What I learned today (or more accurately, this week) continues the dizzying ascent up my personal learning curve on all things two-point-Oh:
It's all well and good to learn by doing it by yourself, but it's quite another thing to learn by doing it with others.
Following an unusually productive meeting of librarians at my shop, those attending all agreed to heed the siren song of Library 2.0 and dive into it head first. In the first day, nay, the first few hours, we had created a blog site (in-house, and therefore password protected), a del.icio.us account, a Bloglines account, and a flickr! site. It's taking a little time for everyone to get comfortable with these new tools, let alone take advantage of them, and making them a regular stop on ones daily rounds may still be a little ways off. One of my colleagues had the foresight to showcase these new developments in his own blog. [Bravo! and why didn't I think of that? ;) ]
What has been a learning experience is discovering how these tools are used collectively. Working alone with your own 'babies', you are free to tinker around, make mistakes, figure out how to correct them, all without a great concern that anybody's taking much notice. (I am coming to understand with this and other blogs that there is always a lurking and hidden community that will happen upon what you've done; they may just not have much interest in acknowledging it.) While I was busy patting myself on the back for what I already knew, I was nevertheless tossed immediately into a different blog provider than my own ... where I proceeding to start all over, comparing notes one with the other, and even making some minor gaffes. But having already worked with one (for what, three weeks?) meant that I was at least aware of what I thought I could do, whether or not they are actually possible. (Unlike here, I can't change font size or color, not paste in images that aren't hosted on the Internet.)
More important, perhaps, is that I now could watch others struggling with the same issues, and finding their own solutions. Imagine that! And what's more, they had some pretty creative ideas about how to address them.
It's too early to see the full effects of this new libraries-wide cooperation. And maybe I'll just have to settle sometimes with some of the choices made collectively. ("Wouldn't it look better in purple?") But I'm definitely going to enjoy the stimulation and inspiration (and even the exasperation) that comes from this new learning paradigm.