This Week in LIS - 4 January 2013

Weekly news and updates from Luther College Information Technology Services. To receive email updates, please sign up here.

Headline of the Week: Exploring e-Reading

I want to encourage you to explore e-reading during J-Term. Our Innovative Services Librarian, Jennifer Rian, with help from other LIS collegues has put together a variety of activities “…to explore the boundaries and freedom of e-reading…” (see for details and to register).

Just as e-reading is not just one thing there are a number of activities planned to explore some of the various dimensions of e-books and e-reading. They include several workshops including one on leveraging the ever growing collection of e-books in Preus Library and the Decorah Public Library, an e-book club that will explore the idea of ‘social reading’ and to make it fun, a participation based contest.

Academic Libraries are experiencing extraordinary change. Much of it is rooted in the proliferation of networks, digitization of materials accessible via networks and through an ever growing and evolving set of devices through which one can assess the digitized information.

e-Books are one manifestation of the change. Within Preus we might purchase two to three thousand new physical titles in a year but an e-book contract might deliver access to tens of thousands of titles all at once. The library team shared in our 2011-2012 Annual Report: “Summer 2011 saw the rollout of the Ebrary Academic Complete collection of ebooks. Beginning with a collection of roughly 50,000 ebooks the collection continues to grow, numbering nearly 80,000 ebooks by the end of the fiscal year. This effectively increased the size of our library collection by 25%.”

e-Books are not without controversy and at many levels. What should they cost? What are the business models between authors and libraries and publishers and distributors. Are they “owned” or licensed? How may they be shared, loaned, sold, inherited? What about standards? Which devices should be supported or invested in?

At the same time new capabilities are enabled. You can carry hundreds of books in your pocket. You can acquire a new book in a matter of seconds. You can collaborate and read together with others without regard to physical location. You can full search text them. They can be updated and modified on the fly.

What a perfect opportunity to experiment and discover?

Suggested Reading/Viewing:

An e-Book

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LIS Blog Highlights from the Week

The following articles are sampled from those available on the LIS Blog:

Notes from LIS Council

LIS Council is the leadership team within LIS. Among the topics discussed this past week were:

  • LIS Operational Agenda
    • Council members will be reporting on LIS operational views (metrics for processes and status of projects) regularly at LIS Council meetings. This week’s reports included the following:
    • Library
      • No report this week as Andi and Ryan were unable to attend the meeting.
    • Software Development
      • Conversations are in progress on coordination of the creation of DNS entries for applications such as the Datatel MSSQL server. This approach adds a new level of abstraction and is based on work we began several years before to separate our applications and databases on different servers. The new Business Objects items will move first. Nothing is in production yet.
      • Software Development has moved all Luther LIS unique SQL code to Github as of December 14, 2012, thus providing a new level of change control.
      • New perspective students will get Norse Key accounts with access to Norse Apps and My.Luther at the time of deposit. This is moving up the requirement for getting the new Norse Key page done that will work in conjunction with Active Directory.
      • Facilities is planning to put exterior door card access on Shirley Baker Commons in January. The workflow for the changes was discussed. Changes to card access is facilitated for students through Residence Life. For staff, faculty and vendors card access is arranged through Facilities. New card access doors are added through CBord consultants. Adam allocates the the IP addresses for the network and then Lane creates a group for the door and populates the group. Facilities is able to contact CBord directly if there are issues.
      • Datatel Migration to SQLServer
        • Rudy, our Business Objects/Datatel Server migration consultant, returns next week. Work includes end-user training on Tuesday and training for Advancement on Wednesday as well as further training for Software Development.
        • In earlier conversations the server topology for the migration project was discussed. A recommendation was made for an additional server to support and isolate portions of the workload. The challenge is to determine the appropriate size and configuration for the server from a performance perspective.
        • The migration is targeted for summer and depends on getting the customer programming complete and running in the new environment. It is difficult to schedule work for which there is ongoing “discovery.”
  • New Items
    • Library Cooperation and Collaboration
      • Megan Fitch from Beloit has put us in contact with WiLS (Wisconsin Library Services is a non-profit, Wisconsin library consortium that facilitates resource sharing, library staff training, technical workflow analysis, and cooperative activities relating to the changing nature of information technology). The purpose of the conversation is to explore collaboration possibilities.
    • Assessment Data Project
      • Jon has multiple sets of assessment data that the Cabinet has suggested be made available to the Luther community for leverage in their own analysis and research. He is looking for LIS to collaborate with his student worker in January to begin a project. LIS is not able to prioritize and staff this work at this time. Marcia and Rachel will meet with Jon to explore more detailed requirements and to see if there are some creative staffing options and/or clarify when the project could be re-considered.
    • Katie Video Streaming
      • Bob has discovered/shared that the tool which made flash media streamable through Moodle has not been upgraded on Moodle 2.3 which is the basis for our Katie support for Spring semester so we are exploring the implications/ alternatives.
    • LIS Advisory Council
      • We discussed the possibility and value of leveraging alumni / friends of the college who might be willing to share their experience and skills specifically on behalf of Luther’s and LIS’s ongoing success.
  • Returning Items
    • Document Imaging
      • ImageNow has provided a new cost estimate and is scheduled to demonstrate software on January 15th with the Luther 2010 research group. PaperFree Laserfiche has provided updated information and is used by City of Decorah. SoftDocs has added more Colleague clients and has whitepapers on successes.
    • Object Codes
      • LIS Budget Center Directors will meet to review how each team is using their object codes and to consider requesting a new code for cloud based services.
    • Recruitment
      • LIS is interviewing candidates for the Program Support Coordinator position this week and next week.

Upcoming LIS Training, Instruction, and Professional Development Opportunities

Click on the event below for specific information and for a link to register. More information on training and development events is available.

Course Format Date Location Enrollment
Get Inside E-Books in Your Library Workshop Jan 8 2013 – 10:00am 10:45am Preus Library – Curriculum Classroom Open
Are You Smarter Than Your Phone? Online Conference Jan 9 2013 – 12:00pm 1:00pm Dahl Centennial Union – Mott Open
E-Reading on Your Tablet Workshop Jan 10 2013 – 2:30pm 3:15pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
J-Term Reading Group: When Madeline Was Young by Jane Hamilton Workshop

Repeats every week until Tue Jan 22 2013 .

Jan 15 2013 – 4:00pm 5:15pm
CFL Closed
Google (Norse) Docs Workshop Jan 16 2013 – 9:00am 9:30am Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie – Faculty Working Session Workshop Jan 16 2013 – 9:30am 12:00pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
Be the Library: How to Lend Your Own E-Books Product Demonstration Jan 17 2013 – 12:30pm 1:15pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
J-Term Reading Group: Luther College history & liberal arts education Workshop Jan 17 2013 – 4:00pm 5:15pm CFL Open
Google (Norse) Docs Workshop Jan 21 2013 – 12:00pm 12:30pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie – Faculty Working Session Workshop Jan 21 2013 – 12:30pm 3:00pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
Get Inside E-Books in Your Library Workshop Jan 22 2013 – 3:00pm 3:45pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
J-Term Reading Group: When Madeline Was Young by Jane Hamilton Workshop Jan 22 2013 – 4:00pm 5:15pm CFL Closed
E-Reading on Your Tablet Workshop Jan 24 2013 – 10:00am 10:45am Preus Library – Curriculum Classroom Open
Google (Norse) Docs Workshop Jan 29 2013 – 11:00am 11:30am Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie – Faculty Working Session Workshop Jan 29 2013 – 11:30am 2:00pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
It's Not Just Facebook!—What Every College Student Should Know About Online Privacy Online Conference Jan 30 2013 – 12:00pm 1:00pm Preus Library – Hovde Lounge Open
Google (Norse) Docs Workshop Jan 31 2013 – 1:00pm 1:30pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open
New Katie – Faculty Working Session Workshop Jan 31 2013 – 1:30pm 4:00pm Olin 301 – Round Table Room Open

Training and instruction is provided to the Luther Community through Faculty Development Sessions, Library Instruction Sessions, Product Demonstrations, Skills Training, Workshops, 1-on-1 Sessions, and Online Materials. To schedule a session, contact the LIS Technology Help Desk at x1000 or enter your request online at

This Week in LIS is published most Fridays by Paul Mattson, Executive Director of LIS at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

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