A new chapter

Here I am on ScienceBlogs, moved from the comfortable confines of my old blog, where I’ve been active since October 2002.

The opportunity to come here was never anything I really expected or pursued, but now that I’m here I’m really excited to start this new chapter in my blogging existence.

How did it happen, you ask? Well, it all started last week with a post I did about the “Are You a Librarian” survey that Seed was running on the site at the time. Basically, the survey was a marketing tool trying to encourage librarians to subscribe to Seed Magazine for their institutions. I was totally ok with that (we subscribe to Seed at MPOW), but at the same time I’d been kind of hoping for a deeper engagement with the library community on Seed’s part.

Well, I guess I got my wish. Sarah Glasser from Seed contacted me a few days later, asking about what I’d been hoping for, and, oh, by the way, how about being part of engaging the librarian community on a deeper level. The next thing you know, I’m in touch with Erin Johnson and the next thing you know after that, here I am typing into the rather unfamiliar (for me) Movable Type interface.

So, who exactly am I anyways? Well, I have a B.Comp.Sci. (1986) from Concordia University in Montreal. After that, I worked as a software developer for a big insurance broker for twelve years, mostly working in dBase, FoxPro, Wang Pace, Cobol and at the end, PowerBuilder. Tiring of the life of the developer, I changed careers and went back to school to become a librarian, taking the Masters of Library and Information Studies program at McGill University. That brings us to 2000, when I graduated and, along with my family, moved to Toronto to take a science librarian job at York University. (More history here and here.)

Now, I’m about a year and half into a five year term as head of the Steacie Science & Engineering Library.

What do I blog about? Mostly about what it’s like to be a science librarian at the beginning of the 21st century: science, computer science, online community building, blogging, open access, open science, science 2.0, collections, databases, ebooks, science books. The whole shooting match. Let’s just say, I was at SciBarCamp last weekend and everyone I talked to basically wanted to know where libraries are going these days and how we’ll stay relevant to the born digital generation. So, yes, I’m obsessed with that stuff too.

What do I bring to the ScienceBlogs table? I hope a greater appreciation amongst scientists what their local science librarians have to offer, both in terms of their teaching and research. I also hope to be able to bring to the librarians that visit me here a greater appreciation of what it’s like to be a scientist in the 21st century, too.

So, to all of you encountering my blog here for the first time, welcome! My best known posts so far have been the My Job in 10 Years series, some book reviews as well as my series of interviews with people in the scitech world.

Enjoy! I hope that will be enough to get to know me a little bit. I’ll be back with a bunch of new posts this week and beyond, including another announcement.


  1. #1 PalMD
    May 18, 2009

    well, i met some librarians at scionline09 and i’m happy for the addition.

  2. #2 Lab Rat
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to Scienceblogs. Good luck!

    I’m a science student who works as a part time librarian, so it will be really interesting reading your blog. 😀

  3. #3 Coturnix
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to the Family!

  4. #4 Yannis
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to the SciBlog team!

  5. #5 Kobra
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome. Er, welcome. Oh, and psst! You have been assimilated into the ScienceB(logsdot)org!

  6. #6 chezjake
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome! It’s good to have you here. As a retired medical librarian/information systems designer and long time reader of ScienceBlogs, I’ll be anxious to read what you have to say on many of those topics.

  7. #7 ScienceWoman
    May 18, 2009

    Let me be the first say, “Welcome!”

  8. #8 Graham Steel
    May 18, 2009

    Ha, I feel like I know you already 😉 Welcome to Science Blogs, John.

  9. #9 Ian
    May 18, 2009

    It’s good to know you have us, er, covered…! Welcome to Sci Blogs!

  10. #10 Mr. Gunn
    May 18, 2009

    Hey John! I loved your interview of Dorothea. Hope you’re liking your new digs.

  11. #11 AgnosticNews
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to Scienceblogs! I look forward to your posts.

  12. #12 DrugMonkey
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome aboard, Librarian John! Looking forward to your stuff.

  13. #13 atgc
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to ScienceBlogs, John Dupuis.

    I’m an undergrad at York University, but I spend most of my time at Scott Library for studying. 😉

    I hope to learn some interesting things from your blog.

  14. #14 LibraryGuy
    May 18, 2009

    Yay! A librarian on Scieceblogs! As a Librarian and someone who loves science, I will be looking forward to reading this blog. (I mean, wow, a blog with issues that I can relate to! Oh sure reading about dark energy, viruses, evolution, and creationism is all fine and good, but collection development? Yeah bring it on!)

  15. #15 Dr. Kate
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome! I’m excited to have a librarian posting here. (Don’t get me wrong. I love the scientists too. But I have something of an interest in library/information science, and I’ll be really interested to read about your perspectives.)

  16. #16 jennifer
    May 18, 2009

    I’m so glad to see a science librarian getting some play! I’m a librarian at a liberal arts college with a background in biology (particularly cell biology and a smattering of paleo) and no one knows what to do with me. The humanities folks are flummoxed by someone being into science and the science folks are too used to other librarians not knowing anything about their fields.

    I’m super excited to hear more from you!

  17. #17 Crudely Wrott
    May 18, 2009

    Nice to meet you John. And welcome to the ScienceBlogsosphere.

    I’ve long appreciated the range and depth of skills that are necessary to be a proper librarian.

    I’ll be stopping by, count on it.

  18. #18 Stephanie Z
    May 18, 2009

    Congratulations on the move. About time they got a librarian around here.

  19. #19 DataJack
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome to ScienceBlogs, John!

  20. #20 Warren
    May 18, 2009

    Great addition to SciBlogs! As a science bookshop owner I suspect there’ll be a lot I can learn from you. I guess the big question is does the bio of Darwin go in History of Science, Evolution or Biographies? I wish there was a way I could metatag my shelves. Anyway I’m particularly looking forward to your book reviews. There aren’t enough places around that review good science books.

    Also I enjoyed this article
    I think one of the most intrinsically interesting things about visiting a bookshop or library in finding the unexpected. This can lead to interesting cross pollination of ideas that possibly doesn’t happen when you are able to find exactly what you’re looking for each time.

  21. #21 Romeo Vitelli
    May 18, 2009

    Congratulations, John. I’ve been following your blog for a while (and we met a couple of times). Looking forward to seeing more of you.

  22. #22 Katkinkate
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome! Looking forward to your words of wisdom.

  23. #23 Gerry L
    May 18, 2009

    Welcome, from a corporate librarian who frequents ScienceBlogs.

  24. #24 John Dupuis
    May 18, 2009

    Thanks for the kind words everyone! I’m really happy to be here! (And sorry for having comment moderation on when I didn’t mean to!)

  25. #25 F
    May 18, 2009

    Science + Librarian = Awesome!

    I’ll be checking out your bog int the future, for sure.


  26. #26 Darren Jones
    May 18, 2009

    Congratulations John, my FeedDemon is now pointing towards your new home.

  27. #27 Chris
    May 19, 2009

    I’m halfway through my MLIS at Kent State University, and it’s great to see a librarian on ScienceBlogs. I’m waiting for the inevitable “WE BETTER POST QUIETLY TEE HEE” comments…

  28. #28 ColonelFazackerley
    May 19, 2009
  29. #29 Chris Leonard
    May 19, 2009

    Hey John – congratulations on your new home. I can’t imagine anyone better to spread librarian’s views on STM to a wider audience. Good luck! Chris

  30. #30 Eugene Wallingford
    May 19, 2009

    Congratulations on the move, John!

  31. #31 Rossana I. Barrios
    May 19, 2009

    Congratulations on the move ! As a librarian you made us proud!!!

  32. #32 Jodi Schneider
    May 19, 2009

    Congrats on the new digs, John! I will miss the clean typography over at your old site.

  33. #33 Eva
    May 19, 2009

    Oh, wow, that’s unexpected. Not that you don’t deserve it! It’s just that usually people’s moves to the borg are prefaced with a period of mysterious rumblings about new homes and changes.

    Also, [insert obligatory comment about how Nature Network is way more awesome, of course]. So there!

  34. #34 Andrea L.
    May 19, 2009

    Congratulations, John! Enjoy your new blog home. Looking forward to your posts.

  35. #35 John Dupuis
    May 19, 2009

    Once again, thanks everyone for all the kind wishes. I hope I can live up to all the “show-em what librarians are made of” hype 😉

    Eva, it actually happened really quickly, almost too quickly to rumble given my general posting frequency. But I did put out a couple of foreshadowing tweets on “disturbances in the Force” but I think those were just way too subtle.

  36. #36 datamuse
    May 19, 2009

    Congrats on the move to ScienceBlogs! As a longtime ScienceBlogs reader, a reader of your blog, AND a science librarian (among other things; it’s a small library and we all wear many hats), I’m triply glad to see you here!

  37. #37 Isis the Scientist
    May 20, 2009

    Welcome, Scibling!

  38. Congratulations!

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