ALA Annual 2013 Chicago

Here’s where to find me at ALA Annual 2013 in Chicago:

Shana’s ALA Annual 2013 schedule

Of course I need a clone. And there are several sessions that don’t appear in the public version of my schedule. Such as my PCC Standing Committee on Automation meeting on Monday morning at 8:30am. Whoever said that conferences are supposed to be relaxing and a “vacation” from work never attended a conference with 12+ hours of back to back meetings/sessions for three days in a row all starting at 8:30am and ending with after-meeting social events for networking. As my friend E. reminded me today on Twitter: sleep is for the weak.

I’m also super excited that we have 37 (!!!!!) people signed up for the ALCTS/LITA Library Code Year Interest Group hosted preconference on Friday, June 28, 2013 titled “Introductory Python Workshop”. THIRTY-SEVEN PEOPLE. This is incredible. And awesome. And exciting. And amazing. And I think I need a thesaurus to find more words to describe the sheer awesomeness of it. Thirty-seven people that want to learn to code and have signed up for a crash course in Python.

Why should these 37 people learn to code Python (or any) programming language? My answer that I gave in a previous blog post (link): catalogers/metadata professionals/librarians work with massive amounts of curated bibliographic data, and being able to manipulate it in new and different ways and in ever increasing amounts is key as we move forward into the bibliographic future and the world of linked data and the semantic web. So learning about coding, and learning to code, gives us more options to curate our own data.

As always, DM me via Twitter (@slmcdanold) or text me if you’re trying to find me or want/need to set up a meeting.

Posted in ALA, Chicago IL, conferences | Leave a comment

The return of Python coding

As many of you know, in 2012 Codecademy made a push to teach people coding one lesson at a time and called it Code Year (they’re doing it again in 2013).

This adventure spread to libraries and the library community chronicled in several ways:

Catcode wiki
ALCTS/LITA Library Code Year Interest Group
Code Year ALAConnect Community page
Catcode Twitter list and hashtags #catcode or #libcodeyear
An IRC channel: #catcode (use for free web access)
Libraries got their own page on StackExchange: Libraries & Information Science

I signed up for Code Year and did a bunch of the lessons. I also took several Python classes from the PyStar group in Philly (which has merged with the Python User Group or PUG). I attended a bunch of other coding related MeetUp sessions in early 2013. You can read about my personal adventures in coding and the development of the catcode group under the category coding or catcode.

Then I moved. And started a new job. And coding kind of fell off my radar of things to do in my spare time as I had boxes to be unpacked and a new neighborhood to explore.

But in the past nearly 9 months, there’s been plenty of coding by librarians going on. We now have a github space for the Library Code Year IG. There was this excellent article by Heidi Frank: “Augmenting the Cataloger’s Bag of Tricks” in the code4lib journal issue 20, talking about Python and PyMarc and MarcEdit (note the NEW web address for MarcEdit).

The ALCTS/LITA Library Code Year Interest Group is also hosting a full day Preconference at ALA Annual in Chicago on Friday, June 28, 2013 titled “Introductory Python Workshop” (registration info here: ).

Today my co-organizers (Andromeda Yelton, Carli Spina, and Jennifer Young) and myself were notified that we received a grant to help cover the food costs for the preconference! This is wonderful news. Thank you thank you thank you to the Python Software Foundation for your support. You can follow them on Twitter here: @ThePSF



Posted in ALA, cataloging, catcode, Chicago IL, coding, conferences, Python | Leave a comment

Spring snow

Spring snow by Shana L. McDanold
Spring snow, a photo by Shana L. McDanold on Flickr.

Spring snowstorm. Work is open. No delayed opening here. Sigh.

Posted in photos, snow, Washington DC, weather | Leave a comment