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Digital Archives, Productivity, and Having a Good Day

July 30, 2010

Happy Friday! Isn’t it just so lovely that it is almost the weekend? I think it is and so I have the usual random assortment of articles and thinking points. Today’s topics are digital archives (because, really, who doesn’t like talking about archives?), productivity (because I can’t seem to get away from the topic), and having a good day (because it is better than having a bad day). This will be a short post, perfect for a quick break from working on your important Friday work. So let’s talk archives!

I have admitted it before and I’ll admit it again, I love research and I love researching in archives. I really think you do get “archives fever” when researching in an archives, or maybe that’s just because the last archives I was at didn’t have air conditioning and I was there in the middle of a heat wave. Either way, you don’t have to worry about that if you follow the Library of Congress’ Guide to Finding and Using Online Primary Sources from the Manuscript Division. Online archives: they are wonderful and should be shared. Even if you disliked your history classes when you were in grade school, high school, or even college, trust me, looking through primary source documents will make you enjoy learning. (You may never want to become a historian, but you’ll probably find something that strikes your fancy in LoC’s vast online collections. If not, head over to NARA–they have an amazing photography collection online too.)

Oh, and check out Library of Congress’ Podcast: Conversations about Digital Preservation. A podcast series on digital preservation–really could life get any better for the library and archives geeks among us?

Why, yes, yes it can. NARA recently debuted its first wiki which will hopefully continue to be populated with wonderful archival information and discussions. Granted it isn’t the prettiest site on the web, but hopefully it will become one of the most useful and get more people interested in archives and archival research.

This article from WebWorkerDaily is fantastic: Passion as “the Ultimate Productivity Tool”. (Reminds me a lot of the advice that Seth Godin writes in his books and blog about work, productivity and shipping.) Read the article and be inspired to do great work–work you love–because then work isn’t something you have to slog through, it’s something you (usually) enjoy. And, unless you have a TARDIS, you’ll never get this day back so why not be passionately productive?

Finally, I want you to have a good day–a great day even. But if you are feeling the makings of a bad day, take a break (grab a cup of tea) and read through Lifehacker’s The Science Behind Having a Bad Day and How to Solve It. I hope it helps.

Of course, I can’t leave you without something fun on a Friday. So go over and check out ThinkGeek. If you’ve never checked out their site before, you are in for a treat. If you already have, you know why it is awesome, geeky shopping fun. Did I mention they have the Friendship Algorithm on a t-shirt?

Have a great Friday, a fantastic weekend, read a lot, and The Waki Librarian will be back next week with more library and technology fun.

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