New Tech in Texas Blog

New Tech in Texas Blog.

live for lightbulb moments when I'm teaching or presenting. Christine
Peterson made my day by letting me know that she has started her own
blog after attending the blogging/RSS preconference Steven and I gave
at the Internet Librarian conference last month! You can find her blog, “Library Technology in Texas,” at, while her Atom feed is at

There's already some great information on her blog, including this that I hadn't seen posted elsewhere:

Just 20% of Your Time

In a posting from a Google employee,
he said that 'Google allows their employees to devote 20% of their
working hours to any project they choose.' In his case, he has been
working on Google Suggest.

Just think . . . what project(s) would you work on if you had 20% of
your working hours to devote to it? A book? A re-write of the web site?
A new service? More outreach? Reading? Learning new technologies?
Attending college classes?

Like Christine, I love this
idea, and I think it's a great one for librarians. I know how hard it
is to find 20% of your time to devote to something other than the five
hats you're already wearing, but when I've stolen time out of my
schedule in the past to “play” with something unexpected, something
good always comes of it. I've been doing that here and there with the
new calendar I'm working on for MLS, and I think it will show in the details.

I'd also encourage library vendors to allow their employees this luxury, because it's probably the closest they would get to something like Google Labs.
I know some of the vendors do encourage creative thinking and
brainstorming from their employees, but this would give them the chance
to implement the resulting ideas. Maybe then they would come up with
stuff like LibraryLookup for their customers and maybe, just maybe, we'd have native RSS feeds from our catalog by now.  [The Shifted Librarian]

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