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65 of 365: A library design problem solved, perhaps.

65 of 365: A library design problem solved, perhaps.

nowhere placemark geolocation by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

nowhere placemark geolocation by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

I was alerted to Toby Greenwalt’s great blog theanalogdivide by Sophie Brookover of Library Link NJ, in which Toby just proposed a series of design problems as they relate to libraries. I love a good design problem. Here he introduces the first problem, and below I answer it in my own way.

“Your first challenge? Create a online…

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60 of 365: Using Pinterest to Gain a Visual Following (book chapter as serial post, part 2)

60 of 365: Using Pinterest to Gain a Visual Following (book chapter as serial post, part 2)

Please visit the first entry in this series and stay tuned for the following parts of this chapter.

What makes Pinterest a preferable social network for organizations such as libraries to embrace?

Pinterest is a social network (a place where people come together to connect) which focuses on visual content, such as pictures, graphics, diagrams, logos, videos, animations and other imagery. In fact,…

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58 of 365: We are living in Orwell’s 1984

58 of 365: We are living in Orwell’s 1984

Yevgeny Zamyatin (1923)

Yevgeny Zamyatin (1923) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m not one to be especially paranoid, generally speaking. In fact, I tend to think of myself as generally stable, pragmatic, and realistic. I go on what I sense. However, recently, I began thinking deeply about all the trails we are leaving, especially my own, and how easy it is to know the deeper part, the private part, of who I am, easily.

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57 of 365: A Call to Libraries to Devise Policy Regarding Patron Consumer Devices.

57 of 365: A Call to Libraries to Devise Policy Regarding Patron Consumer Devices.

phone by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

phone by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

I recently had the opportunity via LibraryLinkNJ to speak on the topic of Consumer Device Support in Libraries at several of their Tech Speed Dating gatherings, in which librarians from across the state of New Jersey come together to learn about the technologies they might love. It is a platform for dissemination of new technologies and best practices, but…

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56 of 365: A three dimensional coffee cup in SketchUp

56 of 365: A three dimensional coffee cup in SketchUp

55 of 365 Coffee Mug by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

55 of 365 Coffee Mug by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

This is a three-dimensional coffee cup created in SketchUp, the Trimble-owned, free, three-dimensional modeling application. Given the increased importance of making and three-dimensional printing in contemporary libraries, I have decided to focus a bit on 3D modeling as an area to extend myself into.  I taught a class on this for a full-day…

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On caring for nature

I was once in an environmental action committee for an organization. In the meetings, we’d plan events to raise awareness for recycling methods, whole food and gardening, saving electricity, promoting alternative fuel sources, and so on. It was quite successful. I was proud to be a part of it, and was active in the meetings.

There were a few times when I think I might have gone a bit too far in my suggestions. For instance, when there were popular suggestions to give out recyclable water bottles and t-shirts, offer games of chance to promote awareness with store-bought-beanbags, and print agendas for the meetings, I protested a bit.

I suggested that we promote the use of already owned recyclable water bottles, (since it seems like everyone already has 10 of them,) and that we offer a small sticker to anyone who shows up with a used bottle, so that we could still share and remind people of our brand.

I said that the new, printed t-shirts should be on-site printed recycled t-shirts, and that the bean bags should be from hand-sewn fabric scraps.

In the case of the agenda printing, I suggested that we use Google Docs instead. This is fairly common for me as a suggestion. Anytime someone offers me a piece of paper with something on it that may change, I suggest that we’d do better, stay more organized, and save costs by moving the document to GDrive.

This is all to say that I take ecological concerns pretty seriously. Which leads me to the point of this post:

Recycled, hand made business cards

I hand out a lot of business cards. If I meet a shop owner, a card almost always comes out. You never know who may need your help someday. I used to get the most beautiful miniature cards from Moo.com that everyone would say something nice about. But because I was printing on new paper, I felt like a hypocrite, when I print so little otherwise.

I work with index cards sometimes to organize my thoughts in physical space, especially for momentary lists, daily to-dos, or to take notes in a phone call. I decided to take these 4×6 cards, used on the lined side. I’d quarter them to use as business cards printed about 20 at a time with a custom stamp I got from staples.com with my contact information and (jl) logo on it. They were fun, obviously hand torn and hand stamped. Imperfect and beautiful, a lovely combination.

A new way to re-use otherwise cast-off cardstock

As I was throwing away a box that held a bulk set of tea bags, I broke it down and opened it up, and realized how nice the weight of the paper was, and how the designer paid attention to the palette to create a soothing package. I decided to cut the box into card sized slices and stamp the unprinted side. The result is lovely: my contact information on one side, and an interesting pattern on the back. They remind me of the recycled vinyl signs that end up as messenger bags. I’ve used the hand stamped cards for about a month, and have gotten some great responses. People I know tend to love hand-made objects of any kind, and my theory is that people are so used to seeing perfectly edged things all day long, that when they see the ‘thumbprints in the clay’, the kind imperfections, I think that they pay special attention to them.

What do you think? Am I a good ecologist, and respecter of nature, or am I just cheap? :) One thing is for sure: my secondary branding is definitely represented by using these cards. Anyone who gets one should be able to see that I’m interested in recycling, that I’m frugal, and that I like making things. That’s a pretty solid set of brand attributes that I’d be proud to align with.

52 of 365: On recycling cardstock: hand cut and stamped business cards On caring for nature I was once in an environmental action committee for an organization. In the meetings, we’d plan events to raise awareness for recycling methods, whole food and gardening, saving electricity, promoting alternative fuel sources, and so on.

On the importance of a great Calendar: Work/Life balance and management at LeMasney Consulting

On the importance of a great Calendar: Work/Life balance and management at LeMasney Consulting

51 of 365 on meeting management by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

51 of 365 on meeting management by John LeMasney via lemasney.com

On the importance of the Calendar in my work.

After a recent conversation with a client in which we were discussing appointment finalization, we discussed how I kept track of my meetings. It made me realize that my workflow for meeting management might make for an interesting template for others. I had another friend ask me what it…

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