Andrew K. Pace: December 2010 Archives

As much as I love ALA, I have to admit that I am not a big fan of holding it the first week of January.  I fretted too much and too often that it would dampen both my holiday spirit and my ALA spirit.  Alas, like Christmas for the Grinch, somehow or other ALA came just the same.  So time to get ready.

This year will be my first ALA in six years without a LITA Board meeting.  While liberating at first, I'm sure it will feel weird not to spend so much time with my LITA colleagues.  Be sure to check out the LITA event schedule.

Of course I will have a little more time to attend some OCLC events and meet with libraries who have signed up for the new Web-scale Management Services.  I'm happy to say that in the few short weeks since my year-end update, the number of libraries signed up for WMS has increased to 18 and there are 5 libraries using the services in production.  A few of them will be joining me on Sunday to talk about their experience.

Sunday, January 9, 4:00 - 5:30 pm
Hilton San Diego Bayfront, Sapphire Ballroom P 
Library Management Services in the Cloud: More Reality than Dream 
Join Andrew Pace and early members of the Web-scale Management Services user community as they share their progress to-date and the realized and potential impact to library staff and users.

To my chagrin, I realize that I am up against Ted Danson, but in my defense, I still have a little bit more hair, I am a librarian, and sometimes you just want to go where everyone knows your acronym.

I also recommend that you catch my colleagues Robin Murray and Kathryn Harnish as they present the larger fruits of some of the underlying work on WMS.

Saturday, January 8, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel, Aqua Room 314 
The Power of Data, Technology and Community: the OCLC Platform Strategy 
Speakers will discuss how the platform enables OCLC, libraries and other technology and industry partners to work together to meet local and global needs for streamlined workflows, improved decision-making, and ultimately exposing information about collections in new contexts.

Robin has a great post that just went up on the OCLC Cooperative blog that talks about some of this from a data perspective.

Of course, these are just two of a long list of OCLC-sponsored events at ALA. There are many more from which to choose!

Happy New Year, everyone.  I hope to see a lot of you in San Diego!

My Server Got Run Over by a Cloud App

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(to the tune of "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, click here if you dare and need a refresher)

My server got run over by a cloud app
Quicken, Word, and CRMs all grieve
I'm lovin' Google, Mint-dot-com, and Salesforce
Like Zuckerberg and cnet, I believe

It's like software as a service
It's second nature to the kids
Any metaphor will work here
Clouds, architecture, rent, or power grids

I read ebooks on my handheld
And I can bank while in the loo
All my data's on the network
At home, at work, in church, or Timbuktu

My server got run over by a cloud app
My OS runs from southern Tel Aviv
You can say that SLA is bogus
But as for me and Balmer, we believe

Now we're all so proud of IT
They've been taking it so well
See them in there smashing servers
Damning all those years of upgrades straight to hell

Can it be email without Outlook?
There's so much space on box-dot-net
Can I be home without an H:\ drive?
Or should I trade my browser in for a diskette?

My server got run over by a cloud app
Upgrading to Gmail I perceive
that you may say there's no such thing as web scale
But as for me and Larry, we believe

I don't install any software
My CD-ROM drive's filled with dust
I have 86 more logins
And an internet provider that I trust

I don't need me no more hardware
In the cloud I'm cavalier
If all the power's in the network
Why do I buy a new device each year?

My server got run over by a cloud app
Emoticons I wear upon my sleeve
The power of the network is our future
Just uninstall, log on, and then believe!

Happy Holidays everyone!

for previous Hectic Pace Christmas parodies, see:

Year in Review

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I'm a deadline kind of guy.  I think it comes from writing for magazines.  I do much better (even at the last minute) if I know I have a deadline.  Frankly, it's one of the reasons I haven't been blogging as much as I used to.  When Hectic Pace was at American Libraries, they were smart enough to contractually obligate me to four posts per month.  I should have told OCLC that if they really wanted me to blog, they should have put it in my contract.

So my deadline for a year end review of activities is, naturally, the end of the year.  It's been a good one for the Networked Library Services product portfolio at OCLC.  And the excitement does not begin and end with WMS.  Well, maybe it does begin there.

After several months of testing with a half dozen pilot libraries, WMS launched to Early Adopters after ALA in June.  I'm happy to say that in that short time, seventeen libraries have already committed to be early adopters.  Four of them are already live and using the services in production.

Platform Services
With the new WMS technology stack comes the opportunity for the real fruits of a Service Oriented Architecture.  OCLC will be expanding the existing Developer Network by working with a few key WMS libraries in developing services on the new platform.  There is some very exciting work going on here.  Stay tuned.

The Developer Network site got a nice facelift this year.  The new Drupal site brings new content and functionality to the dedicated group of developers working with OCLC APIs.  The new deisgn was so popular that it became the basis for the Web-scale Management Services User Support Center.

WCA continues to provide libraries with valuable information about their own collections while also comparing holdings to WorldCat, peer libraries, and several authoratative lists.  Some new analysis tools are currently under investigation and should provide some promising opportunities for even better analytics, including new technologies, integration with library workflows, and clean new displays.  Again, stay tuned!

In the Summer of 2009, OCLC began working with a small handful of libraries to turn the most popular remote access tool for libraries into a hosted solution.  On December 2, OCLC announced the general release of the Hosted EZproxy service.  Several libraries are already signing up.  I don't like to quibble over superlatives like first, best, and biggest....oh who am I kidding...EZproxy is all three.

That's just a quick overview of a year that had a lot of activity.  I didn't even hit some of the enterprise level activities that go into supporting not only the products within my own product portfolio but several others as well--things like OCLC's new Identity Management (IDM) services, Service Configuration (for products like WorldCat Local and the OCLC knowledge base, and other products), and, of course,  

Our team continues to grow, as does our commitment to the libary cooperative.  Membership involvement in the strategic direction, the development process, and product creation has been tremendously helpful and rewarding--from the pilots and early implementers to the focus groups, commentators, and everyone in between.  The validation we have received from libraries is the best reward.  Here's to even more fruitful and productive year in 2011.

About the Author

Andrew K. Pace

I am Executive Director for Networked Library Services at OCLC. I am also a past President of LITA. On occasion, I am known for pontificating "on stage, in writing, and via the web" on a variety of issues important to libraries.

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