Introducing Open paren: a podcast about libraries and code

should we write it all again
I’d end it with
a close-paren.
xkcd, With Apologies to Robert Frost

“I need an excuse,” I thought, “to talk to people and not just my cats,” because (great as my cats are) working from home is lonely sometimes.

“Gosh, there are lots of libraryland coders doing really cool stuff,” I thought, having brainstormed a giant list of them. “I could chat with them, and if I recorded it, I could call that a podcast!”

So here it is. Open paren is a series of conversations with coders in, and near, libraries, at all levels, with all sorts of use cases. It’s about starting something: conversations, projects, ideas. It’s about all these remarkable people doing fascinating things that connect tools, services, and values. Want to play along? You can!

In the first episode, the super-awesome Cecily Walker and I talked about Maptime, metadata, human stories, user experience, learning to code, digital humanities, inclusive librarianship, and more (I told you she’s super awesome). Soon I’ll talk to Francis Kayiwa about devops, and Ed Summers & Bergis Jules about their work doing rapid-response social media archiving of things like #ferguson (which may well be the coolest libraryland tech work happening today).

I don’t actually have time to do a podcast, so this is an exercise in incrementalism – what’s the minimum I can do to get this thing out the door? So there’s no fixed publication schedule, and I should probably get around to buying a proper mic but haven’t, and I definitely don’t have time to artisanally hand-edit audio, because the perfect doesn’t get to be the enemy of the good. I did have a pretty fun time writing scripts in a couple of languages I don’t really know to automate my production process, though, so maybe I’ll blog about that later. (Want to read the scripts? Go for it.)

Little white cat and big orange cat curled up together adorably
My cats are super great, though. FYI.

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