Friday, May 05, 2006

Get ur geek on

Since Easter, my brain has been on almost permanent overdrive, and it's been running non-stop. Tonight's the first time since the weekend before the weekend before Easter it's actually at rest (or at least not in high gear.) I survived the last two weeks of April and the first week of May, and now I only have two more weeks to get through before I'm home-free for the summer.

This past week was the first of our three conferences for Librarians in Northern Ontario - it was for the northeastern and Francophone libraries. Next week, it's the conference for the First Nations libraries (which I'm not attending because I'm not presenting anything there this year), and the week after is the Northwestern conference in Thunder Bay, to which I will be going.

I don't often get my geek on and talk about my work. Which, considering a bunch of librarians link here and have yet to see proof of my librarian cred, is a pity. Not because what I do is so golly-gee-whiz important, but it means I don't often get the chance to brag. So, I'm going to drop the pretense that I don't do anything during the day and brag (a little) about this past week.

I did two presentations this week, both on Wednesday. The first was a session on technology planning - what a technology plan is, why libraries should have one, and how to go about creating one. I did a very similar session to this last year, but made some major changes to it. Since last year, I wrote a document to be used with a toolkit which was created a few years ago on the subject. And I was able to add material from there to this presentation; which, in my not-so-humble opinion, made it better than last year's.

The second presentation was basic computer maintenance - it was a topic assigned to me, and not one I had much to go one. Where does one begin on this topic? Software? Hardware? Troubleshooting? It was a vague topic with a lot of ground to cover in a short period of time. I started with a little show & tell - I have some old computer parts laying around and I passed them around, explaining what they were and what they did. Then I did a little bit about setting up a network, setting up printers, usernames and passwords, and firewalls. The trick to this segment was letting myself get sidetracked by the questions, so that the librarians would see that the computer wasn't as scary as they might think it is. Finally, I ended with stressing the importance of virus protection, anti-spyware programs, and backing up your computer(s).

Now, to brag a little - I think I did pretty good. I won't know for certain until I see the results of the session evaluations, but I'd like to think that I kicked ass and took names*. Last year I did three sessions - technology planning, automation, and an email primer for the First Nations conference - and had uniformly positive responses. (I also have two sessions in TBay - technology planning (*sigh*) and how to give presentations.)

Now that I've bored the rest of you, let's see what else is going on. Not much, really. I'm going to try and spend the weekend vegging and doing the micro-organizational kinds of crap that make me happiest. Like, sorting through the scraps of paper on my desk, and rearranging the books on my one bookcase so I can put my non-knitting craft stuff on it. And maybe reading, because I'm so far behind on the 50 books thing I may not get caught up.

*Aaaand promptly lost the sheet of paper on which I wrote them. Because I'm kind of a spaz sometimes**.

** Witness: tonight I dropped an overdue library book into the drop box,
then noticed the sign indicating it was only for videos and DVDs. After doing a little oh-I-can't-believe-I-didn't-see-that-and-I'm-such-an-idiot dance, I apologized to the surveillance camera. See?