A new begining...

The Microsoft motto ‘Turning ideas into Reality’ always sounded very impressive to me. If we delve deeper into its meaning we may find that we can apply it to our academic lives wherein we wanted to further our studies and here we are now at the ischool, and maybe we wish to conduct some kind of research someday and this class of ours is a step towards that future.

I have a Masters in English and my interest in Literature and Languages made me look up the etymology of the word “research” : it comes from French ‘recerche’ meaning ‘to seek out, search closely’. I guess we are all looking for something in life and as we think more about it and write about it as well, we will be able to find new avenues of looking at things hitherto unseen.

I certainly do not know whether we will get an opportunity to dance salsa as our text suggests but we are definitely going to sweat it out a lot this term given the number of assignments. But with the hope that this small blogging exercise will point us in the right direction and who knows we might even find ourselves as Luker says “drifting into new intellectual areas…” soon.

A step into…

From the first days and classes, stepping into iSchool student’s shoes is extremely exciting! Moreover, being rather modest and communicating only a little with fellow students, I find this blog to be a gift-like opportunity to learn from, and listen to, and share with fascinating people. So, hello and thank you everybody involved!

Out of my Belorussian education in design of radio-electronic devices, a year of professional experience, and research conducted at the junction of engineering and chemistry, I raised and brought with me a wish to make working in any setting an organized, collaborative, and fun activity. Following my previous path, I enjoyed challenges of making things orderly and effectively or finding user centered solutions rather than doing exactly chemistry; and as the result, I came here to start walking along a new path of the humane systems designer.

Although I don’t intend to write a thesis, choosing this course was a fast and easy decision: I would like to have a steady and extensive knowledge foundation, and I can’t imagine acquiring it without knowing which instruments scholars use to develop a core of information science, and also without a skill to fully evaluate resources that will build now my own understanding and expertise through two years of studies. Adding to that, is enthusiasm to form in my mind an actual general structure and branching of information science, not that casual seemingly informed view of an everyday web, computer or library user. And I hope that methodological perspective will help me in this too.

Yet Another Intro...

Hey everyone!
So since introductions seem to be the theme this week, I should give you mine. I just graduated with a BA from Mount Allison University in New Brunswick, where I did a double major in English and History. I basically took every Medieval studies-type course I could, which is where my love of research became apparent. I know it's sort of dorky to say I love research, but I really do! In my third year, I took an Intro to Medieval Literature course, in which the main assignment was a Codicology project. I had to pick a Medieval manuscript and essentially locate - and acquire whenever possible - every piece of information that existed on that manuscript, including its history and contents. I had never done anything like this before, but I was hooked. I loved spending my time searching for sources and information in the most obscure databases and libraries, and it was always so rewarding when I found what I was looking for. After I finished this project, I told the professor how much I had enjoyed it, and she actually suggested that I should maybe consider a Master's in Information Science. So here I am.
I find research to be the best part of the academic process, and I think that's why I want to be a reference librarian in an academic library. I'm interested to learn more about the research process and different methods, because it's definitely something I will use in the future.

Another Intro!

Hi everyone,

This is Elizabeth, your blogging captain. I honestly am not an expert at this business, but I did have a livejournal and then a blogspot of my own for about 5-6 years in highschool and early university, which I updated obsessively at the time. Blogs blogs blogs! I have made Jennette into an additional admin, and if anyone else here knows how to do css or web design or anything, let me know and we'll add you to our club.

Anyway, on to the intro... we've already heard far too many of these this week so mine will be brief. I just finished my undergrad at Queen's, majoring in History. While I was there, I discovered that I had an affinity and adoration for research and organization, which I can furthermore apply to my obsession with literature and general expansion of knowledge. Anyway! My current long-term goal is to be a highschool librarian. But who knows! I look forward to getting to know all of you interesting people through these posts, and hopefully it will be a fun time!

Introduction #3

I'll second Eleonore's thanks to everyone for getting this blog up and running so fast!

To continue the introductions — I've just finished a specialized bachelors of design from YSDN, during which I spent the last two years focusing on information design (think Tufte's visualizing quantatative data). It was a mix between my infographic studies, a couple of internships and a slew of freelancing that I became fascinated in the politics of visual communication.

I learned that there was no such thing as a neutral exchange of information, that the very act of editing, selecting and presenting information produces a nexus of discussions for any message to be conveyed. Rooted in the curiosity for a complete correlation between medum and message, I am interested in the visual form of information, particularily the ethics and the social impacts of such decisions.

With that said, I'm not too sure where I exactly fit into this program right now. The majority of my courses are in the 'critical information studies' pathway, though I am taking Research Methods because I am seriously considering the thesis option. Wherever I end up, I'm really excited to be able to work with so many people from such diverse backgrounds.

(p.s. Elizabeth — can you up please grant me admin privledges and I can look into altering the css? :D )

Introduction #2

Thanks Aurianne for starting the ball rolling with our blog. I'm very excited that we are already starting to post; it's so great to be working with such passionate students.
A little about my background - I finished my undergrad in 2006 at McGill in History and Political Science. Since then, I have worked in the non-profit sector, at first as a program assistant in international development organizations, and then as a communications officer. I now manage communications at Motivate Canada, an NGO that focuses on promoting youth engagement.
I'm taking this class because I want to research the impact of communications and information methods on the public. What interests me the most is the social impact of the Internet, which is an incredibly broad but very topical field. Specifically, what I keep coming back to is wanting to explore the relationship between graphic designers/information architects and website users. A few questions include: how do culturally (or other) appropriate visual cues determine the success of a website? Is there a link between preferences in physical and online environments? How can knowledge sharing be enhanced through colour and structure?
I hope to be able to discuss these and other ideas with you all further during the semester!

Hi Everyone!

Hi guys and Prof. Grimes!

Thank you so much Elizabeth for setting this up. I finally have a google account now...oh the things I can do!

Anyways, for the first post I believe that we are just supposed to introduce ourselves and our interest in the MI program/this course.

My name is Aurianne, I'm from Tavistock, ON, renowned for it's cheese, feed mills and nursing homes...quite a potentially disgusting mix if you think about it. I did my undergrad at McMaster University in Theatre and Film. Afterwards I taught English in Taiwan, worked at a gallery in Stratford, ON and had the pleasure to work deep in the bowels of the Natural History Museum in London, England for two years. There is where my affinity for libraries and the people that work in them grew. I'm very excited to be on the LIS path. Not sure where I want to go or what exactly I want to do with it, but it's the first time that I've thought about actually having a career. As for this course, it seemed necessary (turns out it actually was) even though I might not do a thesis. The ability to analize data, how and why it was retrieved and its relevance to other literature or just our own research seems invaluable. I'm very much looking forward to it!