Myth and Magic of Library Systems

Myth and Magic of Library Systems
Chandos Publishing
  • 1. Auflage
  • |
  • erschienen am 23. September 2015
  • |
  • 208 Seiten
E-Book | ePUB mit Adobe DRM | Systemvoraussetzungen
E-Book | PDF mit Adobe DRM | Systemvoraussetzungen
978-0-08-100087-8 (ISBN)

The Myth and Magic of Library Systems not only defines what library systems are, but also provides guidance on how to run a library systems department. It is aimed at librarians or library administrations tasked with managing, or using, a library systems department.

This book focuses on different scenarios regarding career changes for librarians and the ways they may have to interact with library systems, including examples that speak to IT decision-making responsibilities, work as a library administrator, or managerial duties in systems departments.

  • Provides guidance on how to run a library systems department
  • Focuses on different scenarios regarding career changes for librarians and the ways they may have to interact with library systems
  • Includes sample scenarios that speak to IT decision-making responsibilities, work as a library administrator, or managerial duties in systems departments

Keith J. Kelley has recently concluded his IT career as the Director of Systems at Western Michigan University Libraries where he was also Project Manager of the libraries' ILS replacement project. He managed the library automation group as well as the desktop computing group. He was also an IT expert-at-large for issues in the libraries' Digitization Center, the Web Office and other areas of the libraries with complex information technology needs.
  • Englisch
  • OXford
  • |
  • Großbritannien
Elsevier Science
  • 3,75 MB
978-0-08-100087-8 (9780081000878)
0081000871 (0081000871)
weitere Ausgaben werden ermittelt
  • Front Cover
  • The Myth and Magic of Library Systems
  • Copyright
  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • About the Author
  • Preface
  • A missive to administrators
  • A missive to library IT department heads and library IT administrators
  • A missive to new librarians in IT and students
  • A missive to library school faculties and administrators
  • A missive to IT committee members and other engaged library employees
  • List of figures
  • Chapter 1: Atlantis wasn't a magical place and library systems are just library IT
  • 1.1 World building and the creation of systems
  • 1.2 How IS turned into IT
  • 1.3 Library systems are IT minus two things plus those same two things
  • University Librarian
  • University Librarian
  • Library Director
  • Dean of Libraries
  • 1.4 Library roles are specialized today, so are IT roles
  • Chapter 2: Creatures of ancient myth: The Titans and the systems librarian
  • 2.1 In the land of the blind, the one-eyed librarian is king
  • 2.2 Even specialized MLIS programs don't provide IT fundamentals
  • 2.3 You meant automation librarian, didn't you? Say yes
  • 2.4 The disappearing act: Making your own position obsolete
  • Chapter 3: Customers, patrons, users, and unruly mobs
  • 3.1 Ignorance, repetition, and conflicting priorities: Why the customer isn't in charge
  • 3.2 Don't ignore 10,000 people to serve one person
  • 3.3 Dealing with problem customers
  • 3.4 Your IT unit is a therapist's couch and priest's confessional
  • Chapter 4: Reading users' minds
  • 4.1 Divining what happened from incomplete information
  • 4.2 Knowing the common errors and common resolutions
  • Chapter 5: Sleight of hand: Service or the appearance of service
  • 5.1 Resources versus service levels: An exercise
  • 5.2 [insert thing] as a service
  • 5.3 Tiered helpdesk, just like tiered reference
  • 5.4 Using technology the way it was intended
  • 5.5 Teach your users how to Google their own solutions
  • 5.6 Don't share complete information, share popular information
  • 5.7 Apologize like the user is your significant other (it doesn't matter if he or she is wrong)
  • 5.8 Pretend your user is smarter than you: Ask stupid questions
  • 5.9 You can't over-communicate
  • 5.10 Stop the bleeding instead of applying bandages
  • 5.11 Do a thing well before you do a thing twice
  • 5.12 Do a thing well before you do more things
  • 5.13 Don't do a thing if you can't do it well
  • 5.14 Set your IT unit's priorities: An heuristic for calculating impact
  • Chapter 6: Taking on apprentices: Educating your customer base
  • 6.1 Prevention: You can lead a horse to water, but can you teach a user to fish?
  • 6.2 Self-documenting interfaces, teachable moments, and point of need help
  • 6.3 Train the trainer and online videos (clever ideas for lazy cheapskates)
  • 6.4 Skills and inventory assessment
  • Chapter 7: Do the impossible: Slaying dragons without time, people, or money
  • 7.1 Redefine the problem
  • 7.2 Triage the hell out of the problem
  • 7.3 Solve the visible tip of the iceberg
  • 7.4 To hell with it (Or India): Outsource
  • 7.5 Whatever, just move the deadline
  • 7.6 If all else fails throw money at the problem
  • Chapter 8: Adventure party makeup: Building an IT staff
  • 8.1 Looking for group: Roles that make a well-rounded organizational structure
  • 8.2 Peons, goblins, house elves, and students
  • 8.3 Automation and enterprise computing
  • 8.4 Deskside support, desktop productivity, desktop computing, and helpdesk
  • 8.5 Cloud computing and server-side computing
  • 8.6 Character classes and combining roles (you can do that, sort of)
  • 8.7 So, you're hiring a [insert position here]
  • 8.7.1 IT head, IT Administrator, Assistant Dean, Associate/Assistant University Librarian
  • 8.7.2 UNIX or Windows server administrators
  • 8.7.3 Windows server administrator
  • 8.7.4 Desktop manager
  • 8.7.5 Programmer
  • 8.7.6 Programmer analyst
  • 8.7.7 Network administrator
  • 8.7.8 Network engineers
  • 8.7.9 Database administrator (DBA)
  • 8.7.10 Security specialist
  • 8.7.11 Systems analyst
  • 8.7.12 Project manager
  • 8.7.13 Deskside support technician
  • 8.7.14 Helpdesk operator
  • 8.7.15 Web librarian
  • 8.7.16 Web designer
  • 8.7.17 Web developer
  • 8.7.18 Automation librarian
  • 8.7.19 Systems librarian
  • 8.7.20 Digitization manager/coordinator/librarian
  • 8.7.21 Student
  • 8.8 Job postings: Knowing the magic words
  • 8.9 Training, professional development, and research: It's different
  • Chapter 9: The ritual: Analyzing problems, providing solutions
  • 9.1 Interview customers for their perceived needs
  • 9.2 Come up with a few pretty solutions (and one ugly one too)
  • 9.3 Project planning and management
  • 9.4 Smaller tasks and other tricks
  • Chapter 10: Arcane strategy: Following the magic rule system
  • 10.1 Eliminate redundancy, but also single points of failure
  • 10.2 Make sure everyone everywhere is doing everything efficiently
  • Chapter 11: Predicting the future
  • 11.1 Looking at IT's and the private sector's past
  • 11.2 Technology forecasts, consultants, and pundits
  • Chapter 12: They flow through us, around us, bind us together
  • 12.1 Integrated library systems and the things that replace them
  • 12.2 Other library-specific software: A bestiary
  • Chapter 13: Omniscience: Knowing all things
  • 13.1 Vendor webinars and conference sessions
  • 13.2 Documenting your own setup and vendor documentation
  • 13.3 Reading articles
  • 13.4 YouTube: How to do everything
  • 13.5 Knowing everyone's job better than they do
  • Chapter 14: Superpowers you could possess
  • 14.1 Soothsayer: Reading body language and microexpressions
  • 14.2 Mind control and other dark arts: The tools of persuasion
  • 14.3 Astral projection: Being physically in one place and mentally another
  • 14.4 Superhuman stamina: Long days with minimal rest
  • 14.5 Telekinesis? Solving problems by proximity
  • 14.6 Chronomancer: Manipulating time
  • 14.7 Casting mirror image: More people by using smartphones, large monitors, etc.
  • 14.8 Lifehacker. Yes, the site
  • Chapter 15: Convening the council: Meetings
  • 15.1 This is your life now: Avoiding and attending meetings
  • 15.2 Scheduling methods and strategies
  • 15.3 Preparing versus winging it
  • 15.4 Running meetings
  • 15.5 Attending briefings and webinars when you already know everything
  • 15.6 Levitation: Staying above it all
  • Chapter 16: The crystal ball: Reporting, data mining, and assessment
  • 16.1 Document and review everything
  • 16.2 Big data, profiles, and personalization
  • 16.3 Privacy, paranoia, and assessment
  • 16.4 Canned reports and on-demand reports
  • 16.5 Ad-hoc reports and the bane of custom local code
  • 16.6 Using UNIX command line magic to conjure instant reports
  • 16.7 Reports from the Herald: Department reports
  • Chapter 17: Spellbook: Helpful tips, strategies, and solutions
  • 17.1 How budgets work
  • 17.2 Using one-time funds for IT (and when not to)
  • 17.3 Creating a technology plan
  • 17.4 Software selection methodology
  • 17.5 Flat decision-making structures: Getting a consensus
  • 17.6 Balancing incompatible policies, procedures, and contracts
  • 17.7 TCO: When technologies will save you money and when they won't
  • 17.8 The cost benefit analysis of custom local code
  • 17.9 What to expect when you're expecting to fail
  • 17.10 Visiting the pantheon: Things librarians think they do well but should ask IT people for help
  • Appendix: Magic words your coworkers might be misusing-an un-thesaurus
  • References
  • Index
  • Back Cover


Information technology moves at a fast pace. Libraries have lagged in adopting many IT advancements which are seen as standard in private industry and private life. This sluggishness to adopt new ways of doing things is causing libraries to decay and shrink instead of grow to lead the way into the new view of information literacy appropriate for the information age. This should have been the age of libraries' resurgence in relevancy, but they are having trouble joining the pack, and they certainly are not leading it. One reason for this delayed revolution is that libraries horribly misunderstand "systems" (information systems/technology) and how to manage them to achieve success. In order for libraries to claim their spot as leaders in the information age, they must allow IT professionals to do IT jobs or require more librarians to have IT educations. The complexity of systems requires a better understanding of information technology than what is achieved through today's standard library science curriculum. IT can do amazing and magical things if you let the right people do it, and together with library professionals can help make the transition into the new age.

Temper the things you read herein. It is neither 100% correct nor 100% complete, and if it has had time to be printed several things in it are out of date. Read more books and articles to supplement this information. Don't take them all in equally. Be skeptical. The large majority of what you read will be garbage, but try to take away a few useful points from the things you read (not always possible, but usually you can learn one thing). Also, consensus is no measure of quality, especially since most systems librarians are accidental and lack the professional background and education to be IT professionals, so just because you read it in three library journals (even the peer-reviewed ones) or saw it at two library conferences and Educause doesn't make it true. Also, people who really know the job well don't often have time to publish much, so most of what is published is bunk, and even those who do publish, don't publish 90% of their best stuff.

None of the things in this book are meant to be original or ground-breaking but come from a perspective that isn't too common in library publications because libraries and academia tend to grow their own leaders. This book is contrasting with viewpoints put out there by library professionals because it is more productive than IT professionals shaking our heads and walking away. It is somewhat rare that someone leaves a career leading IT outside of libraries and comes to libraries (it would be a terrible career move, especially financially, but also with fewer career advancement options). When originally conceived, the idea for this book was to include everything about Information Technology in libraries. This idea was quickly quashed with the realization that including everything would amount to many books, certainly not just one. So, the point of this book is not to comprehensively cover all the topics in library IT. The point is to inspire those who are involved or getting involved in library IT to challenge their beliefs and introduce them to the contrasting view of IT, its role in relation to libraries, and how to manage it. This book is largely from an IT point of view but also a management point of view; specifics for other audiences are denoted in the following missives.

Fun fact: if you are certain about knowing something you are almost certainly wrong. Because science. Keeping in the spirit of modern communication, the grammar in this book also occasionally makes use of modern grammar. Because Internet. Also, some of the analogies may only be helpful if you are familiar with genre fiction or gaming. The analogies are for everyone; one cannot teach systems librarianship and pop culture in one book.

Occasionally, throughout this book, words will be used like terminal, which is wrong, or station, which is imprecise, or will make use of other end-user vernacular. One of the confusing issues surrounding IT in libraries is conflicting or ambiguous vocabulary. Terminology plays an important part of communicating problems as well as solutions, especially between two specialized fields. Finding a common vernacular between library and IT professionals would bring about quicker consensus and more satisfying interactions between departments. In this book, you will find ways to bridge this communication gap by using terms which are consistent throughout IT and understood across industries, by vendors, and with users of library services (in other words, everyone else). At the end of the book, some commonly confusing vocabulary is tackled directly, but terminology is a common theme throughout, as well as its ability to clarify the myths or demystify the magic.

IT professionals will get less out of this book than administrators and librarians, who will get less out of it than people just starting to run an IT department in a library. What a library school student will get out of it probably depends on where they've been academically and where they are going professionally. Ideally, everyone will see something in a new light, with the curtains drawn back, so to speak. Following this preface are a few missives from the author to specific audiences that will help them get the most out of the book.

That being said, Chapters 1 and 2 focus around library "systems," "systems" librarians, and their relationship to the library and to IT. Readers will get a good understanding of what it means to run systems within a library, how the position relies on a firm foundation of basic IT concepts, and requires a very strong base in information systems, which is not taught within the curriculum of MLS degrees. In today's libraries, the term "systems librarian" has lost its definition out of necessity. Library systems became too large for an unspecialized professional to manage. IT professionals must take the lead in specific technologies, with skilled and properly educated librarians bridging the gap between the disciplines in a business analyst role where appropriate. IT professionals and librarians can and should work together as a team to bring libraries back to claim their spot as the destination for information experts.

In IT, customer service is a central concept. This book refers to users, customers, and patrons as is appropriate for the context (not quite interchangeably). The goal of information technology is to automate and simplify tasks for the users. Without the customers, there would be no goal to reach. Throughout Chapters 3-6, you will find many helpful tips and techniques on how to deal with different customer service needs. While IT must keep the needs of all of the customers at the forefront, often times customers are unaware of the big picture, do not share the same vocabulary to report problems correctly, or are in need of training. Within these chapters you will find practical, cost-efficient ideas to communicate with customers in order to resolve issues and identify training needs, creating a self-sufficient customer base and therefore lessening the burden on staff and budgets.

Chapters 7-9 discuss problems, the people who solve them, and how they go about it. Resources can be tight and must be managed with care. Chapter 7 gives suggestions on how to work through difficult problems with limited resources and creative solutions. Chapter 8 explains in depth the skills of specialized IT roles and how it takes all of these specialists to solve a library's problems. Explanations on how each discipline within IT overlaps with other roles within the IT department and how to evaluate job postings and descriptions to get the best candidates possible are given. Once your team is in place, you will learn in Chapter 9 how to analyze problems and the importance of creating and using a project plan to successfully complete complex solutions with explicit buy-in from the customer(s).

IT is about the big picture. Systems intertwine with every aspect of your organization, which causes changes and failures to have the ability to cause widespread consequences. If IT is magic, then how you run IT is your magic rule system. In Chapter 10, the book discusses having an efficient, consistently run system of systems to reduce redundancies and remove single points of failure. Still, failures will happen. You will learn about contingency plans and some tips on how to lessen the impact on your organization. With the ever-changing landscape of information technology, it is wise to follow trends and forecasts to see if any upcoming changes might impact you. Chapter 11 shows how you can use past trends to predict your own future, and will guide you to read some library IT forecasters, surveys and trend-spotting conferences you can attend. One such instance is covered in more depth in Chapter 12. Private industry led the way in cloud computing and libraries are starting to catch up. Replacing your ILS with a cloud-based library platform service requires careful analysis of costs versus benefits. You will also find in this chapter a helpful listing of library-specific software. Understanding the big picture requires understanding all the things. In Chapter 13, tips are shared about how to gather information and use resources available to you in order to come close to knowing everything. The book gives practical advice on how to document your past solutions and utilize modern sources to help you know everyone's job better.

Achieving a life-work balance...

Dateiformat: EPUB
Kopierschutz: Adobe-DRM (Digital Rights Management)


Computer (Windows; MacOS X; Linux): Installieren Sie bereits vor dem Download die kostenlose Software Adobe Digital Editions (siehe E-Book Hilfe).

Tablet/Smartphone (Android; iOS): Installieren Sie bereits vor dem Download die kostenlose App Adobe Digital Editions (siehe E-Book Hilfe).

E-Book-Reader: Bookeen, Kobo, Pocketbook, Sony, Tolino u.v.a.m. (nicht Kindle)

Das Dateiformat EPUB ist sehr gut für Romane und Sachbücher geeignet - also für "fließenden" Text ohne komplexes Layout. Bei E-Readern oder Smartphones passt sich der Zeilen- und Seitenumbruch automatisch den kleinen Displays an. Mit Adobe-DRM wird hier ein "harter" Kopierschutz verwendet. Wenn die notwendigen Voraussetzungen nicht vorliegen, können Sie das E-Book leider nicht öffnen. Daher müssen Sie bereits vor dem Download Ihre Lese-Hardware vorbereiten.

Weitere Informationen finden Sie in unserer E-Book Hilfe.

Dateiformat: PDF
Kopierschutz: Adobe-DRM (Digital Rights Management)


Computer (Windows; MacOS X; Linux): Installieren Sie bereits vor dem Download die kostenlose Software Adobe Digital Editions (siehe E-Book Hilfe).

Tablet/Smartphone (Android; iOS): Installieren Sie bereits vor dem Download die kostenlose App Adobe Digital Editions (siehe E-Book Hilfe).

E-Book-Reader: Bookeen, Kobo, Pocketbook, Sony, Tolino u.v.a.m. (nicht Kindle)

Das Dateiformat PDF zeigt auf jeder Hardware eine Buchseite stets identisch an. Daher ist eine PDF auch für ein komplexes Layout geeignet, wie es bei Lehr- und Fachbüchern verwendet wird (Bilder, Tabellen, Spalten, Fußnoten). Bei kleinen Displays von E-Readern oder Smartphones sind PDF leider eher nervig, weil zu viel Scrollen notwendig ist. Mit Adobe-DRM wird hier ein "harter" Kopierschutz verwendet. Wenn die notwendigen Voraussetzungen nicht vorliegen, können Sie das E-Book leider nicht öffnen. Daher müssen Sie bereits vor dem Download Ihre Lese-Hardware vorbereiten.

Weitere Informationen finden Sie in unserer E-Book Hilfe.

Download (sofort verfügbar)

73,72 €
inkl. 19% MwSt.
Download / Einzel-Lizenz
ePUB mit Adobe DRM
siehe Systemvoraussetzungen
PDF mit Adobe DRM
siehe Systemvoraussetzungen
Hinweis: Die Auswahl des von Ihnen gewünschten Dateiformats und des Kopierschutzes erfolgt erst im System des E-Book Anbieters
E-Book bestellen

Unsere Web-Seiten verwenden Cookies. Mit der Nutzung dieser Web-Seiten erklären Sie sich damit einverstanden. Mehr Informationen finden Sie in unserem Datenschutzhinweis. Ok