Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Jon Udell :: A conversation with Ed Vielmetti and John Blyberg about superpatrons and superlibrarians

Originally posted by Jon Udell on February 2, 2007.

Last fall, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, I gave a talk entitled Superpatrons and Superlibrarians. Joining me for this week’s podcast are the two guys who inspired that talk. The superpatron is Ed Vielmetti, an old Internet hand who likes to mash up the services proviced by the Ann Arbor District Library. That’s possible because superlibrarian John Blyberg, who works at the AADL, has reconfigured his library’s online catalog system, adding RSS feeds and a full-blown API he calls PatREST.

I’ve written from time to time about Eric von Hippel’s notion of user innovation toolkits and the synergistic relationship between users and developers that can develop around such toolkits. What Ed Vielmetti and John Blyberg are doing with Ann Arbor District Library is a great example of how that relationship can work.

Update: I meant to call out some of the excellent work that John’s been doing lately. This catalog record is an example of an Amazon-like recommendation feature: “Users who checked out this item also checked out these library items…” Nice!

You’ve also gotta love the experimental card catalog images.