Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

Joe Lucia: Song Of The Open Road


Published on

Joe Lucia of Villanova University keynoted at Evergreen International Conference 2009. His theme was "open." He was also videorecorded and the video will be made available soon (on another site).

Published in: Technology, Education
  • Be the first to comment

Joe Lucia: Song Of The Open Road

  1. 1. Song of the Open Road: Carrying the Torch,  Moaning the Blues, Kicking the Rave Up   For Better Technology  in Libraries Joe Lucia, University Librarian Villanova University [email_address]
  2. 2. Walt Whitman: <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Afoot and light-hearted, I take to the open road, </li></ul><ul><li>Healthy, free, the world before me, </li></ul><ul><li>The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose. </li></ul><ul><li>Henceforth I ask not good-fortune, I am myself good-fortune, </li></ul><ul><li>Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing, </li></ul><ul><li>Done with indoor complaints, libraries, querulous criticisms, </li></ul><ul><li>Strong and content I travel the open road. </li></ul>
  3. 3. You say you want a revolution... Ideology & why it matters   also known as   Carrying the Torch  
  4. 4. What is the social & cultural platform  for libraries?
  5. 5.     The Importance of the “Commons:” Paraphrasing the OED: A resource held in common to its users Lawrence Lessig’s examples: Streets Parks The theory of relativity Writings in the public domain
  6. 6. “ Commons” refers to a particular institutional form of structuring the rights to access, use, and control resources. It is the opposite of “property” in the following sense.  With property, law determines one particular person who has the authority to decide how the resource will be used. … Yochai Benkler's definition           from Wealth of  Networks :
  7. 7. Benkler’s definition, continued: The salient characteristic of commons, as opposed to property, is that no single person has exclusive control over the use and disposition of any particular resource in the commons. Instead, resources governed by commons may be used or disposed of by anyone among some (more or less well-defined) number of persons, under rules that may range from “anything goes” to quite crisply articulated formal rules that are effectively enforced.
  8. 8. The Library as a Commons Libraries are situated within the domain of the commons They provide their communities with open access to intellectual and cultural resources. No single individual controls or “uses up” the resources of a library. Accessibility to all translates into “open stacks,” in which materials are available to any who use a particular facility.
  9. 9. The Intellectual Commons The “intellectual commons” is as much a concept at it is a social space. It is, effectively, an open context for the exchange and critique of ideas… a “gift economy” through which the development of thought is supported and made possible. Libraries instantiate the reality of the intellectual commons for their communities.
  10. 10. A Foundational Claim The cultural assumptions and social practices embedded within Open Source software are congruent and co-extensive with the values and missions of libraries writ large. Embracing Open Source software = Deepening & enhancing our cultural mission & social function.
  11. 11. A Provocative Conjunction Libraries facilitate the creation of new ideas by preserving and extending the intellectual commons. Stephen Weber, in The Success of Open Source: “ Open source intellectual property aims at creating a social structure that expands, not restricts, the commons.” (p. 85)
  12. 12. An Expanded Vision The emergence of Open Source software within the “library space” enhances the library as a center for participatory culture and collaborative enterprise. Libraries are profoundly social: they function to put different ideas and different perspectives adjacent to each other, yielding new insights and discoveries. Open Source software development is a powerful instance of, and rich paradigm, for this function.
  13. 13. The ideological battle is over:   We won!         But it might not matter...
  14. 14. Clay Shirky on newspapers, er, libraries? <ul><li>When someone demands to know how we are going to replace newspapers, they are really demanding to be told that we are not living through a revolution. They are demanding to be told that old systems won’t break before new systems are in place. They are demanding to be told that ancient social bargains aren’t in peril, that core institutions will be spared, that new methods of spreading information will improve previous practice rather than upending it. They are demanding to be lied to. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  15. 15. Tim Spalding, NGC4Lib, 5/5/09 <ul><li>All in all, it's not improbable that, ten years from now, a small city like Portland, Maine will have no new bookstores, video stores, music stores, local magazines or local newspaper. I can't believe that physical libraries will do well in that desolated environment. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>I don't know if that's the future. I hope some media industries can reinvent themselves to shed what's unnecessary and keep or improve what's best. I certainly hope libraries do. But it's not a forgone conclusion. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  16. 16. Walt Whitman   <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Now I re-examine philosophies and religions, </li></ul><ul><li>That may prove well in lecture-rooms, yet not prove at all </li></ul><ul><li>         under the spacious clouds and along the landscapes </li></ul><ul><li>         and flowing currents. </li></ul>
  17. 17. You can't get there from here . . . <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Ideology versus data </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>also known as </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Moaning the Blues </li></ul>
  18. 18. Bad Data: Marshall Breeding's Library Automation Survey, 2008 <ul><li>1. We're still a small minority.   </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>One of the major movements in the library automation industry in the last few years involves the entrance of open source ILS products as a mainstream option. That libraries using these products now appear in this survey reflects that this approach has made inroads among the long-established proprietary systems. The three open source ILS products represented in the survey results include OPALS, Evergreen, and Koha, though only Koha received sufficient responses for inclusion in the primary tables. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Breeding's Survey, 2 <ul><li>2. We have a &quot;true believer&quot; problem. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>It’s not surprising that the libraries already using an open source ILS registered the strongest interest in future consideration of an open source ILS, with Koha as supported by LibLime toping the list (8.05). Other than these open source true believers, libraries running proprietary systems submitted responses reflecting much lower interest, with even those most dissatisfied with their current product such as Winnebago Spectrum (4.95) indicated relatively weak interest. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Breeding's Survey, 3 <ul><li>  3. We need to get more &quot;good reviews.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Libraries using Koha with support from LibLime indicated only moderate satisfaction with this approach. These libraries placed Koha in the middle of rankings for ILS satisfaction (5.92), rated LibLime only moderately as a company (5.84) and for its quality of support (5.52). Those contracting with LibLime with support for Koha also indicated moderate loyalty (5.24) in dealing with the company for their future ILS. </li></ul>
  21. 21. We have some challenges in our professional culture <ul><li>Jim Wenheimer on NGC4LIB, 5/11/09: </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Only now is there a push from libraries to replicate in some way the corporate ethos that brought Google success. With open-source software, real development is possible for even the smallest institutions. But I think it may take a different generation of librarians to get away from the stereotypical cautious-library approach. I hope not, though. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>(Italics mine.  Yikes & double yikes!) </li></ul>
  22. 22. <ul><li>Given the current rate of change, </li></ul><ul><li>  & the likelihood that the rate of change will only increase, </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>& given new developments in our application space, </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>we don't have much time! </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>We need to see significant success, </li></ul><ul><li>& broadly workable new open source models </li></ul><ul><li>in the next 18-24 months </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Otherwise the game could be over.   </li></ul>The Imperative We Face:
  23. 23. <ul><li>Timid leadership & lack of a widely understood rationale /  strategy for open source at the administrative level </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Self-destructive addiction to legacy data & standards </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Complex application needs in a niche application space (for instance, the Acquisitions problem) </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of practical alternatives in realtion to &quot;sink&quot; costs </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Allegiance to current work processes & methods </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Expectation that it will work exactly as desired immediately </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>It gets worse: Challenges in libraries.
  24. 24. Worse yet: <ul><li>Fixed resources: no incremental funding for transition, no new money at all in libraries </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Vendor dependence </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of technical confidence </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of broad & deep technical talent pool in relation to total number of libraries </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Dependence on innovative individuals rather that well-structured communities </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Reluctance to recruit and compensate high-level technologists </li></ul>
  25. 25. Other Complicating Factors: <ul><li>OCLC: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Our core community-developed data store is owned and managed by a monopolistic enterprise that no longer clearly serves library interests </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Emergence of WorldCat Local & OCLC &quot;Hosted LMS&quot; </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Appears to the untrained eye to provide a straightforward, low-cost path to next generation features & services </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Mellon OLE Project </li></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Not invented here&quot; problem:  the largest & most well-resourced libraries are playing &quot;wait & see&quot; on open source </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ProQuest Summon & Ebsco Discovery Services </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Appear to provide a good Web-native path for integrated search & access of library holdings </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  26. 26. Glimmers of Hope: <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>OCLC's recent actions have resulted </li></ul><ul><ul><li>in an intensifying climate of skepticism and concern </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>about a &quot;single-player&quot; library data infrastructure </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Hence, such sentiments as: <ul><li>People need to pull out their bills for what they are paying OCLC and compare it to what they pay for ILS, Link Resolvers, other services.  OCLC charges are too high.  Let them become a monopoly and they will get higher. </li></ul><ul><li>… </li></ul><ul><li>Somebody asked what Fred (Kilgour) would do.  I suggest he'd do open source.  If OCLC wants to offer ILS type modules they should do it in an open source, open system, open data mode, or they shouldn't do it at all. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Frances McNamara, University of Chicago, </li></ul><ul><li>NGC4LIb, 4/24/09 </li></ul>
  28. 28. And this one: <ul><li>I don't know about you, but I've stopped caring what OCLC does. They have shown they will push for onerous, monopolistic terms. And they've shown they'll back down in the face of concerted action by the library and open-data community. Their goals and their weakness are known. At this point, if OCLC succeeds in locking library information up, libraries have only themselves to blame. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Spalding, Founder of LibraryThing </li></ul><ul><li>NGC4Lib, 4/18/09 </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  29. 29. Walt Whitman   <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Listen! I will be honest with you, </li></ul><ul><li>I do not offer the old smooth prizes, </li></ul><ul><li>         but offer rough new prizes, </li></ul><ul><li>These are the days that must happen to you: </li></ul><ul><li>You shall not heap what is call'd riches, </li></ul><ul><li>You shall scatter with lavish hand </li></ul><ul><li>         all that you earn or receive . . . </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  30. 30. A Possible Future:   <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>One dreamer's look at the road ahead </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>also known as </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Kicking the Rave Up </li></ul>
  31. 31. Defining an Ideal End State, 3 years out:   <ul><li>At least 30% of all libraries of all types will have migrated to the open source environment </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>The largest & most well-resourced libraries have re-tooled staff, hired programmers, and are actively contributing effort to the open source development community </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>A new community-owned data infrastructure has been built around current technology, including a robust version of RDA & embracing Semantic Web principles, making teh library world a hub for networked descriptive data </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>A rich commercial & non-profit ecosystem of open source support providers has sprung up to meet the needs of libraries of all types as they migrate to the new environment </li></ul>
  32. 32. Ideal End State, continued:   <ul><li>There is an active international community of software developers in the library open source world </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>There are well-structured library software projects, effective leadership & vision &quot;trees,&quot; and diverse agendas </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Strong partnerships have been forged with major business entities and key funding agencies within the networked information economy </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Major library professional organizations and associations have embraced and are actively advancing open source </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Those who have not yet embraced open source are seen as the rearguard of the library world </li></ul>
  33. 33. How Do We Get There?   <ul><li>Robust flexible service providers with strong technical staff and a variety or options based on library size & type </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Capitalize migration services to cover initial costs for libraries </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Back-load cost recovery by recouping legacy support funds once open source systems are operational </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Provide hosted service & SaaS offerings </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Convince library leaders to let go of legacy infrastructure investments across the board </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Re-direct support savings over time into the funding of new open source technology development positions in libraries </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  34. 34. Getting There, 2:   <ul><li>Develop new collaborative descriptive data development & resource sharing frameworks </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Shift all new investments to community-developed systems & services </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Increase compensation & opportunities for technologists in the library community </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Establish formal organizational frameworks for discussing, advancing, & coordinating the library open source agenda </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Lobby major library professional & regional organizations & to become partisans of the open source movement </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Invest professional development funds in open source </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  35. 35. Walt Whitman   <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Camerado, I give you my hand! </li></ul><ul><li>I give you my love more precious than money, </li></ul><ul><li>I give you myself before preaching or law; </li></ul><ul><li>Will you give me yourself? will you come travel with me? </li></ul><ul><li>Shall we stick by each other as long as we live? </li></ul>