my new job is great and i want to tell you about it

In late October I wrote a semi-cryptic Facebook status update telling people that I gave notice at my job. Then a few weeks later a few people emailed me when they saw my job at the NPPL listed on the PNLA Jobs website. Sorry that I haven’t been able to say anything until now, but Ts were getting crossed and all of that.

I’m super excited to let interested parties know that I’m now the Digital Initiatives Librarian for the District of Columbia Public Library. Not quite sure what a Digital Initiatives Librarian does? Well, it is vague on purpose but I can tell you that I’m going to be doing website visioning, usability testing, web presence development and planning all sorts of fun projects. Much of this stuff is going to fall under a subdivision of the DCPL Information Technology Services department that we’re calling DCPL Labs (still in beta so expect to find some lorem ipsum). You can visit the DCPL Labs Projects page for some details of what we’ll be starting with, but I’m most excited about:

  • Our iPhone application. This is probably the simplest way I’ve seen to search for and place holds on library items. It is built and is in the process of being submitted to Apple for inclusion in the iTunes application store. The current version is about .8 and we have an exciting roadmap for future functionality.
  • Content Creation Stations. We’re giving DCPL Neighborhood Libraries some great hardware and training to help people produce digital content and put it online. We’re going to aggregate this content somewhere on the DCPL site.
  • We’ve got a nice looking and usable design for a new library website that is in the process of being built.
  • DCPL staff education. I’m going to be helping write modules for a learning program, hosting a Library 2.0 interest group for DCPL employees, and writing a tech awareness blog called The Dish. Writing a different style blog, something much more general and link-bloggy than walking paper should be fun and challenging.

Another aspect of the job that is fun and challenging is that I’m not moving to DC. I’ll be telecommuting from Portland and visiting DC as needed. In our estimation this might be for a few days monthly or every other month. I’ll be working from home (which probably means I’ll get back to posting more pics of Mao on the green couch to flickr) and my local haunt, Red Square Cafe. This flexibility also means that I’ll still be doing some traveling for neat presentation and workshop opportunities.

The DCPL is implementing a big transition, including some major construction projects. It is encouraging that the library is considering their digital presence in this transition, and I’m honored to help with the task.

41 thoughts on “my new job is great and i want to tell you about it”

  1. Aaron, that is full of awesomesauce. Congratulations and welcome to the DC/MD corridor (virtually anyway) DC is luck to have you and you are lucky to be able to telecommute.
    I am completely jealous. Contrats.

  2. Wonderful, I was worried that you might have to move away from a place you obviously love. I’m really excited about that iPhone app – will you be able to share the code? We’re running Sirsi too…

    Good luck and have fun!

  3. Sweet deal, Aaron. I hope you’ll blog some about the experiences of telecommuting. I think that’s something more librarians and library directors need to learn more about. Keep us informed and best of luck.

  4. Aaron, well this answers many questions! You were actually the topic of discussion at a dinner in November and we’re glad that you have landed safely.

    You already know that D.C. can be a wonderful place. Perhaps you’ll be there during the SLA conference in June, so lots of us will get to see you?!

  5. I’ve been wondering what you were up to next myself, albeit quietly. I’m thrilled you got such a great gig (and, I must admit, equally thrilled that you don’t have to move to DC. I expect to keep seeing bike trip pictures as well as Mao on the couch pictures.)


  6. Most excellent! It will be so interesting to watch things unfold. Can’t wait to visit with you at CiL and catch up…I mean, CiL is nearly in D.C., so you’ll be there doubly, yes? :) At any rate, many, many gratz to you and a big WOO HOO! :)

  7. Congratulations and welcome to the DC/MD area! It’s so awesome that you get to live&play on the West coast and work&play on the east. I look forward to seeing the amazing things that are no doubt on the horizon!

  8. Congrats Aaron,
    This is good news! I’ll be watching for exciting new stuff to start happening at DCPL! iPhone app… well howsabout that… Great!

  9. That is beyond awesome! I hope in this economic environment, more libraries will become open to folks telecommuting whose jobs are conducive to that (she types while working from home on a very snowy/icy day). Can’t wait to hear more about all these exciting projects!

  10. Congratulations, Aaron! Sounds like a super awesome job. Have to admit, though: I’m glad you’re staying in the Portland area and continuing to share your usability-vibe with WCCLS!

  11. So cool, Happy for you and DCPL is very lucky to get you on board. Can’t wait to start following the innovations at DCPL.

  12. Aaron- this is amazing! I am so excited for you and can’t wait to see all the cool things you come up with but… staying in Oregon? Are you crazy? Do you really want all that fresh air, pine trees, and clean water when you could be on the east coast. lol. -Nancy

  13. very cool stuff Aaron. thanks for sharing more details with us. i’m looking forward to seeing more of this roll out in the coming months. i especially am interested in the iPhone app. any chances you’ll be working on an Android app for google phones?

  14. I’m working my way through a huge pile of RSS-posts and found this great news. Congrats!
    I’m excited to see that you’re working on an iPhone App. I love tot try it. Hope it can be downloaded in Holland too. Do you know when it is availabel? I’m screaming at ProBiblio too that we should develop an iPhone App. It’s our way into the future. The library one finger away from our customer. Maybe we can share some ideas and experiences.

    ps. Great to see our crazy clock(s) appear on your blog.

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