FOLIO - something to wait for....

In the annual library systems report by Marshall Breeding in the ALA magazine - - there is mention of an interesting open source project called FOLIO, which will be an LSP (library services platform) as opposed to an ILS (integrated library system).

EBSCO has helped launch the FOLIO project to develop an open source LSP, in addition to the content and technology products it offers directly. The company has made major investments to fund the project and has provided direct and indirect support for its design and development.

The FOLIO project offers a fresh idea in library resource management, with a modular approach to functionality implemented through microservices architecture. EBSCO has provided funding and direction to Index Data, an open source development firm, to create its core infrastructure. Index Data championed the project throughout the library community, familiar with its work as a major developer of open source technology components used within a variety of environments.

EBSCO envisions FOLIO as a technology framework that will disrupt the current market of LSPs that are tightly bundled with their own discovery services. These bundled offerings result in a competitive environment that disadvantages EBSCO Discovery Service, despite its efforts to integrate with all the major ILSes. FOLIO’s modular design will accommodate any discovery product and EBSCO will naturally ensure that its own products are integrated.

The most depressing thing in the report was its comment on Destiny.

Library software represents a relatively small portion of Follett’s overall business activities. The broader organization also operates college bookstores, distributes educational materials, and provides training across multiple practical professions. Baker & Taylor, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Follett, contributes around $1 billion to the company annually through global sales to libraries and retail outlets. The company is privately owned by the Follett family, with estimated revenues of more than $3 billion.

The Destiny library management system, though a relatively small portion of the company’s business activities, ranks as the dominant product in pre-K–12 libraries in the United States.

No wonder the product isn't being developed effectively or efficiently.  It's not that important to Follett.

Refugees and Palindrome Poetry.... in a picture book....

Brian Bilston became popular on the internet (especially Twitter) when he published a poem about refugees (which my colleague Philip Williams animated for a display in our libraries (see Philip's video here) and someone else illustrated here).

What’s unusual about it is that it is meant to be read first one way and then in reverse.  These are also known as palindrome poems (for another example, see this well-known video of one called “The Lost Generation”).

Barb Reid just showed me a 2018 Australian picture book which does the same thing - on the same topic of refugees.  Luckily it's available on Book Depository here.  Wish we had known about it earlier as it would be a great choice for our Bangkok Book Awards -- as the Singapore Red Dots have got it on theirs.  (Maybe next year for us...)

Citing images in slideshows - an explanation for Y9 students creating Pecha Kuchas this week

I was asked to give a quick lesson on how to cite images in slides being collected for Y9 Pecha Kuchas on contemporary conflicts.  See embedded slideshow below -- or go to http://bit.lyciteslidesnist

Debated whether to get them to use Noodletools -- or to introduce the new ZoteroBib ( -- to help kids get MLA style references, but in the end decided to show them how to create their own simple ones.

NIST Top Reads 2018 - a crowd-sourced summer reading list

UPDATE:  Here's the library blog post on our summer reading and the results of our survey:

We're asking our community to recommend a book or two for friends to read -- based on something great they've read over the past year.

See sample Google Form here:

think about books read IMAGE.jpg

The results are being gathered in this LibraryThing collection -- librarynist

"Dynamicland" - trying to be a public-library-type space

Wonder what the chances are of me being able to visit Dynamicland in Oakland, California, next month?

I'd love to see a non-profit computational medium, where the entire building is a computer.

Listen to Bret Victor on this "Track Changes" podcast episode...

GLLI (Global Lit in Libraries) - Starter Kit Collections?

Idea coming out of IASL 2018 in Turkey (thanks to Karen Van Drie) - every school library should have 2 books from each country.  She suggested over on Facebook that we get Follett to make/host the list.

Instead I suggested using LibraryThing -- e.g., see this public crowd-source List for Children's Lit:

and one for YA Lit:

As people add titles to this list, use the "Explain" feature to indicate which COUNTRY or CULTURE the book relates to -- and, if possible, in what way, e.g.,

-- Content of the book, e.g., setting or characters
-- Author's background
-- Location of original publication
-- Translation

GLLI already has some wonderful collections started:

LibraryThing over Goodreads for sharing tagged lists

Recently re-discovered my love for LibraryThing, after valiantly trying to use Goodreads (with its easy Google Apps for Education integration) for different school librarian projects (Red Dots, Bangkok Book Awards, draft class library lists, etc.), but LT has so much more power.  And now there's the TinyCat interface....

For example, there's a new children's book award starting up in India, growing out of the annual Neev Literature Festival -

And with committee members in different countries, each reading one-third of the longlist titles submitted by Indian publishers, we needed a way to share the whole list.  Why not LibraryThing?  E.g.,

Especially as there's that beautiful simple interface (the tinycat option): 

I foresee this LT catalog as a database of India-related children and YA literature, compiled by the Neev committee.


Going independently micro....

Discovered (see so my short professional Facebook/Twitter posts can be logged in one place.  Why? 

(Forgive this obviously NOT MICRO post to explain.  However, everything is relative, and I am starting this microblog as a storage unit for single thoughts, in contrast to my normal blog mode of compendium style posts, which I tend to feel compelled to produce but take way more time/space)....

Scripting News:  on why the Internet is going the wrong way..... 

  • Evidence #
    • Facebook is taking the place of blogs, but doesn't permit linking, styles. Posts can't have titles or include podcasts. As a result these essential features are falling into disuse. We're returning to AOL. Linking, especially is essential#
    • Click a link in a web browser, it should open a web page, not try to open an app which you may not have installed. This is what Apple does with podcasts and now news.#
    • Google is forcing websites to change to support HTTPS. Sounds innocuous until you realize how many millions of historic domains won't make the switch. It's as if a library decided to burn all books written before 2000, say. The web has been used as an archival medium, it isn't up to a company to decide to change that, after the fact. #
    • Medium, a blogging site, is gradually closing itself off to the world. People used it for years as the place-of-record. I objected when I saw them do this, because it was easy to foresee Medium pivoting, and they will pivot again. The final pivot will be when they go off the air entirely, as commercial blogging systems often do. #

Setting up one's own turf for the small stuff.....
Inspired by Alan Jacobs:

So I am considering two alternatives. One is to post everything directly to my own turf, which has advantages that I have outlined here on several occasions. However, my blog runs on WordPress, and WordPress is not really designed for the kind of quick, frictionless posting that Instagram and Twitter are both designed for – and while I am a committed believer in blogging as an engine of thinking, I also believe that there’s a real place for the quicker stuff, the daily-diary stuff. So I also have acquired a site. Manton Reece has done a fantastic job with, whose origins he describes here – it’s very much part of the open-web movement that I have also celebrated here.

So far I have enjoyed very much: it has some features Twitter lacks (it supports Markdown, for instance) and anything I post there I can also seamlessly cross-post to Twitter or to my own site – most of my recent tweets have originated as posts, though you can’t tell that on Twitter. I am also quite interested in the new support for micro-podcasts.

So while I like the simplicity of keeping everything on my own turf, offers other kinds of simplicity that are also very attractive. So I think that’s the way I’ll go. isn’t free – Manton won’t run ads, and hosting costs money. But my posts and photos belong to me, and I can export them to WordPress any time I want; and people are unlikely to pay for the privilege of trolling, especially when they can do that for free on Twitter. So I would encourage you thoughtful people to consider signing up for a account.