Gitting together: Creating a Living Book of Digital Skills through failure, fun and friendship

Several members of the working group will present the journey towards making The Living Book of Digital Skills (you never knew you needed until now), a CAUL Digital Dexterity Champions working group project. Born out of a tweet pinged to one of our founders about the needing for a book that teaches not-quite-technical computer skills, it has become the perfect project for a diverse group of library professionals with an interest in digital literacy to create. Aimed at all skills levels, and published on the GitBook platform, it can be constantly added to as new skills and tools emerge and old tools evolve. GitBook allows the resource to be flexible, easily updated and added to as demand dictates. Where do a bunch of library professionals (ranging from library managers, training and engagement managers, subject and information service librarians) start with such a project? With upskilling of course! After learning the basics of Git from the ARDC, we were left to learn the rest from practicing practising on the platform. Before working on the real thing, we made up a practise bGitBook to playexperiment with and then moved on to creating the codes of conduct, the chapter outlines, and working out ways we would handle submissions, along with the other backend guides and materials involved with creating any book. While creating all the documentation involved in the implementation of this project, we have learned how to use different parts of Git and forgotten, learned again, and muddled through some more. Throughout this process, we met fortnightly to discuss the parts that needed to be added. During the last half of the meetings we work to continue our learning and work through any issues with and in Github. Sharing this peer-learning experience together has created a close virtual group where all members support, teach and fix problems and roadblocks that we come across as part of this experience. With a soft launch to the greater Digital Dexterity champions group in early October 2021, we have had a lot of interest in contributions from the wider community and we envision this project will go very far! As librarians we have surpassed the usual 'just keeping up' with new technologies and knowledge into crowdsourcing a digital book that never ends and can keep getting better as it ages!

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