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“Managing Data for Patron Privacy” is Here!

I’m thrilled to announce that my second book is officially out! I’m pleased to share the book “Managing Data for Patron Privacy: Comprehensive Strategies for Libraries“, which was co-written with the amazing Becky Yoose and published by ALA Editions. Summary: Libraries are not exempt from the financial costs of data breaches or leaks,...

Should Researchers Use a Standard Folder Structure?

I love to teach people about data management and file organization, but I tend to talk mostly about file naming conventions and ISO 8601. These two strategies are incredibly helpful in keeping files organized and easy to find, but file organization also has a role. My usual thoughts about file organization are to have a logical way to organize...

Wrapping Up

I’ve had two giant projects finish up in the last month and am already feeling their loss. The first project is the Data Doubles project, which I’ve been working on in one form or another since 2017. This team been an amazing group to work with and I will sorely miss our fortnightly group meetings. Part of wrapping up the Data Doubles project...

Book Review: The Book of Trees & The Book of Circles

This post is a review of a pair of related books, The Book of Trees: Visualizing Branches of Knowledge and The Book of Circles: Visualizing Spheres of Knowledge, both by Manuel Lima. I ran across these on a list of the best data visualization books and decided to check them out. I’m reviewing the two books together because they provide parallel...

Life in the Time of COVID

Year 3 of this pandemic is quickly approaching and one might think we’d be getting used to being in these “unprecedented times.” And yet the last several months have been extra challenging for me, particularly as a parent of small children (one of whom cannot be vaccinated yet). So this blog has been silent as my focus has been simply to get through...

Book Review: Better Posters

Pelagic Publishing (disclaimer: they published my book “Data Management for Researchers”) asked if I wanted to review their new book, “Better Posters: Plan, Design, and Present an Academic Poster,” and sent me a review copy to read. As a mid-career librarian and an ex-chemist, I’ve done my share of poster sessions both at library and...

The White Supremacy of Library Learning Analytics

I’ve removed this post because it is problematic. I want to thank my colleagues of color for pointing this out to me and educating me. It is a privilege to not seeing white supremacy in learning analytics research.I jumped into an ongoing conversation without recognizing the work of peers, mostly people of color, who are already working in this...

Thoughts on Data Management as Housekeeping

My colleague Carolyn Bishoff at the MDLS20 conference introduced me to the idea that data management is like housekeeping: it’s a task that you have to continually do in order to live and thrive in your environment. It’s not something that we always enjoy doing and it’s something that we can get away with doing the bare minimum in order to survive,...

Citation Omitted: A Story of Re-identification

I published the article “Data Management Practices in Academic Library Learning Analytics: A Critical Review” in 2019. Eagle-eyed readers may have noticed that I omitted a couple of citations, instead listing them as “citation omitted in order to protect students’ identities.” This is because the two studies in question published student details so...

Visualizing COVID in Fiber

A side effect of being a data specialist-by-day and a crafter-by-night, is that the two sometimes combine. This leads to things like the bad passwords dress and the women in science dress, but more recently, I’ve been dabbling in data visualization with fiber. This is my first finished visualization project. This is a scarf representing...

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