Monday 21st February 2011

Dealt with quite a few niggly problem journals today.  Lower demand titles, particularly where I’ve identified a problem through routine checking, rather than user feedback, can often sit around while higher priority issues are considered.  However, they cannot go without checking altogether!

Tuesday 22nd February 2011

CDG West Country meeting this morning.  It was a useful meeting, and we had some new members of the committee which was good.  After the meeting, we were shown round the building, which is the new Somerset Heritage Centre in Taunton.  This was a fascinating place to see behind the scenes, and they have some amazing treasures, including a document written in 705 which was truly awesome, as I got up so close.  Back to the office after the meeting for a quick catch up, then my late night.

Wednesday 23rd February 2011

Mostly caught up on things this morning.  The afternoon started with a meeting about our Moodle course.  We all agreed it needed a simplified version, but were quite divided on whether it should be a separate part, or whether the whole should be made easier.  I still think it’s better to have some more in depth details, but looking back, it could certainly be made less opaque.  So, I will attempt to make some of the descriptions into diagrams or images to make it less text heavy.

Thursday 24th February 2011

I had a few things to look forward to today.  In the morning, I had a meeting with some colleagues who also have some interest in library services and mobile devices.  At this stage, it is just a gathering of ideas, but it was fascinating how many different aspects there are to consider, and where everyone’s priorities are.  We’re putting together an outline paper for the systems team to look at, so not sure where it will go just yet.

In the afternoon, I spoke to two people from the JUSP team about usage statistics.  It was a very useful conversation, as it was a great opportunity to reflect on what is useful in a statistics package, and how I use statistics.  We are also using UStat, and it was valuable to compare the strengths of each.  I think I’ll write something about this for Piglet (our newsletter) in the next couple of months.

While I was on the phone, I seemed to be getting a couple of messages about my email not connecting.  By the time I’d finished, it was down completely.  I wasn’t too concerned, and assumed it would be back soon.  However, it wasn’t long before we found that we’d lost access for the rest of the day.  I set to work tackling some of the routine tasks that didn’t need email, and hoped it would be back tomorrow.

Friday 25th February 2011

There was still no email in the morning, so I went through some of the routine checks that I’d prepared on Thursday.  As the day progressed, it became clear that the email failure was going to continue.  We were able to set up forwarding to send messages to our personal emails, which alleviated the panic, but it was also a little frustrating, as it was not really possible to send messages.  Being an electronic resources librarian, having no access to emails is a serious handicap, not to mention I use it extensively to manage my work.

Actually, the email problem ran throughout the following week (hence the delay in posting this, as I thought it would be useful to reflect on the impact it had).  At first, there was almost a sense of relief, as the small number of emails to work with was a pleasant change.  However, it soon became apparent that I was very reliant on my emails as a kind of memory – I didn’t need to know the email address to send the file to, as I had kept the email.  I also use my email folders as a long-term to do list, as I put things in month folders to check later.  Normally, this works really well, but with no access to older items, I was floundering.

I now have to wonder whether this is the best system to use, or whether there is a more efficient way of doing things.  Should I be concerned that we will lose it all and back things up?  Or should I assume that this is a one-off problem, and continue as before.  I think one thing is certain: I need to be more disciplined in extracting information from emails – it’s all too easy to leave them for later, especially for things we need to keep, rather than things I need to refer to often.