PLA program brings teens to library careers.

American Library Association • October 31, 2017

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Inclusive Internship Initiative concludes summer pilot

Interns pose with Inclusive Internship Initiative signs at the commencement event in Chicago on October 14. Photo by Tori Soper

Laurence Deutsch writes: “This past summer, PLA piloted the Inclusive Internship Initiative, which was designed to present librarianship as a viable career option for the next generation entering the workforce. Not every teenager who participated will become a librarian, but they may be lifelong supporters of libraries. Through the initiative, PLA sponsored paid, mentored public library internships for 50 high school juniors and seniors at 33 host libraries across the US.”...

AL: The Scoop, Oct. 30; PLA, June 13

Diane Foote selected as ILA executive director

Diane Foote

The Illinois Library Association board of directors unanimously approved hiring Diane Foote (right) as the organization’s next executive director. Foote served as assistant dean of the School of Information Studies and curator of the Butler Children’s Literature Center at Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois. From 2006 to 2009 she served as ALSC executive director. Foote will officially step into the role on November 14 to succeed Robert P. Doyle, who is retiring after 20 years of service and leadership....

Illinois Library Association, Oct. 31

Sponsored Content

Handwritten text recognition

Handwritten text recognition revolutionizes research

Adam Matthew Digital is the first primary-source publisher to utilize artificial intelligence to offer transformative search capabilities with Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR) for its manuscript collections. The first collection available with this enhancement is Colonial America, sourced from The National Archives UK, providing access to thousands of documents on North America, 1606–1822. Now for the first time, all handwritten documents within the entire Colonial America series are full-text searchable. Using AI to determine possible combinations of characters in handwritten documents, HTR enables text in manuscripts to be full-text searchable.

Burton Barr Library flooding was preventable

Flooding in Burton Barr Central Library, Phoenix. Screenshot from KPNX-TV broadcast

The city of Phoenix, Arizona, fired two employees (one a project manager in the library) after concluding an investigation into flooding that occurred at Burton Barr Central Library on July 15. The library, a flagship of the 17-branch Phoenix Public Library system, will remain closed until at least June 2018. According to a memo City Manager Ed Zuercher sent to the mayor and city council on October 27, the flooding was preventable. Some employees in the public works, library, and fire departments had known there were maintenance issues with the library’s fire suppression system....

Phoenix (Ariz.) New Times, Oct. 30

Vandals set fire to school library in Tucson

Burned materials in the Amphitheater Middle School library, Tucson

Vandals set fire to a school library in the Amphitheater School District in Tucson, Arizona, on the night of October 28–29, causing significant damage to the shared library of the Amphitheater Middle School and L. M. Prince Elementary School. The library sustained smoke damage, and computer monitors and other materials were destroyed in the computer lab. Other Amphitheater schools, including the high school, were also targeted by vandals over the weekend....

Tucson (Ariz.) Daily Star, Oct. 30
University of Nebraska

Using films to depict library collections

Screenshot from “A Philosophical Question” video accompanying the “Law’s Picture Books” exhibition

Mark S. Weiner writes: “Museums and libraries today are making sophisticated use of video as a tool for public education. But how should those institutions use film when their subject is books? The answer isn’t obvious. As a scholar and filmmaker, I recently had the pleasure of collaborating on a well-received exhibition for the Grolier Club with Mike Widener, the rare book librarian at Yale Law Library. Four years in the making, the exhibit was titled ‘Law’s Picture Books: The Yale Law Library Collection’ and it had a video component.”...

Fine Books and Collections, Oct. 30; Worlds of Law, Sept. 13

Why are we drawn to horror?

Image from the Dystopia Haunted House website

Mathias Clasen writes: “There are two important take-home messages for horror fans: One, horror entertainment isn’t just mindless junk. The horror genre is ancient and universal, and horror stories serve important psychological, social, and moral functions for us. They give us insight into the darker extremes of our emotional register; they teach us about the vicissitudes of life and the complexities of psychology and sociality; and they provide moral calibration and help us grapple with notions of good and evil.”...

Religion Dispatches, Oct. 30
Latest Library Links

Author of Newberry’s Book of Magical Charms identified

Portion of a page from the Newberry Library’s Book of Magical Charms

The Book of Magical Charms is small, a bit larger than a hotel bible. Each of its 117 pages is written by hand in a dense script. The Newberry Library in Chicago put a digital copy on its website and asked the public to take a stab at transcribing and translating this 17th-century manuscript, which arrived at the library in 1988, bundled with old medical texts. Many of the book’s most active transcribers have been self-identified Wiccans and alchemists. Now, with the help of Renae Satterley, librarian at the Middle Temple Library in London, the author has been identified....

Chicago Tribune, Oct. 30

Fair use and Halloween

American Libraries Associate Editor Terra Dankowski in an A-1 steak sauce Halloween costume. Photo by Amy Carlton/American Libraries

Joshua Lamel writes: “This year, the top three most-searched Halloween costumes all come from popular movies: Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn, and the clown from Stephen King’s It. What most people don’t realize is that Halloween costumes have a direct relationship to copyright. Dressing up for Halloween—without the risk of a Hollywood movie studio or other corporations suing you for copyright infringement—is only possible because of fair use, which allows us to borrow from copyrighted works for a limited and transformative purpose.”...

Medium, Oct. 31; Google Trends
Dewey Decibel podcast

Haunted libraries in the UK

The Library at Felbrigg Hall, Norfolk, UK. Photo by National Trust

Emma French writes: “Following our look at haunted libraries in the US last year (and don’t forget the American Libraries roundup), this Halloween we turn our sights to the phantoms haunting the libraries and private collections of Britain. From a headless ghost, to numerous abnormalities surrounding a vast collection of magical literature from a late ghost hunter, here are some stories around apparitions that have been glimpsed among the stacks—you can choose whether or not you believe them to be true.”...

OUPblog, Oct. 31; Oct. 31, 2016; American Libraries feature, Oct. 28, 2015

Why do people see ghosts?

Postcard showing fake image of the ghost of Sybil Penn, the Grey Lady, at Hampton Court Palace, London

Daniel Kolitz writes: “According to Pew Research Center, close to one-fifth of Americans believe they’ve seen a ghost—a somewhat surprising statistic, given all the other ancient beliefs we’ve mostly jettisoned. For this week’s Giz Asks, we reached out to a number of psychologists and neuroscientists to figure out why this might be—and in the process learned that, given the number of ways our brain has of tricking us into seeing things, it’s a wonder that that statistic isn’t higher.”...

Gizmodo, Oct. 30; Pew Research Center: FactTank, Oct. 30, 2015
ALA news

The oldest treasures from 12 great libraries

The New York Public Library chose the Landévennec Gospels (9th century, Britanny) showing a Celtic influence

Sarah Laskow writes: “When Atlas Obscura contacted 12 of our favorite libraries to ask about the oldest books in their collections, we were treated to a wealth of information about the treasures they hold. In the history of writing, bound books as we know them today arrive fairly late, so there are no actual ‘books’ on this list. Instead, this is a wondrous collection of illuminated manuscripts, papyrus scrolls, and clay tablets. Some of these items you can even see in person, if you pay a visit.”...

Atlas Obscura, Oct. 27

A guide to improving Android battery life

Android battery saver settings

Cameron Summerson writes: “Once upon a time, you had to keep an eye on your Android phone to make sure the battery wasn’t being depleted prematurely. Manually toggling connections and adjusting brightness are all things of the past now—but there are still things you can do to maximize your handset’s battery life. If you do have one of the newer versions of Android (Oreo or Nougat) the following will also apply, though to a somewhat lesser extent. We’ll cover some of the newer features—like Android’s built-in Battery Optimizations.”...

How-To Geek, Oct. 30

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