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Big Bend Library Camp?

“At other conferences I’ve attended, I’ve had many moments–including during actual presentations–when all I’ve wanted was to get online to check my email and feeds. Not today.”– Joshua Neff, from The Goblin in the Library, reporting on his experiences at Library Camp Kansas

I’ve been watching these library unconferences pop up hither and thon and thinking, why don’t we have one locally?

I know there was one a year ago in Niceville, and it sounds as if that was a splendid start. (How could anything go wrong in Niceville?) But I could also see a conference that’s slightly looser in its format: fewer speakers, or at least less pre-planned SDL (that is, “sit down and listen”), with more breakout sessions selected earlier in the day and even prior to the conference.

I see a lot of topics at these unconferences, from customer service, gaming, and web 2.0 to improving the circulation experience. I would like to see at least one very geeky track — like “trickle-up standards,” “How to UnFUBAR FRBR,” “open data knowledgebases,” or “Metasearch that doesn’t suck” — or even a strategic session, such as “How to sell open source to your boss” — but really, if someone can just get me hands-on with a Wii I would consider it an event worth attending.

Of course, maybe other local folks are thinking along the same lines. (If you think I’m looking at you, you’re right.) Yes, it’s a ghastly budget year. But that makes it a superb year for regional unconferences — the ultimate stone soup of event-planning.

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