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Salt Lake City Public Library hostage incident

Sun, 25 Jun 2017 01:14:27 +0000

20/20 did a re-enactment of the Salt Lake City Public Library hostage incident



How a Company You’ve Never Heard of Sends You Letters about Your Medical Condition

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 19:23:27 +0000

This is the hidden underside of the browsing experience. When you’re surfing the web, sitting alone at your computer or with your smartphone clutched in your hand, it feels private and ephemeral. You feel freed to look for the things that you’re too embarrassed or ashamed to ask another person. But increasingly, there is digital machinery at work turning your fleeting search whims into hard data trails. The mining of secrets for profit is done invisibly, shrouded in the mystery of “confidential partnerships,” “big data,” and “proprietary technology.” People in databases don’t know that dossiers are being compiled on them, let alone have the chance to correct any mistakes in them.
From How a Company You’ve Never Heard of Sends You Letters about Your Medical Condition



US court grants Elsevier millions in damages from Sci-Hub

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 17:14:56 +0000

One of the world’s largest science publishers, Elsevier, won a default legal judgement on 21 June against websites that provide illicit access to tens of millions of research papers and books. A New York district court awarded Elsevier US$15 million in damages for copyright infringement by Sci-Hub, the Library of Genesis (LibGen) project and related sites.

Full article at Nature.com



Woman says Librarians Know Who Hit her Car but Can't Tell Her

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 19:08:04 +0000

The alleged perp checked out a book and thus the staff was unable to give her the name of the driver.

Here's the story from WSBTV in Atlanta. The woman whose car was hit feels as if she's being unfairly discriminated against.




Ukrainian Librarian Punished for Not Sticking to the Party Line

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 13:53:50 +0000

Interesting story from the New York Times last week.

MOSCOW — A Russian court on Monday sentenced a former director of the Library of Ukrainian Literature in Moscow to a four-year suspended prison term for inciting hatred toward Russians and embezzling public funds, in a case that her lawyers described as an attack on cultural figures with ties to Ukraine.

The court ruled that Natalia G. Sharina (whose library has since been closed) purchased anti-Russian books and other materials and put them on the library’s shelves to help Ukrainian nationalists get a foothold in Moscow. Her lawyers said that they would appeal the sentence in Russian courts and also seek redress in the European Court of Human Rights.




When in Rome...

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 14:13:39 +0000

...visit a library! Not only a feast for the mind but also for the eye.

New York Times has a lovely feature on Italian libraries and their treasures, inside and out.

(image)




The Cruelest Cut

Wed, 07 Jun 2017 15:17:52 +0000

The Missoulian has a report on the slashing of the budget for Talking Books in Montana libraries.

The proposed cuts merge the Talking Book Library and eliminate the program’s director and one of three reader’s advisers.




Museum dedicated to Dr. Seuss opens in Massachusetts

Tue, 06 Jun 2017 14:58:06 +0000

Topic: 
The museum dedicated to Theodor Geisel — who under the pen name Dr. Seuss wrote and illustrated dozens of rhyming children's books including "The Cat in the Hat" and "Green Eggs and Ham" — features interactive exhibits, artwork never before displayed publicly and explains how his childhood experiences in the city about 90 miles (145 kilometers) west of Boston shaped his work. Full article



After Words with Senator Ben Sasse

Mon, 05 Jun 2017 04:36:08 +0000

Topic: 
On C-Span BookTV

Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE) talked about his book The Vanishing American Adult: Our Coming-of-Age Crisis--and How to Rebuild a Culture of Self-Reliance, in which he looks at how to engage adolescents and young adults to become independent, active, and engaged citizens. He was interviewed by Steven Olikara.
See video here: https://www.c-span.org/video/?428117-2/words-senator-ben-sasse



What should we keep?

Thu, 01 Jun 2017 00:09:20 +0000

Topic: 
In which John looks at the one photograph of his 23-year-old self, considers what to keep from life, and wonders what (if anything) from nerdfighteria should be professionally archived. Also considered: Whether there will be humans for much longer, digitial archiving efforts, and what pictures do.

John was contacted by a librarian and that is one reason behind the creation of this video.

width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/C6v-uNFF7dw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>



The Denver Library--An Unofficial Homeless Shelter?

Tue, 30 May 2017 13:15:26 +0000

From Colorado Public Radio a piece about the main library and how staff are trying to safeguard library visitors.

One person recently died in the library bathroom from a drug overdose. That inspired the library to began a program to instruct staff how to administer the drug antidote, Narcan.

"A lot of the root causes of the behaviors that are finding their way through our doors are happening throughout Denver, and that's daunting,” said Chris Henning, communications manager for the Denver Public Library. “We're trying to do what we can do specifically for our facilities to make sure they're safe. And at the same time, help the city address these bigger problems. These societal problems however we can to try and make an impact on that, because they're just coming at us at a rate that we have not seen before."




It's Out! This is What a Librarian Looks Like

Mon, 22 May 2017 16:20:03 +0000

Topic: 
From The Huffington Post news of the publication of This Is What a Librarian Looks Like by Kyle Cassidy.

(image)

Kudos to the authors and the participants! Tell us your thoughts about participating and the finished product in the comments below.




A look back at Silicon Valley's adolescence

Fri, 19 May 2017 14:36:03 +0000

Topic: 
The images, captured on film, often in black and white, are also being brought into the digital age, alongside the millions of others that comprise the Chronicle’s photo archive. Negatives and prints are gradually being scanned, and some of the best are being featured in the Instagram account SF Chronicle Vault. Atlas Obscura spoke with Timothy O’Rourke, Assistant Managing Editor of the Chronicle and Executive Producer of SFChronicle.com, about organizing millions of images, sharing San Francisco’s history, and stumbling across the perfect image.
From How San Francisco Chronicled Its Own Tech Boom - Atlas Obscura



50 Books Recommended by This Year's TED Speakers

Fri, 19 May 2017 04:11:13 +0000

Topic: 
The much-buzzed-about conference generated a gargantuan list of intriguing book recommendations https://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/50-books-recommended-by-this-years-ted-speakers.html



Library Brings Drag Queens, Kids Together for Story Hour

Thu, 18 May 2017 18:18:30 +0000

Topic: 
It takes a certain something to be a good storyteller: enthusiasm, timing and a flair for the dramatic. Performers at a children's story hour at a New York City library have all that and then some — they're drag queens. About once a month since last fall, the Brooklyn Public Library has been presenting Drag Queen Story Hour, where performers with names such as Lil Miss Hot Mess and Ona Louise regale an audience of young children and their parents.
From Library Brings Drag Queens, Kids Together for Story Hour - The New York Times



Out of time: F Scott Fitzgerald and an America in decline

Thu, 18 May 2017 13:26:53 +0000

Topic: 
F Scott Fitzgerald’s publishing career lasted just two decades, from 1920 to 1940, when he died aged 44. But in that brief time he published four novels, a play and 178 short stories (some of which he compiled into four collections), while leaving an unfinished novel as well as many incomplete stories, fragments, notes, screenplays and film scenarios. Most have gradually trickled into print over the 77 years since his death, and with the publication of I’d Die For You, the trickle all but ends: these are the last known uncollected stories from the archives.
From Out of time: F Scott Fitzgerald and an America in decline



House Votes to Limit Powers of First Black Librarian of Congress

Thu, 18 May 2017 01:00:25 +0000

From Black Press USA (but few other sources) comes news that limits the responsibilities and the tenure of the Librarian of Congress Dr. Carla Hayden.

The bill makes the head of the Copyright Office, the Register of Copyrights, a presidential appointment that would have to be confirmed by the Senate, rather than an appointment by the Librarian of Congress, as it has been since 1870. The bill also limits the position of Librarian of Congress to a ten-year term.

The previous Librarian of Congress, James Billington, served in the position for 28 years though he was a Russian scholar and not really am MLS.




How real books have trumped ebooks

Mon, 15 May 2017 13:35:57 +0000

Topic: 
But after reaching a peak in 2014, sales of e-readers and ebooks have slowed and hardback sales have surged. The latest figures from the Publishing Association showed ebook sales falling 17% in 2016, with an 8% rise in their physical counterparts. At the same time, publishers’ production values have soared and bookshops have begun to fill up with books with covers of jewel-like beauty, often with gorgeously textured pages. As the great American cover designer Peter Mendelsund put it to me, books have “more cloth, more foil, more embossing, page staining, sewn bindings, deckled edges”.
From How real books have trumped ebooks | Books | The Guardian



NYC libraries plagued by leaky roofs, poor electrical systems, report says

Mon, 15 May 2017 12:10:17 +0000

Topic: 
A report set to be released by the three city library systems Monday highlights some of the worst conditions at branches across the boroughs and expresses hope the city will provide some relief. The 15-page report, “Time to Renew,” says despite a $300 million capital infusion from the recent budget, several branches in the New York, Brooklyn and Queens public library systems are still suffering severe infrastructure problems.
From NYC libraries plagued by leaky roofs, poor electrical systems, report says | am New York



The Collector’s Fallacy: Why We Gather Things (like books) We Don’t Need

Sun, 14 May 2017 18:11:13 +0000

Topic: 
Buying books does not equal reading books. We all know that. Yet, so many end up victims of tsundoku anyway. Why? One problem, I think, is that collecting feels like learning. Each time we discover a new productivity toy, internet article or bestselling book, our brain sends us a jolt of dopamine (our brain’s “reward” hormone) for doing nothing at all. Ahh, says our brain, a job well done.
From The Collector’s Fallacy: Why We Gather Things We Don’t Need



How Jean Stein Reinvented the Oral History

Sun, 14 May 2017 16:59:15 +0000

Topic: 
As anyone who’s read Stein’s books knows, her approach encourages her subjects to air their grievances; as people opened up to her, they revealed stories of turbulence and violence, plus the tensions of classism, sexism, racism, and ageism. McNeil and McCain, who are currently working on an oral history of 1969, have noticed this in their interviews, too, and it may be Stein’s most remarkable legacy: the creation of a form that championed a mosaiclike reality, where every person’s account carries an equal weight as “truth.” Her “oral narrative” carves out a place where history is illuminated by people who had a hand in shaping it, yet had never been so much asked for their opinions, and are held up as sacred as the deeds that line history textbooks. “You can really document injustice and the way things went down so well,” McNeil notes. “I think Jean Stein deserves a medal for that.”
From How Jean Stein Reinvented the Oral History



3 Most Popular Books From Each Decade 1950-2010

Sun, 14 May 2017 16:22:28 +0000

Topic: 
Everyone knows knowledge is a vital aspect when it comes to moving forward. By looking at popular literature in a time period you can delve into the people of the time’s though process. Let’s get into the 3 best selling books from each decade starting at 1950-1959 and going to where we are now 2010 onward. If the books are available on Amazon links will be provided for those interested in reading them.
From 3 Most Popular Books From Each Decade 1950-2010 – Factual Future



The Right to Read

Sat, 13 May 2017 19:40:21 +0000

Topic: 
Later on, Dan would learn there was a time when anyone could go to the library and read journal articles, and even books, without having to pay. There were independent scholars who read thousands of pages without government library grants. But in the 1990s, both commercial and nonprofit journal publishers had begun charging fees for access. By 2047, libraries offering free public access to scholarly literature were a dim memory.
This article appeared in the February 1997 issue of Communications of the ACM (Volume 40, Number 2). From The Road To Tycho, a collection of articles about the antecedents of the Lunarian Revolution, published in Luna City in 2096. From The Right to Read - GNU Project - Free Software Foundation



The best American wall map

Sat, 13 May 2017 00:37:52 +0000

Topic: 
By contrast, David Imus worked alone on his map seven days a week for two full years. Nearly 6,000 hours in total. It would be prohibitively expensive just to outsource that much work. But Imus—a 35-year veteran of cartography who’s designed every kind of map for every kind of client—did it all by himself. He used a computer (not a pencil and paper), but absolutely nothing was left to computer-assisted happenstance. Imus spent eons tweaking label positions. Slaving over font types, kerning, letter thicknesses. Scrutinizing levels of blackness. It’s the kind of personal cartographic touch you might only find these days on the hand-illustrated ski-trail maps available at posh mountain resorts.
From The best American wall map: David Imus’ “The Essential Geography of the United States of America”



How J.J. Abrams Reinvented the Written Word with 'S.'

Fri, 12 May 2017 21:20:28 +0000

Topic: 
“It made me smile, this optimistic, romantic idea that you could leave a book with a message for someone. It reminded me of being in college, and seeing the notes that people would leave in the margins of the books they’d checked out of the library.” With the help of creative writing mastermind and novelist Doug Dorst, Abrams built on the romantic idea of the found object as a storytelling device. He constructed, from the ground up, a meta-narrative, centered upon a novel titled Ship of Theseus, written by fictitious author V.M. Straka, in 1949.
From How J.J. Abrams Reinvented the Written Word with 'S.'



Top 20 Library Scandals in Recent History

Thu, 11 May 2017 17:54:12 +0000

Topic: 
Hopefully these examples show how at times it’s worth turning our gaze inward to discover how we can do things better. That’s why, although there’s certainly plenty of cases of library patrons behaving badly — from hackers to politicians to exhibitionists (to say nothing about irresponsible authors) — the focus of this list is primarily on librarians, along with the government and vendors that we do business with. So then, in the spirit of those words from Alice Roosevelt Longworth, “If you can’t say something good about someone, sit here by me."
From Top 20 Library Scandals in Recent History – John Hubbard – Medium



The Strange and Grotesque Doodles in the Margins of Medieval Books

Thu, 11 May 2017 12:07:22 +0000

Topic: 
Manuscripts can be seen as time capsules,” says Johanna Green, Lecturer in Book History and Digital Humanities at the University of Glasgow. “And marginalia provide layers of information as to the various human hands that have shaped their form and content.” From intriguingly detailed illustrations to random doodles, the drawings and other marks made along the edges of pages in medieval manuscripts—called marginalia—are not just peripheral matters. “Both tell us huge amounts about a book’s history and the people who have contributed to it, from creation to the present day.”
From The Strange and Grotesque Doodles in the Margins of Medieval Books - Atlas Obscura



What it was like to be peer reviewed in the 1860s

Wed, 10 May 2017 14:14:55 +0000

That path from submission to revision and publication will sound familiar to modern scientists. However, Tyndall’s experience with the Philosophical Transactions—in particular, with its refereeing system—was quite different from what authors experience today. Tracing “On the absorption and radiation of heat” through the Royal Society’s editorial process highlights how one of the world’s most established refereeing systems worked in the 1860s. Rather than relying on anonymous referee reports to improve their papers, authors engaged in extensive personal exchanges with their reviewers. Such a collegial approach gradually lost favor but recently has undergone something of a resurgence.
From What it was like to be peer reviewed in the 1860s



One of the first books ever printed in England discovered by university librarian

Tue, 09 May 2017 16:42:55 +0000

Topic: 
The University of Reading has discovered pages of one of the first books printed in England, dating from the 15th century. The pages of a mediaeval priest’s handbook, dating to between 1476 and 1477, were found in the University’s archives by Special Collections librarian Erika Delbecque while she was cataloguing thousands of items showing the history of print and graphic design.
From One of the first books ever printed in England discovered by university librarian | The Independent



The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Is Looking for a Librarian

Tue, 09 May 2017 13:57:46 +0000

Topic: 
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, or “Rock Hall,” is best known for their annual selection of new inductees. But the museum also boasts an incredibly comprehensive library and archive chock full of scholarship and memorabilia, from photonegatives of Aretha Franklin in the studio to Jimi Hendrix’s handwritten ‘Purple Haze’ lyric sheet to a full drawer of Kid Rock posters.
From The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Is Looking for a Librarian - Atlas Obscura