Tuesday Feb 14, 2012

Virtual Information Services (VIS) Move to Oracle WebCenter

Check out the recent contribution to the Oracle WebCenter blog during their week of featuring Oracle on Oracle!


Thursday Jan 28, 2010

Gotta Love the Impact of Information

Here is another great example of feedback from an engineer on the value of the information services provided and how they impact his work and collaboration with fellow engineers! This is specific to our eBook program:

"I must say that it's really nice to exchange information with fellow co-workers here at Sun and, if there happens to be a reference to something I'm trying to describe -- I just say -- See the book such-and-so, on page xxx (it's on Safari if you want to have a look online)."

I LOVE it! Information matters!


Thursday Jul 23, 2009

Visualizing The History of Information at Sun

As part of a bigger effort at Sun to capture Sun's history, the Information Services: Digital Libraires & Research team (previously known as SunLibrary) are pulling together the history of information at Sun. As part of this effort, these image were created that showcase visually the services, innovations, learnings, changes and impact of information to Sun's business over the years.

Keep a watch out here for the full timeline and history of information at Sun as told by Sun's information experts (both current and past)!


Thursday Feb 19, 2009

New SMI Press book - Citizen Engineer: A Handbook for Socially Responsible Engineering

Citizen Engineer: A Handbook for Socially Responsible Engineering

This new SMI Press book, authored by Sun's Dave Douglas, Greg Papadopoulos and John Boutelle, is titled Citizen Engineer and early Rough Cut access is available to Sun employees via Safari Books Online. (Sun employees here | Non Sun employees purchase here)

Here is a summary of the book:
Being an engineer today means being far more than an engineer. You need to consider not only the design requirements of your projects but the full impact of your work--from an ecological perspective, an intellectual property perspective, a business perspective, and a sociological perspective. And you must coordinate your efforts with many other engineers, sometimes hundreds of them. In short, we've entered an age that demands socially responsible engineering on a whole new scale. The era of the Citizen Engineer.

This engaging and thought-provoking book focuses on two topics that are becoming vitally important in the day-to-day work of engineers today: eco engineering and intellectual property (IP). The book also examines how and why the world of engineering has changed and provides practical advice to help engineers of all types master the new era of engineering and start thinking like Citizen Engineers.

This access is prior to the print version of the book coming out in June 2009. Sun employees will be able to purchase a print copy at a 40% discount towards the end of April but anyone can purchase at www.sun.com/books when it's published.

For Sun employees: you can download specific chapters for offline reading and even access those downloaded chapters via your iPhone or iPod Touch (see blog on Safari Bookbag application)

Since this is a Rough Cut (pre-published access to book content), you can choose to receive an email alert when the final version is available as well as make comments to the authors about the book before it's published! See snapshot of those features below.

We hope to have the authors do an author chat soon so will keep you posted on that opportunity to talk to Greg, Dave and John about the book.


Christy Confetti Higgins
Digital Library Program - Sun Learning Services

Friday Feb 06, 2009

Pilot - Internal use of Sun's Project Wonderland

Sun's Digital Libraries & Research team, part of Sun Learning Services, is partnering on an internal pilot of Sun's Project Wonderland with Sun's Services Marketing organization.

The library team (as we call ourselves) will be conducting a workshop in this internal instance of Wonderland, for Sun employees to learn about market and competitive information services. Part of the session will be slides and part will be live demo in this engaging and dynamic virtual world setting.

Participants will also be able to learn from pre-programmed bots in this open library space as well as interact with internal library resources via the Firefox browner in-world.

A key benefit we see is that the attendees will not only have the opportunity to learn, but to interact with each other as a community drawn together by their shared interest in market and competitive information.

This is a pilot so we hope to learn a lot about how we can leverage this for employee learning of library resources, information and knowledge sharing and more dynamic/immersive experiences related to information.

Wish us luck!

Digital Libraries & Research Team!

Wednesday May 23, 2007

The Magic of Findability

In my last entry, I talked about library as social setting. Here I get to talk about the two additional points Hal Stern brought out in his blog entry: 1) the organization and preservation of knowledge for findability, and 2) the concept of serendipity in discovering information.

In the age of Google, of information almost literally at your fingertips, Hal states that "you need libraries and the organization they impose to an even greater extent." I believe that, too. But why is that?

All of us have experienced the crush and incoherency of too much information. Say I want to find out information on outsourcing. If I do a Google search at 10am Mountain Time on May 14, 2007, I get over 58 million hits.

The first two "sponsored" links are for CapGemini (a consulting services group) and Nortel (the Google or Services folks might know why this comes up, but I sure don't). I also get image search results for outsourcing. (Why do I need images for outsourcing?)

I get the Wikipedia entry for outsourcing, which is good; Wikipedia's always a fairly reliable place to get up to speed on a topic. On this first page of results, I also get The Outsourcing Institute, a BusinessWeek article, and InformationWeek's Outsourcing center - all good.

So I'm off to a good start. But say what I really want is some definitive guides on outsourcing. Suppose I want some case studies and best practices around outsourcing. Will I find things like The outsourcing handbook: how to implement a successful outsourcing process, by Mark J. Power, Kevin C. Desouza, and Carlo Bonifazi? If this does come up in my Google search, how will I access it? Do I have to buy it? How do I know the eBook version exists from NetLibrary and do I need to buy it?

In the end, how much is it going to cost me - and how much time will I need to spend - to get knowledgable about outsourcing - without having to wade through the massive amounts of information about outsourcing out there?

It all comes down to this: how do I find what I'm looking for, even when I may not be exactly sure of what I'm looking for?

Peter Morville recently coined the word findability. Findability essentially is a word expressing the characteristic of how easy it is to, well, find something. If you need a piece of information, how easily and quickly can you get access to it?

Libraries - in whatever form, and in whatever setting, whether the function is called a "library" or not - are all about findability. That's our JOB. That's our profession - and it has been for many many years. First, we identify and find the information, and then we make it findable for others. (This is one of the driving ideas behind a lot of the Web 2.0 tools and social tools out there: finding and connecting people and information in a variety of different ways, getting your hands on the information when and where you need it.)

Because of this basic fact of our profession, we're constantly trying to improve findability - not only for you, our customer, but also for ourselves. After all, if I'm doing research and I can't find something - even something I KNOW exists - I'm stuck. I can't find it, so it might as well not exist.

But if we've done a good job, then you can lay your hands on the information you need quickly. Or we can lay our hands on it quickly and get it to you.

And that's magic. That's the opposite experience I like to think we've all had. You need that critical piece of information, right now, and, bang, all of a sudden someone hands it to you, or it pops right up for you. It's a beautiful moment. It's a gratifying moment for everyone involved.

So next time you need to find something? You know where to go - to your librarians in your corporation, university or community. Unless it's your car keys. We can't help you there. Unless you tagged them with a social tagging tool. Did you look on the couch?

Next up: Serendipity.

Scott Brown
Digital Libraries & Research
Sun Learning Services

Wednesday Jan 24, 2007

Where have all the phone booths gone?

All over the United States local phone companies have been removing public phone booths. Why? Because there is much less use of them now that so many people have mobile phones. No longer do we need to hunt for a phone booth, find the right amount of change (is it 25c, 35c, 50c?), and hope that the phone is working. Now we can call anytime, anywhere, without hassle or inconvenience. Of course, there are some sentimental losses, such as Superman no longer having a place to change into his super-uniform, but I'm sure even he has adjusted.

What do phone booths have to do with libraries?

Just like the phone booth, libraries have also been going digital. Now you can read a book, newspaper, or magazine online. Now you can complete in-depth research through thousands of sources online that were once only available in print. Now you can collaborate with team members, sharing your documents online. And you can learn through online resources and training opportunities. None of this is particularly new since this change has been occurring for the last 50 years. It's just that the shift from our dependence on physical to digital has accelerated in the last 5 years.

What does that mean for SunLibrary? We've also been undergoing a transformation. Since 1995 our strategic plan has been to create an information environment that supports Sun employees to be info-self-sufficient. And we've been accomplishing this goal by going digital as fast as we can. Last year we estimated that our services and resources were already 90-95% digital. This year we're pleased to announce that we're 100% digital and we have a new name, Digital Libraries & Research, to reflect this change.

As part of Sun Learning Services (SLS), we are now integrated into SLS's Learning Technology team. We are working on making external and internal content even more immediately available to Sun employees – always at their fingertips, whenever they need answers to their questions. With the power of SLS's newly launched MyLearning portal, they can learn just-in-time and just in the way they want. And whenever Sun employees want more information or would like to investigate a topic more deeply, they can work with our librarians and information specialists to get just what they need.

Where are all the phone booths? Where is the library? Just check the web – we've gone digital!

Sun employees - you can find us from the SunWeb Key Links drop down box: Digital Libraries & Research and MyLearning.


Sharing stories of information management, collaboration, integration, sharing, and social enterprise applications for corporate information services.


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