About Nicole C. Engard

Nicole C. Engard is the Vice President of of Education at ByWater Solutions. Her interest in library technology started at the Jenkins Law Library in Philadelphia, where she worked as Web Manager. For her innovative uses of technology in libraries, Engard was named one of Library Journal’s Movers & Shakers in 2007. She keeps the library community up to date on web technologies via her website, “What I Learned Today…” (www.web2learning.net). She has been published in Computers in Libraries, ONLINE magazine, and Journal of Hospital Librarianship and written chapters for Thinking Outside the Book: Essays for Innovative Librarians and Writing and Publishing: The Librarian’s Handbook.

Author Archive | Nicole C. Engard

KohaCon12: It’s all about the people!

In June, I attended the annual KohaCon, a conference focuses on the Koha open source ILS. Open source plays a big role in the second edition of The Accidental Systems Librarian and so I thought I’d share my summary of this talk by Chris Cormack with you all.
Open source (and Koha) is about a lot more than the code and the programmers – it’s about the community. So with Koha, how does the community work? Chris Cormack broke it down for us in to some very simple steps!

  • People are always on IRC talking about Koha and our lives (Stats)
  • The Mailing Lists are very active (as the last speaker mentioned) and are a great way to see what’s being discussed and participating in that discussion.
  • The Wiki has pages like this one where people bid to host KohaCon
  • Bugzilla is where we report problems, request enhancements and keep track of developments/fixes. Always search first and if someone has reported it already comment so people know that you have the same problem (the squeaky wheel gets the grease).

KohaCon12

KohaCon12

It’s not always roses though – like with any community – things don’t always go smoothly. That said we don’t get the same kind of insane flame wars that other communities seem to get. (I like to think of it as a family – every family fights at some point). Usually we all get along.

To be a part of our community it’s really as easy as participating in the above sites in some way. You don’t have to be a programmer! To learn about some of the unsung heroes in the community check Chris’s blog.

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This work by Nicole C. Engard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

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Social Networking for the Systems Librarian

When the first edition of The Accidental Systems Librarian was written Facebook was only being used in colleges and Twitter didn’t even exist! One of the major edits that I made in the second edition was to make sure that current and future systems librarians understood the power of the social network.

The other day I had a problem with my computer (my personal computer – but the story still works for managing systems in your library) where Flash was very choppy. I posted to Twitter and Facebook to ask my network for tips on how to solve my problem and I got 3 answers within an hour!

The key to building your social network is to follow people in your field. It might annoy your family if you’re always posting library and systems related questions to your Facebook wall, but trust me it’s well worth it to build up your network with a focus on your profession so that you can find the help you need when you need it.

Start by keeping a watch on the official book page on Facebook and following me on Facebook and Twitter.

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This work by Nicole C. Engard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

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