I’m fascinated by how the concept of the book is changing with iPad apps and other forms of delivering chunks of information. I took several classes in graduate school on interfaces and usability, but at that time the conversation revolved primarily around web sites. I occasionally write about adventures with ebooks and I’m constantly reading about ebook design and distribution issues.
Another interface going through lots of changes and development is the good old search box. We used to search with our fingers on a keyboard but now we search by speaking out loud or standing in a specific location with our smartphone. How will these changes affect libraries? Will information literacy sessions of the future include geocaching? I continue reading about new search tools and I’m looking forward to developing workshops on various visual search tools.
The passions mentioned above have implications on the third — personal information workflows. I talked about this at the 2012 LibTech Conference and would love to delve deeper into the issue with co-conspirators. Some of our work with library patrons directly involves their information workflows — research, citation, tracking down sources and requesting more. These activities overlap with other information workflows from the news they read to the random book they might see mentioned on Twitter. With some organization tools like Evernote, Diigo, or DevonThink, these workflows can become a beautiful integrated network of ideas.