|American Libraries Online
September/October issue now online
The 2014 Library Design Showcase, our annual celebration of the year’s most exciting new library designs and renovations, comes alive in the new issue of American Libraries. The 18 featured libraries are shining examples of innovative architecture, and each one addresses patrons’ needs in unique and interesting ways. Also, take a look at this year’s ALA award winners....
American Libraries, Sept. 2
Next American Libraries Live
Self-service library technology is everywhere nowadays, from machines that can scan and sort books automatically to self-checkout stations and book vending machines, allowing patrons to access library materials and services without a personal interaction. “Library Self-Service Software and Devices,” the next broadcast of American Libraries Live, at 2 p.m. Eastern time on September 18, will discuss how this technology can best serve the library’s users as well as its staff....
American Libraries, Sept. 2
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Chris Harris appointed OITP Fellow
Marijke Visser writes: “We welcome Chris Harris (right) to his latest role for the Office for Information Technology Policy. Chris will serve as Fellow for the emerging OITP program on Children and Youth Initiatives. In his other life, Chris is the director of the School Library System for the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, an educational services agency supporting the libraries of 22 small, rural districts in western New York.”...
District Dispatch, Sept. 2
Help us improve ALA Connect
Jenny Levine writes: “Five years, one redesign, and dozens of new features after its launch in 2009, we’re doing our largest feedback survey to date to learn how ALA Connect is working for you and how we can make it even better. Both ALA members and nonmembers can fill out the survey, which will be open through October 12. Everyone who completes it will be entered into a drawing for an iPad Mini.”...
ALA Connect, Sept. 3
Libraries as social learning centers
ALA Editions is offering a new iteration of its popular eCourse, “Rethinking Library Instruction: Libraries as Social Learning Centers.” Paul Signorelli will serve as the instructor for this four-week facilitated eCourse starting on October 6. Registration can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, Sept. 2
Become a copyright specialist
ALA Editions will host a new facilitated eCourse, “Becoming the Copyright Specialist in Your Library.” Lesley Ellen Harris will serve as the instructor for a four-week facilitated eCourse starting on October 13. The role of the librarian as all-purpose copyright specialist is becoming increasingly important, and in this course, you will learn what makes a great one. Registration can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, Sept. 2
Ebooks: What you need to know
ALA Editions is offering a new iteration of its popular eCourse, “Ebooks: What Librarians Need to Know Now and for the Future.” Mirela Roncevic will serve as the instructor for this four-week facilitated eCourse starting on October 6. Registration can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, Sept. 2
Cataloging with RDA
ALA Editions is offering a new iteration of its popular eCourse, “Cataloging with RDA.” Magda El-Sherbini will serve as the instructor for a four-week facilitated eCourse starting on October 13. Registration can be purchased at the ALA Store....
ALA Editions, Sept. 2
Books for Banned Books Week
The annual Banned Books Week, held September 21−27 this year, celebrates the freedom to read. Two new titles published by ALA Editions spotlight both the challenges and triumphs of safeguarding intellectual freedom for young people: Intellectual Freedom for Teens: A Practical Guide for Young Adult and School Librarians and Books under Fire: A Hit List of Banned and Challenged Children’s Books....
Office for Intellectual Freedom, Sept. 2
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Featured review: Sports and recreation
Manzione, Gianmarc. Pin Action: Small-Time Gangsters, High-Stakes Gambling, and the Teenage Hustler Who Became a Bowling Champion. Nov. 2014. 256p. Pegasus, hardcover (978-1-60598-645-6).
Mention bowling today and three things come to mind: family fun, coworker leagues, and a niche professional sport. So, a book about bowling? Zzzzzz, right? Nope. Manzione, editor of Bowler’s Journal, takes readers back in time to the rough-and-tumble, action-heavy bowling environment of New York City from the 1950s into the 1970s. It’s known as action bowling, and it’s a bowling version of the pool world portrayed in the movie The Hustler. The best print comparison is David McCumber’s 1997 Playing off the Rail, a participatory exploration of the pool hustle. Manzione covers a lot of ground and profiles a number of colorful characters, but Ernie Schlegel, a blue-collar action bowler, dominates the book....
Top 10 sports books
Bill Ott writes: “Yes, the major sports are represented in this year’s top 10 but so, too, are poker, table tennis, and fishing. Titles selected were reviewed from September 1, 2013, through August 2014.”...
Sports without balls
Keir Graff writes: “Humankind’s fascination with ball games dates back at least two millennia to the Olmecs, who made, and played with, rubber balls. (The fact that the Aztecs later sometimes paid for losses with their lives should provide some useful perspective to modern-day pros complaining about harsh treatment from the media.) With the media coverage given to football, baseball, basketball, golf, tennis, and sometimes even soccer, some days it’s easy to believe we’ve never progressed beyond that early obsession. But, as the following titles prove, there are a lot of games you can play without following the bouncing ball. If these selections lean toward outsider stories—well, these are outsider sports.”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
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AASL white paper outlines research agenda
The white paper resulting from the “Causality: School Libraries and Student Success (CLASS)” forum, convened by AASL and funded through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is now available for view and comment (by October 15) on the AASL website (PDF file). The paper proposes a progression of research methods and projects that will support efforts toward theory building, exploratory research, and demonstration research....
AASL, Sept. 2
Recruit another AASL member and win
AASL members are invited to share the wealth of AASL membership and win. With each new member recruited, the referring AASL member will earn an entry into a monthly prize drawing as well as an entry into the final grand prize drawing worth an estimated $1,500. View the complete campaign details online....
AASL, Sept. 2
Learn the AASL Planning Guide
An upcoming webinar from AASL will demonstrate how the use of A Planning Guide for Empowering Learners, AASL’s online program assessment and planning module, can drive a school librarian’s personalized learning plan. Presented by Mary Keeling, “AASL Planning Guide: A Framework for Professional Growth” will take place on September 25. For more information and to register, visit eCOLLAB....
AASL, Sept. 2
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Nominations extended for I Love My Librarian Award
The nomination period for the 2014 Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian award has been extended to better accommodate nominations for school, college, university, and community college librarians. Nominations will now run through September 24, and are being accepted online....
Campaign for America’s Libraries, Sept. 2
Dollar General will support more American Dream grants
With the assistance of a $327,512 grant awarded from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to the ALA, libraries are now eligible to apply for grants ranging from $5,000 to $15,000 to support programs aimed at enhancing adult literacy through The American Dream Starts @ your library initiative. Applications for funding are being accepted online through October 1....
Office for Literacy and Outreach Services, Sept. 2
RUSA seeks nominations for awards and grants
RUSA is seeking nominations for its annual series of awards and grants. Nominations and supporting materials for most awards must be submitted by December 14. More information about these awards, including nominating instructions, can be found on RUSA’s awards webpage....
RUSA, Sept. 2
PLA accepting nominations for awards and grants
PLA is offering nine awards/grants designed to highlight the best in public library service and to honor those bringing innovation, creativity, and dedication to public libraries. Many of the awards include an honorarium; visit the website for details on each award and nominate yourself, your colleague or your library through December 1....
PLA, Sept. 2
2014 Library of Congress Literacy Awards
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington announced at the National Book Festival on August 30 the winners of the 2014 Library of Congress Literacy Awards, a program originated and sponsored by philanthropist David M. Rubenstein. The awards help support organizations working to alleviate the problems of illiteracy both in the US and worldwide. The winners are: Room to Read, David M. Rubenstein Prize ($150,000); Start Making a Reader Today, American Prize ($50,000); and Mother Child Education Foundation, International Prize ($50,000)....
Library of Congress, Aug. 30
2014 Prize in Romance Languages
Italian novelist, playwright, short story writer, essayist, and translator Claudio Magris has been awarded the 2014 Prize in Romance Languages by the Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL). The prize of $150,000 is given annually to honor a poet, a fiction writer, or a creative nonfiction writer who writes in Catalan, French, Galician, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, or Spanish. Sexto Piso announced on September 1 it will publish a new book of Magris’s stories (right), The Count and Other Stories, a few days before the FIL opens in November....
Publishing Perspectives, Sept. 3
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Libraries in the News
Librarians are an unaffordable luxury for Chicago schools
Becky Vevea writes: “With educators facing tough financial choices, having a full-time librarian is becoming something of a luxury in Chicago’s more than 600 public schools. It’s not that there’s a shortage of librarians in Chicago, and it’s not mass layoffs. All across the district, certified librarians are being reassigned to English classrooms, world languages, or to particular grade levels in elementary schools.”...
NPR: Morning Edition, Sept. 1
DCPL adds a social worker
Among the many roles for which public libraries are appreciated, there’s one that can be problematic: de facto day shelter for homeless people. The District of Columbia’s Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library attracts many such patrons, and Jean Badalamenti (right) understands why. Badalamenti is a social worker who in May became the D.C. Public Library’s first health and human services coordinator....
Washington Post, Aug. 27
Fayetteville adds satellite library at senior center
Fayetteville (Ark.) Public Library is putting a satellite library at the city’s Senior Activity and Wellness Center. Library Director David Johnson called it a one-time opportunity for the library to expand its service. The library will supply books to the center as well as functioning computers outdated for library use, according to the agreement approved by the library board earlier in August....
Fayetteville Northwest Arkansas Times, Aug. 30
Legal bills pile up for Orland Park library
An 11-month dispute over the Orland Park (Ill.) Public Library’s internet access policy has cost the library more than $125,000 in legal fees and resulted in several calls to police to help resolve accusations between critics and library officials. Megan Fox and Kevin DuJan have aggressively campaigned to change library policies since October, when they claimed they saw men viewing pornography on library computers....
Chicago Tribune, Sept. 2
Interview with Scott Bonner, Ferguson librarian
Ingrid Abrams writes: “When I saw how the Ferguson (Mo.) Public Library became not only a safe space, but a source of real positiveness and support, it made me want to be a better librarian. Not only did Ferguson library workers step up their game, but so did teachers and volunteers of all sorts. I wanted to know how, despite so much strife and conflict, the library seamlessly became a hub of strength and solace. I contacted Scott Bonner, director of the Ferguson Public Library. He was nice enough to answer some questions.”...
The Magpie Librarian, Sept. 3
Public and school partnership increases library card sign-ups
Beginning this year, the Salt Lake City School District’s back-to-school registration materials include the option of signing up for a Salt Lake City Public Library card. As of August 29, 14,000 of the district’s roughly 25,000 students had opted into the program. The library card program stemmed from ongoing conversations between school and library officials about increasing the exposure of students to reading materials and educational resources....
Salt Lake City Deseret News, Aug. 29
Busy bees at work at Salt Lake City Public Library
The hum of worker bees drowned out the typical city traffic that can be heard from atop the Salt Lake City Public Library. Four communal hives donated by Slow Food Utah stand atop the library, right in the middle of the city. They are maintained by the city’s officially designated beekeeper, Frank Whitby, and St. Ambrose Church’s Boy Scout Troop 202. The hives produce up to 100 pounds of honey each year, but primarily serve as educational tools to inspire more people to keep bees....
Salt Lake City Deseret News, Aug. 30
Washington County Library flooded
Librarians at the St. George branch of the Washington County (Utah) Library say they lost hundreds of books when water from a flash flood entered the basement on August 26. Since 2006, when the library was built, the basement—used for technical services, children’s storytime, and meetings—has flooded three times, but this was the worst. Librarians are still sorting through the books and other items to see what is salvageable. Library Director Joel Tucker said the damage already exceeds $125,000....
KSTU-TV, Salt Lake City, Sept. 2; St. George (Utah) News, Aug. 29
Quake damage at CSU Fullerton library
Half of Pollak Library South at California State University, Fullerton will remain inaccessible to library patrons for at least three years, estimates Interim University Librarian Scott Hewitt. Floors one, four, five, and six of the southern portion of the library were devastated by the 5.1-magnitude La Habra earthquake that rattled the campus on March 28. The library sustained about $6 million in damage from the earthquake and is still in the early stages of planning for renovation....
Daily Titan (CSU Fullerton), Sept. 2
USF library’s drone plan hits turbulence
What should have been a smooth takeoff for the University of South Florida Library’s drone lending program was grounded indefinitely in late August due to Federal Aviation Administration guidelines. Library officials had expected to be eligible for a Certificate of Waiver or Authorizations (COA) to do research using their Phantom I and Phantom II drones, but on July 3 the FAA General Counsel issued a legal interpretation that education is not a government function under COA guidelines....
The Oracle (USF), Aug. 28
Library case sets state precedent for guide dog puppy raisers
A dispute between puppy raiser Deborah Rosan (right) and the Haverford Township (Pa.) Free Library reached an amicable conclusion in late August, when the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission unanimously approved a consent order affirming legal protections for guide dog puppy raisers. Guide dog puppy raisers will be admitted to the library provided the puppies are at least six months old, well-behaved, and wearing a vest or other insignia identifying a training organization....
Delaware County (Pa.) Daily Times, Sept. 1
Colorado library okays concealed firearms policy
The Clearview Library District clarified on August 29 that the concealed carrying of firearms is permitted at the Windsor-Severance (Colo.) branch. Windsor resident Erika Sattler and the Rocky Mountain Gun Owners group she works for sent a letter to the district August 22 that threatened legal action if the library didn’t review and amend its policy on firearms by August 28. Staff at the branch had asked Sattler to leave August 20 after another library patron pointed out that she had a concealed gun....
Fort Collins Coloradoan, Aug. 26, 28, Sept. 2
Library volunteers find Jack London letter
Volunteers at Pequot Library in Southport, Connecticut, were sifting through rare books in a storage closet for the library’s 125th anniversary recently, when they found a 1906 copy of Jack London’s White Fang. “When we opened the book, we found London’s letter [dated 1905] taped to the inside flyleaf,” said volunteer Lynne Laukhuf. The book had belonged to London’s publisher at Macmillan, George Brett....
New York Post, Sept. 1
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US telecoms ask FCC to block two city broadband plans
The US telecom industry called on the FCC on August 29 to block two cities’ plans to expand high-speed internet services to their residents. USTelecom, which represents Verizon, AT&T, and others, wants the FCC to block expansion of two popular municipally owned high-speed internet networks, one in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and the other in Wilson, North Carolina. Chattanooga has the largest high-speed internet service in the US, offering customers access to speeds of 1 gigabit per second—about 50 times faster than the US average. More background here....
The Guardian (UK), Aug. 29; USTelecom Blog, Aug. 29; Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times Free Press, Aug. 29
Teens and internet privacy
Trained as an ethnographer, Danah Boyd has spent the past decade traveling around the US talking to young people about how they use social technologies. “I had been overwhelmingly told, ‘Kids these days don’t care about privacy,’” she noted. “And yet when I wandered around talking to young people, I found that young people care deeply about privacy, even in an online environment.” But, she added, how they strive to achieve that privacy is sometimes puzzling to outsiders.”...
Knowledge@Wharton, Aug. 5
Librarian labor shortage
Lauren Weber writes: “America may be running out of sea captains and librarians. Those professions, along with occupational therapists, plant operators, and scores of others, are likely to report significant deficits of qualified workers over the next 15 years or so, according to a report issued September 2 by the Conference Board. The corporate-research organization examined the risk of labor shortages in 464 occupations, projecting shortfalls for a majority of them.”...
Wall Street Journal, Sept. 2
GPO’s proposed policy on regional discards
James R. Jacobs writes: “The discussion surrounding the ALA Government Documents Round Table’s response to a recent Government Printing Office proposal to allow regional depository libraries to discard some government documents has been intense and impassioned. Unfortunately, the GPO proposal (as written) allows and even encourages actions that will predictably result in outcomes that are the opposite of our shared goals.”...
Free Government Information, Aug. 27
The data-driven library of the future
Christopher Erdmann writes: “For me, the path to a relevant, 21st-century library lies beyond digitization and in creating ‘serendipitous discovery.’ If we’re able to offer a tool—a visual display, a 3D printer, a gesture-based interface, an Oculus Rift for visualization simulation, a Makey Makey for inventing new links to monitors and other devices—that tips off a researcher’s interest and causes him or her to run back to an office and say ‘Eureka!’, then we’re making a strong argument for the library as a place.”...
Inside Higher Ed: Higher Ed Beta, Sept. 2
E-rate is cool
Marijke Visser writes: “For those of you following the ALA’s E-rate year, we are working through the fifth major installment in a series of actions by the FCC, responding to the Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking issued in July as part of the E-rate Modernization Order. As we prepare ALA’s comments, I have been reflecting on the ways in which we have engaged with the Commission, the Hill, our coalitions, our members, other library organizations, the press, and others to make strategic decisions and identify ALA’s policy positions.”...
District Dispatch, Sept. 2
Librarianship: A philosophical investigation
Kevin Michael Klipfel writes: “One of the first things you learn as a professional librarian is that very few people have any idea what you do. In fact, enough people who actually want to become librarians are sufficiently in the dark about the nature of the profession that many LIS graduate programs explicitly require their prospective applicants to state in their applications what interests them about the field other than loving books.”...
Ethos, Aug. 19
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How to buy PC speakers
Jamie Lendino writes: “Buying PC speakers should be relatively painless, but to get the most bang for your buck, you should analyze your needs before pulling out your wallet. Options run the gamut from super-cheap, space-saving stereo speakers that sound just okay, to pricey, bass-infused powerhouses that deliver loud, thumping beats. Since music lovers, movie addicts, and gamers have different sound agendas, first we’ll explore the key points everyone should consider.”...
PC Magazine, Aug. 27
Keep your computer awake
Rick Broida writes: “We’ve all been there: You step away from the PC for an extended period and come back to find it locked out or in standby mode. Why does this happen? Because Windows hasn’t logged any mouse or keyboard activity, so its power-saving settings kick in. Sure, you could monkey around with Windows power settings. How about a software solution instead?”...
CNET, Sept. 3
Cloud storage showdown: Which is the best?
Mario Aguilar writes: “Over the past year, most of the major cloud storage companies have been cutting prices and upping sizes. The price of storage has gotten so cheap that most of the serious options you would consider are almost giving it away. Dropbox, MediaFire, Microsoft OneDrive, and Google Drive all offer 1TB for $10 a month or less. So what’s the best option today?”...
Gizmodo, Aug. 27
Why do Android apps want so much data access?
David Pogue writes: “Every time you install an Android app, you’re asked to OK the app’s access to certain parts of your phone. As it turns out, all apps seem to ask for a lot of permissions, and most of it sounds a lot scarier than it is. If you’re an app developer for Android, Google says you must declare what parts of your phone your app can use—and you must use Google’s wording.”...
Yahoo! Tech, Sept. 2
Digitize old slides on the cheap
Christian Cawley writes: “Converting old photo slides into digital format is potentially expensive if you rely on photographic shops to carry out the conversion. You may well be wondering if there is a better way to convert them to that they can be cleaned up, printed perhaps, or shared on social networks. We’ve come up with five methods for you to try, using devices and materials you may already have, or might be prepared to invest in.”...
MakeUseOf, Sept. 1
For library web developers: Performance and austerity
Eric Phetteplace writes: “Libraries aim to be open institutions that welcome anyone to use our services. Yet when we make websites that work only for high-powered desktop computers with broadband connections, we privilege the wealthy. Design a slow enough website and even laptops on decent wireless connections may struggle to load a site in a timely fashion. Poor web performance renders sites unusable for some and frustrating for all. I want to outline some actions you can take to immediately speed up your sites.”...
ACRL TechConnect, Sept. 3
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Two Kentucky libraries help authors to e-publish
A partnership between the Henderson County Public Library and the Daviess County Public Library in Kentucky is aiming to help new writers find a market with electronic publishing. Interested authors can access the ePublish or Bust! website and do the publishing themselves. “We don’t publish the books for them,” Henderson County Library Director Essy Day said. “We provide the resources to help them do it themselves.”...
Associated Press, Sept. 1
Making covers for public domain ebooks
Mauricio Giraldo Arteaga writes: “Here at NYPL Labs we’re working on an ebook borrowing and reading app. Book covers weren’t a big deal until the 20th century, but now they’re how people first interact with a book, so not having one really puts a book at a disadvantage. They are problematic, and not only in ebooks. We needed a design that could display very long titles (up to 80 characters) but that would also look good with short ones. Then I remembered 10 PRINT.”...
NYPL Blogs, Sept. 3
Ingram and ProQuest expand collaboration
Ingram Content Group and ProQuest have announced an expanded ebook collaboration that benefits libraries worldwide. Earlier this year, the companies teamed to make titles from Ebook Library (EBL) available through Ingram’s OASIS content platform. Ingram has now added ebrary’s vast range of titles, integrating all ProQuest ebook titles within the platform, simplifying acquisition for the companies’ shared customers....
Ingram, Sept. 3
How to read ebooks on a $20 cellphone
Nate Hoffelder writes: “When I ran across $20 cellphones on Amazon, I couldn’t resist buying one to see if I could read ebooks on it. Yes, I could—hour after hour. I’ll never confuse this econo-phone with an iPad Air or upscale Kindle Fire. But ebooks and affordable smartphones like the $20 model could help narrow both the digital and book divides in many countries.” Here’s a step-by-step method on how to do it....
The Digital Reader, Sept. 2
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2015 Midwinter Meeting and Exhibits, Chicago, January 30–February 3. Bundle registration opens at noon Central time on September 9. Midwinter-only registration and housing will open October 1.
The Sleep Room (1998, Canada). Kathryn Kirkpatrick plays a librarian.
Sleepers (1996). Two scenes take place in the library of a reform school.
Sleeping with the Enemy (1991). Julia Roberts as Laura Burney changes her name to Sara Waters and gets a job as a college library assistant in Cedar Falls, Iowa, where she hides from her abusive husband after faking her death.
Sliders (April 26, 1995, TV series), “Eggheads.” The Sliders visit an alternative world where intellect is prized, the San Francisco Public Library boasts of longer hours, and hip-hoppers rap about going to the library (“Library Rap” by MC Poindexter & The Study Crew: “I give you one warnin’ there will be no repeats, Get outta my face when I’m readin’ my Keats”).
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.
Amigos Library Services, Libraries, Authors, and Publishers Online Conference.
Georgia Council of Media Organizations/ Southeastern Library Association, Annual Conference, Augusta. “Transforming Our Libraries: Master the Possibilities in Augusta.”
Missouri Library Association, Annual Conference, Holiday Inn Executive Center, Columbia.
Association of Research Libraries, Fall Forum 2014, Dupont Circle Hotel, Washington, D.C. “Wanted Dead or Alive—The Scholarly Monograph.”
Michigan Library Association, Annual Conference, Amway Grand Plaza, Grand Rapids.
Institute of Library and Information Research / National Autonomous University of Mexico, Second Meeting on People, Web 2.0, and Libraries, Mexico City, Mexico.
Association of Vision Science Librarians, Annual Meeting, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland.
Amigos Library Services, Online conference. “MOOCs, Mobile Technologies— Their Impact on Reference Service.”
Common Ground Publishing, Twelfth International Conference on Books, Publishing, and Libraries, Simmons College, Boston. “Disruptive Technologies and the Evolution of Book Publishing and Library Development.”
Middle East Librarians Association, Annual Meeting, Gelman Library, George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
American Society for Theatre Research/ Theatre Library Association, Annual Conference, Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, Baltimore. “The Paradox of the Post-Human: Archival Subjects, Systems, and Sites.”
Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL), Exhibition Center, Guadalajara, Mexico.
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Pompeii portrayed in YA lit
Sharon Rawlins writes: “According to many sources, August 24 is generally accepted as the day Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD and killed many thousands of people living in the city of Pompeii. This tragic story has captured people’s interest and imagination for hundreds of years. I’ve visited Pompeii and it is a haunting and fascinating site—the perfect backdrop for a historical YA book.”...
YALSA The Hub, Aug. 29
Hispanic Heritage Month
Jennifer Schultz writes: “Hispanic Heritage Month is an ideal time to highlight or expand your collection of books that celebrate the diversity of Hispanic cultures. What started as a week-long celebration in 1968 is now a month-long observance (September 15–October 15) of Hispanic history, arts, and culture.” Here are four books to get you started....
ALSC Blog, Aug. 28
Blackman will not be silenced
Carolyn Sun writes: “Malorie Blackman (right), the United Kingdom’s first black children’s laureate (2013–2015), recently found herself the focus of a racial firestorm following an interview she gave to Sky News that was originally titled ‘Children’s Books Have Too Many White Faces.’ Following the article, Blackman found herself facing a ‘wave of racist attacks both on Sky’s website [in the comments section] and directed personally at [her] on Twitter,’ she shared in the Guardian.”...
School Library Journal, Aug. 29; Sky News (UK), Aug. 24; The Guardian (UK), Aug. 26
New chapter: Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014, and the occasion has brought about a controversial new book cover, a golden ticket sweepstakes, and now the unearthing of a previously unreleased chapter of the book. “The Vanilla Fudge Room” is a chapter that was edited out of the book from an early draft. The Guardian has published the chapter....
GalleyCat, July 15, Aug. 7, Sept. 2; The Guardian (UK), Aug. 29
Take a book out for a walk (PDF file)
Literary cartographies are part of a new and growing area of geographical research, according to a session held at the Royal Geographical Society conference in London in August. Geography is an essential part of any story and new dimensions of our favorite books can be experienced if read in the locations in which they are set, Jon Anderson of Cardiff University told conference-goers. “You can walk into and out of the plotline, mixing fiction with reality,” said Anderson....
Royal Geographical Society, Aug. 29
Judging books by their covers: US versus UK
Carli Spina writes: “During my trip to the UK this summer, I found myself judging covers. Books that I had already seen in the US looked so much more appealing in covers that were designed for the UK. For example, US fans of Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass preferred the UK cover (featuring a stylized drawing of a female in an active pose) so much that it was brought to the US for the paperback edition; subsequent books in the series have used a similar cover style.”...
YALSA The Hub, Aug. 29
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Collaborating with your public librarian
Joann Absi writes: “A new school year is about to begin and as you start to get your library organized, get updates on the students you will have this year, and reconnect with your faculty, don’t forget to touch base with one more person—your local public librarian. She or he can be a great asset in helping you to develop programs during the school year, meet the after-school needs of your students, and with coordination provide extra resources for your teachers.”...
AASL Blog, Aug. 28
Makerspaces can make new patrons
Visit the downtown branch of the Chattanooga (Tenn.) Public Library and you’ll find a makerspace complete with a laser cutter, a zine lab for making paper publications, a 3-D printer, and a loom. A survey by John Burke at Miami University found that 109 libraries in the US had a makerspace or were close to opening one. A Pew Internet survey found that these new activities bring in folks who normally shun libraries, often men and people with limited education....
Wired, Sept. 2
Host a Rube Goldberg competition
Erin Warzala writes: “Have you ever thought about hosting a Rube Goldberg competition at your library? In July, I hosted the Chain Reaction Challenge: an event where families were given supplies and two hours to construct a Rube Goldberg machine. I admit that I had my doubts about the program initially, especially since our target age was grades K–5. However, I found that this is a great family program that emphasizes teamwork, critical thinking, and STEM. Here are a few components you might consider.”...
ALSC Blog, Aug. 31
STEM versus STEAM
Laura Delaney writes: “Without STEM knowledge, students won’t be well-prepared to enter college and the workforce. But some are hoping that STEAM education, which includes the arts, will receive more support in classrooms. According to research compiled by the University of Florida, students who engage in music education often perform better on math tasks.”...
eSchool News, Sept. 2; University of Florida, Apr.
Getting into schools for booktalks
Abby Johnson writes: “I love booktalking. It was something I got to do on a regular basis at my previous library in Illinois; we had several regular programs set up with some of the schools up there. When I moved to my current library, I was eager to set up booktalking programs, but the marketing I was trying just didn’t seem to work. No one seemed to be interested. What was up with that? Two things I learned helped us get started.”...
Abby the Librarian, Aug. 26
Eight fun children’s libraries
Jill Harness writes: “With all the distractions of mobile devices and games, many kids never even visit the library; when they do, they find it to be boring. That’s why some libraries have really made an effort to encourage kids not only to keep reading but also to see just how much fun can be had at the library. Here are a few branches that go above and beyond when it comes to keeping kids entertained.”...
Neatorama, Sept. 2
Storytime: What is it good for?
Abby Johnson writes: “Why do you offer storytime at your library? Is it just for entertainment? Is it to give kids and parents something to do? Is it to get them to step inside the library? Is it just because you’ve always offered storytime? Is it because storytime is what libraries have? Every community with young children needs programs to help them succeed in school. And that’s exactly what storytime brings to the table.”...
ALSC Blog, Sept. 3
Millions of Internet Archive photos uploaded to Flickr
Kalev Leetaru, a Yahoo! Fellow in Residence at Georgetown University, is creating a searchable database of 12 million historical, copyright-free images. He has already uploaded 2.6 million pictures to Flickr, which are searchable thanks to metadata tags that have been automatically added. The photos and drawings are sourced from more than 600 million library book pages scanned in by the Internet Archive organization. The pictures range from 1500 to 1922, when copyright restrictions kick in....
BBC News, Aug. 29
Webinar on the Affordable Care Act
With the next open enrollment period spanning November 15, 2014, through February 15, 2015, there are more opportunities for libraries to learn more about the health marketplace. On September 24, WebJunction will offer a free webinar on the Affordable Care Act that will provide an overview of the 2015 open enrollment period and review opportunities to connect community members to health marketplace information through library service priorities and partnerships....
District Dispatch, Sept. 2
Seed libraries: Challenges and opportunities
Cindy Conner writes: “I have spent the past year studying seed libraries, researching every one I could find in the US and Canada in the process of writing a book about them. Libraries considering starting up a seed library might want to begin with annual or seasonal seed swaps. Regular seed swaps could evolve into having seeds permanently at a library with the replenishment coming from seeds donated from the swaps.”...
Mother Earth News, Aug. 29
Strange medieval books
Erik Kwakkel writes: “While printed books were shaped generically and according to the printer’s perception of what the market preferred, the medieval scribe designed a book according to the explicit instructions of its user. That’s why we come across some very strange medieval books. Scribes, especially those who were paid for their work, would accommodate any quirky wish. Here is a selection of five striking manuscripts that are literally outstanding as they are shaped unlike the bulk of surviving medieval manuscripts.”...
medievalbooks, Aug. 29
First bookmobile south of Maryland
Orty Ortwein writes: “The first bookmobile to run south of Maryland was the Pathfinder of Greenville, South Carolina, though strictly speaking it operated just outside city limits. The Greenville Public Library had been founded in 1921 but was limited to city residents. This barred the workers living in the cotton mill towns located in the city’s outskirts from using the library.”...
Bookmobiles: A History, Aug. 29
Teaser for new series, The Librarians
Remember those Librarian movies starring Noah Wyle? In case you missed it, TNT is returning to that world with a new drama series, The Librarians. On August 29, TNT released a teaser (0:20) that reveals that it will premiere on December 9. “Humanity’s end begins at the library,” the voiceover proclaims as we get a glimpse of the four new members of the team. Then we see Wyle’s Flynn Carsen trying to do some shelving in the library. Wyle will only be appearing in select episodes....
Queens Primetime TV Examiner, Aug. 29; YouTube, Aug. 29; EnStars, Aug. 30
The ultimate public library cake
Cake designer Kathy Knaus creates everything from sugary sushi rolls to a scaled-down fashion studio, but her most exceptional work is her multi-tiered library cake (right). In this fabulous creation, Knaus has hand-designed the interior section of a public library. The miniature display features a tiny table with two gumdrop reading lamps and a small chair placed directly in front of rows and rows of books....
My Modern Met, Aug. 29
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