Episode 80: Sarah Strahl

Guest host Leah White chats with Sarah Strahl, Assistant Director of Technology and Technical Services at Ela Area Public Library.

sarah head shot 2

Sarah Strahl is the Assistant Director of Technology and Technical Services at Ela Area Public Library in Lake Zurich, IL. She received her MLS from Indiana University-Bloomington in 2008. She currently serves on the Program Planning Committee for Electronic Resources and Libraries. She enjoys trying to figure out the whodunnit in a wide variety of mysteries and can be found on tumblr @detectiveinspectorlibrarian.


Leah White is the Head of Popular Materials at the Ela Area Public Library in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago and the author of The Library Innovation Toolkit. She graduated from Dominican University with her MLIS in 2008 and won the Library Journal Movers & Shakers Award in 2012 for her work on building community engagement. You can find her on Twitter: @leahlibrarian or check out her website: www.leahlwhite.com.

Episode 79: Tara Robertson

Steve chats with Tara Robertson, Accessibility Librarian at CAPER-BC.


Tara Robertson is an accessibility advocate and systems librarian. She works as an Accessibility Librarian at CAPER-BC and oversees the production of alternate formats (e-text, Accessible PDF, DAISY, Kurzweil),  advocates  for  accessibility  and works to improve service. She is passionate about accessibility, access to information, open source (especially the open source ILS Evergreen), intellectual freedom, and Fluevog shoes.

Episode 78: Suzan Alteri

Steve chats with Suzan Alteri, curator at the Baldwin Library for Historical Children’s Literature at the University of Florida.

suzan alteri

Suzan A. Alteri, Curator of the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, conducts research on the materiality of the book and special collections in the classroom. She is the principal investigator on the grant “Women Authored Science Books for Children 1790-1890,” awarded by the American Library Association. In addition, Suzan has curated the following exhibits: Subverting the Natural Order, Bigger, Better, Best: the Panama Canal in Children’s Literature, When Phantasie Takes Flight: the Art &Imagination of Arthur Rackham, and Grimm Changes. Her most recent publication, “The Classroom as Salon: a Collaborative Project on Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe” appeared in Digital Defoe: Studies in Defoe & His Contemporaries. She regularly liaises with the Department of English on campus, which includes the Children’s Center for Literature and Culture.


Baldwin Library for Historical Children’s Literature
Unjustly Maligned: “Monopoly”

Down The Rabbit Hole

Episode 77: Alison Macrina

Steve chats with Alison Macrina, the founder and director of the Library Freedom Project.

Alison Macrina

Alison Macrina is a librarian, privacy rights activist, and the founder and director of the Library Freedom Project, an initiative which aims to make real the promise of intellectual freedom in libraries by teaching librarians and their local communities about surveillance threats, privacy rights and law, and privacy-protecting technology tools to help safeguard digital freedoms. Alison is passionate about connecting surveillance issues to larger global struggles for justice, demystifying privacy and security technologies for ordinary users, and resisting an internet controlled by a handful of intelligence agencies and giant multinational corporations. When she’s not doing any of that, she’s reading.


Library Freedom Project
Digital Rights in Libraries conference

Library Digital Privacy Pledge
Tor Exit Relays in Libraries
Kilton Library’s Tor node is back online [BoingBoing]

Episode 76: Merlin Mann

Steve chats with Merlin Mann about his history with libraries, the importance of the library as a community space, why libraries aren’t dead, and checking in with the Library Elf.

photo by Graham Ballantyne

photo by Graham Ballantyne

Merlin Mann is an independent writer, speaker, and broadcaster based in San Francisco.

Merlin created 43 Folders, co-hosts Back to Work, Roderick on the Line, and Reconcilable Differences (and appears on many other podcasts), and speaks and consults about things like emailtime & attention, and creative work.

Sure, Merlin also makes and does other stuff, including kinda-famous things like Inbox Zero, the Hipster PDA, the Procrastination Dash5ivesThat Phone Guy, and, of course, his personal favorite, “Cranking.” Merlin strongly discourages you from following him on Twitter.


43 Folders
Library Elf
Library Extension

Episode 75: #nextLoC

Steve chats with Jessamyn West about hopes and expectations regarding the next Librarian of Congress.


Jessamyn West is a librarian and community technologist. She helps run the Internet Archive’s Open Library project and writes a column for Computers in Libraries magazine. She works with small libraries and businesses in Central Vermont to help them use technology to solve problems.


Circulating Ideas, Episode 13: Jessamyn West
Librarian of PROgress
“Selecting The Next Librarian of Congress” (Medium)
“The Day I Spoke to the White House”
#nextLoC on Twitter

Episode 74: Equinox

Steve chats with the team at Equinox Software, which provides open source solutions to libraries around the world.


Equinox was founded in 2007 by the original developers and designers of the Evergreen ILS. They are wholly devoted to the support and development of open source software in libraries, focusing on Evergreen, Koha, and the FulfILLment ILL system.

Equinox is proud to be the only open source support company that can boast to employ both Evergreen and Koha core software developers. They wrote over 80% of the Evergreen code base and continue to contribute more new features, bug fixes, and documentation than any other organization.

Mike Rylander was born in San Diego, but has lived in Georgia for over almost thirty years. Mike has held a wide variety of technical positions, but he started his career in the 90’s repairing SCO and AIX-based servers. From there he progressed into Linux support, to systems engineer, and finally to software development and DBA duties. In 2004, Mike was hired by the Georgia Public Library Service to help develop Evergreen.

Mike’s role has always been one of designer and architect. In fact, the innovative OpenSRF infrastructure that lies underneath Evergreen was his brainchild. At Equinox, he leads all technical-leaning efforts including software development, systems engineering, and technical support. Mike loves explaining technical things to the non-technical, and solving problems.

When not at work, Mike enjoys insanely hoppy beers, early 90’s indie rock, and Tae Kwon Do. Mike is married to his high school sweetheart and together they have two daughters.

Jason Etheridge received his B.S. in Computer Science from the University of South Carolina and later joined the United States Army, ostensibly for military intelligence.   He self-identifies as a software developer, though he wears many hats, and he is an open source and pro-commons advocate.  He was instrumental in the development of Evergreen while working for PINES, and for its release under an open source license.  Jason leans “paleo” and enjoys gaming of all sorts, but has a special fondness for pen & paper roleplaying games and juggling sticks.  His favorite books include The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss and The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie.  His favorite authors include Fred Saberhagen and David Brin.

Galen Charlton is a library hacker who has been working in library automation and data-slinging for the past 15 years, helping migrate hundreds of libraries to new ILSs and digital library systems.  In the process, he has worked with the full gamut of library types and sizes, including small church libraries, public and academic libraries of all sizes, library consortia, and national libraries.

In recent years, Galen joined the world of library open source software, contributing to both Koha and Evergreen as well as other F/LOSS projects.  He was elected release manager for versions 3.2 and 3.14 of Koha.

Galen was named a Library Journal Mover and Shaker in 2013.

When not staring firmly at code and data to scare the bugs and inconsistencies away, he, along with his wife Marlene, is a loyal servant to three cats.


Equinox Software
Dan Scott