Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The first (official) day

The Conference started off with a bang when during the Opening Ceremony there was an overture by the brass quintet band of National Taiwan Normal University, the conference venue. A short video which was shown last year in Lisbon to promote the conference was then shown again introducing Taiwan and it's resources and people.
After speeches by several dignitaries, including the president of the Library Association of the Republic of China, the president of NTNU, a ministers from the Department of Education and the Council of Cultural Affairs of Taiwan, a welcome by IASL President Peter Genco, we were entertained by a group of students from various Taiwanese aboriginal tribes who live in Taipei and are part of a folk dance company.
Pictures of some of the opening events can be see on the IASL Taiwan web album.
The first keynote speaker was Jay Jordan, President of OCLC. For those who don't know OCLC is the Online Computer Library Center. Among other things OCLC owns the Dewey Decimal System, maintains WorldCat, and for many years has been a clearinghouse for catalog records especially for academic and public libraries.
Mr. Jordan talked about the history and future of OCLC and I think the main thrust of his talk was that an organization like OCLC must continue to build an international presence and must continue to interact with and use new web tools to help make libraries a vital part of the Internet.
More on the first day later.

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