It's been a hectic autumn, with travels to London, Trondheim and Berlin. (Never finished my blogpost from Berlin. Must see what I can do about that!) When I went to Berlin, I was pretty sure that it would be my last travel this year. But as usual, going to seminars and conferences away from home often makes me feel inspired and more energetic, so before I knew it, I was on my way to London for the second time in less than two months.
Internet Librarian International is a conference I've been to 7 times now, being a speaker myself 4 of the times. This year, however, was just fun and learning and listening to others. It is a great conference to be at, with lots of time for networking if you want to. This is my very short summary of my two days at ILI 2012. (And I won't even mention all the hours spent at airports because of delayed flights!!!)
Keynotes first. The first keynote was a pre-recorded video. David Lankes had to cancel his journey because of health problems, and the video was seen as the best solution. It worked surprisingly well. Lankes is a great speaker and had no problem sharing his enthusiasm with us. The title of his presentations was "Stop lending, start sharing" and this was based on the idea that "the more you share, the more you have, whereas the more you lend, the less you have". I have a feeling, his presentation was especially directed at public libraries, but he had a lot of interesting thoughts for all of us.
The second keynote was held by the new Chief Executive of The British Library, Roly Keating. The title of his speak was "The journey to digital at the British Library". This was a presentation of all the great stuff the BL has been working on over the least few years, and I must say I'm impressed. As a keynote presentation, I had however expected more edge and sparks perhaps. I didn't feel the topic inspired a lot of new thoughts and discussions.
Apart from these I managed to listen to an impressive 21 talks during these two days.(Not much time for shopping, in other words!) I would rate 13 of these presentations very good, with the rest being ok. No disastrously bad speakers this time, I'm glad to say. With three tracks, you always wonder if you chose the right ones. I think I did this time:)
Slightly to my surprise, the speaks I liked the most was very quick and not really pedagogical, but still inspiring. Maybe it was because I immediately knew this was stuff I could make use of when back at the University Library of Tromsø. I hesitate to mention names here, because I will certainly leave out others that truly deserves mentioning. But - Phil Bradley and Arthur Weiss (went to both his presentations!) really gave me a fun and useful glimpse of so many things I didn't know about. Similarly, Hugh Murphy and Karen Marie Øvern gave short, but enthusiastic presentations of very concrete projects they've been working on, and which can easily be adopted by other librarians.
Going to conferences, it is also very important to socialise and make new contacts, talk to people all over the world about their library practices and other important issues, be it vegetarianism or the Channel Islands:) Thanks to Rurik, Brian, Dave, Ed, Hugh, Marie, Mary, Tony, Suzy, Kiera, Asgeir, Anne-Lena (apologies if your names are incorrectly written) and many more for absolutely lovely company at the Olympia (and at Wagamama and The Hand and Flower). Hope to see you again:)