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* Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Holland Days

Our hands-on participants for the dayLast week I had the pleasure of traveling to Holland with Michael Stephens in order to do a hands-on workshop for the Ticer Institute’s Digital Libraries a la Carte series at the University of Tilburg. My morning session focused on blogging and RSS, while Michael’s afternoon session focused on instant messaging. At the end of the day, Paul Miller wrapped up with a lecture and discussion of Library 2.0, which was heartening to see included in this type of event. There were 40 participants from 14 countries at the Institute (mainly academic and special librarians) at our sessions, which is pretty impressive. I had a great time and met a lot of interesting people, including several Dutch bibliobloggers at a special dinner Tuesday night. These folks traveled from all over Holland to Tilburg just to have dinner with us, which I really appreciate. It was also very educational for me, which is a double-plus bonus!

Proof: I had the pleasure of talking to Sybilla Poortman of inter-net-viewer about her job and some of the things her institution is implementing. I’m always looking for examples of libraries using RSS to include in my presentations, and Fontys Mediatheek (where she works) is now part of my list. The Library has its own blog at (check out the downloadable toolbar in the left-hand sidebar), and they are using RSS to display the headlines on the English Department at Sittard’s home page (

“You can see ‘kennisdomein Talen’ on the left (domain Languages) with the entire text of the original post on the same domain of the mediatheekweblog, whereas on the right you can see the headlines for the posts that appeared in the section ‘informatiebronnen’ (information sources – relevant for all domains).”

In addition, they are using these same headlines from the Library’s blog for display on a page for the Venlo campus ( It’s all in Dutch, but you should be able to get the basic idea that they are blogging in one place and reusing the content on campus department web pages where it is being updated automatically with no further drain on staff time after the initial setup. That’s the power of RSS – getting your content off your own site and out onto others where your users are.

Dutch bibliobloggersMore of my pictures from the dinner are at, while the pool is at Major thanks to Rob Coers for organizing such a lovely gathering. I’m so glad I got to meet him and everyone else that attended.

I very much need to thank Jola, Teun, and Vivi from the Ticer Institute for another wonderful experience. I think the program they put together was even better than last year’s, as evidenced by the increased interest and attendance, and I look forward to following up on the content of some of the other lectures.

I’ve uploaded pictures from the whole trip at The pictures below are two of my favorites from a walk through the king’s forest preserves on the way to the University the morning of our workshop. I tell everyone that walking through that forest is like finding yourself in the middle of a fairy tale, and I think these pictures help capture how magical it seemed.

 Wednesday morning walkOur last view of the sun in the forest

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