By Meredith Farkas | June 28, 2006
It’s funny for me to think back to one year ago when you couldn’t have paid me to speak at a conference. Between now and November, I’m going to be giving at least 8 talks (2 virtual). Even now that I feel better about speaking, the thought of giving so many talks makes me a little nervous, especially the three-hour pre-conference at Internet Librarian. But I’m also excited. Conferences are such great opportunities to meet new people and make new connections with people you’ve admired for a long time in the field. You never know when someone you meet at a conference could lead to your next job or an amazing opportunity. I had so much fun at Computers in Libraries and met some really brilliant people there. My big problem is that I hate travelling and I can’t stand being away from my husband, but most conferences are worth the travel hassle and I can always drag Adam with me.
This summer I’m giving two talks — one virtual, one in the Boston area. My first talk will be a SirsiDynix Institute Webinar on Wikis. The talk is taking place on July 13 at 11:00 am Eastern Time. It’ll consist of a basic introduction to wikis: what they are, what their pros and cons are, how they have been (and could be) implemented in libraries, and how to successfully develop your own wiki. It’s totally free to attend, but you have to register in advance. If you went to the OPAL talk in January, some of this talk may be a bit redundant, but if you’re interested in learning more about wikis, this will definitely be the perfect venue for it. As I’ve learned from experience, people tend to have tons of questions about wikis, so I promise to leave a good bit of time for you to ask me questions about wikis, wiki projects you’re considering, etc.
The second talk I’m giving this summer is also on wikis, but it’s not at a library conference. I am going to be speaking at Wikimania at Harvard Law School on the subject of wikis to enable library knowledgebases. I am thrilled to be sharing the podium with fellow wiki-loving librarians Mary Carmen Chimato and Ellyssa Kroski. I was told that we would be speaking Saturday morning, August 5th, though the final program has not been released. Looking at the amazing list of featured speakers, I am getting increasingly excited about going. It’ll be the first non-library conference I’ve ever gone to, so I look forward to mixing with a new crowd and meeting some of the people I’ve been reading for years. If you live in the Boston area, you may want to consider going to Wikimania; it looks like it’s going to be an interesting and diverse bunch of people there with lots of talk about wikis in education and libraries. Let me know if you’re planning on going.
If you want to see where I’m going to be speaking over the next few months, I recently placed a little script on the sidebar of my blog to allow you to see my upcoming events via RSSCalendar. It’s not the fanciest calendar around (it doesn’t have all that AJAX-y goodness), but it’s easy to use and it’s dead simple to publish a customized RSS feed on your blog or Web site.