Monday, May 31, 2010

BHL Workflow presentation for Australia

The second of my presentations at the BHL Australian Node meeting.

The Biodiversity Heritage Library: Workflow Overview . Martin R. Kalfatovic and Suzanne C. Pilsk. BHL Australian Node Meeting: Museum Victoria. 2 June 2010. Melbourne, Australia.

QF 10: SIN to MEL

Had a short layover and then picked up the same plane (and seat) for the final leg of trip. Didn't realize it would be over 6 hours from SIN to MEL!

QF 10: LHR to SIN

This is my first trip aboard an A380. Quite an airplane!

OS 455: VIE to LHR

I like the way this has a "letter box" look, actually, just the wan the window slats were.

Biodiversity Heritage Library Overview for Australia meeting

Here's my first presentation for the BHL-Australia meeting, June 1, 2010.

3 Years On: The Biodiversity Heritage Library. Martin R. Kalfatovic. BHL Australia Kick Off Meeting: Melbourne Museum. 1 June 2010. Melbourne, Australia.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Angry Fish : Dr. Seuss

In January 2007 I was at the birthday party for "The Cat in the Hat" held during the American Library Association in conference in Seattle. I took this picture of the fish cake (there were also interesting drinks called Thing One and Thing Two.

So, this picture has been really popular with the Flickr audience, getting, as of today, just over 2,000 views!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

CAT Train from VIE to downtown

Originally uploaded by martin_kalfatovic
Nice and uneventful flight from IAD to VIE. Collected my things and caught the CAT train to downtown and then the U3 subway to near Parliament, and then a short walk to the hotel just before the rrain started!

Monday, May 24, 2010

OS 94: IAD to VIE

And away we go!

Call me Passepartout

Getting ready to head out to IAD (Washington Dulles) for a trip to VIE (Vienna), but that'll be just the start.

From there, it's LHR (London), SIN (Singapore), MEL (Melbourne), CBR (Canberra), SYD (Sydney), SFO (San Francisco), and then back to IAD!

The trip(s) are for a meeting of BHL-Europe and then in Australia, to do some prep-work for the kick-off of BHL-Australia. For most of the trip, I'll be with colleagues from the Smithsonian (the Vienna part of the trip), and Chris Freeland (MOBOT) for both Vienna and Australia.

I feel a bit like Passepartout ("Goes-everywhere in French), the character in Jules Verne's novel, Around the World in Eighty Days. He is the French valet to the novel's English protagonist, Phileas Fogg. So I guess in the BHL Around the World, Chris is Phileas!

Follow the trip on Twitter (#BHLE2010, #BHLAU2010, #WorldTour).

Follow on Flickr Around the world, BHL-Europe, and BHL-AU.

And on the blog, tag World Tour.


  • 9 segments
  • 26,603 miles
  • 2 days 9:39
  • 8 Airports
  • 4 Carriers
  • 5 Countries


Megan Prelinger signs her new book

Be sure to get Megan's new book, Another Science Fiction! Here's the NY Times review. She was at the Smithsonian's Air & Space Museum today (May 24, 2010) doing a book signing.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Quote of the Day: "Nature red in tooth and claw ..."

In MeOriginally uploaded by martin_kalfatovic
Happened to be watching this hawk during a successful hunt. It enjoyed a hearty lunch with a crowd of interested by-standers. Made me think of Tennyson.

In Memoriam A.H.H. (1849)
Alfred Tennyson

'So careful of the type?' but no.
From scarped cliff and quarried stone
She cries, `A thousand types are gone:
I care for nothing, all shall go.

'Thou makest thine appeal to me:
I bring to life, I bring to death:
The spirit does but mean the breath:
I know no more.' And he, shall he,

Man, her last work, who seem'd so fair,
Such splendid purpose in his eyes,
Who roll'd the psalm to wintry skies,
Who built him fanes of fruitless prayer,

Who trusted God was love indeed
And love Creation's final law?
Tho' Nature, red in tooth and claw
With ravine, shriek'd against his creed?

Who loved, who suffer'd countless ills,
Who battled for the True, the Just,
Be blown about the desert dust,
Or seal'd within the iron hills?

No more? A monster then, a dream,
A discord. Dragons of the prime,
That tare each other in their slime,
Were mellow music match'd with him.

O life as futile, then, as frail!
O for thy voice to soothe and bless!
What hope of answer, or redress?
Behind the veil, behind the veil.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Education 101: Where is it written that the old way is the right way?

Just saw the new Kaplan University (since when has Kaplan been a university????). Stunningly provocative ad. A powerful statement about the future of post-secondary education in the U.S. Being someone who graduated from a private college in the 1980s, I missed the glut of "new" majors that exploded in the later eighties and nineties. It's interesting how universities (both public and private) have moved towards the more "open type" of majors just as the large post-secondary institutions (the University of Phoenix, Strayer Collage, and now it seems Kaplan University) expanded beyond basic vocational studies to start to fill a true need in the educational experience.

And what does this all mean for libraries? As large swaths of the post-secondary education market moves towards a convergence between the Kaplans and the "traditional" public/private colleges and universities, what types of library service will these students need/want?

In the Kaplan commercial, the education experience moves beyond the desks locked down in traditional classrooms; out of classrooms and into new spaces, subway stations, the beach, etc. Will libraries follow students to where they are? Or will libraries insist that their functions and services are "destination" spots.

I just read a future library scenario posted to the LITA-L discussion group. It described an event in 2015 when a student walks into the library, consults with a librarian looking for a book by "Wells" about the "future" who then SMS's the student a link from the library catalog to an e-book for the student to download (and gets some penumbra of other library resources around it).

2015? I don't think so. After reading the post, I just typed "wells future" into my e-book reader on my Droid phone, The Time Machine popped up as the first hit; I hit download and had the book in just under 30 seconds. Never got up from the couch. Where's the library there? How can we stay relevant in that transaction?

In the words of the Kaplan University commercial, "Where is it written that the old way is the right way?" If our users head off to the Kaplans (and the more "traditional" post-secondary follow behind the Kaplans), will libraries still be sure that their "old ways" are the "right ways"?

A quick trip to Rochester, MN

I went to Rochester, MN for a meeting of the Medical Heritage Library. Rochester was a nice little town, but very dominated by the Mayo Clinic. In some ways, it reminded me of a science-based Lourdes.

Here's my presentation, An Anatomy of a Mass Scanning Project. I had a couple of interesting meals (which you can read about here). Added a new airport (RST) and one Starbucks to my lists.


View Rochester, MN in a larger map