The Law Librarian of Congress, Roberta Shaffer, gave an amazing keynote address that helped kick off the AALL Vendor Colloquium in Chicago on Monday. I know that there were a number of members that would have like to have that keynote speech live streamed, but I’m going to try to do the next best thing and use XtraNormal to create my interpretation of what Shaffer shared with us. As Roberta started out her discussion by saying that her views were simply those of a personal nature and not representative of any part of the government, I’m going to take that up another notch and say that everything in these videos (yes, there’ll be more than one) are solely from my notes and memory and should not be seen as direct quotes from Roberta. So, if there is something that you think sounds absolutely crazy… then you can probably attribute that to my bad note taking or memory. If there is something that you think that is mentioned that is absolutely amazing and life changing, then that is completely because of what Roberta Shaffer said.

I’m not sure how many parts there will be, as I’m still filtering all my notes, the first part of the keynote talked about how we view the rule of law in our society from a societal perspective, from a historical perspective, from a present and future perspective, from a cultural perspective, and from a perspective of language, interpretation and comprehension. I just hope that my notes do justice to how well Robert Shaffer did in kicking off the colloquium and setting the stage for bringing vendors, librarians and stakeholders together to identify difference and defining the common connections we all share. You can find a good recap of the presentation from the AALL Spectrum Blog, here, here and even the handout, here.

Finally, Roberta said that anyone from the Library of Congress is obligated to mention Thomas Jefferson whenever possible. Therefore, I found the closest avatar I could find that looked like Thomas Jefferson (although, it is really Issac Newton) rather than one that looked or sounded like Roberta.