Previously posted on http://labs.nypl.org/.
A week ago today, a few of my DEG colleagues and I went to see Liz Lawley from RIT's Lab for Social Computing give a talk entitled "Libraries as Happiness Engines." It was a modified version of a talk she gave at this year's CiL conference. The gist of the talk was that gaming in libraries means not just using established games to draw the public into the library, but also to begin implementing game mechanics into libraries that allow them to flourish as social spaces. In particular, these game mechanics include things like collecting, points, feedback, exchanges, and customization.
I've been ruminating on this for the last week or so in a couple different ways. First of all, I've been trying to figure out how we could implement game mechanics within NYPL.
Many of Web 2.0's detractors argue about it's real value, but given the wildfires in Southern California, I was happy to see it really put to good use. KPBS, a San Diego radio station, has been using Flickr and, even more shocking (at least for some), Twitter as ways to disseminate information and news quickly. The use of Twitter is particularly interesting as it can send out SMS messages. You might recall a few years ago when protesters in the Philippines used SMS to organize political rallies and warn of police retaliation. The California State Library Blog also has provided information from the California State Archivist about archives affected by the fires. In addition, information about disaster recovery for libraries and archives is available both on a regional level by the San Diego/Imperial County Libraries Disaster Response Network and on the state level by the California Preservation Program. Please hold those affected by the fires in your thoughts, and if you can, contact SILDRN or the CPP to help.
ArchivesNext recently discussed the possibility of having some "Archives 2.0"-themed events this summer, and I think it's a great idea. Now, we may not be able to throw something together in time for SAA, but it seems like the idea of at least meeting up informally is percolating. There's a wealth of opportunities available for archives and archivists to improve access to their holdings through social software and the like. My vision, as I said in a comment on the post, would be to end up with an unconference along the lines of a Library Camp (or more generally, a BarCamp), maybe with lightning talks if enough of us have something to show off or talk about. Like Library Camp, I'd like to see a "bridging the gap" session where we learn and share ways about how to talk to IT staff and other stakeholders essential to our ideas taking off. I facilitated a such a session at Library Camp East, and although trying at times, it was really instructive.