Tag Archives: The Library

Jon AKA web designer.

How sweet is this? I have created my own web page.

Take a peek.

For my Computing Foundations class, we get to use the library science program’s online web server to upload things like websites. Our first assignment was to learn a bit about HTML by reading a textbook and writing a website in HTML. It’s pretty cool, programming in HTML isn’t really “designing” a website, but rather taking the template for a website and telling it what to do. So this is website is very basic but I’m still pretty happy with it. Obviously it could use some work and I will hopefully be updating it as I come up with new stuff; any suggestions?
-Jon

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Thoughts over coffee.

I’m in the 4th floor of the University of Iowa’s Main Library. Tucked far away in a corner of the Graduate Reading Room. The only other thing in this room are stacks and carpet dryers left by the overnight cleaners. In the last week, I keep thinking of things I should write about, but they are always just germs of ideas and it would be so much easier to “tweet” these things rather than blog about them. Luckily, I don’t have Twitter and am forced to think through what I want to write about.

For example, I am back in school again. It’s a little different this time around, as I am a full-fledged graduate student. This brings with it many perks, such as a key to the School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) Department ($200 lost key fee) and the entitlement to look down on younger students I pass on the street. But there are still lots of reminders of what undergrad looks like in this city. I pass by Mayflower, my first dorm, every time I drive into the city for class. Kids are always outside waiting for the bus to come pick them up and drive them into campus. I remember the year I spent out on those steps with my first generation iPod shuffle. Last Friday night I went to a CAB sponsored event at the Union, the stand-up comedy of David Koechner. The show itself was terrible, he’s never been funny in any movie or show he’s ever been in, why would his stand-up be any different? But I was more struck by the crowd which attended. It was almost entirely the freshman class of this school. I saw one older couple, probably fans of Koechner from his early SNL days, but everybody else was young and wearing Iowa apparel. Groups consisted of four nerdy-ish looking guy friends all enjoying their first week of college. Young, young looking couples fresh out of high school. Girls whose outfits were just a bit too paltry for their own good. I remember being those kids and seeing them all just brings back all those feelings of being on this campus by myself, scared, lonely, not really knowing what I was doing and feeling in over my head all the time.
But then I remember I have an expensive key that opens a whole wing of the library that they can’t get into, and I snap out of it. Niiiice. You know else I’ve been reminded about? SLOW WALKERS. Gracious there are some slow walkers on this campus. If you must walk slow, just do your best to be spatially aware and move out of the way of walkers with a purpose. Gosh is it annoying.
And classes have started for me now; I’m a full week in. It’s going to be a lot of work, a heck of a lot of reading but really interesting. Once I really get into the readings I can start to share interesting articles/books/whatever I come across related to the field.
Finally, September is just around the corner, which means BRING IT ON MUSIC MONTH. Can’t wait. Plus Coll’s and my bird-day month. Plus the start of fall weather. Hi-oh.
-Jon
P.S. The Daily Show writing team wins the Emmy over The Tonight Show with Conan Brien’s writing team? There is no justice in this world.

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A brief history lesson.

A very cool article from the LA Times about the beginning of the Disney Archives:

click

The very first ticket to Disneyland ever sold. To Walt Disney’s older brother Roy, for only $1. This is awesome for a few reasons. Preservation is such an important part of our life. Librarian Smith was able to join a company that wasn’t holding its own history in such high regard and turned it around so they wouldn’t lose sight of where they came from. What a huge accomplishment, and especially for a company as enduring as Disney. Disney is truly one of the most established brands in this country’s history. I would argue no other company’s name has as much clout behind it. “Disney” evokes such an enduring legacy of pure entertainment infused with heart and meaning and love and goodness. True, they’ve produced their fair share of crap material in the last twenty years*, but no other brand name has as much good quality entertainment under it’s belt as Disney does. And they’ve done so well by keeping sight of their past. They’ve let their past successes inform their current endeavors. You’ve got to keep sight of where you came from to know where you’re at and where you’re headed. That’s why the Disney Archives are so important and awesome.

It’s also another reason for me to get excited about library school. I have no idea what I want to do once I’m actually there, but heading into the program is exciting because I know my core desires have to do with what the field is all about. Information, preservation, organization, communication. Lots of -tion words that are important in life. It’s cool to me that in hopefully three years, I will get a job in an institution where information is highly regarded and I will get paid to organize and communicate that information to others. Awesome.

Also, Lost was/is the most incredible television experience I’ve ever had. Hopefully more on that later.

-Jon

* Why they chose to work with Roseanne, I’ll never understand. Moo.

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i’m glad lotr made the list.

this is the side of the kansas city public library parking lot.

well done kansas city. you just sealed the deal with this. if i ever live in a big city, it’s kc without a doubt. absolutely inspired. I LOVE LIBRARIES.

-jon

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fallout boy.

today i made my usual trip to uni’s library to pick up a few cds i had on hold for me, and something came to my attention walking into the building. i’d seen this sign before, but i guess today was the first time it made me double take. as you walk into the rod library building, in the area between the two sets of front doors, there is a bright yellow sign on the wall, a little higher than eye-level, about the size of a speed limit sign. this is what i saw:

weird huh? i don’t know why i’d never taken note of it before. so anyway, i go up to the circulation desk to pick my cds up, and in passing i ask the librarian what that sign is about, if the library could serve as a real fallout shelter in the case of some kind of weird nuclear emergency. she responded in sort of a surprised way, like she had never really noticed the sign before either. she wasn’t sure what exactly it meant. i said, “it’s not really a big deal, i was just curious.” she proceeds to let another librarian check my cds out while she goes to do some detective work. apparently she went to the dean’s office, which is located in the library directly adjacent to the circulation desk. in the meantime i’m waiting for this second librarian to finish my check out. the first librarian comes back out and says “well the dean isn’t in his office, but let’s go ask at the reference desk.” i assure her it’s not at all important and i just asked on a whim, and she says something to the effect of “that’s what the reference librarians get paid the big bucks for” and leads me toward the reference desk.

at this point i have no real choice except to follow her, or i guess i could’ve just walked away and acted like a huge a-wipe. but i didn’t want to do that because these librarians know me by now, having gone into the library every two or three days this summer to get cds. so i follow this lady to the reference desk, where we find an averaged age college kid sitting and doing something on a computer and also a old lady with white hair. probably in her 60s. the circulation librarian asked the reference librarian if the library was an actual fallout shelter, and she replied she didn’t know. at this point, i stressed again that it wasn’t any big deal and i was just curious, but she said she’d go ask the library director.

are you kidding me? i tried to stop her but it was no use. she came back with a middle aged guy, a little nerdy looking but nice enough. like the others, he told me the library basement was definitely used as a shelter for severe weather, tornadoes and the like, but he wasn’t sure if it was actually a legitimate fallout shelter if some kind of a nuclear accident were to occur. he also told me that if i was really interested (even after me telling him and the other two women that i didn’t care all that much), i could google “fallout shelters in eastern iowa” or “shelters for severe weather around eastern iowa”, or i could probably find something on wikipedia or somewhere else on the web. i said thank you and finally excused myself to leave.

luckily i wasn’t stopped by any other librarians trying to help me on the way out. the worst part of the whole deal was that at one point, i tried to give a look to the college kid behind the desk, like an eyebrow raise that meant “man these people really are going overboard with this aren’t they?” and i didn’t really get anything back in return. so i asked a simple question with a yes/no/i’m not sure answer and i end up looking a fool in front of three librarians and a kid my age. embarrassing. i bet working at the library is super boring if all the librarians get in a big kerfuffle over a silly question like mine.

-jon

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