Conference time again

Well, apparently it’s taking a new conference to get me back to blogging again. I’m up at 4:30am tomorrow to get ready and out of town by 5:30 for my flight to California for Internet Librarian. I’ll be blogging about the conference at, for those who would like to follow along. Bobbi is going and will be blogging at that spot also, so there will be twice the fun!
As for work-related issues – I’ve got both of my new fancy switches in and I’m now fighting with the wireless firewall to get public wireless access going again at the library. The firewall doesn’t seem to want to play with the NAT rules that it used to use… We’ve got multiple firewalls in place, though, so the problem could be with the first one in the chain, and not the wireless one. I’m still looking for an evening PCC clerk – I’m sick of working Monday nights and asking the staff to cover the other nights of the week – we need somebody in there!! I’m still interviewing, though, so that might take another week or better – especially with Internet Librarian coming right in the middle of the process. There is more, but I will have to fill you all in on the rest later – I’ve got to start doing now, and write later!

Presentations, meetings and Bass Pro Shop, oh my!

I took it pretty easy this morning, sleeping in until after 8 and not getting to the conference hotel until 9:30. My first presentation was on EbscoHost (see previous post for links, I’m lazy…) and went pretty well. My part was not terribly polished and on the short side, but overall there were lots of good questions and lots of head-nodding, so things were fairly well received. My boss was in the back row, threatening to make faces at me as I talked until water shot out of my nose. I made eye contact with every person (around 50 or so) in that room – but him. No water leakage!
The second presentation – the one I did with Bobbi went REALLY well. It was our second time doing it and we were very comfortable with the material and each other. I did manage to make eye contact with everyone in the room again (even my boss, who just looked proud that we were on his staff, as opposed to making crazy faces) and got even more good head-nodding feedback (and great, sometimes hard, questions, too!). At the end of the presentation, one woman came up and asked us if we could do this program at her library for her staff. It’s not official yet, but we are hoping to be able to take this dog-and-pony show out on the road soon!!
After the presentations, and lunch at Red Lobster, we separated and I went out to the “Library Central” building of the Springfield-Greene Library. It’s a beautiful building with LOTS of cool features (including a permanent Friends shop and a cafe). I noticed they used the SAM PC Management Software – the same one we use – and so I got to speak to the head of Reference (who selects which software is used for their public computers) about their experiences with it. It was all-in-all a great use of my time – even if I did miss a few sessions at the conference. After that, as I was driving back to the hotel, I detoured at the world famous Bass Pro Shop and went through their museum, shopping areas and arcade. It was fun! Now I’m back at the hotel, checking email, posting this and killing time until 9, when the “Hollywood Librarian” movie will be shown.

I’m full!

Even at 11pm, so I definitely ate too much at dinner – but it was sooooo good! We went to a nice Japanese Steakhouse (the kind where they cook your food in front of you) and we ate very, very well! After that we went to the “Ernie Biggs” dueling pianos event – cash bar, though I was good and remembered I have to present tomorrow – and very funny performers. What more could you want? Now I’m getting my final “read-throughs” on both the Ebscohost and RSS and the Library Learning 2.0 presentations. Natasha just called and informed me that she and Letitia were bringing me back a donut from the late-night donut party that I skipped out on, so I’m outta here. More tomorrow!

MLA – Day one

I’ve arrived in Springfield and have already gone to one really interesting session on Microsoft’s next version of the shared toolkit – SteadyState. It looks really interesting, and may save us some money if I can make it work at least as well as Centurion Guard! I ate lunch at a fast-food italian place called Pasta Presto (I basically got into my car, pointed it vaguely west and drove until I saw something interesting – that’s what I found) which wasn’t too bad – the salad was great, the rest was OK. I’ve checked my email, taken care of things at work and I’m now ready to head back to the conference and spend some time grabbing free stuff from the vendor booths.

On a completely different note – I apologize to Margaret and Bobbi – their comments on a previous post got eaten by the spam filter. I’ve restored them and appreciate the time they took to reassure me that they both read my blog – though I’m not sure I buy Margaret’s claim that she has nothing to blog about…

More tomorrow! Tonight is vendors, eating, WoW and sleeping so I’m somewhat capable of doing two presentations tomorrow – one right after the other. Fun… Drinking and partying will have to wait ’til Thursday night!

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