American Library Association • May 5, 2015

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Library Systems Report, 2015

Library Systems Report, by Marshall Breeding

Marshall Breeding writes: “Tied to the economy of libraries, the vendors that make up the library technology industry support a stable but highly constrained economic sector, with global opportunities. Library budgets may never recover to pre-recession levels, fueling interest in technology to improve their efficiency and the impact of collection resources. Products able to deliver efficiency, innovation, and excellent user experience are especially well-positioned in this phase of the history of the industry.”...

American Libraries feature

National Library Legislative Day, May 4–5

Former Sen. Byron Dorgan at the NLLD opening briefing

May 4–5 marks ALA’s National Library Legislative Day, the annual event when hundreds of library supporters from across the country meet in Washington, D.C., with their members of Congress to advocate for library funding. Former Senator Byron Dorgan (D-N.Dak., right) jumpstarted the event by discussing the importance of constituent advocacy at the opening briefing. On May 5, Virtual Library Legislative Day, you can take action and let your voice be heard. ALSC’s Advocacy and Legislation Committee has developed resources so you can contact congressional leaders from home....

ALA Office of Government Relations, May 4; ALSC

Choose Privacy Week, May 1–7

The Multnomah Public Library observed Choose Privacy Week on Saturday, May 2, with “Is Privacy an Option?” a talk led by Mark Alfino

Libraries and schools around the country are observing Choose Privacy Week 2015, May 1–7, with a variety of activities. Here is a sampling of what libraries are doing. The Choose Privacy Week blog offers important information on “anonymous” aggregated data, the virtues of encyption, patron privacy in discovery services, and strong passwords....

Choose Privacy Week, May 1–5

Louisiana sheriff’s department helps return rare books

Charles Lucien Bonaparte’s Sulla seconda edizione del Regno animale del Barone Cuvier: Osservazioni, and William Woods’s Birds of Connecticut

Terrebonne Parish (La.) Sheriff’s Sergeant Michael Morrison helped investigators with the Smithsonian Institution find two stolen rare books, Charles Lucien Bonaparte’s Sulla seconda edizione del Regno animale del Barone Cuvier: Osservazioni, and William Woods’s Birds of Connecticut. In 2011, Morrison responded to a 911 call from an intoxicated woman who claimed she knew the alleged thief of the books. A four-year investigation eventually helped return the books to their rightful place, the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C....

Thibodaux (La.) Daily Comet, Apr. 29

Voters approve new tax for New Orleans Public Library

Milton H. Latter branch of the New Orleans Public Library

On May 2, New Orleans voters overwhelmingly approved a measure to raise property taxes to provide more money for the struggling New Orleans Public Library system. The request for a 25-year, 2.5-mill tax that would raise $8.25 million annually for the library system—money that city and library officials say is necessary for the system to continue operating—cruised to an easy victory, with about 75% of voters in favor....

New Orleans Advocate, May 4

Oldest Ten Commandments on display in Israel

Part of the All Souls Deuteronomy, containing the oldest extant copy of the Decalogue

The world’s oldest complete copy of the Ten Commandments is going on rare display at Jerusalem’s Israel Museum in an exhibit tracing civilization’s most pivotal moments. A 2,000-year-old Dead Sea Scroll, All Souls Deuteronomy, from a collection of the world’s most ancient biblical manuscripts, has never before been publicly displayed in Israel and has only been shown in brief exhibits abroad....

Associated Press, May 5
ALA Annual Conference

10 ways to make your Summer Reading program inclusive

Summer Reading program

Jordan Boaz writes: “Youth services library staff have summer reading on the brain this time of year. My library is always looking for ways to make our Summer Reading program as accessible and inclusive as possible. Renee Grassi’s post inspired me to create this list. For example, for patrons seeking sensory experiences while reading, look into having volunteers create tactile books. This can even be a craft program during the summer so that kids can create their own original books to interact with.”...

ALSC Blog, Apr. 3, May 2

Libraries and the management mindset

Libraries must create delight in patrons. Screenshot from The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

Steve Denning writes: “For several decades, libraries have made significant efforts to make themselves relevant to the computer age with elaborate efforts to computerize services and develop new technology. Will this effort pay off? To answer that question, we need to recognize that the computer age is not fundamentally about computerization. The computer age is about the change in management mindset enabled by computerization.”...

Forbes, Apr. 28

How to soothe digital eyestrain

Causes of digital eyestrain

Amy-Mae Elliott writes: “Nearly four in 10 millennials or one-third of Gen Xers that spend at least nine hours on a digital device each day are putting the health of their eyes at serious risk. A recent study (PDF file) from the Vision Council suggests that 68% of millennials report suffering from the effects of digital eyestrain. For most of us, looking at screens throughout the day is utterly unavoidable. So what can we do to protect our eyes?”...

Mashable, May 5; 2015 Digital Eye Strain Report

Secrets of the Windows control panel

Control panel applets by category

Eric Griffith writes: “With the Windows control panel, you can add or remove software and hardware, administer user accounts, take care of your security settings, and change how Windows looks and acts. It’s powerful stuff. And scary for non-techies. Consider this a quick-and-dirty intro to some of the less obvious things you should know about accessing the Control Panel—which is, really, just a virtual folder full of applets in a single location within Windows.”...

PC Magazine, May 5

Top 10 crime fiction for youth

Cover of Skink: No Surrender, by Carl Hiaasen

Sarah Hunter writes: “From lost toys to murder, the mysteries in this year’s top 10 crime fiction for youth, reviewed in Booklist between May 1, 2014, and April 15, 2015, are no match for the deductive skills of these crackerjack sleuths. For example, Carl Hiaasen’s Skink: No Surrender: When Richard’s missing cousin, Malley, drops a clue about spotting a rare bird, he knows she’s in danger. With the help of Skink, a character from the author’s adult fiction, Richard careens around Florida to track down his cousin.”...

Booklist Online, May 1

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