|American Libraries Online
Feedback wanted: Strategic planning
ALA President Courtney L. Young (right) writes: “Dear colleagues, I wanted to share some highlights related to our strategic planning activities at Annual Conference. The Executive Board held two working sessions related to strategic planning. At one, we focused on our member engagement plan: how we will reach out to members and others to involve them as we update our strategic plan. The board also spent time at its second meeting talking about evaluation and assessment.”...
AL: The Scoop, July 29
President’s Message: Advancing our mission
ALA President Courtney L. Young writes: “As I begin my ALA presidency, I’m aware of the need for both consistency and change. Like ALA presidents before me, I bring to the table my commitment to the profession as well as a good understanding of the Association’s structure, finances, members, and aspirations. But my unique experiences will also help shape my approach to key ALA initiatives. Over the next year, several significant developments are in store for our professional association.”...
American Libraries column, July/Aug.
Editor’s Letter: How we do Annual Conference
Laurie D. Borman writes: “The ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition can be quite a production, especially in Las Vegas. For the American Libraries team, the 2014 conference involved four editors reporting, blogging, tweeting, and posting on Facebook, with five freelance librarian writers reporting. Two editors hung back in the Chicago office to accept our on-the-spot work, editing for style, resizing photos, writing headlines, and generally cleaning up our late-night posting mistakes.”...
American Libraries column, July/Aug.
Librarian’s Library: Building the collection
Karen Muller writes: “Building the collection is a core activity in any library. A school library collection is built to support the curriculum and provide for voluntary reading; an academic library collection is developed for current and future student and faculty research, in lines of inquiry that might be hard to imagine today; and a public library collection provides for all of these things, but above all for active, community use. Selecting the right titles for the right audience is an art, but over the years, a certain amount of science has been added through collection evaluation tools.”...
American Libraries column, June
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ALA urges passage of the USA Freedom Act
Reacting to the July 29 introduction of the USA Freedom Act of 2014, Emily Sheketoff, director of the ALA Washington Office, said the bill “deserves to be passed quickly by Congress and signed by the President without delay; 13 years to begin to restore Americans’ privacy is long enough.” She added, the bill, “if passed, would end the dragnet collection of US citizens’ telephone records under the Patriot Act.”...
Office of Government Relations, July 29
Broadband speed test deadline extended
ALA and the Information Policy and Access Center at the University of Maryland, College Park are extending the deadline for public libraries to gauge the quality of public access to the internet until August 8. The speed test study is funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The new study will complement findings from the 2013–2014 Digital Inclusion Survey released in mid-July. Libraries can log on to capture the data....
District Dispatch, July 29
Volunteer to serve on a committee
ALA President-Elect Sari Feldman encourages members to volunteer to serve on ALA and Council committees for the 2015–2016 term (terms start on July 1, 2015). Committee appointments will be finalized at the 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting, with notifications sent out in early spring 2015. The online volunteer form will open on August 4 and close on November 7....
Office of ALA Governance, July 28
ALA Graphics Fall 2014 catalog
Discover more than a dozen new items in the new Fall 2014 ALA Graphics catalog (PDF file), including posters and bookmarks
to help energize your space and keep readers of all ages engaged. On the cover is a new Taylor Swift Celebrity READ poster featuring The Giver by Lois Lowry. Other new posters include Big Nate, Amulet, Read Something Spooky, Read Like a Ninja, and Buggy Bug....
ALA Graphics, July 28
Instructional design essentials
ALA Editions will host a new four-week facilitated eCourse on “Instructional Design Essentials” starting on September 15. Nicole Pagowsky and Erica DeFrain will serve as instructors. Whether you present face-to-face workshops or develop online tutorials, this course will help you hone your teaching skills and prepare you for your instructional needs. Registration can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, July 24
Other ALA Editions eCourses
ALA Editions is making available new iterations of its popular facilitated eCourses on “Demystifying Copyright” and “Storytime Shenanigans” beginning September 8, and “Collaborating with Teens” beginning September 15. Registrations can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, July 25
Using massive digital libraries
Some have viewed the ascendance of the digital library as some kind of existential apocalypse, nothing less than the beginning of the end for the traditional library. But Andrew Weiss, in his thought-provoking and unabashedly optimistic new book Using Massive Digital Libraries: A LITA Guide, explores how massive digital libraries are already adapting to society’s needs and looks ahead to the massive digital libraries of tomorrow....
ALA TechSource, July 29
US historical novels for grades 7–12
Historical fiction helps young adults imagine the past through the lives and relationships of its protagonists, putting them at the center of fascinating times and places—and the new Common Core Standards allow for use of novels alongside textbooks for teaching history. Perfect for classroom use and YA readers’ advisory, Experiencing America’s Story through Fiction: Historical Novels for Grades 7–12 by Hilary Susan Crew, highlights more than 150 titles published since 2000....
ALA Editions, July 29
Featured review: Crime Fiction
Penny, Louise. The Long Way Home. Aug. 2014. 356p. Minotaur, hardcover (978-1-250-02206-6).
Until now, Penny’s challenge in her bestselling Armand Gamache series was to imagine new ways to take the chief inspector of the Sûreté du Québec from his Montreal home to the vividly evoked village of Three Pines, the author’s setting of choice. Now, with Gamache retired to Three Pines, there is a new challenge: coming up with reasons to get her hero out of town. No challenge is too great for Penny, as skillful a plotter as she is a marvelous creator of landscape and character. Still grieving over the carnage that wreaked havoc with those he loves and with Three Pines itself (How the Light Gets In, 2013), Gamache reluctantly agrees to come to the aid of his friend, artist Clara Morrow, who is worried about her husband, fellow artist Peter, who has failed to return to Three Pines after their agreed-upon one-year separation....
In praise of browsing
Joyce Saricks writes: “I’ve long been an advocate of browsing in the library. Well before I became a librarian, I learned from experience that even if I wasn’t sure what I wanted to read, I’d come upon something that captured my interest if I just spent some time in the stacks. Many readers are just like me; they don’t come to the library looking for a specific title. Or, if they do, they are often seduced into taking more when they come across something that strikes their fancy, either in the stacks or on a display. Although some library users have developed strategies that allow them to browse successfully, many become overwhelmed when there are too many titles. Surely, then, we have an obligation to set up the library so that it invites browsing.”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
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Alex Haley Museum will be a Literary Landmark
United for Libraries, in partnership with the Tennessee Historical Commission and the staff and board of the Alex Haley Museum and Interpretive Center in Henning, Tennessee, will designate the museum a Literary Landmark on August 9. The dedication ceremony honoring Haley (1921–1992) will include the unveiling of the official Literary Landmark bronze plaque; proclamations by city, county, and state officials; the US Coast Guard and Color Guard Detail; and representatives from the Tennessee Historical Commission....
United for Libraries, July 29
Tour the Riviera with ASCLA
The itinerary is set for ASCLA’s biannual fundraising trip (PDF file), which will head to the French and Italian Rivieras this fall—the fourth tour abroad hosted by the division. This trip abroad will take place October 7–15, and all interested travelers are welcome—you do not need to be a member in order to participate. Deposits in the amount of $500 are due by August 1, with the balance due by August 25....
ASCLA, July 29
ASCLA seeks webinar and online course proposals
ASCLA invites subject matter experts and experienced librarians with knowledge to share to submit proposals for ASCLA webinars to be presented in October 2014 through August 2015 as a part of ASCLA’s outstanding online learning offerings. Proposals may be submitted using the webinar proposal form or online course form. The submissions deadline is September 1....
ASCLA, July 29
RUSA calls for webinar and course proposals
Ebooks, library programming and outreach, marketing, and leading a book group are just some of the topics sought by RUSA for 2015 online continuing education webinars and online courses. Proposals may be submitted using the webinar proposal form or online course form and must be submitted by September 1 for presentations taking place from October 2014 through August 2015....
RUSA, July 25
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2014 Teen Read Week grant recipients
YALSA has announced the recipients of its 2014 Teen Read Week Activity Grant. The grant was funded by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation and awarded to 10 libraries to help fund their Teen Read Week activities. Each grant is worth $1,000. This year, Teen Read Week will take place October 12–18 with the theme of “Turn Dreams into Reality @ your library.”...
YALSA, July 29
Scholarships available for intellectual freedom course
The Freedom to Read Foundation will provide two scholarships to interested LIS students for “Intellectual Freedom and Censorship,” a two-credit online course taking place August 26–October 10. The course is offered by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Graduate School of Library and Information Science in conjunction with FTRF’s Judith F. Krug Fund Intellectual Freedom Education Project. Apply by August 4....
Freedom to Read Foundation, July 29
Bogle-Pratt Travel Fund winner
Sai Deng (right), metadata librarian at the University of Central Florida, is the 2014 recipient of the ALA International Relations Committee’s Bogle-Pratt International Library Travel Fund grant. The Bogle Memorial Fund and the Pratt Institute School of Information and Library Science will provide a $1,000 cash award for Deng to attend her first international conference in London, England....
International Relations Office, July 29
2014 Joey Rodger Award winners
The Urban Libraries Council has presented three public library executives with the 2014 Joey Rodger Leadership Award: Paula Brehm Heeger, service operations manager of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County; Edward Melton, chief of branches for San Francisco Public Library; and Lisa Wells, assistant director for library services, Pioneer Library System, Norman, Oklahoma. The $5,000 award allows the winners an opportunity to strengthen their executive skills through a structured professional development program....
Urban Libraries Council, July 24
Librarian of the Year at the RWA conference
Sean Gilmartin (left) writes: “Librarian of the year, man of RWA, aspiring cover model—these were just some of the names I was called while attending this year’s Romance Writers of America conference in San Antonio. It didn’t matter that RWA has a special award for librarians; no, I was certain that I would feel isolated in the midst of 2,000 romance authors. I could not have been more wrong.”...
USA Today, July 30
Reference librarian wins writing contest
Leslie Anderson (right), reference librarian in the Alexandria (Va.) Library Special Collections department, won the 2014 National Genealogical Society Family History Writing Contest with her entry, “Tabitha’s Story: Survival, Struggle, and Success.” The article follows four generations of her mother’s family from Mecklenburg County to Norfolk, Virginia, and will be published in the December issue of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly....
Alexandria (Va.) News, July 23
2014 PEN Literary Awards
Poet Frank Bidart, critic James Wolcott, and novelist Ron Childress are among the winners of the 2014 PEN Literary Awards, announced July 28 by the PEN American Center. Wolcott won the PEN Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the art of the essay with his career-spanning collection, Critical Mass. Bidart received the PEN Voelcker Award for Poetry, given for a distinguished body of work. Childress won the $25,000 PEN Bellwether Prize for socially engaged fiction for And West Is West (Algonquin, forthcoming)....
New York Times: ArtsBeat, July 30; PEN American Center, July 28
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Libraries in the News
Racine’s weeded school library books will be held for review
Racine, Wisconsin, Unified School District administrators will hold books removed from the libraries of Case High School and Mitchell Middle School until those schools’ new librarians can go through them and determine which should be removed or saved. The district announced the decision July 24, after librarians, staff, and parents decried the massive weeding of books from these schools, where staffing changes had briefly left the libraries without a librarian to consult during the process....
Racine (Wis.) Journal Times, July 24
Cape Henlopen eradicates entire summer reading list
The board of the Cape Henlopen School District in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, on July 24 voted 6–1 to put The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth back on a suggested summer reading list. After about an hour of comments from the public, it decided that it did not have a proper way to evaluate the novels on the reading list for incoming freshman and could not make a decision until that protocol was established. Then the board voted to eliminate the entire list....
WBOC-TV, Salisbury, Md.,
Eight Queens library trustees removed
Eight members of the Queens (N.Y.) Library board of trustees were dismissed July 23 by Mayor Bill de Blasio and Borough President Melinda Katz. The board members were removed after they voted in April against firing Library Director Thomas W. Galante, who has been under investigation for using money earmarked for library improvements for renovations to his personal office and for steering contracts for the work to a friend....
New York Times, July 24
Library honored for tornado help
Seven months after the November 17 tornado and 10,000 photos later, the Morton (Ill.) Public Library was given a plaque for its post-disaster help. Illinois State Rep. Keith Sommer (R-Morton) presented the honor to Library Director Janice Sherman and her staff on June 26 for collecting, sorting, and reuniting photos and other items with their owners. All photos were transferred on April 18 to the Washington (Ill.) District Library....
Morton (Ill.) Times-News, July 2
Two northern Michigan libraries get $400,000 from man’s will
Charles Heffer, who died in May 2013 in Williamsburg, Michigan, at the age of 89, bequeathed more than $400,000 to each of two area libraries: Elk Rapids District Library and Kalkaska County Library. Elk Rapids set up a public survey to determine what to do with the windfall, while Kalkaska has designated the money for a new building....
WWTV, Cadillac, Mich., July 17
Losing librarians in Chicago public schools
Becky Vevea writes: “Having a school library with a full-time librarian is becoming something of a luxury in Chicago’s 600+ public schools. Two years ago, Chicago Public Schools budgeted for 454 librarians. Last year: 313 librarians. This year? 254. Those are the numbers Megan Cusick, a librarian at Nancy B. Jefferson Alternative School, laid out at a recent meeting held by the parent group Raise Your Hand.”...
WBEZ-FM, Chicago, July 23
Miami mayor lets tax ceiling stand
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez won’t veto a higher property tax rate ceiling for libraries set by county commissioners. The mayor decided to let the commission’s 8–5 vote from July 15 stand, even though that means the county’s overall tax rate could go against Gimenez’s wishes. With the exception of libraries, commissioners signed off on Gimenez’s tax-rate plan....
Miami Herald, July 25
Easton library’s mold problem is frustrating
A months-long mold problem has been plaguing the children’s department at the Mary Meuser Memorial Library in Easton, Pennsylvania. It has been closed since the end of May because of the appearance of several types of mold on the walls caused by flooding from a burst pipe in January. Almost 23,000 books sit abandoned on shelves in the children’s section. No one is allowed into the room because of potential health hazards posed by the mold....
Allentown (Pa.) Morning Call, July 23
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Update on cellphone unlocking
Carrie Russell writes: “The Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act (S. 517) (PDF file) allows cellphone users—once their contract term with a service provider expires—the right to circumvent technology in order to use their existing phones with a new service provider. This legislation was only necessary because the Librarian of Congress, under the advisement of the US Copyright Office, did not renew the exemption that allowed such circumvention in 2010. Now you might be saying, ‘Why the hell are we even talking about this?’”...
District Dispatch, July 25
The FCC’s E-rate Order
Marijke Visser writes: “After checking the FCC website several times each day between July 11 when the Commission adopted an Order in the E-rate Modernization proceeding and when it was released to the public on July 23, things have been remarkably quiet in E-rate land. We are pleased to see that many of ALA’s recommendations have indeed been adopted—testament to the hard work we asked of our members.”...
District Dispatch, July 30
Research on school libraries and student success
Sarah Darer Littman writes: “Last April, after I’d criticized my congressman (Jim Himes, D-District 4, Connecticut) in a column, he asked if we could meet for a ‘deep dive’ on education issues so he could understand why they have become so polarizing. During our meeting, he asked me if there is research to justify the salary of a media specialist. My answer was a resounding ‘Yes!’”...
School Library Journal, July 23
Academic librarians and tenure
Barbara Fister writes: “Meredith Farkas wrote a terrific post on her move to a non-tenure-track position and why she thinks tenure for librarians is counterproductive. The stimulating Twitter conversations that followed (some of them Storified by Meredith) made me want to unpack what I think about this issue.”...
Inside Higher Ed: Library Babel Fish, July 29; Information Wants To Be Free, July 23
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MultCloud for all your accounts
Richard Byrne writes: “If you’re like me, you probably have accounts on more than one cloud storage service. I have accounts on Box, Google Drive, Dropbox, and SugarSync that I use regularly. MultCloud is a service that allows me to tie them all together in one place. MultCloud does more than just provide a single login for all of the cloud services that I use. It also allows me to move files between services with a simple drag-and-drop.”...
Free Technology for Teachers, July 27
Some 3D printers are too good to be true
Natasha Lomas writes: “An affordable yet high-quality consumer 3D printer, the $99 Mota, has turned out too good to be true, surprising no one. The 3D printer market is generally sitting in a quasi-limbo state that’s progressed beyond proving itself to early adopters willing to shell out serious dollars to live the dream, yet still has a very long way to go—specifically much squeezing of price tags and smoothing of processes—before it can arrive at the joyous nirvana of mass adoption.”...
TechCrunch, July 29
How to manage your video files
Jill Duffy writes: “Video files pose unique organizational challenges. For starters, they’re much larger most other file types, so where you store them and how frequently you archive them matters. Second, you probably remember what’s in your video files in a very different way than you remember or think about other kinds of files, such as a PowerPoint presentation. I spoke with a few video professionals to get a sense of how they organize their clips, from naming the files and adding tags to archiving the files themselves.”...
PC Magazine, July 28
Your body is turning into a joystick
Dan Tynan writes: “In a few years, people will look back at keyboards and mice the way we look now at rotary phones and fax machines. Soon enough, you’ll be able to control devices using different body parts, if that would make for a better experience. Some of this technology is already commercially available; the rest may be coming to a body near you over the next couple of years. Here’s a quick head-to-toe tour.” Watch the demo video (1:24) from Thalmic Labs....
Yahoo! Tech, July 30; YouTube, Feb. 25, 2013
Google Maps in your shoes
Amanda Kooser writes: “When you’re out running, walking, or biking, it’s inconvenient and potentially hazardous to keep your eyes glued to the map on your phone. Imagine if your shoes told you which way to go without you ever having to take your eyes off the road or sidewalk. That’s the idea behind the Lechal smart shoes and insoles from Ducere Technologies. The shoes sync over Bluetooth to an app that pulls your path from Google Maps. The shoes buzz to tell you which direction to turn.”...
CNET News, July 29
21 Windows admin tools explained
Chris Hoffman writes: “Windows is packed full of system tools, and many of them are in the Administrative Tools folder. The tools here are more powerful and complex, so they’re hidden where most Windows users won’t stumble across them. Some of these tools are only available on Professional or Enterprise versions of Windows, not the ‘core’ or Home versions of Windows 8.1, 8, and 7. The list of tools here is from a Windows 8.1 Professional system.”...
How-To Geek, Apr. 28, July 29
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Macmillan makes its ebook frontlist available to libraries
Macmillan Publishers will be adding its full collection of frontlist ebooks to its public library e-lending pilot. It is the first time the company has made its catalog of ebooks published in the last 12 months available for lending in libraries. The pilot program has been in place since March 2013. ALA President Courtney Young issued a statement on the expansion....
Digital Book World, July 29; ALA Washington Office, July 29
Amazon says cheaper ebooks are better
Amazon is trying to cast itself as a champion of lower ebook prices as its messy dispute with publisher Hachette drags on. In a post on its website, Amazon said that most ebooks should cost $9.99 or less, not the “unjustifiably high” prices of $14.99 or $19.99 that many books sell for now. Lower prices, Amazon said, would benefit readers, publishers, and Amazon alike, because people would buy a lot more books....
TechHive: Weird Wide Web, May 28, July 30; Amazon.com, July 29
Open access articles have more views
An independent statistical analysis (PDF file) of the articles published in Nature Communications, carried out by the Research Information Network (RIN) has found that open access articles are viewed three times more often than articles that are only available to subscribers. RIN also found that OA articles are cited more than subscription articles....
Nature Publishing Group, July 30
James LaRue writes: “Former Rocky Mountain News book critic Patti Thorn and literary agent Patricia Moosbrugger recently formed BlueInk Review. With a stable of other accomplished, credible critics and reviewers, they sift through the torrent of self-published works to help libraries find the best selections. Let me be blunt: I think every public library in America should track their recommendations and buy them.”...
AL: E-Content, July 30
Create an ebook with Evernote
The popular note-taking app Evernote has a new feature that lets users produce an ebook or PDF directly from the app. Users can publish a group of notes from Evernote or their entire notebook by importing the pages into the FastPencil self-publishing platform from within the Evernote app. There is an option to edit, collate, format and create a table of contents....
GalleyCat, July 30; Evernote blog, July 29
Accidentally going digital
Peter Damien writes: “I don’t like ebooks. I poke at them a lot, and I try out books on Kindles and iPads and iPhones. Not only that, but when I do read a book digitally, I find that I read a lot slower. Then I looked up the other day and realized that I hadn’t read a physical book in two months. How did that happen? What caused the shift? What caused me to so abruptly become comfortable with ebooks that I didn’t even notice the shift happening?”...
Book Riot, July 28
TRAC certification of the CLOCKSS archive
The Center for Research Libraries has released the findings of its preservation audit (PDF file) and has certified CLOCKSS as a trustworthy digital repository. The certification applies to the repository’s ability to preserve and manage digital content deposited with CLOCKSS by participating e-journal publishers as of May 2014....
Center for Research Libraries, July 25
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2014 Annual Conference and Exhibition, Las Vegas, June 26–July 1. Look back at the 2014 ALA Annual Conference, enjoyed by 18,626 attendees and exhibitors. Enjoy American Libraries coverage. Get the Cognotes highlights. Looking for handouts? See you in 2015! Bundle registration opens on September 9.
Solitude (2001, Canada). MaryAnn Wourms is a librarian.
Some Kind of Wonderful (1987). High school students Keith Nelson (Eric Stoltz) and Amanda Jones (Lea Thompson) interact in the school library.
Something Borrowed (2011). Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Dex (Colin Egglesfield) goof around while studying torts in the New York University Law School Library and get shushed by another student (Noel Davis Poyner).
Something Wicked This Way Comes (1983). Jason Robards Jr. plays Charles Halloway, a librarian at Green Town (Ill.) Public Library, who resists the temptations of Pandemonium Carnival owner Mr. Dark (Jonathan Pryce) in the library as he tears pages from a book.
This AL Direct feature describes hundreds of films (and some TV shows) in which libraries and librarians are featured, from 1912 to the present. The full list is a Web Extra associated with The Whole Library Handbook 5, edited by George M. Eberhart and published by ALA Editions. You can browse the films on our Libraries on Film Pinterest board.
Youth Services Director. Williamsburg (Va.) Regional Library seeks an energetic, innovative, user-focused librarian to lead its Youth Services Division. Must be knowledgeable about current issues affecting youth and families, including technology trends; conversant with current best practices for youth services; and able to successfully facilitate the blending of traditional and non-traditional services. Works collaboratively to help the library continue its award-winning tradition of excellence in collection, programs, and services as it strives to fulfill the library’s vision of informing, enriching, and strengthening its community....
Digital Library of the Week
World War I Military Portraits, maintained by the Milwaukee (Wis.) Public Library, is comprised of more than 32,000 photographs, typewritten volumes, and service records. The items were compiled from collections of the American War Mothers Milwaukee County Chapter and the Milwaukee County Council of Defense. These items contain a wealth of genealogical information and provide a candid look into soldiers’ ideas and perceptions of the First World War. Included in the collection are portraits of service men and women in military uniform and less formal snapshots of individuals at their homes or serving in the theater of war.
Do you know of a digital library collection that we can mention in this AL Direct feature? Tell us about it. Browse previous Digital Libraries of the Week at the I Love Libraries site, Check out our Featured Digital Libraries Pinterest board.
Noted and Quoted
“. . . the work done in the world by the library cannot be measured by the number of people visibly seated in it. I will go so far as to say that if a public library did not attract even one reader from the outside, its existence would be justified by the presence of its librarian and his official staff. And it never comes quite to that. There are always two or three readers to keep the place in countenance.”
—British playwright George Bernard Shaw, “Neglected Aspects of Public Libraries,” The New Republic 29 (Dec. 21, 1921): 96–97.
Association of Research Libraries and the University of Washington Libraries, Library Assessment Conference, Seattle. “Building Effective, Sustainable, Practical Assessment.”
Document Academy, Annual Meeting, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio. “Documents Without Borders.”
Florida State University Libraries and the Panhandle Library Access Network, The Innovation Conference, Panama City, Florida.
IFLA World Library and Information Congress, Lyon, France.
4th International Conference on Integrated Information, Madrid, Spain.
International Conference on Digital Intelligence, Nantes, France.
Digital Scholarship Cooperative, Digital Frontiers 2014 conference, Texas Woman’s University, Denton.
Southeast Florida Library Information Network, Virtual Conferences. “User Experience: Seeing Your Library through the User’s Eyes, Mobile Devices: Gateway to Your Library; eBooks: Benefits, Challenges and the Future; Library Resource Sharing: Emerging Trends and Technologies.”
Great Lakes E-Summit, Maumee Bay Lodge and Conference Center, Oregon, Ohio. “Delivering Information vs. Collection Building.”
National Federation of Advanced Information Services, Humanities Roundtable, Graduate Center of the City University of New York, New York City. “Digital Humanities and Digital Publishing: Insights and Opportunities.”
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12 resources for word nerds
Bonnie Swoger writes: “My recent post about specialized dictionaries got me thinking about the fun books and sites I have encountered that feature words and language. The most recent bit of geeky word stuff I’ve seen is Weird Al Yankovic’s gift to word nerds everywhere, a parody of Robin Thicke’s ‘Blurred Lines’ called ‘Word Crimes’ (3:45). Then check out the following podcasts, websites, and books.”...
Scientific American: Information Culture, July 22, 24; YouTube, July 15
YA books to satisfy your inner romantic
Kelly Dickinson writes: “There is something about love stories that makes them particularly well-suited for vacation reading. It might be the inherent optimism in love stories—even those lacking a tidy, happy ending. They revolve around the belief that human connection is meaningful, fragile, and precious. What could be more encouraging? Happily, the last few months have produced several rich and varied titles perfect for readers seeking a good love story to dive into this summer.”...
YALSA The Hub, July 25
Journaling in YA literature
Anna Dalin writes: “I’ve kept a journal on and off for years. The first key to journaling is to set aside a certain time each day to write and stick to it. Now that it’s summer, if you have a couple months off and a little extra time, this may be the perfect time for you to start a journal. With inspiration in mind, I wanted to recommend a few current and classic YA novels which are either written as journals or include journal entries.”...
YALSA The Hub, July 30
Judging books by their covers
Emily Gatlin writes: “Never judge a book by its cover. We all know this applies to judging people and not actual books, right? A few months ago, I realized how much I hate jacket copy. Big plot points that don’t happen until 100+ pages in are spoilered in those magic three-to-four paragraphs. I decided to do a little experiment. For 90 days, I made my reading choices based solely on the book’s actual cover and title instead of the author’s name, what the jacket said the book was about, or the author’s photo.”...
Book Riot, July 29
Winners and losers of Comic-Con 2014
Every year, people spend thousands of dollars to journey to the motherlode of geeky pop culture: San Diego Comic-Con. And every year, entertainment companies do their utmost to generate excitement about their upcoming spectacles. But who gained buzz, and who lost it? Here is io9’s list of the biggest winners and losers of Comic-Con 2014. (And a round-up of comics news from Comic-Con.)...
io9, July 28–29
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Unusual collections (PDF file)
Pam Tomka writes: “Need a Cookie Monster cake pan to bake a birthday cake for someone who just can’t live without it? You can probably find one to check out at Rock Island or Heyworth Public Libraries in Illinois. How about a fishing pole for your favorite grandkid or a summer trip to the lake? Try Metropolis or Edwardsville public libraries. Maybe you sprained your ankle and need a walker for a few days. Check one out at Marrowbone Public Library in Bethany.”...
ILA Reporter, Aug.
Batman Day at the library
Sarah Bean Thompson writes: “Part of being a librarian means the ability to be flexible and spontaneous. When I got to work on July 23 (which was Batman Day), I was told that we had been getting calls about a Batman Day at the Library celebration we were hosting on July 26. All I know is that we were given three days to plan an unexpected program. Luckily, I work with a wonderfully nerdy team of people, so we threw together an amazing program.”...
GreenBeanTeenQueen, July 28
Soldering in the library
Claire Moore writes: “It has almost been one year since my library opened our makerspace for kids, cleverly branded the T|E|A Room for technology, engineering, and the arts, by Kiera Parrott. One program that caused families to make the library a destination point one cloudless spring day was the Intro to Soldering class. Neither my colleague nor I had ever soldered anything before, and to be quite honest we both couldn’t even tell if the L was silent. The project we decided to use, mostly for its simplicity, was the Skill Badge from the Maker Shed.”...
ALSC Blog, July 26
University press titles and usage: A case study
Rick Anderson writes: “This is a report on a case study that looks at university press books from the perspective of one library that buys them. While ‘importance’ is a broad and vague term and I have no illusions about the ability of library data (let alone a single library’s data) to establish it in any fundamental way, there are facets of importance that can be established by library data, so I offer the following data and analysis for what they’re worth.”...
The Scholarly Kitchen, July 28
Let’s talk about technical services
Erin Leach writes: “I’m a cataloger, but not that kind of cataloger. I did an experiment and asked my Twitter pals to tell me the stereotypes about people who work in technical services. I was told that people who work in technical services are socially inept, socially awkward, change averse, unfriendly, rigid, detail-oriented to a fault, bad communicators, uncompromising, rule-bound, and territorial. This stereotype isn’t helped by relegating technical services departments to basements or off-site buildings.”...
Letters to a Young Librarian, July 24
A bibliographic prank from 1962
David A. Jordan writes: “In January of his senior year at Stanford University, Mike Munger, Class of ’62, and two coconspiratorial students from his fraternity, Dave Commons and Pete Richardson, hacked (in a pretechnological sense) Green Library’s card catalog and thus launched a prank on the libraries that went partially unnoticed for decades and wasn’t entirely understood until Munger recently sent a full explanation to University Librarian Mike Keller.”...
ReMix 78 (July)
How to deal with the media
Kimberly Matthews writes:
“Dealing with the press (print or television or bloggers) is a situation that may cause even the most capable librarian or director’s blood to run cold. ‘The newspaper is on the phone for you’ or ‘The Channel 6 news van just pulled up outside’ is enough to make any of us want to run for the bathroom and hide. Especially if you do not know why they are there. However, by keeping a few key things in mind (and with some experience) everyone can use their relationships with the press to their greatest advantage.”...
21st Century Library Blog, July 23
Facebook is forcing Messenger on users
Karissa Bell writes: “If Foursquare’s attempt to force users into Swarm taught us anything, it’s that people really don’t like being forced into using apps. Facebook, never one to heed the lessons of history, will soon be forcing its iOS and Android users over to Facebook Messenger, and many users aren’t happy about it. Over the next few days, users who have yet to download Messenger will see new reminders prompting them to get it.” Sam Fiorella notes that the app’s terms of service are insidious....
Mashable, July 29; The Huffington Post Blog, Dec.1, 2013
The best free alternatives to Microsoft Word
David Nield writes: “Microsoft’s titan of a word processor is used almost everywhere by almost everyone, but what if you don’t want to spend seven bucks a month? Here are our favorite alternatives to Word. They’re all free, they’re all capable of working with the ubiquitous .docx format, and they all offer some very useful features on top as well.”...
Gizmodo, July 24
How to tweak your Gmail address
David Nield writes: “One trick you might not have picked up about Gmail is that you can add in periods anywhere in the front part of your address and it makes no difference: firstname.lastname@example.org works just the same as email@example.com. You can also add a plus sign and any word before the @ sign (firstname.lastname@example.org) and messages will still reach you. If these tweaks make no difference, then why use them? One major reason: filters.”...
Gizmodo, July 23
Gilbert H. Doane: Librarian and Monuments Man
Larry Nix writes: “The story of the World War II Monuments Men, a special Army unit created to help recover art treasures looted by the Nazis, has become well known due to the recent George Clooney film. One of the monuments men was Gilbert H. Doane (1897–1980, right), librarian of the University of Wisconsin–Madison from 1937 to 1956. Doane took a leave of absence in 1943–1945 to serve in what was officially known as the Army’s Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (MFAA) program.”...
Library History Buff Blog, July 28; Bibliophemera, Apr. 26, 2010
The low-tech appeal of Little Free Libraries
Margret Aldrich writes: “When a 36-year-old bibliophile in Daegu, South Korea, sat down at his computer and googled the word ‘library,’ he didn’t expect to find anything particularly noteworthy. But as DooSun You scrolled through the results, an appealingly anti-tech concept popped up. The internet led him to Little Free Libraries—hand-built boxes where neighbors can trade novels, memoirs, comics, and cookbooks, and connect with each other in the process.”...
The Atlantic, July 27
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