent ranking:
1. Number of school media personnel per 1,000 public school students
2. Number of branch libraries per 10,000 library service population
3. Volumes held in the library per capita of library service population
4. Number of circulations per capita of library service population
5. Number of library professional staff per 10,000 library service population

These numbers were then divided by the city population in order to calculate ratios of library services and resources available to the population.

1 Cleveland, OH
2 St. Louis, MO
3 Kansas City, MO
4 Seattle, WA
5 Cincinnati, OH
6 Denver, CO
7 Pittsburgh, PA
8 Toledo, OH
9 Tulsa, OK
10.5 Minneapolis, MN

From CCSU's 2007 listing of America's Most Literate Cities. Minneapolis is the most literate city overall.