My first day of IFLA was fantastic--attended sessions on statistics & measurement, access to genealogical & archival data, and library partnerships. I think what I'm enjoying most, besides the mostly excellent presentations and good speakers, is that these presentations are giving such a broader world view than a session at TLA or ALA. TLA and ALA are valuable, and certainly relevant in a "close to home" sense, but these sessions keep nudging my brain into those "ah-ha" moments of remembering that no, the entire world does not operate like the United States. It's refreshing and encouraging and exciting and a little wild to wrap the brain around sometimes.
Perhaps as a result of so many cultures and traditions being thrown together, I'm also noticing less library jargon being tossed about--another refreshing aspect of this conference. The only thing that threw me for a minute was the prevalence of the acronym ICT, which I puzzled out is information communication technology.
One interesting tidbit I took from one of the morning speakers... He's from a public library in Norway where they are hand-gathering statistics on how people use the library, whether they are performing activities in groups or alone, and how long they spend on each activity. What really interested me is that they count "computer activities" separately for those on the library computers, and those who bring their own laptops (as well as those who work at each type of computer alone or in groups). I hadn't ever thought of counting laptop vs. library PC use separately before, although it seems obvious now. (Of course, now that we're also checking out laptops, that brings a potential third category for UNT to track.)
All right, I'm off to find a quick dinner and then back to work some more on my presentation for tomorrow morning.